How To Prepare Your Car For An Overseas Trip

Putting your car on a ferry and taking it to another country is always a lot of fun. But you need to prepare it properly to deal with local conditions and laws. 

So, what should you be doing to your vehicle before your next epic road trip? Here’s our advice: 

Register The Car With The Destination Country

The first step is to check if you need to register the car in the destination country. Some states force you to complete various forms, providing records for the vehicle before you can enter. 

Of course, this depends on where you’re going. If you’re hopping over to Indonesia, this shouldn’t be a problem. However, if you’re planning on taking a vehicle somewhere as far as China, then permits and passes may be necessary. 

Ensure Your Driver’s License Is Valid In The Destination Country

The next stage is to check if your driver’s license is valid in the destination country. While this is rarely a problem, it can be an issue, especially when hiring a car. Some countries don’t have reciprocal agreements, meaning Australia might accept their licenses, but they don’t accept them from Australians.

If this issue crops up, check the rules. Some countries will let you apply for a temporary license or pass while others will get you to sit an exam (and usually pay a fixer to push your application through). 

Get Breakdown Cover

Getting breakdown cover is a must if you’re planning on taking your vehicle to a foreign country. Otherwise, total costs if your engine goes kaput can be fantastically high. 

Fortunately, obtaining such cover is relatively easy and you can probably do it through your existing carrier. Just remember to tell them where you are going and for how long. Most will cover you abroad for a period of three months. If you need more than that, you’ll want to go to a local provider. 

Comply With Local Regulations

Another annoying thing you’ll have to do is spend some time complying with local regulations. Many countries require you to have things like a window sticker or a first aid kit in your vehicle at all times. 

These requirements change from one country to the next, so you’ll want to be careful. Look up the local laws and take everything you need with you. 

For example, you might require: 

  • A warning triangle
  • Reflective safety vest for waiting by the side of the road
  • Fire extinguishers
  • Blankets
  • Water and food rations

Prepare The Fluids And Filters

If you’re taking a long trip, you’ll also want to prepare the fluids and filters. That means checking the engine oil, coolant, and brake fluid. Making sure you top these up can help. 

Check The Tyres

It might sound routine, but checking the tyres could save your life. Most car tyres should be 30 PSI. If they go below 20, it’s dangerous and could cause you to lose control of the vehicle. 

So, there you have it: how to prepare your car for an overseas trip. We hope you learned something valuable.

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