Border control: taking a car into Morocco

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Taking a car into Morocco

Morocco is a perfect destination for a road trip and travelling independently. Despite what many people think, you do not need a specialised vehicle.

Sure there’s lots of off-road routes you can take, but most of the country in accessible without a 4×4. Just stick to the roads.

Many people have asked us about the Moroccan border process for entering with your own vehicle. Taking a car into Morocco is easy and this guide will help you through the process.

Border control: taking a car into Morocco

This guide on taking a car into Morocco focusses on travel from Europe. We’ve also entered Morocco (Western Sahara) in our own vehicle from Mauritania. The entry process is the same and just as simple.

How to get to Morocco overland

If you’re travelling to Morocco overland, you have a couple of choices about your entry route. If you’re travelling from mainland Europe you’ll need to take a ferry from either Spain or Italy.

The map below shows the locations of the ferry ports from Spain into Morocco.

Morocco is a perfect destination for a road trip and travelling independently. Despite what many people think, you do not need a specialised vehicle. Sure there’s lots of off-road route you can take, but most of the country in accessible without a 4x4. Just stick to the roads. Many people have asked us about the process for entering Morocco in your own vehicle. This guide will show you how to enter Morocco in your own vehicle and help you through the process. #Morocco #RoadTrip #Travel //mowgli-adventures.com/taking-a-car-into-morocco/

From southern Spain, you can sail from:

  1. Algeciras to Ceuta in 2 hours
  2. Algeciras to Tangier Med in 90 minutes
  3. Tarifa to Tangier Ville in 90 minutes

Ceuta is a Spanish enclave so you will need to drive about 5km from the port to the Moroccan land border. In our experience, there’s a little more hassle here in the form of fixers and less orderly passage.

We’d suggest you avoid this in favour of Tangier Med or Tangier Ville. From northern Spain, you can take a ferry from Barcelona to Tangier Med in 32 hours From Italy, you can take a ferry from Genoa to Tangier Med, via Barcelona. This is a 48 hour crossing.

Morocco is a perfect destination for a road trip and travelling independently. Despite what many people think, you do not need a specialised vehicle. Sure there’s lots of off-road route you can take, but most of the country in accessible without a 4x4. Just stick to the roads. Many people have asked us about the process for entering Morocco in your own vehicle. This guide will show you how to enter Morocco in your own vehicle and help you through the process. #Morocco #RoadTrip #Travel //mowgli-adventures.com/taking-a-car-into-morocco/

We’ve always used FRS ferries for our ferry crossings between Spain to Morocco. You can buy tickets at the port, at the booths on the motorways as you approach the port area or book in advance online. And sorry but that’s not an FRS ferry above. That’s the Queen Victoria moored at Tangier. Now that would be a grand entrance!


Don’t miss our road trip travel guide to the Sahara Desert. No specialised vehicle required!

Taking a car into Morocco – the formalities

Morocco Border Control

Anyone that’s driven across borders knows the challenge at customs tends to be with your vehicle, rather than the traveller.

Most countries want to ensure that you’re not bringing the vehicle in to sell it, so avoiding import taxes. The Moroccan authorities protect themselves from this situation and you don’t need to buy an expensive insurance policy.

This is the list of documents you will need to take your car or any other motorised vehicle into Morocco.

1. Passport

2. Driving Licence

3. Vehicle registration documents (V5c for UK registered vehicles)

4. Valid MOT certificate (to prove road worthiness of your vehicle)

5. Vehicle insurance (at least 3rd party)


Make sure you carry all these travel documents

Points of note

Road Worthiness

The Moroccan authorities have never asked for our MOT certificate. In fact, if you’re travelling long term and your MOT expires while you’re away, this isn’t a problem in Morocco.

I don’t believe there is any requirement to prove road worthiness of your vehicle in Morocco. Let us know if you can confirm this or otherwise.

Driving Licence

The Moroccan authorities have never asked for our driving licence at Morocco’s border control. You may need to present it at checkpoints further south in the country. It’s sensible to bring it with you regardless.

Vehicle Insurance for Morocco

The Moroccan authorities won’t ask for your insurance documents at the border. Yet it is a legal requirement and of course, appropriate insurance cover is common sense.

For European vehicles, check with your insurance company before you travel that you have a Green Card and that it covers Morocco. A Green Card extends your insurance policy to many other countries, usually giving 3rd party cover.

