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  #1  
Old 14 Apr 2009
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Getting a bike in Kuwait?

Hey guys, I might (man I hope!) be getting a job in Kuwait City and if so, I'd like to pick up a bike there (dual sport or pure dirtbike for dunes?) How hard is it to get one there, and how difficult to register so you can ride on the street?

Oh, and if I may specify, how about used, Japanese (for reliability), and cheap.
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  #2  
Old 16 Apr 2009
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Biking in Kuwait

Hi,

Bad News first: You cannot ride a motorcycle in Kuwait without obtaining a Kuwaiti Motorcycle licence first. These are slightly different to the Kuwaiti Driving licence. I am an expat teacher here and thought that when they had issued me a Kuwaiti driving licence based on my UK driving licence, then they'd take into consideration my motorcycle allowance. But they didn't. So when i got busted by the 'undercover' cops, my bike was confiscated for three months and i had to pay some storage charges when recovering it. I had to go to the British Embassy to have my UK motorcyle licence attested first etc.

The GOOD news: Generally lots of bikes around. You can BUY one as soon as you get your Civil ID ( which is your entitlement to residency).
Try the Kawasaki dealership (ZED motors) who service all sorts of bikes and often have a few for sale. Or try the BMW/KTM/Ducati dealership (Tri star motors) who have a selection of secondhand bikes that have been traded in.
Bikes from these dealers are a little expensive. Sometimes you can find private bikes for sale in the weekly free ads papers but some of these have been seriously abused. Also try www.q8showroon.com and select bikes for sale.

Let me know when you're around and i'll show you around.

Hope this helps,

HA
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  #3  
Old 22 Apr 2009
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HA, thanks for the info. From what I understand, my new company will be supplying me with a vehicle, I suppose that means I'll be getting a Kuwaiti driver's license? How long does that take?

To avoid the problems you had, how do I go about getting my MC driver's license there?

Also, please check your PMs.
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  #4  
Old 23 Apr 2009
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Hi,

It takes between 1-3 months to process a drving licence, depending how quick your mandoob ( fixer/agent ) acts. You have to go through the process of having a medical, fingerprint etc for your residency, then your licence will follow.

Some expats drive on their UK licences but the police may object if they catch you 6 months down the line still driving on a foreign licence. Also the insurance of the vehicle may then be an issue. As far as I am aware. here in Kuwait the car is insured, so anybody with a valid licence can drive anybody else's car. If your firm provides you with a vehicle then insurance should already have been sorted for the vehicle.

Some car hire firms allow you to rent on a UK/International licence.

You'll have to take your UK driving licence down to the UK embassy which is literally located opposite the Kuwait Towers on the Gulf Road. Ask them to validate the licence and confirm that it entitles you to drive a car as well as a MOTORCYCLE. This shouldn't take more than a couple of days or a week. If you do hand over your UK licence then keep a photocopy for yourself.

When your agent applies for your car driving licence then give him the embassy papers so that he can apply for the Motorcycle licence at the same time. Tristar motorcycles ( BMW/KTM/Ducati) dealership often provide this service for a fee for newcomers and they have 'Wasta' ( connections) to generally speed up this process so you could hand over your documents to them. and ask them to get you a Kuwaiti motorcycle licence.

Hope this helps
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  #5  
Old 29 Apr 2009
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Hmm, I assume the methods are roughly the same for an American...I guess we'll see.
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  #6  
Old 2 May 2009
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Guys,
Just to endorse what HA has already said about getting a bike licence here. I too thought on arrival that my combined (UK) car and bike licence would simply be converted to the Kuwait version, as is the case in the UAE, but no such luck. It's a straightforward swap for the car licence (no test, and I'm pretty sure it's ghe same for US licence holders too after attestation by the embassy), but to get my Kuwait bike licence I had to sit a test (!) which I failed the first time (!!) because I didn't understand the (Arabic) tester's instructions and crossed a line when doing a figure of eight - all very embarrassing at the time. Got through no probs next day however. All this costs money of course, endless paperwork and lots of stamping and signing by officialdom (they've taken bureaucracy to a whole new level). I'd recommend having a mandoub with you if poss for translations - unless you speak Arabic. Again, as HA says, Tristar can and will help if necessary – ask for Salem.
As for going off road, there’s not a lot in the way of dunes here. The desert’s flat, stony, scrubby and not really very interesting, plus a lot of it is fenced off to ‘protect’ oil installations/pipelines. Add to that the recommendation NOT to veer off identifiable tracks because of unexploded ordinance left behind by the Iraqis – they still find stuff every so often… But there is a dirt track and an ex-KTM Team rider called Mark now working for Tristar who is doing what he can to generate interest.
But bikes here are expensive, even second-hand - they blame the small market. However, I do happen to know that Tristar now have a very good ’06 640 Adventure with a ridiculously low mileage at the moment because I’ve just traded it with them for an ’06 1200GSA. Low mileage because it sat doing absolutely nothing from more than a year while I moved from Dubai (where I bought it) back to UK, then to Kuwait (long story) but it’s a great bike. I’ve switched to the BMW because I plan to ride back to UK when my time is up here and didn’t fancy doing all those kilometres on a single pot. Get in touch when you get here. Cheers, Dave
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  #7  
Old 6 Jun 2009
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Getting Bike in Kuwait is 3rd story. First of all getting Driving license in Kuwait is hell. Getting Bike Driving license is 3rd story.

According to Kuwait Law, To get normal car driving license, the applicant must meet following requirments....
1-----Applicant must be Graduate...
2-----His salary should be above 450KD
3-----His educational documents should be attested from His Country from Ministry of Forigen Affairs..then from the embassy of where he is resident..then from the ministry of interrior from the country he is resident.
4-----He can apply for license when his stay is over 2Years in Kuwait..
5-----if you meet all these requirment..then the last thing is that.. it depends on mood of the person in traffic department... if he dont like.. then he will reject your application weather you are the first person of the day in traffice department..

Traffic law is applicable on expatriate not on Citizens.. ...racisum is full in Kuwait...
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