I often need to move files to web servers with restricted permissions. Most commonly these are media files, which need to live in folders owned by a specific web user.

Copying these files into place, using chown to fix the permissions manually is a huge hassle, so I use this trick, which takes advantage of --rsync-path to rsync via sudo:

$ rsync -a -e "ssh" --rsync-path="sudo rsync" src dest