Can I Ship A Car That Is Financed? What To Know & Not To Do

A good car is something most of us need to get around—going to work, taking our kids to school, going to the beach, and more. But there may be instances when you need to relocate and transport your vehicle out of state or even out of the country!

If you are somehow in a position where you need to ship your car elsewhere, you probably have plenty of questions. We’ll go over those concerns and try to address them as best as possible.  

At the end of the day, can you ship a car if you still owe money on it? Or are you better off exploring other options? Let’s find out about all that and more below.

Shipping a Financed Car inside the United States

Shipping a financed car within the contiguous United States isn’t likely to give you any issues. Most banks or lienholders will allow borrowers to ship their vehicles, especially if you’re a borrower in good standing. If you pay your loan amortizations on time, you should be good to go! 

However, doing your due diligence and researching more about the topic is a great way to ensure you won’t be overstepping any boundaries. Here are some things you should remember when shipping a financed car. 

Read Your Lease or Loan Contract

Your contract is the lifeblood of your financed vehicle—and knowing its contents will make or break your ability to handle your car and finances with the finesse of an expert. Plus, going over contracts well is an excellent way never to put yourself in disadvantageous positions. 

Your contract should be the first thing you read whenever you’re looking for guidance on anything regarding your financed car. Most contracts have the answer to any question you could have; all you need to do is sift through some pages of provisions and text. 

Banks typically allow borrowers to ship the collateral material as long as it is within the contiguous United States. However, if you’re confused about the provisions or have some concerns about your contract, we highly recommend giving your bank a quick call. 

Call the Auto Shipping Company

Once you’ve made sure that you can ship your car safely, you next must contact a reputable Auto Shipping company to assist you with any of your needs. We suggest taking the time to choose which Auto Shipping company you want to entrust your vehicle to. 

You can give Mercury Auto a call for a free shipping quote, and we can go over all your options and see if you think we are a good fit for your needs. Different customers have different requirements for a service, and we want to ensure we can provide for all your shipping needs and concerns. 

Considering that financed vehicles are still not fully paid, exerting extra effort and care in ensuring the car is safe is a plus for all parties involved. Choosing the right company to ship your vehicle is integral to this process and should be done with careful consideration. 

Make sure to call in advance so you’ll have enough time to gather the necessary documents for shipping, bringing us to our next point.

Get The Right Documents (if needed)

Even if most banks agree to ship your financed vehicle, you will still need some documents to legally transport your car within the country. Laws can differ from state to state, so it’s best to consult with an Auto Shipping company to determine which documents you’ll need for the shipment. 

That said, you will most likely need to procure your insurance documents and some proof of your lien. You probably won’t run into any trouble trying to source these documents, but make sure to secure them ahead of time so you won’t have any issues with moving. 

In addition, don’t forget to properly retitle and register your vehicle in the state you will be moving to. Different states have different rules for these transactions, so make sure to do your research and catch yourself up on relevant state laws and regulations. 

Shipping a Financed Car Overseas

Shipping a financed car overseas is much more complicated than shipping it within the US. Most banks will not allow shipping a financed vehicle abroad, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t possible! 

If you know you’ll move at some point in the future, choose a bank that allows for overseas vehicle shipments. Obviously, this isn’t an option for people who already have leases, but do keep it in mind for future transactions. 

Most of you will already have financed vehicles by the time you’re reading this article. The best thing to do in that scenario is to call your bank and ask for clarification. While your contract isn’t likely to allow shipping a financed car overseas, you can still try and negotiate with your bank or loan institution. 

If you are in good standing with your bank and have given them no indication that you’ll default on your loan, there’s a chance they will allow you to transport the collateral. However, do bear in mind that you will need additional documents. Make sure to have the following notarized and ready for the transfer:

  • Lien Authorization Letter
  • Title of the Vehicle

Shipping your car to another country may require more papers, so it’s best to consult your Auto Shipping Company for any concerns. 

Can I Ship A Leased Car?

person with hand out of leased car

Shipping a leased car is slightly different from sending a financed vehicle out of state. While the general rules still apply, there are some extra considerations you’d have to make when shipping a leased car. 

For starters, it is definitely possible to ship your leased car within the US. Leasing companies probably won’t prohibit vehicle relocation, but it’s still best to check your contract for guidance. If your agreement doesn’t allow you to ship the car out of state, give the lender a call. You may still be able to negotiate the lease terms to allow for relocation. 

Shipping A Leased Car Inside The United States

If you’ve received confirmation that you can ship your leased car from state to state, you’ll then need to learn about a couple of things before finally committing to it. 

First, you must understand that different states have different rules for leased vehicles. You should familiarize yourself with any laws or regulations that may apply to your transfer and set relevant plans in motion. 

Returning Your Leased Vehicle

One of the main differences between shipping a leased vehicle vs. shipping a financed vehicle is the return process. With a leased vehicle, there’s a good chance your lender will require you to return the car to the state you got the lease, whereas, with a financed vehicle, the car becomes your property after the finance agreement ends. 

Some lessors have locations all over the country and may allow you to return the car to any branch. However, this is more of an exception than a rule. For the most part, you will have to return the car to the state where you first got the lease—the cost of which you will have to factor in your move. 

Regardless of whether you pay a company to ship your car or if you plan to drive it back yourself, you will still incur significant expenses. Before sending your leased car anywhere else, make sure you’re prepared for the necessary expenditures to move it from point A to point B. 

Shipping A Leased Car Overseas

Shipping a leased car overseas is much more complicated than doing it within the US. And in a vast majority of instances, lenders will not allow their lessees to take the leased vehicle abroad. Remember, when you’re leasing a car, you’re virtually just renting it—the car is not yours.

