Import Car from USA to Guatemala

Importing a Car from the USA to Guatemala

Importing a Car from the USA to Guatemala? Car imports from the USA to Guatemala start at a cost of $1,850 USD with an estimated turnaround time of 14 – 24 days, depending on make and model of the vehicle, the nearest departure port in the United States, and your final destination in Guatemala. Below, our 2020 guide will explore everything you need to know about importing cars from the USA to Guatemala.

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from the USA to Guatemala?

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Want more information on car import services to Guatemala from the USA?

Read on below for our US to Guatemala Import Shipping Checklist, Vehicle Import Options, US to Guatemala Car Import Costs & Time Frame, US to Guatemala Vehicle Import Options, Ports Served in the US & Guatemala, and other details on how to Import Car from USA to Guatemala.


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US to Guatemala Vehicle Import Checklist

Here’s a rough breakdown of the process you’ll need to go through to import your vehicle to Guatemala.
  • After you’ve determined that your vehicle is eligible and selected an import option, gather all necessary vehicle documentation, including:

    • Sales Contract / Bill of Sale

    • Car Registration

  • Understand the costs of importing a vehicle, including:

    • Freight and insurance charges when importing your vehicle

    • Wharf, transport, storage and delivery charges after your vehicle arrives

    • Duties, taxes and fees

    • Cleaning the undercarriage of foreign soil

    • Registration and insurance requirements in the relevant Guatemalan State or Territory

    • Other charges such as import processing, customs brokers’, and logistics service provider charges

  • Select an international car import company and preferred shipping method to transport your vehicle from the United States to Guatemala

  • Determine your vehicle’s departure and destination ports

  • Confirm the vehicle is clean and free of foreign soil

More information on the process of importing a vehicle to Guatemala can be found here.

Vehicle Import Options

As you engage in the vehicle import process, some of the most important questions to consider include:

  • Whether you plan to import the car permanently or if it’s just a temporary move,

  • Whether you have been the owner of the car for at least 6 months,

  • Whether you’re importing a new or used vehicle.

These questions and more will determine whether your car is eligible for import to Guatemala. Your actual tax rate is based on these details.

You should never assume your scenario is the same as someone else’s. Some vehicles such as used cars may have eligibility requirements that differ from those for newer vehicles for import into Guatemala.

To obtain an estimate of the cost to import a car to Guatemala, fill out our free quick quote form.

Vehicle Import Approval

Upon arrival of your vehicle import to Guatemala, the vehicle must be declared in Customs.

You’ll need the following documentation:

  • Declaration of Goods (Our agent will assist with filing and submission)
  • Transport Document
  • Original Vehicle Title & Registration
  • Transport Document
  • Purchase Invoice or Bill of Sale
  • Transport Document
  • Declaration of Customs Value, where appropiate.

Things to Consider

  • Upon entry, vehicles are granted a temporary permit lasting 30 days. Duties must be paid once plates are issued.
  • Vehicle clearance typically takes two weeks.

US to Guatemala Car Import Costs & Time Frame

Using a baseline of a compact car being imported using the roll-on/roll-off method from the Port of Los Angeles to Puerto Quetzal, our estimate to Import Car from USA to Guatemala starts at a cost of $1,850 USD with an estimated turnaround time of 14 – 24 days.

However, the cost to import a car to Guatemala can vary according to factors such as the model and make of your vehicle, your current location, the nearest departure port in the USA, your transport method of choice, availability of your chosen services and your final destination. Additionally, you’ll need to consider costs such as storage, cleaning, other vendor fees, and Guatemalan taxes & duties.

Taxes & Duties for Guatemalan Car Imports

Prior to importing a vehicle from US to Guatemala, verify your vehicle’s specifications and compliance with Guatemalan requirements.

If you are importing a vehicle to Guatemala from the USA, your car will be subject to local customs duties levied by the Guatemalan government.

However, in certain circumstances you might be able to gain exemption from paying customs duties and taxes.

  • Diplomatic vehicles don’t pay duties.

The amount of taxes and import duties payable when shipping a car to Guatemala from the US will vary and depends on the details of your shipment. To obtain an estimate of the cost to import a car to Guatemala, fill out our free quick quote form.

