When it comes to international vehicle shipping there are two options, RORO (roll on roll off) and container shipping. Both have their pros and cons which we will outline here.

It is important to note that before dealing with a Registered Importer and choosing a shipping method, be sure to purchase cargo insurance if it is not included with your vehicle purchase. At RightDrive, we carry maximum cargo insurance with every shipment, standard. This means no extra costs to you.


roroRORO (aka Roll On Roll Off) is the cheaper of the two methods.
Vehicles are driven directly onto the freighter and secured to the vessels decks. This method of shipping is popular with new vehicle manufacturers who ship their vehicles to other countries. It keeps costs and is fast and efficient when it comes to unloading. For these same reasons, RORO is popular with some importers.
The cargo is simply “rolled on” the vessel at the port of loading and “rolled off” the vessel at the overseas destination. Vehicles are unloaded with port employees which is where problems have been known to arise. In the past, we have heard of and even seen port workers driving vehicles around their shipping yards, sometimes causing damage to the vehicles. Another problem with RORO is the time that the vehicle sits at the shipping yard, exposed. Car stereos, shift knobs and other easy to steal items have gone missing and other times rain or snow can get into vehicles who windows have been left open.
RORO’s final setback is that it is not available to all locations.


containerWith container shipping, vehicles are secured in a locked container. At RightDrive we store 3-4 vehicles per container depending on the size of the vehicles.
Although container shipping is more expensive, it is preferred by many importers for its added security. Once loaded in Japan, the vehicle is secured and locked until it arrives at the importers. Since RightDrive has staff in Japan, we can ensure that your vehicle enters the container with care and it not vandalized before it sets sail.
Collectors tend to embrace this shipping method in order to have maximum security of their vehicle.
Aside from the higher cost, one of the drawbacks of container shipping is the length of time that a vehicle sits without being started. It is not uncommon for batteries to die which is why we replace them as needed at no extra cost.