Transporting Heavy Drilling Equipment To The Job Site

How do you transport heavy drilling equipment worldwide? And what are the best options when it comes to heavy equipment transport?

Below we’ll go into how to ship your heavy drilling equipment and how to find a suitable shipping company to help you along the journey. Let’s get started. 

How To Transport Heavy Drilling Equipment?

Flatbed truck

If you’re shipping a short distance, you can always rely on a flatbed truck to transport your heavy drilling equipment. If you’re transporting a lot of drilling equipment at once, you can even opt to rent a cargo container truck to fit as much as possible within the confines of the container.

This option will become less attractive the longer the distance as well as impossible if you’re going international. While it can be a good idea to do this type of shipping yourself, you’ll also need to get your insurance which can be quite costly without the right connections.

International shipping

International shipping normally relies on two types, roll on/roll off and load on/load off. Roll on/roll off is a ship where you can drive the vehicles onto it. If your drilling equipment can be driven, then you’ll be able to utilize the cheaper shipping method that ro/or provides.

Load on/load off is likely the option you’re going to go with when shipping heavy drilling equipment. Load on/load off boats do that, load the equipment by a crane. This type of shipping is costly because of the logistical planning required as well as the time it takes to load everything.

Cargo Shipping

Cargo shipping, whether domestically or internationally, is also another option. These are the typical containers you’re used to seeing on those big boats or even on the road. This shipping is the most economical because it’s practical and easy to ship multiple containers at once. 

The problem you’ll encounter is having to fit the drilling equipment into your container, and sometimes, the equipment is oddly shaped, leaving you with no choice but to look for other shipping options.

Should You Hire a Professional Transporting Service? 

While it may make sense to ship your drilling equipment a state or two over, once the distance widens, you’ll encounter tons of logistical problems, like insurance and even tax documentation. A professional transporting service can save you a ton of time by having the expertise and knowledge of how to safely ship your drilling equipment.

Look for a transport service that is well-versed in heavy drilling equipment transport. This way, you’ll have the peace of mind of having them treat your equipment with the respect it deserves. Considering that drilling equipment can often cost in the hundreds of thousands, you don’t want to take any risks.

The other benefit is not having to deal with purchasing your insurance. You likely will need to purchase a little bit extra insurance to cover the entirety of the shipment, but that’s going to still save you a ton of time when you’d otherwise have to get it figured out yourself.

When looking for a transport company, look for one that has a good amount of online reviews. Remember you can always get quotes from different providers and negotiate down the price. Let your intuition guide you, and don’t let anyone try to corner you into making a deal fast.

It’s often that transport companies will do bait and switch tactics to sign you into a contract, only to find that the actual price is much larger once it comes time to hand over your equipment. This often leads to panicked customers on a deadline without much of a choice.

Always make sure you get a flat quote, and make sure that your insurance covers the entirety of the shipment. While it can be difficult to find a reputable shipping company, many out there are honest and are in it to make their customers happy.


Transporting heavy drilling equipment, particularly across vast distances or international borders, is no simple task. It requires meticulous planning, a deep understanding of various shipping methods, and a keen attention to details like insurance, taxes, and logistics. 

While options like flatbed trucks or cargo containers might be suitable for shorter distances, international moves require more specialized solutions like roll on/roll off or load on/load off shipping.

However, the intricacies involved in these processes highlight the importance of hiring a professional transporting service, particularly one that specializes in heavy drilling equipment. 

These experts not only have the know-how to ensure safe and efficient transport but also alleviate much of the administrative and logistical burden. With the potential high cost of drilling equipment, it's crucial to prioritize its safe and effective transport. 

When selecting a transporting service, always conduct thorough research, seeking out reputable companies with proven track records and transparent pricing structures. Remember, while the journey of moving heavy equipment might be complex, with the right precautions and partners, it can be executed seamlessly.