A Guide to Military Car Shipping for Service Members - Social Media Explorer
A Guide to Military Car Shipping for Service Members
A Guide to Military Car Shipping for Service Members

Military personnel often face the daunting task of relocating frequently due to deployments, transfers, or assignments. Among the many challenges they encounter, shipping their vehicles safely and efficiently is paramount. Fortunately, numerous resources exist to aid service members in navigating the complexities of military car shipping. In this comprehensive guide, we delve into these resources, offering insights and guidance to streamline the process. Click here to learn more.

Understanding Military Car Shipping

Before delving into resources, it’s essential to understand the intricacies of military car shipping. Unlike conventional vehicle transportation, military car shipping involves specific considerations such as deployment timelines, overseas transfers, and adherence to military regulations. These factors necessitate specialized services tailored to the unique needs of service members.

Military Vehicle Shipping Companies

Several companies specialize in military car shipping, offering tailored solutions to meet the diverse needs of service members. These companies provide door-to-door services, vehicle tracking, insurance options, and assistance with customs documentation for international moves. Some prominent names in this sector include United Auto Transport, Patriot Auto Transport, and USAA Car Shipping.

Government-Sponsored Programs

The military also offers government-sponsored programs to assist service members in shipping their vehicles. The Privately Owned Vehicle (POV) program, administered by the Defense Transportation Regulation (DTR), facilitates the shipment of vehicles for service members on official orders. Through this program, eligible personnel can receive reimbursement for shipping costs or opt for direct government shipment.

Military Installations Assistance Offices

Military installations typically have assistance offices or transportation offices dedicated to helping service members with relocation logistics, including vehicle shipping. These offices provide guidance on selecting reputable shipping companies, understanding entitlements, and navigating paperwork requirements. Service members are encouraged to leverage these resources for personalized support. 

Online Resources and Forums

The internet hosts a wealth of resources and forums where service members share their experiences and recommendations regarding military car shipping. Websites like Military.com, Reddit’s military community, and specialized forums such as PCSGrades provide valuable insights, tips, and reviews on shipping companies. Engaging with these online communities can offer invaluable guidance and reassurance during the shipping process.

Military Relocation Assistance Programs

Military relocation assistance programs, such as the Department of Defense’s Relocation Assistance Program (RAP), offer a wide range of services to help service members and their families transition smoothly during relocations. While not exclusively focused on vehicle shipping, these programs provide valuable resources, including counseling, financial assistance, and relocation workshops that may indirectly aid in navigating car shipping logistics.

Vehicle Storage Facilities

In situations where immediate shipping isn’t feasible or advisable, service members may opt to store their vehicles temporarily. Many military installations offer secure vehicle storage facilities with provisions for both short-term and long-term storage. These facilities often provide added peace of mind for service members, knowing their vehicles are stored safely until they can be shipped or retrieved.

Financial Assistance and Entitlements

Understanding financial entitlements and assistance available for military car shipping is crucial. Service members may be eligible for reimbursement of shipping costs under certain circumstances, such as permanent change of station (PCS) orders. Additionally, some shipping companies offer discounts or special rates for military personnel, further easing the financial burden of relocation.

Documentation and Compliance

Compliance with military regulations and proper documentation is essential when shipping a vehicle. Service members must ensure their vehicles meet safety and emissions standards, obtain required permits for international shipments, and complete necessary customs paperwork. Military transportation offices and shipping companies can provide guidance on the specific documentation needed for each move.

Additional Considerations for Military Car Shipping

Vehicle Preparation: Before shipping a vehicle, service members should ensure it is properly prepared for transport. This includes removing personal belongings, securing loose items, and documenting any existing damage to the vehicle. Additionally, service members should ensure their vehicles are in good working condition, as shipping companies may refuse vehicles with mechanical issues.

Insurance Coverage: While most shipping companies offer insurance coverage for transported vehicles, service members should review their existing insurance policies to determine coverage during transit. In some cases, additional insurance may be necessary to fully protect the vehicle against damage or loss during shipping. Military personnel should inquire about insurance options and ensure they have adequate coverage before shipping their vehicles.

Delivery Options: Service members shipping their vehicles have several delivery options to choose from, including door-to-door delivery, terminal-to-terminal delivery, or a combination of both. Each option has its advantages and considerations, such as convenience, cost, and accessibility. Service members should carefully evaluate their preferences and select the delivery option that best suits their needs and budget.

Timelines and Scheduling: Timing is crucial when shipping a vehicle, especially during military relocations with tight schedules. Service members should plan ahead and schedule vehicle shipments well in advance to ensure timely delivery at their new destination. Additionally, they should communicate effectively with shipping companies and transportation offices to coordinate logistics and minimize delays.


Military car shipping can be a complex and stressful endeavor, but with the right resources and guidance, service members can navigate the process smoothly. Whether leveraging specialized shipping companies, government programs, or online communities, there are numerous resources available to assist military personnel in relocating their vehicles efficiently and safely. By understanding entitlements, seeking assistance from military installations, and staying informed about regulations, service members can ensure a seamless transition during their relocations.

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