US to Guatemala Vehicle Import Options

Import Car from USA to Guatemala can be performed using a shared container, a sole container or a roll-on/roll-off service.


Roll-On/Roll-Off – Your vehicle will be driven onto a large cargo area on the shipping vessel, similar to a parking garage, and secured for transport. This is our most budget-friendly shipping option, since the only added charges are customs clearance and port fees.

Transits tend to be faster than with the shared container service as ships mostly depart on a weekly basis.


Shared Container Service – Your auto is safely stacked into a 40ft encased container, alongside a few different vehicles that will share in the extra charges for container transportation. These charges include terminal handling, unloading and trucking as well as customs clearance fees.

Vehicles are loaded utilizing our industry-leading steel loading system into a completely encased shipping container. Although you’ll have the peace of mind of a full enclosure, with no exposure to the weather or other elements, the container must reach capacity before shipping, resulting in a longer wait time before your vehicle ships out.


Full Container Load – You’ll have the additional advantage of a completely encased shipping container, just like our shared container service, yet the container is committed exclusively to your vehicle. Subsequently, there’s no wait for container capacity, so you’ll enjoy a shorter hold up before shipping. Be that as it may, extra terminal handling expenses and fees won’t be shared with other vehicle proprietors.

Our clients appreciate the added security and convenience offered by our dedicated container shipping. Once we receive your vehicle, we’ll photo and report the vehicle’s condition and loading process. Your vehicle will be loaded utilizing our cutting-edge steel loading framework that doesn’t depend on obsolete wood ramps and nails, which can harm your vehicle.

After your auto is loaded onto your own private container, it is bolted and secured. This will guarantee nobody accesses your auto before reaching its last destination. Since the vehicle is completely encased in a protected compartment, we welcome our customers to pack and transport additional items inside the vehicle. Notwithstanding, everything must be stacked safely, as we won’t be responsible for harm of any sort. Once your vehicle reaches its last destination in Guatemala, our operators will open the container, record the vehicle’s condition and photo the whole unloading process.

Compared to our Roll-On/Roll-Off service, enclosed container transportation is more secure, as well as much quicker because of regular takeoffs every week.

Additional Services


Sourcing Vehicles – Over twenty years’ experience in the shipping industry has allowed us to develop an established network of car buyers. Our agents are ready to assist overseas clients with sourcing and buying vehicles, for a nominal fee.


Other Services – Some of the auto transport services we offer in overseas territories include domestic pickup, vehicle import assistance, tracking of your shipment, customs clearance in the USA and a full vehicle inspection report.

Ports Served in the US and Guatemala

Departure Ports – United States

The location your vehicle will depart from depends on the method of car transport to Guatemala, where your vehicle is located, your budget and which services the nearest port offers. We have multiple departure locations in the USA, including Los Angeles, New York, Houston, Miami, Savannah and more.

Destination Ports – Guatemala

Here are the Guatemala entry ports where your vehicle can be imported.

  • Champerico
  • Puerto Barrios
  • Puerto Quetzal
  • San José
  • Santo Tomas de Castilla

Cleaning Your Vehicle’s Undercarriage

Before importing your vehicle to Guatemala, the undercarriage must be cleaned and free of foreign soil to prevent the introduction of invasive plants, animals, fungi and microorganisms. This can be accomplished through steam cleaning or other thorough cleaning methods.

CFR Rinkens can assist with finding an appropriate cleaner to help ensure you comply with this requirement. We do not recommend washing the interior of the vehicle as it can cause mold during transport. Vacuuming the interior is usually more than sufficient.

Plating Your Vehicle in Guatemala

Upon arrival of your vehicle import to Guatemala, vehicles undergo a physical examination to confirm the make, model and serial numbers. A 30-day temporary permit will be assigned.

Once your vehicle plates are issued, all import duties and taxes must be paid.

Declaration and payment of duties can be done online via the Declaraguate online system.

To obtain an estimate of the cost for car import from USA to Guatemala and other services, fill out our free quick quote form.

Other Guatemala/US Shipping Options

This information was updated in January 2020. All information, time frames, pricing, and regulations are subject to change. Please contact a sales representative for the most current rates and information.