Advice desk: Is it cheaper to import my car to Ireland for long holiday or just to buy one?
Aidan Timmons and Motoring Editor Eddie Cunningham team up to help readers make the right choice with their next car. Aidan visits dealers all over the country to produce a monthly guidebook on the values of used cars. He is co-editor of Motor Trade Publishers, who supply a car-valuing service to the motor trade, insurance companies and finance houses. Eddie is author of former best-seller 'Clever Car Buying'
The wife and I reside in Perth, Australia and holiday in Ireland every year. She spends three months visiting family. The biggest cost is a hire car rental especially automatics. I am preparing to buy a new car in Perth and am toying with the idea of importing my old car to Ireland instead of trading. I just wanted to know how hard it would be to get it through customs, insured and registered in Ireland and costs. Given all that and shipping it might be cheaper just to buy a car in Ireland? It's a 2008 Ford Focus cabriolet with 58,000km on the clock.
Aidan: Renting might be the only option. It is conceivable you might be considered a high risk as you spend most of your time in Australia. It is also unlikely you will organise three months insurance. I don't think buying a car in Ireland is the solution either. It still needs to be stored, maintained, put through the NCT (car test) and insured with all the same risk factors as before. Perhaps you can strike a deal with a rental company here.
Eddie: A legal expert I raised this with focused on the insurance. Overall I have to say I don't think it is worth the effort. But I do know for a fact that if you shop around online for rental deals well in advance there can be offers that make bothering with your own car a waste of time. Expend your energy on getting a good rental deal. Enjoy your three months.