New NSW trailer registration

In the past 18 months we have had to go through the process of registering four unregistered trailers in NSW.

  • Chris’ boat trailer – Came from interstate.
  • My boat trailer – The dealer failed to register the trailer at the time of sale.
  • Greg’s boat trailer – Imported from the USA.
  • Hobie trailer – A farm trailer which had never been registered.

All these trailers were required to have unregistered vehicle inspections (Blue Slips) in order to have them registered in NSW.

Aside from some modifications and changes to make each trailer comply with the Roads and Traffic Authority (RTA) in NSW, the process was similar.

  1. Chris’ boat trailer which had records of registration in another state was exempt but the other three trailers were required to be weighed at an authorised weigh station. Simple for the Hobie trailer, but for my boat and Greg’s boat there was a little more to it than that. As both of our trailers were imported from the USA and had never been registered in Australia before, the RTA required us to have our trailers weighed without the boat. It may not seem that difficult but finding an authorised weigh station close to a boat ramp and having somebody on hand to watch your boat while you take it to get weighed was a challenge.
  2. Once you have a weighbridge ticket or in Chris’ case proof of registration in another state showing the trailer weight, an appointment will be needed at an authorised unregistered vehicle inspection station (AUVIS) to check roadworthiness and compliance with RTA standards. In the case of the Hobie trailer, as it was manufactured post 1988 and has no records of registration, I was required to obtain a Vehicle Identification Number plate (VIN) before the AUVIS could apply for a 17 character VIN and complete the Blue Slip.
  3. Once the Blue Slip is carried out all the paperwork then needs to be taken to an RTA office where you fill out some more paperwork and pay a fee in exchange for some registration plates and label.

This is the basic process which we encountered to register all four trailers in NSW although this will more than likely differ for other states. Check the Vehicle Standards Bulletin (VSB1) on the Australian Government Department of Infrastructure and Transport website and for further information regarding registration in NSW.

7 responses to “New NSW trailer registration

  1. Hey Guys,
    No doubt trailer registration can be a bit of a mine field at times, I feel your pain too now that you have those trailers done try bringing them into Tasmania to be re registered…..even though they have been done in another state you will have to go through all of that again to please our state legislators…..and pay a hefty fee as well.
    St Helens Bait & Tackle

  2. Appreciate the info Ian.
    What was involved with getting a VIN plate in the case of Gregs trailer from USA?

    • Hi Zane, I’ll have to confirm with Greg but I believe that the existing US plate may have been enough if it contained the required information. There is also the option of purchasing a blank VIN plate from a trailer manufacturer, having them populate it with the VIN and all the required details and then attach the plate for you.


    • Zane existing US Vin sticker was not adequate. I had to purchase a blank, update details and affix to trailer. The blue slip inspector was able to complete this for me.

  3. Hi
    i am importing a boat from the us i have had a trailer built to aus stanards my boat will be arriving in port kembla but i live in sydney and need to tow it there.Can i tow it with out it having rego.Or how do i go about doing this any info you can give me would be appriciated.


    • Hi John – You’ll need to check with RTA. You may be able to get a permit to tow the trailer if everything complies, including your lights. When mine landed at Port Kembla, this wasn’t the case, and I had to organise a flatbed truck to tow it back to Sydney.


  4. I hear you guys I suffered the same fate when I purchased my boat back in 09 it was also a import US boat & trailer but luckily half the work was done with the previous owner brought it with him from the Netherlands which he imported from the states the family and I drove from Toowoomba then the head aches started to accumulate i had to get a marine check from a certified marine dealer then go to maritime to get the boat NSW registered then as the trailer next cause at the time QLD had a great system where both the RTA & Maritime were a combine combined thing every thing can be done in one hit with the right paper work of course then slip the boat at a ramp with the wife lucky she had a boat license to help in that awkward situation then go to a weigh station to get a weight ticket as Ian was mentioning then go to a blue slip ticket inspection get clearance then RTA for trailer registration hot damn wasn’t that a mission and a half but definantly worth it, lovely looking aluminium trailer in the main pic which make may I ask?? Mines on the way out showing rust signs as it was made for fresh water only still got a couple more years me hopes.

    Regards Rich

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