Auto Export Options: Roro vs Container

June 13, 2019

There are two different ways to ship automobiles via ocean: through Ro-Ro or container. Which option is best ultimately depends on your needs and transport preferences.

What is Roro?

"Ro-Ro" is a shorthand phrase for Roll-on Roll-off which is the process by which the vehicle is rolled into the vessel at the port of origin and rolled out of the vessel at the destination port. This method was first introduced to the world as a mean of transporting military vehicles from port to port during World War I. After the end of the war ship builders began to incorporate the roro design into larger ocean freight carriers. This aided the coming boom in international trade whereby many of the world's automobiles would be built in one country and shipped to be driven in another. Today over 20 million vehicles are shipped across the world via roro vessels.

Benefits of Roro:

  • Speed and flexibility- since roro vehicles are shipped individually these vehicles can be quickly picked up and transported to the nearest roro port to await the next available vessel.
  • Cost effectiveness- roro is typically the cheapest option if you are shipping just one vehicle or if you have multiple vehicles in distant locations
  • Customs clearing and destination charges- Customs clearing & destination charges are lower when a vehicle is shipped via roro. This is because containers attract higher terminal and service charges at the destination port. Roro units can also be cleared more quickly.

Automobiles via Container

Shipping automobiles via container is the process of loading one or more vehicles into a 20- or 40-foot container. One single automobile can be loaded into a 20-foot container whereas a 40-foot container may hold 1-4 vehicles depending on the size and condition of the vehicles and the loading arrangement. Special techniques are used to load a 40-foot container with more than 2 vehicles.

Benefits of container:

  • Safety and security- Container provides maximum safety and security for your vehicle. With container your vehicle will be enclosed in a metal shipping container with a lock and seal. This means access to your vehicle is restricted and there is an additional layer of safety.
  • Multiple vehicles- container can be a more cost-effective solution if you have multiple vehicle in the same location (or general area)

Now that you know the benefits of both options you are on the right track to make the best decision for your automobile shipping needs.

Contact us now to get a quote on moving your vehicles or to get additional information.