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Old 23 Mar 2010
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Carnet in Indonesia and Malaysia


I'm asking for advice from recent motorcycle visitors to Indonesia and Malaysia. Can you confirm that a carnet is indeed required if you bring your own bike?

I pretty much expect the answer is "yes", or "you are asking for trouble without it".

This whole carnet thing seems like a nice little earner for the various automobile associations. The base price is AUD$400, plus the "commission" which is based on the vehicle value, but not less than AUD$300. All this for a 6-week ride .

Is that about the same as it costs for a legitimate carnet issued from other countries?

Colin (Sydney)
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Old 24 Mar 2010
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Yes, officially in both countries you need one. However:

You can ride across the border from Thailand without one, in fact without any paperwork and insurance, which is probably not a good idea.

We met a young Spanish lady in West Timor who had shipped her Oz reg'd bike into Timor Leste from Darwin, without carnet and without correct licence plate, i.e. the plate number was different from the rego, because she lost it... She sweet-talked her way into TL and Indo without carnet. Somehow I doubt that would work well for somebody who is not a pretty young single lady. Also, the bike was a beat-up CT110 postie bike, so its value was probably approaching zero.

German carnet is 3000 Euro deposit + 150 E fee. RAC carnet is twice current value of the vehicle for deposit + 150 GBP fee + 42 GBP courier, if outside GB. GB citizens can elect to use insurance instead, which means less deposit, but higher fee.

I suspect that the Oz carnet uses insurance, which is why it's expensive. Ask whether you can put up a cash deposit instead that you get back 100%.

Europe to NZ 2006-10
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Old 24 Mar 2010
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Hi Peter,

The way it works here is that the $400 is an "admin fee" and can't be avoided. You pay that amount even if you are taking the vehicle for only a day and it is worth $1 (not that anybody would).

Then there's the option of paying a premium based on the vehicle value (but in any case not less than $300), or lodging the value of the import duty in the highest-rate country. In my case that would be 1.5 x vehicle value for Indonesia. But I would get that back, whereas the premium is dead money.

Have put the hard word on my bank to give me an indemnity, with my own account as security. Another Aussie told me that her bank wanted 2% pa to do that, so she gave it a miss (she is travelleing for years). The advantage of this method is that you can get the carnet for a long time without having to leave your money locked up with the automobile association. Who knows, I might want to make another trip with this prescious carnet when I get it.

A spunky young lady with a junker bike has got all the aces. She's got a good chance of giggling her way through it, but if that fails she can just walk away from the bike. Most men are defenceless against such attacks anyway, self included. As you rightly point out, not an options for the rest of us

Anyway, it looks like we are not that badly off here regarding the cost of a carnet. But it's still a rip-off.

Colin (Sydney)
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