How Can a Canadian Buy a Boat in the US and Import it Into Canada?

Buy a Boat in the US

Can a Canadian buy a boat in the US? How? What do they have to do to properly take care of this process? The National Vessel Registry Center has all the answers you’ll need to know.

Can a Canadian Buy a Boat in the US?

When looking to purchase a boat, a lot of people ask us how a Canadian can buy a boat in the US. Well, the process is definitely a bit more complex than that to purchase a boat here in Canada, but it doesn’t have to be all that hard. Here’s what you need to know.

Protecting Your Purchase

When you’re buying a boat abroad, you will need to be particularly careful about the purchase in order to avoid any potential scams or wrongdoings on the part of the seller. The best way to do this is to to check the boat for any liens that may be placed on it, such as loans or unpaid repairs. It’s always a good idea to check for these yourself even if the seller claims that the ownership is clear of them. Also worth noting is that if the boat comes with a trailer, the trailer will need to have a valid VIN, so call the Canadian Registrar of Imported Vehicles to find out if the VIN is valid before purchasing the boat. It will always be a smart idea to arrange for a professional boat survey of the hull and the motor before making a formal offer. 

Import the Boat Into Canada

Once you’ve made sure that the purchase is good to go and have taken care of the payment arrangements, it will be time for you to import the boat into Canada. Now, how can a Canadian buy a boat in the US and take it back to Canada? Well, the best way to do so is by land with a trailer. You will need to arrange for the insurance, although often your tow vehicle’s insurance can be extended to cover a boat or trailer when transporting them back to Canada. Remember to stop at Canada Customs, not United States Customs, and declare that you are importing a boat, which means sharing its value and selling price. Always tell the truth when answering customs officials’ questions, but also remember that you don’t have to give away details they’re not asking for. 

Buy a Boat in the US

Registering Boats in Canada

Here at the National Vessel Registry Center, we are well aware that no one likes to go through extensive documentation and paperwork, which is why we’ve set off to make it all much easier for you. We have established our platform in order to provide everyone access to all the forms they might need in order to take care of their Transport Canada boat registration or pleasure craft license, as well as the corresponding documentation that might follow. Regardless of what you need to file with Transport Canada, all your vessel documentation needs can be met right here on our website. Additionally, you can feel free to reach out to our team should you have any doubts throughout the process.