Importing cars

edited December 1969 in General
Whilst the situation with regarding cars from the EEC is relatively clear is there anyone who can advise on importing cars from outside the EEC. I am a Portuguese National from South Africa working in the UK and have been offered the chance to go to the middle east for 18-24 months prior to retiring in Madeira and am unsure of the position if I was,say to import a left hand drive car from there. Any ideas???

Comments

  • Hi

    One thing that is unpleasant to discover after you have imported the car, is that EU safety standards have to be met. This may mean a small change in headlight bulbs or some standards that are impossible to meet without taking apart the car - at which point it is cheaper to buy local.
  • I imported from within the EC, and that was bad enough. I got tax exemption, and the whole cost was about €500 ... but the amount of time & paperwork involved was amazing. After 2 inspections, a weighing, and about 20 visits into Funchal it took around 6 months.

    http://www.madeira4u.com
  • Der,

    Was the car you imported new or used and what were the taxes and charges.
    When you say you were tax exempt, what do you mean. Could the car be used while waiting for registration or was it impounded.
    I have temporary residency at present but will move to full residency soon, does this make a difference ?
    Lots of questions I know but appreciate answers to them and others I have not thought of.
  • Bear in mind it was 2004, so things may have changed. It was a used car, and the car age makes a difference to the tax payable, as does the engine size (it may be based on emissions now).

    To avoid the tax, you had to have residency (temporary shouldn't make any difference) and fulfil other criteria, with documents. The car could be used whilst the application was being processed. If you are a member of AFPOP they have all the latest procedures and tax rates. If not, it would be better if someone who had done this more recently answered any more detailed points. Bit more info here http://www.madeira4u.com/m4u_RI/resources_i_driving.html

    Der
  • Just a PS to Der's info, you should be able to get upto date info from the British Consule, email - Britcon.funchal@netmadeira.com
  • Thanks everyone,
  • As the originator of the querie regarding cars some 4 months ago I can advise as follows:
    1) Approached the Portuguese government by e mail and have received 3 replies all of which enclosed the relevant legal documents which i was able to translate fro free using "google". It appears I can import a car free of tax from a residence outside the EEC (in my case Qatar) as long as I have been resident here for a minimum of 12 months and keep it with me for a minimumm of 6 months (12 months is better).I was very surprised to receive the repies andc take my hat off to the Portuguese government for prompt and efficient replies)
    2) Also approached the nearest Portuguese embassy to here (Saudi Arabia) in English and received a reply within a day - in English and they advised there would be no tax as per the above and sdtated they would assit with filling in forms and translating the Arabic documents into Portuguese.
    3) Have purchased a new car (with an EEC compliance certificate - very important) with a view to taking to Madeira in 18 months time.
    4) Transport to Madeira does not appear to be cheap based on a single quote but have 18 months to work on that..

    PS have used website Madeira4U and like many others find it excellent.
  • As the originator of the querie regarding cars some 4 months ago I can advise as follows:
    1) Approached the Portuguese government by e mail and have received 3 replies all of which enclosed the relevant legal documents which i was able to translate from Portuguese to English free using "google". It appears I can import a car free of tax from a residence outside the EEC (in my case Qatar) as long as I have been resident here for a minimum of 12 months and keep it with me for a minimumm of 6 months (12 months is better).I was very surprised to receive the repies and take my hat off to the Portuguese government for prompt and efficient replies.
    2) Also approached the nearest Portuguese embassy to here (Saudi Arabia) in English and received a reply within a day - in English and they advised there would be no tax as per the above and stated they would assit with filling in forms and translating the Arabic documents into Portuguese. Again I have to take my hat off....
    3) Have purchased a new car (with an EEC compliance certificate - very important) with a view to taking to Madeira in 18 months time.
    4) Transport to Madeira does not appear to be cheap based on a single quote but have 18 months to work on that..

    PS have used website Madeira4U and like many others find it excellent.
  • As it is proposed to run a ferry from the Algarve to Madeira, starting in the summer, it may be cheaper to get the car to Lisbon, then drive to Portimao, then come over on the ferry. Of course, it might not be...
  • Hi,

    or you embark on the existing summer ferry via Gran Canaria (from Cadiz).

    Regards - Anton
  • An update about the ferry. It will be going on round all year from now on. Which means every week there's a ferry between Madeira and Portimao.
    The price goes from 75 euros/person + 100euros for the car transportation. Prices are for each way (but then again you only want one way :)) and it gets you a sofa chair. For a cabinet it will cost more.
    For consulting and ticket booking:
    http://www.naviera-armas.com

    I do believe you have 4 days to start legalizing your car once it is in Portugal. It can't be drived until you get a license plate.
    If there's an inspection in order you should use a tow truck to take it. I don't know about police being hard on it but portuguese forums about imported cars advise to tow it instead of driving it to the Inspection facility.

    Hope it helps.
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