Yet, many policies differ in respect of the countries included.

If your policy doesn’t include Morocco, it’s worth asking your insurance company to extend the cover. If they won’t, you can buy insurance just outside the border control area.

At Tangier Ville, just after you leave the border gates, there is a kiosk on your right. It’s not usually open before 10am so consider the timing of your ferry. 

Border areas aren’t places you want to be hanging around for too long because there’s lots of people trying to make a quick buck.

Morocco Border Control Formalities

Regardless of which border you arrive at, the formalities are the same. If you don’t know how to enter Morocco in your own vehicle, this explains the process. It’s simple and straight forward. Just watch out for the fixers.

How to spot a fixer

A fixer is likely to offer to help you through the formalities. This is wholly unnecessary. Avoid getting caught out by one of these chaps.

They tend to wear high vis jackets and act with authority. You’d be forgiven for thinking they are officials. A high vis jacket is NOT an indication that you are speaking with an official. In fact, the officials don’t wear high vis jackets at all. Just a blue uniform.

Do not handover your passport to anyone that you are not 100% certain is an immigration official. Keep hold of your passport, be polite and decline the offer, waiting until you meet an immigration official.

If you do get caught out, and handover your passport to a fixer, it’s not that big a drama. Ask for it back. You may not get it because the fixers are the height of efficiency.

He’ll have run to one of the officials and be dealing with your paperwork before you realise what you’ve done. Of course, you’re expected to handover a few euro before you’ll receive your paperwork back!

If you do get caught, don’t give anymore than €5 and check that you have all the necessary stamps as explained below.

Passport control

Morocco is a perfect destination for a road trip and travelling independently. Despite what many people think, you do not need a specialised vehicle. Sure there’s lots of off-road route you can take, but most of the country in accessible without a 4x4. Just stick to the roads. Many people have asked us about the process for entering Morocco in your own vehicle. This guide will show you how to enter Morocco in your own vehicle and help you through the process. #Morocco #RoadTrip #Travel //mowgli-adventures.com/taking-a-car-into-morocco/

Upon arrival you will need to present your passport first.

The immigration officials will add an entry stamp with a number. Make sure you receive the entry stamp before leaving the border area, to avoid problems later.

European tourists to Morocco are currently given 90 days visa free. It’s best to check the latest entry requirements with your Foreign Office before you travel.

If you want to stay longer, you can arrange extensions in Rabat and Marrakech with the Royal Gendarmerie.


Take a look at 9 reasons to make south Morocco your next epic road trip

Customs & taking a car into Morocco

Once you have your entry stamp, you need to present your vehicle registration papers to the customs officials. They may search your car and may have sniffer dogs.

Or you might be lucky and they may just ask if you are carrying anything you shouldn’t be. They’re just interested in weapons and drugs. 

Once the customs officials are content, they’ll write your vehicle details in the main drivers’ passport with your entry stamp. They’ll give a form which you must keep safe as you’ll need it to leave the country.

Morocco is a perfect destination for a road trip and travelling independently. Despite what many people think, you do not need a specialised vehicle. Sure there’s lots of off-road route you can take, but most of the country in accessible without a 4x4. Just stick to the roads. Many people have asked us about the process for entering Morocco in your own vehicle. This guide will show you how to enter Morocco in your own vehicle and help you through the process. #Morocco #RoadTrip #Travel //mowgli-adventures.com/taking-a-car-into-morocco/

The passport holder with the vehicle details entered, is not allowed to leave Morocco without the vehicle. As a point of note, the last time we entered Morocco in 2015, the customs officials asked us if we were carrying a drone.

Many years ago, we were asked if we carried a CB radio, and some years after if we had a GPS. Clearly modern technology seems something to be wary of if you’re a customs official. 

I’m not sure what they’d have done had we said yes and we’re not aware of any restrictions on carrying a drone. Let us know if you’ve had any experiences bringing a drone into Morocco.


Read next: All you need to know about driving in Morocco

That’s all you need to know!

And that’s how to take your car into Morocco. Simple isn’t it? Now you know how to enter Morocco in your own vehicle. We said it was simple. It could take anything from 10 minutes to 2 hours to get through.

This depends on how busy your ferry is and how energetic the officials are feeling. Just relax and take your time. There’s no need to stress and no bribes to pay. Even the fixers are friendly!

