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How to ship a container from USA or Canada to Uruguay?

Procedures and guide to ship a Container to Uruguay:

  • 1st- You need to check with customs or a clearing agent in Uruguay to make sure the cargo, merchandise, or House holds goods are permitted to be shipped and imported in Uruguay.
  • 2dn- It is very important to get in contact with a Freight Forwarder in USA or Canada as BR EXPORT USA / BR LOGISTICS are, to check the procedure of your container shipping for documentation, export, customs clearance at the port of departure.
  • 3rd- Loading the container: What kind of container do you need? 20ft standard, 40ft standard, or a 40hc (high cube container). Where is the container to be loaded? You have 2 options, send the container to the factory, warehouse, residential address. What kind of documentation do i need to ship a container? Packing list, HTS code, cargo list, Bill of sale, commercial invoice, original title for vehicles, depend of the type of cargo, check with BR EXPORT USA INC for more information.
  • 4th- You have to do a POA (Power of attorney) authorizing the Freight Forwarder or Export Company to make a booking with the SSL (Steamship Line) and to transport the empty container from the port to the loading place, return the loaded shipping-container to the port or terminal of departure, and handling the customs export documentation, title validation if you are shipping a vehicle.
  • 5th- The owner of the cargo or shipper of the container have to pay to the Forwarder for the local charges in the USA or Canada, trucking of the container, ocean freight to Montevideo, and export docs, to receive the Bill of lading, Telex Release, PAD, or Express Release of the cargo.
  • 6th- After the original bill of lading or release of container is received, you will need to send it to the customs broker or clearing agent in Uruguay to start the import process.

How much does it cost the ocean freight to ship a container to the port of Montevideo Uruguay?

To get the price to ship a container to the port Montevideo Uruguay there are different factors from origin as the kind of container you will need for example a 20ft container or 40ft container, the location, state, city that the container will be need to be transported to, or loaded.

You can request a rate to ship your container clicking the following bottom or contacting us with more information:

Shipping rates from North America, United States or Canada to Montevideo Uruguay from: Halifax, Toronto, Vancouver, Massachusetts, Boston, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Baltimore Maryland, Washington DC, North Carolina, Atlanta Georgia, Savannah Georgia, South Carolina, Jacksonville Florida, Miami Florida, Houston Texas, Washington State, Los Angeles California, Long Beach California, San Francisco California. How much is to ship a container to Uruguay? The price to send a container to Uruguay: DV20ft between $2500 to $4000, the price for a DV40ft is between $2990 to $4500, you can Request a full Quote or tariff to the forwarder agent. How much cost to ship a 40HC? The freight rate to Montevideo for a 40HQ container is between $ 2990 to $4500, Request your ocean freight to the forwarder agent.

Port of Montevideo

Port location

The port of MONTEVIDEO is one of the sea container ports in URUGUAY where BR EXPORT USA operate as a trusted company member of the BR LOGISTICS INTERNATIONAL TRANSPORT group of Freight Forwarders & Logistcs. Montevideo’s port named in Spanish “Puerto de Montevideo” is located in the northern part of the capital city of Uruguay, this terminal is one of the major ports of South America and plays a very important role in the economy of Uruguay from where almost the 90% of the Uruguayan maritime cargo, import and exports business are handled. Address: Juan Carlos Gómez, 11000 Montevideo, Uruguay, South America. Port Authority: Administracion Nacional de Puertos Annual handling capacity: of 900,000 TEU.

Planing to Return to Uruguay from USA or Canada?

As per the approved decree 330/008 by the president of the Uruguay, All the Uruguayan citizens with more than two years of residence in foreign countries for example USA, Canada, Spain, New Zeland, Australia, Germany, Netherlands, France, Portugal, Mexico, China, Japan, and others that decided to return definitively to the country of Uruguay, can apply with a local consulate of Uruguay to send their personal effects and one vehicle per person.

How to return to Uruguay and send a container with your personal effects and vehicles.

Manual to return to Uruguay without paying taxes and duties for Automobiles (Car or Motorcycle), personal effects, household goods , and work tools:

What is the return to Uruguay?

It is understood by return to the process by which a compatriot who lives abroad decides to come to Uruguay to reside permanently, accompanied by his family and bringing with him the goods that the regulations authorize him to enter. To be considered a return and can access the Corresponding benefits must comply with what is established in current regulations: Law 18,250 and its amendments, and Regulatory Decree 330 / 08 for exoneration of import taxes and duties. Any other import procedure by which goods, or commercial cargo are entered into Uruguay are not considered a return procedure and will need to pay taxes and duties.

