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North America Topics specific to Canada and USA/Alaska only.
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  #1  
Old 15 May 2003
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insurance in USA

In 4 weeks I am leaving for the states (from the uk) to complete the trans am trail on an american xr400.

I am having a real nightmare sorting out the bike insurance for the trip 'cos I dont have an american licence.

Any ideas?

Ta.


Dave
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  #2  
Old 16 May 2003
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David
You could try David Grist with H-C Travel, he can fix you up with insurance for the US. Phone number is 01256770775. Website is www.hctravel.com

Good Luck Peter

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  #3  
Old 16 May 2003
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Also contact Motorcycle Express

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  #4  
Old 22 May 2003
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I have tried both of these agents, but because the bike is an xr400 (off road, with a road legal kit fitted) and the trip is also predominantly off road neither will touch me!

Do I have to be insured in the states? is it a legal requirement? Do you have any other ideas?

Dave
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  #5  
Old 22 May 2003
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David, why are you talking about the off-road part to them? All they want to know is that the bike is fully street-legal - and it either is or isn't - and you're going to go on a nice civilised tour.

Learn the travellers mantra - KISS - or Keep It Simple Stupid! Otherwise known as "don't make the bureaucrats have to think." As soon as you throw even the slightest curve at "them" it becomes a road block.

Try Motorcycle Express again, and clarify with them that you're just doing a cross-country tour on the back-ROADS and see what happens.

Make sure your bike is fully street legal or you will run into problems in the US. If you can plate it in the UK you're fine. You DO want to have the UK plate on it, and all your rego. You DON'T need an MOT tag, but it should be capable of passing MOT. It MIGHT be useful to have as proof that you are legal at home in case of a dispute.

You probably have to get an Off-Road Vehicle (orv) tag in the US. US riders please chime in on this, I'm not sure.

Have you read Russell Fisher's story (in the travellers stories page, link left) on his Trans-Am Trail trip?

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  #6  
Old 6 Jul 2003
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Grant is 100 percent correct. Just tell them you need insurance and when they ask what you want to insure just say "Motorcycle".

NOw of course in the states once legal in one state its legal to be driven in all. SO I would guess any vehicle with a foriegn license thats allowed to drive here would be legal in all states.

NOw, heres the hard part. There may be separate licenses or fees to ride in certain state parks. I know here in Ohio there is a license reqired to ride in the national forest. Its just a matter of paying the fee. BUt, finding a place when you need one is hard.
SO there may be local license that are needed.

But, from what I see regarding the Trans AMerican trail it should be accesible easily by any street legal vehicle. Its seems to concentrate on public domains to minimize the licenses problems, from what I've seen.

Thanks,
Todd BEllew
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  #7  
Old 6 Jul 2003
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In most states, and here in California if you have a street legal bike from any state you can ride in the national forest as long as you have a spark arrester. The special lisc only applies to bikes that are for off road only. Basicaly as long as you have a street legal bike with spark arrester you are legal. Keep your regerstration and proof of insurance with you. BTW a spark arrester is a screen in your exhaust that keeps hot sparks from coming out and starting a forest fire.If you don't have one they are cheap and easy to put in. Mine takes about two min to take out and put back in.

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Old 6 Jul 2003
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Oh yeah. The spark arrestor. Out east where fire is never a problem the rangers are soft on it. Bikes sold originally as street legal from the factory have oem mufflers that are spark arrestor legal.

I always did use my off road bike only at the national forest. But, I thought one of the fees for riding the Wayne National Forest was a usage charge for prepping trails. I know I know, what are the taxes and other licenses for.

HAving the street legal bike definately opens a bunch of doors.

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Todd Bellew
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  #9  
Old 7 Jul 2003
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Out west they tend to be a little more strict. They usually don't look at street legal bikes so much, but off road only bikes they do check. Some places are very strict, but we have lots of forest fires and we lose several homes every year in the west.I am not familar with Ohio so they might have a seperate fee. BTW if you run across a forest fire, no matter how small, get away quickly. Once going the fires are unpredictable and move at up to 70 mph. It doesn't always go that fast, but no sense taking a chance.

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