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Old 26 Apr 2006
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Location: Cornwall, UK
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London to Shanghai


Doing some initial planning for a London to Shanghai motorcycle trip (July 07 start)

Can anyone provide information about getting into China, which border to use, requirements etc etc. I hear that the paperwork is a nightmare, will be grateful for any guidance.

Inital plan is to go through Kazakhstan and enter China via the crossing at Korgas (Between Zharkent and Yining). Is this possible???



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Old 26 Apr 2006
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Location: On the border - NE FR
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Unhappy China

Hi Criag,

planning something similar next year as well. Info I have on China is not so encouraging so far. In fact its put a bit of bummer on the trip and needs serious rethinking or sending the wife onto the streets to get extra dosh!
I attach below, a copy of an email fron Caravan Cafe:

Thank you for your inquiry. Yes, we do make arrangements for entry and travel in Xinjiang of foreign-licnesed motorcycles. To give you an idea of what is involved and of cost, below I have included information sent to another client regarding what is required to complete paperwork and the cost of a 5-day itinerary (knowing that if you enter China from Kazakstan your itinerary will need to be longer) . To give you a cost quote, I need you to send me as exact an itinerary as you can give me. In order to have your paperwork processed, we will need an exact itinerary including date and location of entry and date and location of exit into and out of China. I can tell you this, that it will be cheaper for you if you enter China from Kyrgyzstan (Torugart Pass or Irkeshstam Pass). This is because if you enter from Kazakstan (eg. Korgas), it will cost more because of the number of days necessary to drive from the north side of the Tian Shan to Kashgar. When ever you are on your bike, you are paying for a guide/liaison officer and his accompanying vehicle. If you send me an itinerary, I'll send you a price quote.

Please read the info below. If you have additional questions, please do not hesitate to contact me. Thank you.


Steve Larson
Caravan Cafe Travel

__________________________________________________ ___
Info for entering China on your motobike:

Hi. Steve here from the Caravan Cafe. We make arrangements for
foreign-licensed motor vehicles to enter and drive in China. It costs - more
than it will cost you to drive through any other country on your itinerary
(many people are shocked when they hear this). China is developing, but
there are still many bureaucratic requirements for foreigners wanting to
drive their own motor vehicles into China (as opposed to touring bicycles
which require no paperwork).

For the following itinerary your cost for 2 motorcycles will be
12,102Renminbi (or US$1,512 as of the Jan. 5, 2006 exchange rate).

1 - Enter China via Khunjerab Pass and drive to Tashkorgan, meet Chinese
liaison officer (required) and pass Chinese customs-immigration, stay in
2 - Drive to Kara Kul (lake with great mountain views of Muztagh Ata and
Kongur), stay in guest yurts at lakeside and eat at cafe.
3-4 - Drive to Kashgar, park motorcycles at hotel.
5 - Drive to Irekeshtam Pass and exit China. End services.

Included in the above are the "minimum requirements" of the Chinese

- Required liaison officer/guide and his costs (who will accompany you for the
duration of the time you are on your bikes, but he will be in a separate
- Car and driver for the liaison officer.
- All permits and licenses required for your bikes and yourselves to enter
and drive in China for the duration and itinerary specified above.

NOT included in the price above:
- Your lodging and meals
- Any other costs not specified as "included" above.
For days in Kashgar once you "park" your bikes and do not ride them, there
will be no cost. So, if you want us to make your arrangements, please think
through how many days you plan to stay in Kashgar. When we submit paperwork
we will need a firm itinerary with dates.

Please note: Full days that you leave your bike(s) parked in Kashgar are
free-of-charges if the guide/liaison officer originated in Kashgar.

In addition to a specific itinerary with dates of entry and exit
into/departing China, we will need specific information on your bikes and
yourselves including: photo images of the bikes, serial numbers of the
bikes, passport copies and driver license copies from yourselves.

China does not recognize Carnet de Passage ( so they are worthless for
processing paperwork here).

If you want us to make the arrangements for your trip, please let me know
asap. I takes 1 to 2 months for the Chinese authorities to process paperwork
once we submit. For your trip, we will require a US$800 non-refundable
deposit (wired to our account) be received by us before we will submit your
paperwork. This is because once we submit your information, we are liable
for paperwork processing costs.

To Drive a Foreign-Licensed Vehicle into China

For permits and licenses what we need for each vehicle:

- 1 photo (color) of each vehicle (front, side, rear views with printable image size at 3inches x 5inches or 8cm x 13cm)

- 1 photo (color) of the vehicle license plate (same size as above)

- 1 passport-sized photo (color) of each vehicle driver

- photocopy of driver’s license (grayscale)

- photocopy of driver’s passport identification page (grayscale or color)

Other information we need:

- driver's license number

- vehicle serial number

- vehicle frame serial number

- engine serial number

- vehicle make, model, year, engine size and type (eg. petrol, diesel)

- unloaded vehicle weight

- vehicle color(s)

- specify right or left drive (steering wheel on which side?)

You should be able to scan and email all images and documents. Please be sure that each image printable size is the same as noted above. Also, please limit the size of image file to 500 kilobytes or less. Please email images to images2caravancafe@yahoo.com.

We need the following information from each person in the party:

- Name

- Citizenship

- Date of birth

- Passport #

- Sex

- Passport issue date

- Passport expiration date

- Occupation

- We also need a photocopy-quality image (grayscale) of each participant’s passport (id page).

- Also include as detailed an itinerary as possible including dates of entry and exit, port of entry into China, where you will exit China, and where you will travel to in China.

Nostradamus Ate My Hamster
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Old 5 May 2006
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Location: Ulaan Baatar, Mongolia
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Hi I know of two people and they where entering China via the Mongolian border and one day waiting and 400 Dollars for registratrion and no other problem at all.
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Old 5 May 2006
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It would seem, from what I have read that its worth getting as much sorted as you can, like visas, license etc. and then "winging" it when you get there.

It may take a few border probes at different locations and it may mean linking up with another party and contributing towards the guide.

Still cheaper than sorting it all before you depart you home shores.
This is the way I will be trying it.
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Old 10 Aug 2006
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If it helps ...

I went the other way, Shanghai to London 12 years ago ... maybe there is something in the website below that helps.
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