What does Law Nº. 18.250 establish?

Article 76 of Law 18.250 or “of Return” establishes the benefits that compatriots have that decide to come to reside in Uruguay. “Article 76.- Any Uruguayan with more than two years of residence abroad who decides to reside permanently in the country, may enter for one time only, free of any exchange procedure and exempt from all kinds of customs duties, taxes or related charges : A) Movable property and effects that house your room. B) The tools, machines, devices and instruments related to the exercise of their profession, art or trade. C) A motor vehicle owned by it, which cannot be transferred until after a period of two years from its entry into the Republic. The regime to which the automobile is subject must be recorded in the municipal registration documents and in the National Automotive Registry. The said vehicle must be registered directly by the person interested in the corresponding Departmental Administration. In the operations provided for in this article, the intervention of the customs broker will not be mandatory. Free consular legalization is established in the documents related to the process of permanent residence in the country of the compatriots and their family nucleus, which comply with the requirements established in this article. ” According to this article, the beneficiaries are all Uruguayan nationals, both those born in the national territory and the children of a Uruguayan father or mother born abroad. Legal citizens, as well as residents, are not covered by this law. The entry of the move of the home, tools or machines of his profession and a motor vehicle are allowed, all free of taxes. The return under Law 18,250 is final and only once; the person who in some future would like to return to support this regime or some other customs franchise for entry of removals (eg Decree. 572/94) may not do so. Law No. 18,250 allows the entry of a used vehicle per person. At the time of starting the return process, the person must demonstrate that he has resided permanently and continuously abroad in the previous two years and, in case of returning with a vehicle, he must have been at least one year in his possession and affected its use. It is also established that all procedures related to return are free and that the hiring of a Customs Broker is not mandatory. Important: those who enter a vehicle under this law may not transfer it until after a period of two years from its importation. There is no exception to this provision. Decree No. 330/008 regulates Law 18,250. This decree establishes all the requirements that compatriots must meet in order to be able to protect themselves from the benefits of the Law of Return as well as the procedures of the procedure. Outside of Law 18,250, the prohibition of importation of used motor vehicles is governed, in accordance with Law 19,171 of December 13, 2013.

Is there another tax-free income regime for Uruguayan citizens returning to the country?

Yes, there is another rule (Decree 572/994) of application for Uruguayan citizens (and foreigners) with more than one year of residence abroad, whereby they are allowed to enter the country, exempt from taxes, their furniture and other goods for domestic use , tools, machines, devices and instruments necessary for the exercise of suppression, art or trade, individually considered. Under this regime, the entry of vehicles is not authorized, nor are the costs of legalization of documentation by the Ministry of Relations exempted The process begins when the corresponding Consulate begins, where proof of residence will be obtained and the list of belongings will be intervened. If you returned from abroad IMPORTANT Those who enter a vehicle under this law may not transfer it until after a period of two years from its importation. There is no exception to this provision. 3. Is there another tax-free income regime for Uruguayan citizens returning to the country? Manual for Return 5 Without doing the procedure, you must contact the Consulate directly to obtain the corresponding documents on your own. The documentation obtained legalizes it in Foreign Relations and presents it to Customs. In the case of returning with tools, a certificate of profession or trade will also be required.This regime, unlike the one-time Return, allows to be used again in the future as many times as necessary.Inform yourself on which regime best suits to your needs.

What is free?

With Law 18.250 (Return) and its Regulatory Decree 330/08: A) Legalization’s are exonerated in the Consulate, the visa in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the procedure in the Ministry of Economy and Finance, as well as another procedure related to public dependencies. B) Customs duties, taxes or related charges are exempted as follows:

Household Goods: Vehicles:
  • Value Added Tax (VAT) of 22% plus 10% down payment.
  • Internal Specific Tax (IMESI) 30%
  • Import surcharges for 20%
  • Consular Rate of 2%
  • Port Provisions of US $ 110 per ton
  • Extraordinary expenses for US $ 10
  • Impuesto al Valor Agregado (IVA) de 22% más 10% de anticipo.
  • Impuesto Específico Interno (IMESI) 42.44%
  • Recargos de importación por 23%
  • Tasa Consular de 2%
  • Proventos portuarios de 38 USD cada 1.000 USD
  • Gastos extraordinarios 12%
  • IRAE 4%
  • Tasa de Servicios Aduaneros 0.2%

What should be paid?

