How To Import Car From The USA To The Philippines

How To Import Car From USA To Philippines

Car Import


Importing a car from the United States to the Philippines can be an exciting endeavour, offering access to a wide range of vehicle options that might not be readily available locally.

Whether you’re a car enthusiast searching for a specific make and model or an individual relocating to the Philippines, the process of importing a car can be both rewarding and challenging.

To ensure a smooth and successful importation, it’s crucial to understand the regulations, paperwork, and logistics involved.

In this article, we will guide you through the steps and considerations for importing a car from the USA to the Philippines.

How Do I Import Cars From the USA To the Philippines?

The idea of importing a car from the United States to the Philippines can be a thrilling prospect for car enthusiasts and individuals seeking specific vehicle models not readily available in the local market. 

However, the process of importing a car involves several steps, regulations, and considerations to ensure a smooth and legal transition of the vehicle to the Philippines.

In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through the essential steps and considerations when importing a car from the USA to the Philippines. 

1. Research and Select Your Vehicle.

Before you begin the import process, conduct thorough research to select the car you wish to import.

Consider factors such as make, model, age, specifications, and availability in the US market. Ensure that the vehicle complies with Philippine regulations and emissions standards.

2. Verify Philippine Import Regulations.

Understanding Philippine import regulations is crucial. Contact the Bureau of Customs in the Philippines to obtain up-to-date information on import policies and requirements for vehicles. The regulations may change, so it’s essential to be aware of the most recent rules.

3. Verify Eligibility.

Not all vehicles are eligible for importation. Make sure that the car you intend to import complies with the eligibility criteria outlined by the Philippine government. Typically, vehicles that are less than 3 years old are eligible for importation.

4. Find a Reputable Importer or Shipping Agent.

To facilitate the import process, consider working with a reputable car importer or shipping agent experienced in handling international vehicle imports.

They can assist you with the necessary paperwork, shipping arrangements, and customs clearance.

5. Gather Required Documents.

Collect all the required documentation, which may include:

  • Bill of Lading (BoL)
  • Commercial Invoice
  • Certificate of Title
  • Certificate of Origin
  • Import Entry Declaration (IED)
  • Valid Identification and Tax Identification Number (TIN)

Ensure that all documents are complete, accurate, and meet the specific requirements of Philippine customs and regulatory authorities.

6. Shipping Your Vehicle.

Once all the paperwork is in order, your chosen shipping agent will coordinate the transportation of the vehicle from the USA to the Philippines.

Vehicles are typically shipped in containers, and the shipping method can affect the cost and shipping duration.

7. Pay Applicable Duties and Taxes.

Upon arrival in the Philippines, your vehicle will be subject to import duties and taxes. Be prepared to pay these fees as they can significantly impact the total cost of importing your car.

8. Customs Clearance.

Your shipping agent or customs broker will assist with the customs clearance process, which involves inspection and verification of the vehicle’s documentation and compliance with local regulations.

9. LTO Inspection and Registration.

Once cleared by customs, the vehicle will need to undergo inspection by the Land Transportation Office (LTO) in the Philippines. Ensure the vehicle meets local safety and emissions standards.

10. Legalization and Roadworthiness.

Depending on the car’s specifications, you may need to make modifications to ensure it complies with Philippine roadworthiness standards, such as changing the headlights to right-hand drive.


Importing a car from the USA to the Philippines is an exciting venture that can provide you with a unique and personalized vehicle.

However, it’s essential to navigate the process carefully, following the regulations and requirements outlined by the Philippine government. 

With proper research, documentation, and assistance from experienced professionals, you can successfully import your dream car into the Philippines and enjoy the thrill of driving a vehicle that perfectly suits your preferences and needs.

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Written by Udemezue John

Hello, I'm Udemezue John, a web developer and digital marketer with a passion for financial literacy.

I have always been drawn to the intersection of technology and business, and I believe that the internet offers endless opportunities for entrepreneurs and individuals alike to improve their financial well-being.

You can connect with me on Twitter


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