Vehicles, boats and planes

Don't forget to get your vehicles, boats and planes cleared and check to see if you qualify for concessions.

Vehicles, boats and planes

Vehicles, boats and planes

Bringing in vehicles, boats and planes

You can get a “household items” concession if:

  • you’re moving to the Cook Islands, or moving back after 3 years or more away, and
  • you’ve used the items for their intended purpose.
  • This means you won’t have to pay VAT and duties on some items.

You can also get concessions on:

  • private vehicles, including:
  • motorcycles
  • cars
  • scooters
  • motorhomes
  • camper vans
  • ambulances
  • boats

They can come with you, or you can send them separately. You can import more than one vehicle, boat or plane but only one unit is duty-free, as long as you meet the Concessionary Requirements (PDF 102 KB).

Learn more in Fact Sheet 01: Ref 85.01 85.02 (PDF 267 KB).

If you sell your vehicle, boat or plane within 3 years of bringing it into the Cook Islands duty-free, you must pay Customs duty and VAT on a pro rata basis.

If you don't qualify for concessions

If you don’t qualify for concessions, you will have to pay:

  • VAT and Customs duty of up to 120% on motorcycles, cars and planes
  • VAT and Customs duty of 5% on private boats (yachts and other vessels for pleasure or sport)
  • VAT and Customs duty of 5% on motor vehicles for transporting more than 10 people
  • VAT and Customs duty of 10% on private boats, camper vans, ambulances and motor homes.

Clearing your vehicle, boat or plane

Shipping companies will usually give you arrival papers when you import your vehicle, boat or plane.

Some freight forwarders will also help you with Customs processes.

To get a delivery order, which allows you to take possession of your vehicle, boat or plane, you must arrange:

  • a Biosecurity Certificate (Biocert) from Biosecurity Cook Islands (MoA) (PDF 124 KB)
  • a Customs clearance.

Ministry of Agriculture - Biosecurity will also check your vehicle, boat or plane when it arrives to look for contamination.

Customs clearance

To get a Customs clearance for your vehicle, boat or plane, you must provide:

  • the Biocert
  • your passport (or a high-quality copy of it, if you’re emailing us)
  • an invoice or receipt showing what you paid, and when you bought it
  • registration/ownership details
  • an invoice showing freight and insurance costs for shipping to the Cook Islands
  • the bill of lading or arrival notice.


If you’re bringing in a vehicle, you must also provide:

  • registration papers or,
  • certificate of permanent export (UK)
  • certificate of title (USA)
  • de-registration certificate (Japan)
  • an invoice showing your export costs (Japan)
Valuing your vehicle

If you need to pay VAT on your vehicle, we will calculate the amount based on the sum of:

  • the Customs value of the plane, boat or vehicle
  • any Customs duties, other duties and levies
  • the freight and insurance costs of transporting the item(s) to the Cooks.

If you need to pay duty on your vehicle, we will base the duty on the vehicle’s Customs valuation only.This is decided according to the provisions of the Second Schedule of the Customs Revenue Border Protection Act 2012 (CI Legislation).