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  #1  
Old 28 Jul 2012
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Colombia Panama Crossing

Just saw this post on advrider

No more bikes from Colombia to Panama
Guys,

I may be the very last person to ever take a motorcycle on the sail boats which run between Cartagena and Panama
( via the San Blas Islands).

We booked ourselves and the bike on the Independence two weeks ago. All was good. Three days before our departure we tried to start the custom process for the bike. What a **** around It turned out to be! Apparently the port authorities and customs are in a blame game ever since the Fritz the Cat sank with about 16 passengers on board ( all of who are now safe) and one motorcycle ( which didn't make it unfortunately).

Apparently the motorcycle onboard did not properly clear customs before departing Cartagena and the port authorities say that the vessel carry the bike was no designed to carry cargo, hence may have contributed to the sinking of the vessel.

Long story short, we have spend the past three days trying to get permission to leave on the independence with the bike and until 4.00pm today (Friday) were told that there was no way that this would happen. After a lot of persistence, sop stories, and some bullshit thrown in, we finally got the customs official to stamp the form. However, her last words were that we would be the last people to ever transport a motorcycle via this method and that all future motorcycles would either have to be transported via a shipping container or via air freight.

We were also told that the new transport ferry which was supposed to be up and running in May, won't happen and neither customs not the port authority in Cartagena will approve it.

Its basically a big **** up at the moment!

Max
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  #2  
Old 28 Jul 2012
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Boat.

Hi, check up on the Stahlratte, a German ship which can carry motorcycles properly. They do the ferry journey between Panama and Colombia plus Carribbean tours and a world tour coming up.
www.stahlratte.org: Ongoing Tours

Lindsay.
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  #3  
Old 29 Jul 2012
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I don't think there will ever be a last, if Cartagena shuts down then Turbo, Colombia business or the Pacific side will pick up.

Never say never...
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  #4  
Old 20 Aug 2012
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We just arrived in Panama today with our bikes, we also travelled on the Independence. We heard about your issues from the Captain and expected the same just before we arrived. We experienced no problems, it seems that Customs are allowing bikes to travel as before until they recieve written instructions not to allow it. Other good news is that Fritz has got a new and much better boat. So it's all smiles.
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  #5  
Old 26 Aug 2012
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Thumbs up Pending Stahlratte reservation

Stumbled across this today and considering we have a reservation on the Stahlratte in October it managed to raise an eyebrow.

Nonetheless, I emailed Ludvig (El Capitan de Stahlratte) to get the low down on the trip, his response is as follows;

"absolutely no problems at all for us..we are on tour (today 25th Aug 2012) coming from cartagena with 4 bikes...and no trouble with customs! too many rumaors around in the www!!!! i will go through all paprework with you so dont worry you do not have to do anything! ludwig"

Too many drama queens on advrider!

I will be sleeping easy tonight!

Chris & Chloe
BUENOS AIRES to VANCOUVER | Chris, Chloe & two motorbikes across South, Central & North America
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  #6  
Old 26 Aug 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chloechrisSA2011 View Post
Too many drama queens on advrider!
You must not read much on here.
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  #7  
Old 28 Aug 2012
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"Too many drama queens on advrider! "

Brilliant

CYA in Panama guys!!!

P&C
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  #8  
Old 28 Aug 2012
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Hi guy's!

We've been on the last sailing on the Stahlratte.
4 Motorcycles went across customs within 20 minutes....

No problems here! The only problem i can see is after 4 day's on the Ratte you won't fit in your Mc gear anymore....
That trip is absolut awesome!!!


Werner+Claudia
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  #9  
Old 28 Aug 2012
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hi,

we was on the stahlratte on the last trip -just perfect!!!

the costums in panama was easy, only the traffic in the city in the eavening was too much.

the stahlratte is the best choice!!!

cheers,

heidi and bernd
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  #10  
Old 29 Aug 2012
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Cheers guys, great to hear we've booked with the right gig
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  #11  
Old 31 May 2014
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Cartegena to Panama Motorbike Shipping Ends today

May 30 2014 - All boats are now stopped from doing the trip from Cartegena to Panama - both passenger and moto ferries. We spent two days trying to get out of the port with a similar story to the one below basically a big mess with Fritz's boat Jacquline in the middle of it all. A real waste of time but we were lucky to get our deposit back. Now we fly to panama

Quote:
Originally Posted by MAXVERT View Post
Just saw this post on advrider

No more bikes from Colombia to Panama
Guys,

I may be the very last person to ever take a motorcycle on the sail boats which run between Cartagena and Panama
( via the San Blas Islands).

We booked ourselves and the bike on the Independence two weeks ago. All was good. Three days before our departure we tried to start the custom process for the bike. What a **** around It turned out to be! Apparently the port authorities and customs are in a blame game ever since the Fritz the Cat sank with about 16 passengers on board ( all of who are now safe) and one motorcycle ( which didn't make it unfortunately).

Apparently the motorcycle onboard did not properly clear customs before departing Cartagena and the port authorities say that the vessel carry the bike was no designed to carry cargo, hence may have contributed to the sinking of the vessel.

Long story short, we have spend the past three days trying to get permission to leave on the independence with the bike and until 4.00pm today (Friday) were told that there was no way that this would happen. After a lot of persistence, sop stories, and some bullshit thrown in, we finally got the customs official to stamp the form. However, her last words were that we would be the last people to ever transport a motorcycle via this method and that all future motorcycles would either have to be transported via a shipping container or via air freight.

We were also told that the new transport ferry which was supposed to be up and running in May, won't happen and neither customs not the port authority in Cartagena will approve it.

Its basically a big **** up at the moment!

Max
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  #12  
Old 16 Jun 2014
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Hi !

Apparently no problem for the Stahlratte.... so it's still going...

Have fun!!!!


Would love to be there again..:-)


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  #13  
Old 17 Jun 2014
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But is he still taking people+ bikes to cross into panama?
A friend has found out he cant do that now. Only fligths.......
Can you confirm he is doing that?
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  #14  
Old 17 Jun 2014
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I flew, much easier and i don't find seasickness that romantic....
Not that much more expensive than sailing either
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  #15  
Old 18 Jun 2014
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BCK_973 View Post
But is he still taking people+ bikes to cross into panama?
A friend has found out he cant do that now. Only fligths.......
Can you confirm he is doing that?
Looks like it:

panama_cartagena_tours_de

-Terry
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