USA & Canada:
  • Transportation cost to the freight forwarder or export company (shipping ocean freight) from the country where you live to port of Montevideo.
  • Costs of the maritime company in the country where you reside, container trucking transport, local charges, terminal charges, loading of the container, export documentation, and customs clearence in origin.
  • Costs of the maritime agency company in Uruguay, for example the Steamship Lines MSC, ZIM, MAERSK Line, Hapag LLoyd, Safmarine, Hyundai, HSUD.
  • Container handling costs in port.
  • Particular intra-port deposit.
  • Deposit in container terminal.
  • THC destination (Terminal Handling Charges)
  • Transportation (freight) from the Port of Montevideo to the address you will live in Uruguay.
  • Clearing agent if needed, it is not mandaroty to use a clearing agent, you can do all the clearing by your self using the return law.

Example for estimated local charges cost in Uruguay: 20FT Container: between a $1000 dollars to $1500 dollars, depends of the terminal, steam ship line, and the days that the container stay at the port terminal. 40FT Container: between a $1250 dollars to $1750 dollars, depends of the terminal, steam ship line, and the days that the container stay at the port terminal.

What are the requirements and commitments?

The benefits of Law 18.250 are provided as long as the requirements are met and certain commitments are assumed:


1. Having resided continuously abroad in the last two years at the time of starting the return procedures. If at any time he interrupted that residence (having spent more than 90 days a year in Uruguay) without a duly justified cause (e.g. major force), he will not be able to rely on the law. 2. Having had the vehicle on his property and in usufruct for at least the last year at the time of initiating the return procedures. If it has been within one year, you must wait to make the return procedure. 3.Present the documentation in a form and within the established deadlines.Over the deadlines the procedures are not accepted. 4.Not having received before any special regime for the entry of vehicles and goods and / or household goods.


1. Return in a definitely to the Republic of Uruguay. 2. Do not dispose of or transfer the vehicle for a period of two years from the customs clearance. 3. If you enter a vehicle, appear before the Ministry of Foreign Affairs once a year during the two years following the start of the procedure, with the corresponding proof of entry and exit of the country issued by the National Migration Directorate, for the purpose to verify permanent residence in the country. It is verified that you have had continuous and permanent residence in the country if you have not spent more than 90 days a year abroad, except for duly justified cases (eg force majeure). 4. Register the vehicle within 30 days of its clearance.

What are the consequences for non-compliance of the retun law for Uruguayan citizens?

As mentioned in the previous point, the benefits of the regime established by Law 18,250 are granted as a counterpart of requirements and commitments assumed by the returning countryman. Failure to comply with the requirements will result in the non-acceptance of the procedure.The breach of the commitments established in Law 18.250 and its regulatory Decree 330/08 will result in the loss of all the tax benefits indicated in Point 3, revoking the authorization granted . Such revocation will be communicated to the National Customs Directorate and the General Tax Directorate. The latter body will reliquidate all those taxes, which must be paid in full by the interested party.

Return via Maritime Container service FCL or LCL:

These are the transfers of the goods on board, either in a full container container load or via a less than a container load from a warehouse. In the case of vehicles, household goods, personal effects and tools, the interested party must complete all the steps numbered in the points 12, 13 and 14 of this Manual. It is clarified that both the personal effects and the car they may not leave the port area until they have the corresponding authorizations. The exit of the Port of Montevideo from the move and the car may, however, be made separately.

What do you need to do to start the retun process:

The process begins at the Uruguayan Consulate near your place of residence. You can look for it at: http: // We suggest that you contact the consulate beforehand in order to be informed of opening hours for the public consulate or embassy, documentation to be presented, etc. The procedure is face-to-face, that is, you will have to go personally to the Consulate. If you live in another city far away from the consulate and cannot move or in situations of physical impossibility or force majeure, the Consulate will indicate the procedure to follow. Once returned to Uruguay you must continue, personally, said procedure at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Center of Citizen Service, in Cuareim Street 1384, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. No paperwork will be accepted until the person has returned from abroad. From the date of return to Uruguay you will have a maximum period of 60 days to continue the process . Once this period has expired, you cannot use the Return Law. Remember that all the documentation intervened in the Consulate has a maximum validity of 90 days from its date of issue. Once this term has expired, you must complete the process again, presenting updated documentation.


