The Hawaiian Islands are considered one of the most beautiful places in America, that many mainland citizens are dreaming of one day escaping to. The colorful culture permeates nearly every aspect of life on these islands that are surrounded by the crystal blue waves and surf of the mighty Pacific Ocean. With so many things to do and places to see, it’s no wonder so many try to make it out here at least once in their lifetime, whereas others actually decide to not just be tourists but actually relocate here permanently.
Whether you just want to tour the islands using your own car or you’re looking to move here and bring your family cars with you, they have to get there somehow. As you know, driving here is physically impossible, so having them shipped becomes the only way to get it done.
Also Read: Tips For Owning a Car in Hawaii
It can sometimes be possible to arrange your own shipping container that you put your vehicles in, but that can mean you’re without your car, truck, van, or SUV for possibly up to two months. While our shipping company doesn’t provide overnight service, we’re faster than that, and we specialize in vehicle shipping to and from the islands.
Keep reading into the following paragraphs to learn the basics about shipping your car to Hawaii, how long it takes, and how it works, along with common questions.
We offer our services at multiple ports for both arrival and departure. Since Hawaii as a state is a chain of islands, we offer at least one port on each major island, depending on where you want to be. We also service multiple ports on the West Coast of the mainland, with a select few options on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Seaboard, although service to and from those locations obviously takes a bit longer, as ships must pass through the Panama Canal or even go around South America.
If you want to ship larger vehicles, like an RV, oversized freight, or a commercial truck, we ask customers to actually call in to talk to one of our staff rather than just put in an online reservation, as a consultation can come up with the best possible solution for your larger vehicles.
For your convenience, we do offer to pick up and transport services for select mainland ports, where someone will show up at your door to take your car to an enclosed storage area as they await shipment across the Pacific. If you live close enough to a departure port and want to drop off your vehicle on your own, you’re certainly welcome to do so. Many who don’t live nearby do this before boarding a flight at a local airport.
Our rates are highly competitive for the market of Hawaii, although the specific costs will depend on the size and number of your vehicles, the port of departure, and whether your destination port is Honolulu or one of the other ports.
West Coast shipping often happens from ports in California and Washington state. From the time we get your car, we usually have them in Honolulu with a week and a half. This is assuming the drop-offs line up with your vessel schedule, all documentation is taken care of in advance, and the car is ready to go.
If you need to ship to any of the islands other than Oahu, where Honolulu is, then you should factor in an additional week of transit time from the West Coast.
East Coast and Gulf of Mexico residents need to have their vehicles shipped to the West Coast first. That can take an additional two weeks, either by road or sea. Residents of inland states can use road carriers to get their vehicles directly to our West Coast ports. It’s good to call us in advance and find out which one is best in such cases.
First of all, don’t fill up your tank. Many clients know that gas is a lot more expensive in Hawaii, so they try and top off their tank before departure. However, gas is a dangerous substance and regulations prevent us from taking any vehicle with more than a quarter of a tank.
If you have a battery or alarm system, those also have to be disconnected entirely prior to loading. This prevents fire hazards on our ships.
It can be a common practice to pack a vehicle full of household goods and personal belongings before using a domestic roadside carrier, but this isn’t allowed for overseas shipping. Even your trunk has to be empty. Anything you leave will be removed for liability reasons. Exceptions include spare tires, the jack, and a child care seat.
If multiple parties are on the title or registration, everyone must be present for the drop-off. A notarized letter authorizing a shipment can excuse an absence.
Keep in mind that even though you’re shipping from one state to the next, regulations can still come into play. For instance, if you ship from Hawaii to Washington state, certain agricultural and environmental rules are quite stringent about outside dirt and soil, so cleaning the vehicle is essential. Also, Hawaii has title and registration requirements for anyone moving back to the mainland.
It’s not possible to mail your car to yourself, and only the super-rich can afford to pack their cars in a plane. Using a general shipping container is often possible, but that can take sometimes multiple months, nor would the shipper really be looking out for your freight. Using our services means your vehicles are carried in the hands of specialists dedicated to getting cars, SUVs, trucks, vans, and even motorcycles between the paradise that is the Hawaiian Islands and the mainland continent. Use us for the simplicity and peace of mind, and if you have any concerns or questions about shipping your car to Hawaii, please feel free to consult us right away.