Guide book & road maps

If you’re preparing to for one week in Morocco, it’ll be useful if you’re carrying a paper road map. It won’t take up much room in your luggage and we find them useful for planning our routes. It’s much easier to get an idea of distance and what you’ll be passing on the way than your GPS. 

You can buy your Morocco road maps here, today. We also suggest bringing a guide book with you. We’ve always used a Lonely Planet one but the Bradt guides are good too.

We should update ours because it’s about 10 years old now, dog eared and just a tad out of date! Take a look here and check out what guide books are on offer.

Booking accommodation

When it comes to booking accommodation, we just wing it. But then it’s a little easier when you’re travelling in your own vehicle and able to camp just about anywhere.

If your week in Morocco is a fly-drive,we advise you book your accommodation for your arrival date and the day before departure, at least.

It’ll take the stress out of the start and end of your holiday. You can book accommodation pretty easily en route after this.

In fact, we suggest you don’t book in advance to avoid having a fixed itinerary. Half the fun of road trips is having the flexibility to do as you like, when you like. You lose some freedom with a pre-booked reservation.

To book your arrival and departure night accommodation, click here.


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Morocco is a perfect destination for a road trip and travelling independently. Despite what many people think, you do not need a specialised vehicle. Sure there’s lots of off-road route you can take, but most of the country in accessible without a 4x4. Just stick to the roads. Many people have asked us about the process for entering Morocco in your own vehicle. This guide will show you how to enter Morocco in your own vehicle and help you through the process. #Morocco #RoadTrip #Travel //mowgli-adventures.com/taking-a-car-into-morocco/

40 thoughts on “Border control: taking a car into Morocco”

  1. Hi,
    I am driving to Morocco next Sep from Manchester, the thing the V5 is on the name of my wife and my question is will be any problem on this please ?

  2. I read in your posts that the vehicle you take into Morocco needs to be registered in your name, but how does this work if it’s a company car (I’m an owner of the company) but the V5C shows the name of the company, not me.

    • Hi John – Sorry for the tardy response. I’m sorry I don’t know the answer with any certainty. If you haven’t already, it may be worth asking on the Overland Africa facebook group. Someone may have done this before and be able to give you details of their first hand experience.

  3. iam disabel and planing taking my motability car to morocco but motability insurance no coverin morocco on green card can i get advice on this

    • Hi Mustafa. We suggest you speak to your insurance company directly. Car insurance is available at the border but I don’t know if there’s anything unique about your vehicle that would mean this insurance would apply. If you insurance company can’t help, I suggest you post a message on one of the Africa overlanding Facebook groups for advice from the wider community.

  4. Hi, I am looking to ship my Land Rover to Morocco from the US, I will be in Morocco for 3 months then driving up through spain and into italy.. I am hoping to ship and enter morocco ether coming down through spain or if I go direct to Morocco, avoiding import taxes. Which is the best way to go, place to ship to, and would I be okay with American Registration and Insurance? Thanks

    • Hi Cody
      We don’t know about shipping from US into Morocco although we suspect the customs side of it would be much the same as it is at the port borders from Spain. Temporary Import Permits protect you from paying import taxes (assuming you follow the rules). So long as you have the correct ownership papers for your vehicle we’re not aware of any issues you’d have entering – you can buy insurance at the border (or just after). Maybe double check with the Overland Sphere Africa Facebook group for the latest info?

  5. Hi ,

    Is it possible to enter Morocco with a friend’s motor-home (with a notarized power of attorney ) ?

    Thanks

    • Well it should be but who knows? The officials may not be used to seeing the POA and therefore not sure what to do. I’d try to speak to others who have done it before – sorry we can’t be more help!

  6. This guide is as good a guide as it can get. Excellent. I reached Morocco yesterday (Algeciras – Tangier Med) and sharing my experience in case it will help anyone:

    1. Book your FRS crossing in advance online or on the motorway. I did not do this and this wasted some time. Strictly ignore any uninvited advisers/agents. I booked open return to give me flexibility.
    2. Upon boarding the ferry, go straight to immigration queue or send someone to get in queue asap. In my case, everyone had to be present at the desk when our turn came.
    3. Upon arrival at port, follow signs to customs inspection. They will need your passport and vehicle registration document. I had everything advised in the article with me. The officer returned my papers with a temorary permit for vehicle entry. Ensure you follow the ‘Blue uniform’ advise given in this article. I didn’t have any trouble getting through.
    4. Purchase insurance from one of the booths just after customs.
    5. Obtain some cash unless you already have it (I have a dedicated account for foreign travel and get 0% withdrawals from my bank).

