Even though shipping your vehicle across the ocean sounds like a pretty hard and complicated task, in practice it not much harder than regular car shipping. We would like to give you the general idea of how shipping to and from Hawaii is performed and draw your attention to several important things about it.
How is it done?
First, the vehicle is either driven or hauled to one of the port terminals where it is further loaded on a special car shipping vessel. Depending on the vehicle condition, it’s either driven or rolled up the ramp when loaded.
All vehicles are tightly secured with special lashings inside the ship so they are not moving around during the transportation. Because they are fully enclosed the vehicles are not exposed to the elements or any ocean hazards.
After your car is delivered to the destination port, it can be picked up right away or stored* for a few days until you or a specially hired carrier comes to take it to the needed location.
*Storage facilities are different from port to port, but majority of them provide at least 1 or 2 days of free storage.
Are there any restrictions?
The main restriction in shipping a vehicle to or from Hawaii is connected with the size of the vehicle.
Since all cars are transported on an enclosed deck of a cargo ship, the dimensions of each vehicle cannot exceed 21’8”L, 8’W and 7’H.
If the size of your vehicle is bigger, it will be considered as an oversized load which will require customized logistics and extra charges.
Another restriction is associated with the condition of the vehicle. The majority of carrier companies that deal with Hawaii shipping do not provide service for inoperable vehicles and those which do charge about $150 of extra fee.
Other limitations may apply to ground clearance of the vehicle and fullness of a gas tank (no more than ¼ full) as well as personal items inside the vehicle.
Mainland port cities
- Washington (Seattle, Tacoma)
- California (Oakland, Long Beach, Hayward, Covina, San Diego)
Hawaii port cities
- Honolulu (Oahu island)
- Kahului (Maui island)
- Hilo (Big Island)
- Kawaihae (Big Island)
- Nawiliwili (Kauai island)
- Kaunakanai (Molokai island)
- Kaumalapau (Lana’I island)
Note. Since, each port has its own schedule and shipping days it is important to start planning the transportation at least 3-4 weeks ahead.
How long does the transportation take?
The shipping time mostly depends on origin and destination port, but on average you will be separated from your vehicle for about 14 – 21 days. However, if your vehicle is on the opposite coast or somewhere in the middle of the US Mainland, then it obviously takes extra transit time to get your vehicle to the port city.
What is the price for shipping?
The price for shipping a car to or from Hawaii usually consists of two parts:
- land transportation cost – if you need to hire a carrier to get your car from Door to Port or from Port to Door
- sea transportation cost – actual Port-to-Port transit
The dimensions of your vehicle have direct impact on the price as the shipping rate is different for regular sedans and larger cars (i.e. SUVs, pickup trucks, vans etc.) for both land and sea transportation.
All vehicles are divided into two major rate categories according to their size:
If the vehicle is 21’8”L or 7’W or 6’3”H or smaller
Larger vehicles group
If the vehicle is 21’8”L or is between 7’ – 8’W or is between 6’3” – 7’H
Contact us to receive a customized quote for your transportation.
The payment for Port-to-Port transportation must be made in full before the shipping day.
If you are looking to hire a carrier to transport your vehicle between your front door and port, there is a separate charge for that service:
Door-to-Port – the payment is collected prior to or at the pick up
Port-to-Door – the payment can be made upfront or upon delivery
Note. The broker deposit is paid only after the car is picked up.