Is There a Tax When I Ship my Car to Puerto Rico?

You can expect to owe taxes and duties on imports of cars outside the United States. Although Puerto Rico import taxes are not levied on all imported goods, shipping a car to Puerto Rico will require you to pay taxes.

Puerto Rico’s Embassy can provide you with the nation’s current auto import rates. You will not see these Puerto Rico import taxes on your transporter’s invoice for vehicle shipping services so be sure you do your due diligence.

All imported vehicles are subjected to an excise tax. There is a wide range of tax and import duties depending on the type and age of the vehicle, but you should expect to pay no less than 5% of the car’s worth.

Through Hacienda, the Puerto Rico tax collector’s office, you can calculate all the duties due. Although there are no strict laws regarding the age of imported cars, registering older cars tends to be more expensive. In Puerto Rico, you cannot drive a car with regular U.S. license plates for more than 3 days after paying the excise tax.

What is Excise Tax?

An excise tax is a tax imposed by Puerto Rico on things shipped there, such as vehicles. The amount depends upon how much the vehicle is worth in Puerto Rico.

Puerto Rico import taxes

Does Shipping My car Include Excise Tax?

The cost of shipping your car to Puerto Rico does not include the excise tax. The tax must be paid separately given that the car shipping company cannot pay it for you. The tax is also determined when your car arrives, which is after you have paid the auto transport company.

Where Can I Find My Excise Tax?

You can find out how much excise tax you owe by clicking here. There will be a Spanish version of the site. The page will translate when you right-click on it in your browser if you cannot read Spanish. From the drop-down menu, click “Translate to English”.

You must enter your vehicle’s VIN number or the year, make, and model of your car. From there, the tax fee will be estimated for you.

Where Can I Pay My Excise Tax?

To pay your excise tax, fill out the Official Excise Tax Document and pay the excise tax at 2 Avenida Juan Ponce de León, San Juan, 00917. Hacienda Centro de Servicios is located there.

Upon arrival, you will likely need cash to pay. Credit cards may or may not be accepted. Checks are not accepted. The best option is cash; you do not need to exchange your money first in Puerto Rico because the currency is the same U.S. dollar.


Shipping your car to Puerto Rico will require you to prepare for the Puerto Rican excise tax. Prepare your estimate of the tax and have the cash ready when your vehicle arrives at the port. Do not forget this cost is NOT included in the quote your car shipping company will give you.

Puerto Rico Vehicle Import Tax FAQs

Are the AutoStar Transport Express quotes inclusive of taxes?

We do not have access to government charges so that is why AutoStar Transport Express does not provide a price including taxes. Customers can get an estimated price by logging into Hacienda’s webpage.

Can the taxes be paid beforehand? Can we provide an estimate?

Taxes can only be paid after the vehicle sails because we need the bill of lading to be generated in order to be able to pay the taxes. There is a number on the invoice needed to pay the Arbitrios (government taxes). Please note that we cannot provide an estimate as prices are not fixed because they charge per vehicle.

Got any questions? Here are some answers we have compiled to your most common Puerto Rico car shipping questions.

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    Mark Dugger

    Mark works as operations manager at AutoStar Transport. He has extensive experience in systems management and understands how to run a business efficiently. Mark is with AutoStar since its early days. He writes about auto shipping, logistics, and cross-country car shipping. In his free time, Mark plays golf and do skiing.
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    Edward Larrivee

    Edward knows everything about car carriers. He helps AutoStar Transport Express customers learn the auto shipping industry and process and writes about car carriers, auto shipping, car transit, and things you need to know for a great car shipping experience. Edward spends his free time watching and playing basketball.
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