    Yet again, take ultimate precaution against official looking but fake traders/agents.

      • Hi! Thank you. This helps alot. But I’m little confused about the green card. You said you delivered all documents as in this article to the immigrations inspection, then you say you got the insurance later. As I understood it you need to present the green card to the offials on the boat or is the green card checked later? Can you please clarify for me? I’m going there with van and a motorcycle in the back and need to buy insurance/green card for both vehicles. Plan was to do tarifa – tangier.

        • Hi there. You don’t need insurance to get into Morocco – only to drive. Our insurance documents weren’t checked at all. The insurance office is outside the border area so if you don’t have a green card, you can buy it once the formalities are done and before you drive anywhere. Enjoy! It’s a fabulous country.

  7. An excellent resource and encouraging for a first time visitor.
    I’m planning bringing dog and car from UK in January for some sunshine

    • What a helpful page!
      Question – my friend is in Morocco with his vehicle – and has lost sight in one eye, needs to temporary exit without his car – how does he do this?? – has initially been told that he must leave WITH the vehicle, but cannot drive it.. Has been initially advised by the consulate that to leave it there would be a federal offence! What documents/who to see to leave it there whilst he exits the country, to return once eyesight restored (retinna detached!! )
      Thanks for any help!

      • Hi
        I’m so sorry to hear this news and for my tardy response! If your friend hasn’t already sorted this, he should go to the local immigration/customs office and ask for permission. They are quite helpful. They may insist the vehicle is left in a specific location and not driven while he is out of the country. I do hope he gets this sorted and he’s health is improving.

      • Hi Sarah, I’m reading up on any information I can find for taking my car & caravan to Morocco and I came across your post and I’m wondering if this is Nick H, whom we met up with in Cordoba in his Toyota Landcruiser. I got a message from him some time after Cordoba to say that he’d got a detached retina in one eye and was flying back to the UK to get it fixed. Hope all went well for him. If you mention Chinese lady and Cordoba he’ll be sure to remember, we tried to fix his CB for him.

  8. Hi, can anyone suggest how to get car insurance for a UK registered car for driving in Morocco? AXA do not provide Green Cards and won’t cover Morocco either…..
    Many thanks,
    Alexander

    • Many UK insurance companies now don’t give a Green Card as a matter of course.
      When taking out insurance specify that at some time during the period of insurance, you are considering a trip to Morocco.
      They will then , at a later date, and at a cost, send you the cover for Morocco, but I might add that I am doing the above, and the cost is circa £240 ! On top of your insurance premium…..I have no experience of obtaining insurance at the border, I don’t know how good, expensive, it is, but I didn’t want to be over there with no insurance, so bit the bullet.

      Would love to hear from someone who has actually obtained at the border, someone must have done it ??

  9. Hi Mowgli Adventures. I am planning on travelling to Morocco with my UK registered car. Im currently living in Spain. My car is insured with a company here in Spain and it has my Spanish home address on the insurance documents. The car is still on UK plates and my drivers license and V5 document show my UK address. Is this okay to travel through into Morocco?

    My insurance company have endorsed my policy to show that I will be covered whilst I travel into Morocco.

    Finally, what is a Green card?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    Thank You

    • Hi Asif – a green card is simply insurance coverage for Morocco – European insurance companies often (but no always) offer an extension to Morocco as well as other eastern European countries.
      With you address being inconsistent across your documentation I’m not sure how the Moroccan authorities would deal with this, if they noticed. The UK plates aren’t a problem. Let us know how you get on.

  10. Hello :) I would like to ask how is the traffic and the safety on the roads. I am considering to take my car from Europe to Morocco but I am pretty afraid of damage or theft. I mean.. I think I am a good driver but I am not sure about moroccan drivers. What is their behaviour on the road? I hope you understand. Isn´t it better to just come to Morroco without your car and just rent a car from the rental company? What do you think is better? :) I am planing to go from Tanger through Fes, Merzouga to Marrakes, Cassablanca and back.
    Thank you so much for any informations. Your articles are so useful and helpful!
    Best regards,
    Michal

    • Hi Michal. We’re so glad you find the posts helpful! Driving in Morocco isn’t so bad. Take a look at this post for more info. I don’t know if that puts your mind at rest but you could have your car stolen pretty much anywhere in the world and I don’t think Morocco is a greater risk than anywhere else. Make sure you take out the proper insurance and if you choose to go with a hire car, please go with a reputable firm. Let us know how you get on :-)

  11. Hi there,

    First of all: guys, your site seriously rocks!

