Need help shipping cars from USA to Nigeria? Here is a free guide.

Car importation is big business in Nigeria. This is largely due to the fact that the auto manufacturing industry is almost non-existent. The United States of America is a major source of cars being imported.

Because of this, we will discuss how to start shipping cars from this destination to Nigeria. We have also covered grey areas which have proven quite difficult for importers.

Port of Destination

This is an important detail you shouldn’t ignore. Your port of destination will determine your overall car shipment costs. It’s no secret that there are several seaports in Nigeria. But these can be classified under major and minor seaports.

Our focus will be on the major seaports.

The major seaports in Nigeria include the Apapa Port in Lagos (also the largest), The Tin Can Island Port in Lagos and the Calabar Port in Calabar. Others are the Rivers Port Complex in Rivers State, Onne Port (also in Rivers) as well as Delta Port. While all these are major ports, they don’t receive equal traffic.

Lagos ports are the best destination for shipping cars from the USA. This is the corridor through which a large chunk of car shipments from the USA arrive. As a result, the rates are more competitive due to higher traffic.

Ports of Origin

Our focus is on shipping cars from USA to Nigeria. Hence, it will only be fair to mention a list of ports you can use. Some of the most used ports in the USA for shipping cars to Nigeria include the Port of Los Angeles CA, Port of Providence FI, Port of Miami FL and Port of Philadelphia PA.

Others are Port of Newark NJ, Port of Seattle WA, Port of Norfolk NJ, and Port of Savannah GA. There are also the Ports of Baltimore MD, Jacksonville FL, Bayonne NJ, Houston TX, Galveston TX, Boston MA, and the Port of Charleston SC. You can use any of these ports for the shipment of your car(s) to  Nigeria.

RORO or Container Shipping?

You’d get familiar with these terms once you get involved. But for the uninitiated, RORO simply stands for Roll-On Roll-Off.

So what does this mean? It simply means the use of specialized ships known as vehicle carriers. These carriers are designed in such a way that cars are driven onto the ship decks and secured or harnessed. These will be driven off as well on arrival.

Now that you know, you’d have to choose your most preferred shipping options. That is, RORO or container shipping. But there are further details you need to know. This information is necessary for beginners to understand the procedure.

  • RORO Shipping

The general concept of RORO shipping has been explained. However, kick starting the process is as important.

RORO shipping is popular due to its several advantages. These include a cheaper car shipping option to Nigeria, efficient as well as faster.

Faster in the context of shipping to certain destinations in Nigeria compared to others. Such ports include Tin Can Island and Apapa.

The Shipment Process

The shipment process starts with delivering your car to the loading terminal. You can choose the nearest port to you.

But if this seems like a herculean task to you, your freight company can handle it for you. After the car must have been successfully transported, it is received at the port and readied for shipment.

Your car or cars are parked at a designated point before they are loaded onto the vessel. All the procedures here are handled by the shipping company right up to the arrival at destination. On arrival from the USA, your cargo (in this case your vehicles) will need to be cleared. The Nigerian Customs Service oversees this process.

Import duties will be charged on each car depending on its value of purchase. But cost incurred is most times lower than container shipments.

  • Container Car Shipping from USA to Nigeria

Apart from RORO shipping, container shipment is an alternative you can use. However, this is most useful when shipping multiple cars to Nigeria. Here, cars are loaded into containers prior to shipment. Another benefit you get by using container shipping is its protection against the elements. 2 main types of containers are used. These are the 20 and 40 ft. containers.

But this may bring up certain questions such as; what if I need to ship 1 or 2 cars but prefer container shipment? Can

I save cost by consolidating my car shipments into a single container?

These are important questions whose answers will help you weigh your options. As such, the following should provide you with the information you need.

You can still use the container car shipping option even if you have 1 or 2 cars. Under such conditions, the “Less Than Container Load” LCL option will be your preferred option. Here, other cars having the same destination (Nigeria) will be included.

The answer for the second question is a resounding YES! And this is made possible by the “Full Container Load” provision. This is for persons shipping multiple cars.

Here, your cars are packed into a 40 ft. container. This normally holds a maximum of 4 cars. It also saves you cost on the cost you’d have to pay per car.

Arrival Time After USA to Nigeria Shipping

Arrival time is an important factor to consider when shipping cars from the USA to Nigeria. You should expect this information from whichever shipping company you choose.

For most, typical arrival times range from 3 to 4 weeks. This is fair enough considering the fact that certain routes are considered faster and better than others.

These are ways to start your car shipment process from the USA to Nigeria. It’s best to carry out as much inquiry as possible. This will help you avoid common mistakes as well as enable you get the best shipment deal possible.