Procedure of International Freight Forwarding for Boats

International freight forwarding of boats can be done with ease if you know the whole procedure of international shipping. The basic method is enumerated in this article.

Getting Quotation

Get the quotes for shipping your boat overseas from a few shipping agents. Compare and analyze the services offered by them. Once you have zeroed in on a shipping agent next step is to book the cargo.

Booking Cargo

Once your cargo is booked with a shipping company please check whether the shipping will be done on a RO / RO vessel or it will be loaded inside the ocean container. The containers are of following sizes, 20′ x 8′ x 8′, 40′ x 8′ x 8′ or 40′ (high cube) x 8′ x 9′ or open 20 feet and 40 feet Flat rack containers. There is another option for international freight forwarding for boats which are bulky, that is, ON DECK or Break bulk shipping but in this case the boat will be on top of the vessel and will be subjected to wind and water.

Documents Needed

To export any vehicle US customs requires proof of ownership. The original title / foreign title / MSO will suffice for ownership. For older boats notarized bill of sale is required. If the boat is financed then an authorization letter from finance company is required along with certified copy of title. These documents are necessary while doing international freight forwarding for boats.


US Customs and Border Protection may inspect the cargo / boat and documents. The cost of inspection will be added to customs invoice.


Once the boat is cleared for export, it will be scheduled to be loaded in the next vessel for the destination. A Ocean bill of lading will be issued and the ETA (expected time of arrival) at the destination will be given.

Marine Insurance

While International Freight Forwarding for Boats two types of marine insurance available are ALL RISK and TOTAL LOSS. The ‘total loss’ does not cover the damages to the boat during loading and unloading etc., rather it covers the cargo in the cases it is stolen, damaged by fire or lost at sea.

Delivery of Boat

The shipping company will give the details of their agent / branch office at destination. You must keep track of the arrival date with your shipping agent on regular basis. Once your boat arrives at destination do not delay the pick-up as the demurrage starts after few days of free storage period. You must know the import procedure of the destination country or contact their customs office or any clearing agent for clearance of import cargo after paying import duties / taxes, if any.

So have a nice time and pleasure in your boat after successfully completing International Freight Forwarding for Boats.