First step (in the US or Canada)

Go to the corresponding Consulate to request the voluntary return under Law 18250 and its regulatory decrees 572/94 for household goods and 330/08 for vehicles, presenting:

  • List of personal and domestic effects.
  • Residence certificate, or any other requiered document for the consulate.
  • Public or private document that proves that you own the vehicle and it is affected to its use, with a minimum of 1 year in its possession.
  • Certificate / Labor history and affidavit that must be signed at the consulate itself.
  • General documentation of the vehicle, original title, registration, valid identity card and passport.  

Second step (in Uruguay)

Present yourself at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (it is at Cuareim Street 1384): (Citizen Attention Center), presenting all the visa documentation provided by the Consulate before and the Identity Card of the interested party.

Third step (in Uruguay)

  • To appear before the National Directorate of Migration, to obtain the Certificate of arrival for customs and for external relations, in this case the history of the movements of the last two years must be included (it is in Misiones Street 1513).

Fourth step (in Uruguay)

Returning to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs with the Migration Certificate, the MRREE will form a file with the submitted documentation of the vehicle, which will be sent to the Ministry of Economy and Finance internally. Request right there and at that time also the letter of exoneration of port supplies and then the customs broker can exonerate A.N.P. in the effects. The Ministry of Economy and Finance will be the competent Authority to authorize the entry of the vehicle into the national territory, once the resolution is approved, they will call you by telephone for withdrawal at Colonia 1089 Ground Floor (in the background). This resolution must be delivered at the time to the customs broker for customs clearance.

Vehicles to be shipped to Uruguay under the return law:

Point 12 Only one motor vehicle per person and one time will be admitted, leaving the entry of vehicles with more than two axles, as well as trucks, truck-tractors, motor homes, motorhomes and buses in all its modalities, being forbidden. The entry of all types of boats and aircraft will also be prohibited. Trailers or trailers are not allowed to enter. Very important: The vehicle may not be sold or transferred for a period of 2 years from its importation into Uruguay, and must be directly registered by the person interested in the Departmental Government of the reported address, within 30 days after the release, allowing its withdrawal from Customs. Likewise, you must contract the S.O.A. (Mandatory Automobile Insurance). The extra tires that you intend to enter (beyond those that are placed in the vehicle or the auxiliary wheel) are not included in the franchise and you will have to pay taxes to import them.If you enter appliances in the vehicle, in order to take advantage of the space, please take into account that if you did not declare them in the corresponding equipment list, you will incur a customs infraction.

Household Goods or Personal effects to be shipped to Uruguay under the return law:

After living outside of Uruguay for a period of more than two years, the following used goods, may be entered free of encumbrances: -Personal clothes and objects, books, brochures and newspapers.-Furniture and other use goods domestic.-Tools, machines, equipment and instruments necessary for the exercise of their profession, art or trade, subject to the prior verification of the activity developed by the traveler. ALL KIND OF GOODS FOR SALE EXCLUDED OF THE LAW, INCLUDING LAUNDRY AND CLOTHES.

Tools to be shipped to Uruguay under the return law:

According to current regulations, those returning to the country may enter: “Tools, machines, devices and instruments necessary for the exercise of their profession, art or trade, individually considered”. The procedure is the same as for the equipment, adding to the documentation of Point 13 of the following documents: a) List of tools or machines of a particular profession, art or trade. Nor will the manuscript list or the Packing List be admitted. This list is made separately to deenseres. In the case of simple tools for domestic use, they must be included in the list of household goods indicating that they have that purpose. . b) Proof of work by profession or trade, or other documents (Institutional title or note) that accredit profession, art or trade that the interested party performed. This is necessary only in the case that they wish to enter the country specific tools of said profession or trade, but it is not necessary for tools of purely domestic use. This document must be presented in original, not being necessary its legalization / apostille, or translation. This benefit applies to those who are protected by both Law 18.250 / Dec 330/08 and Decree 572/994.



It is forbidden to enter the country unsing the retunr law the products and by-products of animal and vegetable origin (Sanitary Barrier) -Meats of any species, cold cuts and sausages.-Fluid milk (except long life), butter, eggs, cream of milk and cheeses.-Fruits and fresh vegetables, seeds, handicrafts with seeds and vegetable products.-Vegetables, their parts and related products. For any other question please contact your local consulate or custom in Uruguay.

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