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Home » Your Ultimate Guide To International Moving from the USA to Europe » International Moving To Germany From USA

International Moving To Germany From USA

Published on Jul 13, 2021 by Kfir Cohen

International Moving Company to Germany specialists in relocation and shipments of household goods, personal effects, automobiles, and commercial goods. Germany is one of the most popular destination countries for American citizens because it has a strong economy, beautiful cities, and amazing healthcare.

Challenges and pitfalls abide when moving continents, and an experienced international moving company to Germany like SDC International Shipping will partner with you to help make it easy.


What’s on this page?

01 | International Household Moving From USA to Germany
02 | Shipping Your Car from USA to Germany
03 | German Customs and Regulations
04 | Important Checklist When Moving to Germany from USA
05 | Moving from USA to Germany – Shipping Options


International Household Moving From USA to Germany

The heart of Europe, Germany, is the destination of choice many Americans choose for their European relocation. Most people who move from the US to Germany want to bring their household items and personal goods and effects. Germany is a wonderful place to live, but you have to keep in mind that some items that Americans are accustomed to may be hard to find.

First of all, you will want to take most of your furniture with you. American furniture is fantastic, high quality at reasonable prices. Many European visitors hire SDC International Shipping to ship furniture they bought while traveling in the US back to Europe.

Moving to Germany from USA Statistics

SDC specializes in international households moving to Germany and knows exactly how to move your household to Germany while both protecting your belongings and saving you space and budget. The legs and stands of most tables and beds are carefully removed and wrapped. All wood furniture is wrapped to protect from scratches along the way.

You will want to take your personal effects with you. For your fragile items, you should rely on SDC’s professional packing service rather than packing by yourself, as items that you pack yourself can’t be insured against damage. Special boxes are available for artwork and mirrors. Custom crates that protect your special items can be built for unusually shaped items or precious possessions.

Most appliances should be left behind, but most electronics can be taken. Keep in mind that many European appliances are much smaller than their American counterparts, so if you are moving with a family, consider finding an American washing machine that will work in Germany (only do this if you already know where you will live and can verify that it will fit). Refrigerators, dishwashers, etc., should be purchased in Germany.

However, the vast majority of electronics should work in Germany; just check to see if the electricity input of your device has 110/220 v capabilities. This includes most TVs, computer monitors, and even many modern vacuum cleaners (those with AC adapters are almost always OK). If you’re unsure, your relocation specialist should be able to check for you.


Shipping Your Car from USA to Germany

You can ship your car (or motorcycle!) to Germany, in most cases without import duties. Please ensure that your car is at least six months old and registered to you.

Newer cars are subject to 19% VAT and another 10% import tax. You will also need to show that you have not lived in Germany for the past 12 months, or you will pay the VAT and import tax; your name needs to appear on the vehicle’s title and registration, which will need to be provided before picking up your vehicle for shipment. These should be translated into German.

The method for sending your vehicle to Germany will vary according to your point of origin, destination, and the remainder of your shipment. Sometimes your vehicle will be sent with your goods, sometimes as a separate shipment.


German Customs and Regulations

As a part of the EU, most of Germany’s customs and regulations are governed by the official European Customs Union policy. This website provides the current official policies of Der Zoll (German customs authority) in English. In addition, it is a good idea to call the closest German consulate for clarifications of any specific questions you have.

If you are relocating to Germany, you need to check the specific import and customs regulations. For the most part, there are few problems importing used goods to Germany, and as long as what you are shipping is legal and belongs to you, it should not be difficult to import your goods. It is imperative to prepare a thorough and accurate list of the goods in your shipment.

When you use SDC International Shipping’s professional packing services, this list is prepared for you. However, it is still your ultimate responsibility to ensure that it accurately reflects what you are shipping. This list is also important for your shipment insurance, so it is a good idea to put the time into making an accurate list.

Most new goods will be taxed at the standard 19% VAT rate. Do not import alcohol.

It is important to note that if you are using mold inhibiting products or humidity preventing measures or are sending new wood (crating, pallets, etc.) that might contain these, they need to be declared and conform to German safety and health regulations. When you use a professional service like SDC International Shipping, all of the packaging materials are suitable for international shipments.

If you are sending a commercial shipment, you need first to obtain an EORI number (Economic Operators Registration and Identification). This number is valid throughout the European Union but should be obtained from the country you are shipping or opening an office.


Important Checklist When Moving to Germany from USA

All packed and ready to go? While you are waiting for SDC International Shipping to come to load your personal belongings, it is time to double-check that you have prepared everything you need:

Immigration visas

  • The Customs Registration form #0350 available here and the Anmeldebestaetigung (proof of residency) once you get to Germany
  • Personal documents for the whole family (birth certificates, passport, marriage or divorce certificates, driver’s license, medical records). Consider translating vital medical documents.
  • Official school records – including primary school. If you are an American citizen relocating to Germany, you may one day need to present these records to prove the duration of your residency in the US in order to obtain citizenship for children or grandchildren born abroad. A little bit of extra work now can save you lots of work in a few years!
  • Diplomas, professional certificates of qualifications and degrees.


Read more: The Ultimate International Relocation Checklist


Moving from USA to Germany – Shipping Options

Working with SDC International Shipping opens up many different options for international shipping to Germany. A detailed examination of your particular needs will help you decide upon what makes the most sense for you. Some things to consider include the size of your shipment, the contents of your shipment, the timing of your move, and the exact location of your destination.

Options include full container load (20’ or 40’ containers), partial containers, oversized freight for special items that don’t fit into containers, and air shipments.

As one of the reputable and reliable moving companies to Germany – SDC International Shipping is in a unique position as a large relocation service provider to offer its clients the ability to send almost any sized shipment. Decided to add a few more items? Everything doesn’t fit into one container? Not a problem. You don’t need to feel that you must limit yourself to the contents of a container.

Timing is always an important factor in choosing your shipping options. SDC International Shipping will work with you to time your delivery with storage facilities on both sides of the Atlantic. To get shipments delivered to your destination quickly, it is necessary to order shipping as early as possible. However, if you want to take advantage of your relocation to do a grand tour of Europe or visit family and friends in the US before you depart, SDC International Shipping will plan your move with our shipping options that will make the most sense for you.

Our International Moving Services Include:

  • FREE Estimates
  • Door-to-Door and Port-to-Port Service
  • Custom Crates
  • Professional & Licensed Moving Agents, Worldwide
  • 24/7 Shipment Tracking

Call for your FREE moving quote NOW! (877) 339-0267

Useful information regarding The Bundeszollverwaltung (the German Federal Customs Service)

The Bundeszollverwaltung (The German Federal Customs Service) is the head monitor for all import and export activities all over Germany different states. The service complies with the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). Its main duty is to prevent any illegal import or export to and from Germany.

For more information, visit the Zoll.DE – the Bundeszollverwaltung official website.

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