Frequently Asked Questions about Heavy Equipment Shipping

Frequently Asked Questions about Heavy Equipment Shipping

When clients express an interest in international construction equipment shipping, they often have a lot of questions; especially if they have no previous experience with international shipping. Clients may be pleased to know that even the heaviest and largest equipment can be safely transported from ports in the United States to virtually all ports in the world.

The following are four of the most common questions asked about international shipping services in general and heavy equipment in particular. For more detailed answers to these and other questions, get in touch with the reliable and experienced international shipping agents at K International Transport Co. Inc. today!

(1) How much should I expect to spend on shipping, and how long will it take for the equipment to arrive overseas?

It is often difficult to estimate exactly how much a particular shipment will cost, but there are several known factors that will inevitably affect price. The dimensions and weight of the equipment will affect cost, as it will be more expensive to transport heavier and larger equipment that will require more handling and gas. With the help of a freight forwarding company like K International, clients will also have to choose the best method of shipping their cargo overseas.

There are several methods of transporting heavy construction equipment overseas, including roll-on/roll-off (RORO), container shipping, and shipping via flat rack. RORO is typically the cheapest and most common method of transportation. It is reserved for wheeled or self-propelled equipment that must be driven onto the vessel and strapped to the deck.

Static (non-moving) equipment can be transported in containers. Heavy equipment that can be dismantled can travel in a 20-foot or 40-foot container and reassembled once it arrives at its port of destination. Clients who can dismantle the cargo themselves can save money on the shipping process, but will otherwise have to pay for dismantling services.

For particularly large equipment, flat racks can be used. However, flat racks are often the most expensive option. An experienced freight forwarding company like K International can help clients decide on the best shipping option depending on their individual budget and type of equipment.

The time it takes the cargo to arrive will depend on where the port of origin and port of destination are located. Visit our rate request page to receive a quick price and time estimate.

yellow and black heavy equipment near body of water during daytime
Photo by Chris J Walker @Braxted

(2) How can I get started on the process of transporting my heavy equipment overseas?

Once clients decide to transport cargo overseas, they must submit several required documents and prepayment in full. Shippers will likely be required to submit the following before any shipment can take place:

  • A certificate of title / notarized bill of sale to prove ownership of the cargo.
  • Specifications and dimensions of the goods being shipped.
  • A packing list showing all the goods being shipped.
  • A power of attorney form to allow the freight forwarder to legally handle their shipment.
  • Identification of both the shipper and consignee.

Clients should also let their freight forwarder know their preferred schedule for shipment to ensure the equipment is transported accordingly.

(3) How should I prepare to send my construction equipment? Is there anything I must do before it leaves the port?

Different ports and countries around the world have their own requirements that construction equipment and other imports must satisfy to be accepted. Because some rules and regulations are more strict than others, it’s important to know and understand what is required before shipping any cargo overseas.

One basic requirement that’s common among most international ports, is that heavy machinery must be kept clean, free of excess dirt, and leak-free. The machinery must also be in good operating condition. If certain cleanliness conditions are not met, clients may be charged a cleaning fee.

Some countries have more specific inspection and cleaning requirements than others, especially for used construction equipment. If these requirements are not met, the cargo may be rejected or withheld upon arrival. We strongly recommend consulting an import customs broker at the country of destination to ensure all import requirements overseas will be met.

yellow train
Photo by Nishant Kirar @nishantkirar

(4) How do I choose the best international shipping company to help me with my shipment?

Because there are so many options, regulations, deadlines, documents, and things to remember, it’s all the more important that clients select an experienced and reliable international shipping company. K International has decades of trusted experience transporting all types of cargo including heavy construction equipment such as excavators, bulldozers, cranes, stone cutters, dump trucks, and more. We can easily transport this heavy equipment to international ports in the Middle East, West Africa, Europe, Asia, and more!

For a preliminary quote, please visit our rate request page. K International will provide you with a low rate for transporting your equipment. If you’d like to proceed with the shipment, simply dictate your preferred shipping schedule, submit the necessary documents, and pay in full. Once this process has been initiated, K International will take exceptional care of your cargo every step of the way.

With a reliable international shipping company like K International, transporting heavy construction equipment from brands including Kobelco, Komatsu, Hitachi, Caterpillar, Volvo, and more, can be hassle-free and more affordable than ever before.

For more information or to ask any further questions, call 212-267-6400 or send an email to You can also reach out to our friendly and professional agents on Skype at kinternationalny. We look forward to working with you and thank you for choosing K International for all your overseas shipping needs!