How COVID-19 Has Affected The Car Shipping Industry

How Covid 19 Has Affected the Car Shipping Industry


Do you plan on shipping your vehicle internationally during the Covid 19 pandemic? If yes, then it’s very important that you read this article. Covid 19 has been around for a while now, yet the world is still trying to adjust. Yes, vaccines are here and parts of the world are beginning to reopen, but the situation is clearly far from being resolved. For one thing, uneven vaccine distribution means that while some economies are starting to get back to normal, others are still in the grips of the deadly disease. Covid 19 has drastically changed the way in which we conduct business. And the international car shipping industry has not been spared the ravages of this pandemic. So, how has Covid 19 affected car shipping around the globe?


  1. 1. Demand for vehicle shipping services has fallen

One of the major effects of the Coronavirus pandemic has been a drastic fall in demand for on international vehicle shipping services. This is something that we, at Shipoverseas, can attest to. According to the WTO Goods Trade Barometer, there was a shard fall in maritime trade in the second quarter of 2020. That trend has continued in 2021, and it looks set to continue as long as the pandemic persists.

In general, the automotive industry has been hard hit by the disease. With people around the world finding themselves out of work due to Covid 19 related restrictions, it’s not really surprising that fewer of them are buying and shipping cars. Indeed, many countries have had to introduce bailouts for their citizens to ensure that they get the most basic of needs.

Fortunately, vaccination campaigns appear to have reduced the strain, particularly in the United States. With the economy reopening, demand for auto shipping services appears to be on a slow but certain uptick.



  1. 2. Production has fallen due to supply chain disruptions and enhanced safety standards for workers

To further understand the effects of the pandemic on the international car shipping industry, we need to understand how the auto manufacturing industry works. This is a sector that has long supply chains, with parts being manufactured in different countries around the world.

China, as an example, is a major supplier of car parts. This is the place where the pandemic first began, and the country responded by introducing strict lockdown measures. This led to the disruption in supply chains.

The fact that parts come from all over the world has proved to be a major vulnerability. It has meant production has had to be reduced due to the different levels of lockdown that were in place around the world.

Many countries introduced measures such as physical distancing, the wearing of facemasks, and reducing the number of people working in the same place at the same time. These measures have also had a negative effect on the car manufacturing industry.



  1. 3. There has been a fall in people moving to other countries

A large chunk of the auto shipping industry’s revenue is derived from people who are moving to other countries, either to work or for holiday. These activities have been severely affected by the pandemic. One effect has been that people are now being forced to stay in one place.

The tourisms industry was also affected negatively. In fact, at the height of the pandemic, this industry was virtually on its knees, with lockdown measures stopping people from moving from one place to the other. The result for the auto shipping industry was a fall in demand.


  1. 4. International events were cancelled

The Covid 19 pandemic has also seen a fall in international auto related shows. This has also had a negative effect on the car shipping industry. Just to give an example, the Tokyo Motor Show was cancelled in 2021 for the first time in 67 years due to the pandemic.

That’s just one example of events that have had to be cancelled, postponed or curtailed due to the pandemic. The result has been a further fall in demand for the car shipping services. Fear of the disease means that very few people are willing to risk their lives attending crowded events, either at home or abroad.


  1. 5. The classic car industry has remained lively

While things have been dire elsewhere, the classic car industry is one sector that has weathered the effects of the Covid 19 pandemic very well? Much of it has to do with innovation. Classic cars are now mainly being sold via the internet.

So, with people stuck in their homes, it appears they had all the time in the world to buy vintage cars. Most of these cars are being bought from the UK, while others are coming from as far away as Japan. As a result of this uptick in demand, this is a sector that has helped sustain the international car shipping industry, albeit on a very small scale.


  1. 6. Longer shipping times

This is something that you are going to have to bear with if you plan to ship your car overseas. Disruptions in shipping schedules have meant that it’s taking longer to get your car to its final destination. Yes, the situation is improving, but you should try to be patient. Expect some delays and plan accordingly.


What Does The Future Look Like?

The future, it has to be said, is looking a bit hopeful. However, there is still a lot of uncertainty.  The Covid 19 pandemic has been around for over a year now. Does it look like it’s going away any time soon? Well, not really, at least from the perspective of the international car shipping industry.

Yes, countries around the world are beginning to reopen, which has seen a slight uptick in demand for services in the sector. However, the fact still remains that people are still battling joblessness. And restrictions still remain, depending on how advanced a country’s efforts to curb the disease are.

Recovery is likely to be slow. In some countries, the disease is still killing thousands of people per day. An example is Brazil. New variants also threaten to undo the progress that has been made so far. The Delta variant from India has led to a reintroduction in restrictions in some countries, such as in the United Kingdom.

In short, Covid 19 is a pandemic whose effects are being felt globally. Like every other industry, the international car shipping industry has been badly affected. With people finding themselves out of work, demand for cars and for car shipping has fallen drastically.



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