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-   -   Fuel costing 3X more in Bolivia for foreign registered plates (http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hubb/south-america/fuel-costing-3x-more-bolivia-61242)

2foilheads 11 Jan 2012 17:11

Fuel costing 3X more in Bolivia for foreign registered plates
For those who haven't already heard, the Bolivian government is trying to charge foreign plated vehicles 3 times the cost for their (shite) fuel.
I had heard this law was put into effect as of December 1st, 2011. Through Bolivia, I only paid the bs foreigner price once. This does not seem to be an issue with the fuel station attendants as we had attendants telling us that there were cameras around. I looked up, and sure enough, there they were. I was able to get fuel on several occasions in small towns that had no cameras (for example, in Colchani, 20 k's north of Uyuni near the entrance to the salar) and at other times, I was in medium sized cities where all the stations had cameras and none of them were allowed to sell to foreign vehicles. So I was forced to buy some even worse fuel from the side yard of someone's garage. Anyway, just thought I'd let everyone know.

_CY_ 11 Jan 2012 18:00

so what's the cost per gal/liter before vs 3x?

2foilheads 11 Jan 2012 18:47

It was something like 3.47 Bolivianos per liter normal, 8.6 - 8.8 for foreigners. I think thats around $1.25 US per liter. If the fuel was at least decent, then it wouldn't be so bad. But damn 85 octane leaded crap... not cool. Not to mention the hassle when you're in a town and no station will sell to you.

teevee 11 Jan 2012 23:57

simple answer is, boycott bolivia. it's not like many people NEED to go there...

BCK_973 12 Jan 2012 00:17


Originally Posted by teevee (Post 362754)
simple answer is, boycott bolivia. it's not like many people NEED to go there...

What??????That is a sad comment.:funmeterno:

mika 12 Jan 2012 01:12

what ???

simple answer is, boycott bolivia. it's not like many people NEED to go there...
what ?? are you crazy ?? if you havnt been to Bolivia you missed one of the most exciting countries on this planet, and you havnt seen South America. pls dont miss out on this, just because of a law that hardly anybody enforces anyway.

I boycott two other countries, but this is another story ...

saludos de salta

bigalsmith101 12 Jan 2012 01:45

B.S law is NOT B.S
Dude. Consider the facts.

The Bolivian government obviously subsides the fuel cost for it's some odd million inhabitants. The populace pays it's taxes, and receives this benefit. WE, the tourists/travelers, do not pay said taxes and do NOT receive this benefit. It's hardly a difficult scenario to understand.

This law was in affect, as far as I know, several months prior to Dec, 1st, 2011. While I was there in November '11, my friends were there in October '11, and others a few months earlier in the same year, the same B.S. was going on.

You should consider yourself lucky to have found fuel in Colchani, as when I passed there, there was no fuel and I was able to siphon from the gas tank of my Bolivian friend/guide's Land Cruiser.

Further more, in nearly all towns, if you speak Spanish, you can find a gas station that sells tourists fuel, though you will indeed pay the tourist price. For example, in Oruro, the only gas station that will sell a foreigner gas (as far as I know) is named "Cinco Esquinas" (Five Corners).

Also, I never had a single issue with the fuel on Bolivia and my '07 DR650 consistently returned it's trip average of 40-42mpg, regardless of where I purchased the fuel. So, maybe you had bad luck with the "crap 85 octane leaded fuel" as I didn't mind it.

The foreigner fuel price is only 2.5 times the standard Bolivian National Price. Not 3 times.

Bolivia KICKS ASS.

loubutler 18 Jan 2012 21:20

Bolivia is an amazing country and I can't wait to go back! It was the first country I travelled to 12 years ago and to now have the opportunity to ride it is a dream!

But I'm glad you've given us the information



" normal is a failure of potential"

Two Moto Kiwis 19 Jan 2012 10:17


Originally Posted by teevee (Post 362754)
simple answer is, boycott bolivia. it's not like many people NEED to go there...

Wow, sad to read that, Bolivia is one of our major points of interest for our upcoming trip, BTW the fuel is cheaper than in NZ so I am very happy to at least get it let alone cheaper anyways.

+1 Wot bigalsmith101 said, we can't wait to get there (although we will have to :smartass:)

Just pack your sense of humour and take it with you, it will be your most useful tool.

snohobo 22 Jan 2012 22:11

I just passed through Bolivia and though I was told many times that they either couldnt sell to foreign plates, or charged a foreign plate price, I never paid the foreign price.

I would either wait until they sold it to me at the regular price, negotiate a price in between, or go to another gas station(when possible).

There seems to be a lot of misinformation about this law. No one was able to show me anything regarding said law, and most would sell to me after I told them that I have traveled in Bolivia for 2 weeks without paying foreign plate prices.

Dont let this stop you from going to Bolivia. It included some of the best riding of my trip.

chris 22 Jan 2012 22:44

Can't be that hard to get somebody to manufacture you a Bolivian number plate that you cabletie/ducttape on just to fill up, then remove again when you're round the corner. Could even have your numbers/letters.

Bolivia is great. Even the dogs are a lot less likely to chase your bike than their canine bretheren in Peru.


ljensen 27 Jan 2012 18:57

Emergency fuel bags
From my time riding in Bolivia, I found that the same attendants who couldn't sell fuel at a fair price (or at all) because of paperwork/plate issues would gladly fill one of their 4-liter emergency bags (or a normal gas can or whatever size) at the normal price. Granted, going back and forth to your bike parked around the corner can be a pain, but when you get stuck and nobody will sell you gas it's a good solution.

I'll support the other comments, this is no reason to skip Bolivia. Beautiful country!


kjiratsiekoedel 11 Feb 2012 20:31

Now in Bolivia.

Normal price is 3.74 bolivianos per liter, extranjeros price is 9.09 bolivianos. At the bigger routes the pumps sell for 9.09 or ar not allowed to sell to foreigners. The pumps in smaller places just sell for local price (they probably ar not allowed to sell, but just sell).

If you buy fuel at houses the price is 6 or 7 per liter.

Guillaume 14 Feb 2012 12:57

in Bolivia in 1 or 2 weeks
Thanks for the info guys.

I should be there in a week or two.

I guess I have to be ready to buy, again, some gas out of the barrel.

Damn just had my carb cleaned...

Vorteks 15 Feb 2012 02:44

Staying south of Tarija right now.

I was sold gas for 5 Bol in the village where i m staying. I got charged 5 Bolivianos as well at the gas station south of Tarija after the control. It s all about how good the seller will percieve you. The plate from Europe impressed them and they didnt charge the "gaucho" argentine price. Another frenchy on a Paraguayan motorcycle was charged the local price.

A good sense of humour and language skills will certainly help...

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