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The best car transport options when buying a car interstate

A comprehensive guide to buying a car interstate - covering the necessary checks, costs, transport options, and insider tips to ensure a smooth purchase.
The best car transport options when buying a car interstate

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Trusted by thousands of vehicle owners across Australia. Get a fixed price for your interstate car relocation.
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Buying a new or used car once meant visiting your local dealership or scrolling through the classifieds in the hunt for a great car that also happens to be nearby. But, thanks to the internet, you can now buy cars from all over Australia and have them delivered to your door.

Car transportation services offer a cost-effective, safe and reliable way to transport a vehicle from another state or territory. Whether buying a car from a dealership or via private sale, using an experienced transport provider can be the best way to get your car home safely.

In this guide we're going to be exploring the following:

Finding the right vehicle online

The first step in purchasing a new or used car online is knowing where to look. Fortunately, numerous reputable websites are available, offering everything from brand new vehicles to pre-inspected private sale cars. We recommend checking out Drive and Cars24. Both platforms provide a vast selection of vehicles coupled with excellent customer service.

To streamline your search, make sure to utilise filters such as price range, make and model, and year. Additionally, take the time to read reviews and ratings from previous customers as this can offer insights into their reliability and the satisfaction of other users.

Shopping for cars online can be distracting, especially with the allure of new models, upgrades, and additional features. To stay focused, establish clear criteria from the beginning. Consider the following essential factors:

  • Budget. Define how much you are willing to spend
  • Car Type. Determine the style or model that best fits your needs
  • Maximum kms. Decide on the maximum mileage acceptable for a used car
  • Age. Set a limit for how old the car can be
  • Color. While not crucial, the color can be an important personal preference

By setting these parameters early, you'll make your car-buying process more efficient and targeted towards your specific needs.

Pre-purchase inspections

One of the most important steps in the buying process is to have the vehicle inspected before committing to anything; this should be in the form of a pre-purchase inspection. These checks can be performed by dedicated pre-purchase inspection companies or mobile mechanics.

Both options achieve the same result: the vehicle will be checked over mechanically, the interior and external bodywork will be reviewed. These inspections help assess the car’s overall condition, confirm its history, and identify hidden problems. The inspection report provides a sound basis for negotiation and ensures you are making a well-informed decision.

What you need to consider when transporting the vehicle

1. Cost. The greater the distance the higher the cost, make sure to factor this into your total car buying budget.

2. Insurance. Make sure the transport company has appropriate insurance in case something happens during transit.

3. Method. There are two main types of car transport services; enclosed vehicles and open-air carriers. Enclosed transportation offers more protection from the elements, but is generally more expensive.

4. Reputation. When choosing a car transport service, always look for one with a good reputation and plenty of positive reviews.

5. Time Frame. Some transport services offer guaranteed pick-up and delivery times, while others may take a little longer.

By carefully researching your options and comparing car transport services, you can find the best one to meet your needs and budget. With a reliable car transport service, you can feel confident that your new pride and joy will arrive safely, wherever you are in Australia.

Finding the best car transport company

There are many professional car transport operators across Australia that can help relocate your vehicle. To get the best price from these experts, you can submit a single transport request on Upmove, and multiple companies will quote for your job. This will ensure you're getting the best price and help you make an informed decision by checking ratings and reviews from previous customers.

How much should it cost?

The cost of transporting a car interstate varies depending on where it's being moved from and too; below are some popular routes to help give you an idea of cost:

Car transport Brisbane to Melbourne - $550 to $950

Car transport Perth to Sydney - $1,100 to $1,670

Car Transport Sydney to Melbourne - $550 to $1,100

The five main factors affecing the costs of vehicle transport:

  • The car type and size (see full breakdown on vehicle types)
  • If the car is running vs non-operational
  • If belongings will be in the car during transit
  • If you need the vehicle delivered to a specific address or pick-up from a local depot
  • The location of the destination

Updating a vehicle rego

When buying a car from another state, you'll need to update the registration to the new state. This process generally involves:

  • Inspection. Some states require a vehicle inspection before registration.
  • Proof of ownership. Provide a bill of sale or transfer of ownership document.
  • Application for registration. This can usually be done at local transport departments like VicRoads in Victoria or Transport for NSW.

The registration fees vary by state and vehicle type, so check the relevant transport authority website for the most accurate information. See our complete guide on vehicle registration.


Now more than ever, Aussies are choosing to purchase their next vehicle online and have it transported to their doorstep. By entrusting a reliable car transport company with your vehicle, you can rest assured that your new wheels will arrive in the same condition as when they left. To find reliable and experienced car transport professionals, use Upmove to get multiple quotes to ensure you get the best price.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I buy a car from another state in Australia?

Yes, it is possible to purchase a car from another state in Australia. However, depending on where you are based and the location of the car you wish to purchase, you should arrange for transport services to get your vehicle home.

How much does it cost to transfer a rego to NSW?

When you transfer the rego for the vehicle within fourteen days of acquisition, it's only $34. However, if you wait longer than 14 days to make payment, a late-transfer surcharge is added and bumps up the total cost to $157.

Can I buy a car in QLD if I live in Victoria?

Yes, you can buy a car in Queensland if you live in Victoria. All that you need to do is research the car transport options available to you and arrange for your vehicle to be transported from Queensland to Victoria. It is important to find a reputable car transport company that can deliver your car safely within the stipulated timeframe. Additionally, you should check the regulations in both states regarding the purchase of vehicles. This will ensure the process of buying a car interstate is done legally and successfully. Once your car is in Victoria, you can go through the process of transferring its registration to Victoria with VicRoads. This will allow you to drive the vehicle within the state of Victoria.

How long can I drive on an interstate car in NSW?

You can drive with your existing licence for up to 3 months, as long as you still have a valid licence from the state of origin. If your existing licence expires before the 3 months is up, you will need to get an NSW driver's licence in order to keep driving the vehicle.

Find and compare the best car transport providers

Trusted by thousands of vehicle owners across Australia. Get a fixed price for your interstate car relocation.
9.8 · 958 reviews
Car type

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