International Moving Company License #: FMC 02238N

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Moving to Dubai from the US

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Moving to Dubai from USA

If you’re a UAE citizen returning to Dubai or a US citizen moving for work, SDC International Shipping is dedicated to providing top-notch service for international household and car shipping. We aim to make your relocation from the USA to Dubai as seamless and stress-free as possible.

With a decade of experience, SDC International has managed numerous moves to the UAE and serves various global regions in Asia, Europe, and Latin America. Our network of partners at international ports are well-versed in the shipping process, ensuring reliable and secure service. You can trust us to handle your relocation needs with care and professionalism.

Our shipping services encompass the following:

  1. Bringing the Container to Your Home: We arrange for the container to be delivered directly to your residence or specified location.

  2. Packing and Loading Your Belongings: Our team handles the packing and loading of your household items and vehicles with care and expertise.

  3. Preparing All Necessary Documents: We take care of all documentation required for international shipping, ensuring compliance with regulations and smooth processing.

  4. Preparing for Customs Clearance: Our experts assist in preparing the necessary paperwork and declarations to facilitate customs clearance at both origin and destination ports.

  5. Trucking the Container to the New Location: After clearance, we ensure safe transportation of your container to its destination within Dubai or other specified areas.


With SDC International Shipping, you can rely on a comprehensive and efficient service that takes care of every step of your international relocation process.

What You Can Ship in One Container

Here’s what you can ship in one container when using our services:

  • Bedroom furniture
  • Kitchen cupboards
  • Clothing
  • Dishes and kitchenware
  • Automobiles (cars and motorcycles)

In a 40-foot FCL (Full Container Load), you have the flexibility to transport a comprehensive range of household goods along with your vehicle. This option is often preferred by clients who have substantial belongings to transport, including a car.

Alternatively, if you have fewer items to transport, you can opt for LCL (Less than Container Load), where your shipment shares container space with other customers’ shipments. This method is cost-effective for smaller loads.

It’s important to note some guidelines:

  • Household goods and personal effects should be owned for more than six months to qualify as personal property.
  • There are typically no duties or taxes applied to household goods and personal effects.
  • Avoid shipping large quantities of certain items to prevent them from being mistaken for commercial purposes.
  • Firearms should not be shipped in containers; instead, they should be transported as checked luggage on a plane.

For any specific items or concerns, our team can liaise with UAE authorities to ensure compliance with import regulations.

Shipping a Car to Dubai from the USA

If you’re relocating to Dubai from the USA with a UAE residence permit and wish to bring your car, we can assist you through the process of shipping your vehicle. Once we confirm your vehicle’s eligibility for shipping, we will initiate the necessary documentation, including:

  • Title
  • Bill of Lading
  • Original Invoice and OCO (if applicable for new cars)
  • US Customs Export Declaration
  • Value estimate
  • Order of delivery from the US
  • US Traffic Department Certificate of Vehicle Export
  • Valid insurance and ID documents

Regarding shipping options for your vehicle, you can select either LCL (Less than Container Load) or FCL (Full Container Load) services. Luxury vehicles typically benefit from FCL, where the car is securely fastened inside a sole container, minimizing the risk of friction against container walls and potential scratches.

We prioritize shipping vehicles in containers as part of your household move, ensuring the safety and protection of your car during transit. Unlike LCL, in FCL, your vehicle will not share container space with other vehicles.

While Roll-On/Roll-Off (RoRo) services are available and can be cost-effective, we emphasize the security and protection provided by shipping vehicles within containers. With RoRo, personal belongings cannot be left inside the vehicle and must be removed before shipping.

For a comprehensive and secure shipping experience for your vehicle to Dubai, choose our container shipping services tailored to meet your needs and preferences.

What to Know About Importing a Car to Dubai

If you are relocating to Dubai from the USA, it’s important to be aware of the regulations and requirements for importing your personal vehicle. Here are the key points to consider:

Vehicle Eligibility
The UAE does not allow the registration of left-hand drive vehicles, except for classic cars over 25 years old. This means that most vehicles from the USA, being left-hand drive, cannot be imported and registered for regular use in Dubai.

Import Limits
There is a limit of importing one car and one motorcycle per year for personal use in the UAE.

Vehicle Restrictions
Vehicles with heavily tinted glass that reduces visibility are generally not permitted for import into Dubai.

Import Duties and Taxes
When importing a car to Dubai, you will be required to pay an import duty of 5% of the vehicle’s value. Additionally, a 5% value-added tax (VAT) is applicable on the vehicle’s value.

Documentation Requirements
To import your car to Dubai, you will need to obtain a Vehicle Clearance Certificate from UAE customs. This process requires providing detailed information about the vehicle, such as the VIN, make, model, year, and other specifications.

Age Restrictions
If your vehicle is older than 10 years, you may need to obtain special permission from authorities like the RTA (Roads and Transport Authority) for import.

Residency Requirements
A valid UAE residency visa is mandatory to clear the vehicle from customs and register it in the country.


Moving to Other UAE Cities from the USA

If you’re a US citizen relocating to Dubai for work, you’ll discover a vibrant expat community in the emirate. Most US citizens reside in Dubai, though there’s also a smaller but notable American presence in Abu Dhabi and other areas.

The UAE offers a high standard of living, and many Americans quickly adapt to the amenities available in this Persian Gulf city. While Arabic is the native language, English is widely spoken, making it easier to navigate daily life.

If you require shipping services to locations beyond Dubai, we can also deliver your goods to other cities across the UAE, including:

  • Abu Dhabi
  • Fujairah
  • Ras Al Khaimah
  • Sharjah

Whether you’re settling in Dubai or venturing to other cities within the UAE, our shipping services are designed to support your relocation needs efficiently and reliably.

Packing and Loading

We offer comprehensive packing and loading services as part of our relocation assistance. Our team can deliver a container directly to your location and manage the full packing and loading process of your household goods. Our international agents specialize in professional packing techniques, providing pallets and crates for fragile items as needed. Your shipments will be securely organized and safely loaded into the container, ensuring a smooth and secure transition for your belongings.


Full Coverage Insurance

Some people may view insurance as a reluctant expense, but we emphasize to our clients the immense value it offers.

While we strive to ensure the safe arrival of your cargo, shipping involves multiple stages and external factors beyond our control. Containers are handled numerous times during transit, and rough sea conditions can subject cargo to various stresses. In extreme cases, goods may become wet, physically damaged, or even lost overboard.

To safeguard against such possibilities, we highly recommend purchasing international moving insurance. At SDC International, we provide our customers with several insurance options tailored to their needs. This coverage offers peace of mind, ensuring financial protection in the event of unforeseen incidents during transit.


Over the years, we’ve assisted thousands of clients with successful international shipments, prioritizing attention to detail and personalized service. Whether you seek a cost-effective shipping solution, rest assured that we’ll work diligently to keep you within budget.

For a personalized quote or to speak directly with our shipping agent, please don’t hesitate to contact us at (877) 339-0267. You can also fill out our free quote form or chat with us online. We’re here to assist with your shipping needs and offer tailored solutions that match your budget and preferences.

International Moving From USA to Any Destination

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