    I’m planning a road trip to morocco (Sahara) and although I visit Morocco almost every year by car during summer holidays, I never had the guts to travel lower than Fes/Meknes. Truth is my travel buddy and I are both ladies and for some reason we are a bit scared of people blocking the road robbing us and leaving us behind without car, money etc. Is this nonsense and should we be less scared? (Note: I have no certificate in any fights sports.)
    Hope to hear from you soon…we will be leaving next Thursday

    • Hi Noon. If you’ve driven in Fes, you’ve pretty much got driving in Morocco sorted. Further south from Fes is fairly easing going. Roads are less busy, and the scenery is fantastic. We’ve never had any issues with safety on the roads, other than a few annoying would-be faux guides. You’ve probably met some of these in Fes, driving around on mopeds trying to help you. Just ignore them. You’re probably as safe in Morocco as you are in Europe. Sometimes in Morocco, women travelling without a man, will get unwanted attention from Moroccan men. Again, you may have experienced this in the north of the country and it’s no different in the south. So just be mindful of that. Otherwise, get yourself to the desert! It’s fab! And it’d be great to hear how you get on :-) Merry Xmas!

  12. Hey do you know whether a photo copy of v5c vechicle registration document would be ok? I’m on a road trip and and stupidly didn’t think to bring it with. The car is insured for Morocco and registered in my name.

    Thanks in advance for any advice you can offer

    • Hi Vicky, Sorry for the delay in responding. I think you need the original. However, if you’re able to get a good quality double sided colour photo copy, you could possibly get through. Not sure I’d want to risk it though. Can you get it couriered from home to a reputable campsite or hotel in Spain?

  13. Thank you for informing us of others …. I am currently in Gibraltar with my camper and have a scooter behind the camper … now I have heard that I can only take a vehicle / person to Marocoo … you know something about this. ??

    • Hi Peter, You can bring in your scooter as well as your camper so long as you have all the paperwork for the scooter too. Both vehicles will be stamped into your passport and you won’t be able to leave the country without either of the vehicles. I hope that helps. Enjoy Morocco, the weather is perfect at this time of year.

  14. Hi there!

    We are going in November with our car and thanks for all the helpful information. Would you recommend going into Tangier Ville rather than Tangier Med in terms of ease, or does it really not make much difference?

    Many thanks

    • Hi Georgie
      We’ve always preferred to use Tarifa to Tangier Ville. I think it’s a little less busy but it may just be personal preference. And we’ve been so many times we’ve just got used to it. Have a great trip! Is it your first visit?

  15. Thank you Graham for the info. I am lost on this process. Who would I contact to make this transport possible? I contacted a couple of shipping companies and they said I need the title. I also need to find out about auto insurance for it while I’m there. Can you email me? [email protected]
    Thank you

  16. I am traveling to Morocco for 3 months in December 2017 and want to take my vehicle from Florida. My vehicle is not paid off yet. Will I be able to take it overseas to Morocco without the title?

    • Hi Nivy. December is a great time to visit Morocco! The weather is perfect. To enter Morocco with your own vehicle you need to have the registration documents. It doesn’t matter if it’s on finance but you need the paperwork showing you are the registered owner. I hope the helps.

  17. Hello! I am planing a trip to Morocco from Spain with a car registered in Germany that is not under my name (I am peruvian traveling around Europe and the car is from a friend). Does anyone know the documents I will need to enter Morocco? I have a signed letter from the owner that shows my name, passport number but not sure if I will need any other document. Thank you in advance.

    • Hi Fabrizio – apologies for the delay in responding. I’m not certain about taking in a vehicle that’s not registered in your own name. A letter from the owner along with the registration documents might be sufficient but I couldn’t be sure. Have you tried contacting a Moroccan Embassy to ask them? It may be worth asking but I’d say if they make it all sound difficult or if they’re not certain, you have next to no chance of the border officials at the border being sure either. I’d be interested to know how you get on so please let us know.

    • Thanks Prasad. Yeah, we’ve entered Morocco in our own vehicle many times over the past 10 years. It’s not as a big a challenge as many people feel it might be. Although I’d encourage first timers to avoid the Ceuta border.

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