Taking it out of the country poses a significant risk to the lender, and oftentimes, the risk isn’t worth it. Plus, it will take a lot of money to bring your vehicle abroad, only to return it to the US once your lease is up. 

Nevertheless, you can still give it a try by calling your lease company and negotiating an agreement with them. It isn’t likely to work out, but at least you exhausted all your options!

FAQ About Shipping A Financed Car

Can I Ship A Financed Car To Another Country?

It’s possible, yes. If your bank or lender allows it, you can most definitely ship out your car to another country. However, this will most likely be very expensive, especially if you choose to do it by plane—which isn’t a practical option. 

But before you can ship a financed car to a different country, there are still some things to consider. Consult with your bank and ensure they allow overseas shipping since many finance agreements don’t have provisions for shipping your car outside the country. 

Once you’ve made sure your lender allows overseas vehicle shipments, call an Auto Shipping Company for a quote and prepare the relevant documents. We also encourage you to do additional research on the topic. Even if you are delegating the task to professionals, knowing what’s happening to your vehicle is always a good idea. 

Can You Ship A Financed Car From Hawaii?

Shipping a financed car from a non-land-locked state is a little more complicated than if you were shipping from a contiguous state, but it is definitely still possible! You will need additional documents, such as an authorization letter, to ensure all goes according to plan. 

Here are some details and documents you’ll probably need to furnish for the process:

  1. Title of the vehicle
  2. Lienholder approval or authorization letter
  3. Registration plate
  4. Information about the recipient
  5. Certificate of safety inspection. 

This isn’t an exhaustive list of requirements, so make sure to give your Auto shipping company a call for a consultation and complete details. 


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What Our Customrs Are Saying


We feel it’s important for you to know how we determined your quote. Quotes are based on what the market demands for cars to be moved at a given time. Each quote is compared with the current rates on the National Load Board before being sent to our customers and will be reviewed periodically through the process.

Other companies might offer you a lower price to obtain your business. This method is ineffective because if the car does not pay the correct amount of money, it will run the probability of not getting loaded or transported on time. You will not get this information from our competitors. Truck drivers always take the loads that pay the most first, leaving the loads that are mispriced to be moved last or not at all. We try very hard to avoid this with our customers by quoting a fair but realistic quote up front. Visit our How we determine your quote page for more information.

Understanding auto transport insurance is important and we think it’s valuable to explain how it works. As part of providing a great car transport service, it is our job to guarantee that the carrier we assign to pickup your vehicle is licensed and insured. Click here to check out our license.

When you go with Mercury to ship your vehicle, you can rest assured that the carrier assigned to move your car is fully insured and licensed with the FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier and Saftey Administration).

Your vehicle is covered by the carrier’s insurance policy that is doing the shipping. Depending on the type and size of the truck/trailer that is shipping your car, the insurance policy can cover from $100,000 to $1,000,000 of damage.

We have also provided a checklist to explain what you need to do at both pickup and delivery in case there are any issues so, you can file a claim and know that everything will be taken care of.

It is rare but, time-to-time there may be accidental damage while in transit and it is good to know that your carrier’s insurance will protect your auto shipment in that event.

To view a sample BOL (Bill of Lading) and learn what to do in case of accidental damage, please check out our Condition Report and Procedure checklist.

When comparing auto transport companies, keep in mind that low-priced quotes often result in delays in getting your vehicle loaded. Choosing the right broker is vital to getting a reputable carrier for the lowest price possible.  

We feel it’s important for you to know how we determine your quote.

When you’re looking for a car shipping rate, you want to understand how auto transport works. Prices are based on seasonal market demands for cars to be moved at any given time. Each quote is prepared based on the season and the current national rates.

When comparing auto transport companies, keep in mind that low-priced quotes often result in delays in getting your vehicle loaded. Choosing the right broker is vital to getting a reputable carrier for the lowest price possible. Not all brokers are created equal in this talent.

Mercury does a thorough background check with each carrier for every shipment. We verify their ratings, references, and in addition, we obtain a certified copy of their insurance certificate, directly from the government agency that it is on file with.

You can have peace of mind knowing that the carrier shipping your vehicle is the very best and that there are no surprises guaranteed.

Mercury Auto Transport is licensed, Bonded and Insured. Our FMSCA Motor Carrier Number is MC647319.

While we do our best match your auto shipping needs with the most responsible carriers with the best track records, from time-to-time there may be accidental damage while in transit, it is good to know that the insurance of the carrier we locate for you will protect your auto shipment in that event.

Shipping a vehicle can be stressful if you don’t know what to do.  This is why we believe it is paramount to have our highly trained agents be your main point of contact from start to finish.

They will go over everything you need to know so you can relax.  In the meanwhile, we prepared this checklist.  This includes everything from pickup to delivery and how to make sure your car is ready for pickup.

When it comes to car moving, we want you to be ahead of the game!  For any questions and further assistance our agents are standing by, (800) 553-1828.  Please read our checklist to prepare your vehicle to learn more.

There are several ways you can ship a car.  The options include enclosed trailer, open carrier transport, flatbed truck, door-to-door shipping services, and to or from a terminal as well.  The most popular of the options is a 7 to 10 car open carrier.  These large trucks can accommodate almost any size vehicle including carsSUVstrucksjeeps, and vans.

Open car transport, door to door is also the best way to get the cheapest auto transport rate possible.  To learn more and see what transport method is best for you, please fill out our free quote form and one of our representatives will respond to you within minutes.  You can also call us at (800) 553-1828.

We present offers from FMCSA Licensed and Insured Carriers. When you accept an offer, we send your service agreement that guarantees the price, door-to-door service, and 100% bumper-to-bumper insurance. There are never any hidden fees or charges, guaranteed.