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Motorcycle travel in Tibet, Nepal, Bhutan, India...

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  #1  
Old 9 Sep 2004
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current boarder crossing situation for china, vietnam, myanm

dear riders out there

i'm a swiss guy on a trip around the world on my bmw r80 gs and currently in bangkok. i want to get to india overland through laos, cambodia, vietnam, china, myanmar knowing that some of these countries it's extremely difficult or impossible to get in or through. but i just can't take no for an answer! does anybody have really recent information about taking a 800ccm bike into vietnam, china and myanmar? regulations are subject to constant change and the embassies aren't much of a help as they don't know this kind of stuff themselves.
thanx a lot for any kind of info or suggestions!
safe travels to everybody.

marc.
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  #2  
Old 31 Jan 2010
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Hi everybody, I'm new here, starting to plan my trip for 2011. I found out this post, and as I'm a swiss rider with a R80GS as well, and I have the same question, than marc, I'm surprised that there an any answer to his post. It's too late for him now, but it can help other people.

1) Is it possible to travel trough Myanmar by Motorbike?

2) Is it possible to travel in Vietnam with a big bike (during my wolrd tour in 2007 I did it with a minsk 125 and was told that bikes over 175cc were not allowed in Vietnam, but afterward I head that some did it with 1000cc bikes...?

3) How about china? The search i did on this hub told me that you need a guide and that it's very expensive, but on the last DVD of HU, they say it's possible, and the border crossing should be made putting the bike in a truck.
Is it possible to have more information about that?

Thanks in adwance for your help

Cheers from Switzerland.
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  #3  
Old 31 Jan 2010
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Might be a good idea to do some searching on these forums, as there are several threads about the things you want to know.

China - possible, but officially a guide is required, and trying to cross the entire country without one could be tough I think. Vietnam - as of late seems to be possible, but only in a similar way as China. Myanmar - you can try your luck, but it´s highly unlikely you will get your vehicle in, nevermind manage to cross between Thailand and India with it.
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  #4  
Old 31 Jan 2010
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HI there her is some Info for you

Getting your bike into china is a pain and you will need a "guide" or a goverment spy ,making sure you dont do funny things. But I meet people on the route in Kazahkstan who were going in without a guide, into Urumchi. As said the only way is to put the bike on the truck or pay your way in , but again that is very risky. While we were there we got stopped a couple of times , and what they do is they call there supervisors and they will come after you and believe me they will find you and ask for paperwork. I would say its not worth the headache , and chinese people are not easy if you piss them off .specially in Xinjiang district. Think about it ..

Vietnam has the same issue, yiou are not aloud to take in any kind of bike in to the country . You will need a guide for this to there are many companies in Laos and Thailand (expats) who can arrange this for you for a fee offcourse...

The only way in to burma by land is from thailand, there are two main borders, Mae Sai (norther most border) Mae Sot in the South.. You are not aloud to take in your bike in any of these , I tried and failed.

Burma | GT Rider

simon Harby and suzi harby

These two are the only ones that actually crossed in to burma from India , how they did it I dont know , but probably alot of permits required.

Try contacting the Indian,Malaysian and Thai HU community they are keen travellers and most of them are well connected and will help you out.

Again if you have the money anything is possible , good luck
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  #5  
Old 1 Feb 2010
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Just a bit more of non optimistic experience. I went to Myanmar embassy in new Delhi a couple of months ago. They did not say it was impossible. They just said it was awfully complicated. You have to hand over to them a huge pile of documents, explaining your trip, your itinary, showing your hotel reservations, the dates you'll stay in such and such places. You need in top of that to get an authorization from the ministry of interior and the ministry of tourism... If you do that, fair enough, but you'll still have to deal with indian authorities at the boarder between Myanmar and India. The area, according to some travellers, is subject to a special permit - you'll have to check this information though.

Vietnam: you can forget about it. China is completely possible, but very costly. Last prices I've heard of, when I was in Kazakhstan, was about 3500$ just to get to the Pakistan boarder with a transit visa - 4 days in china...

I've just shipped my bike - well, my side car which is 6 cubic meters... - from chennai to port klang in Malaysia. It took 5 days, and it cost me so far around 500 euros - I still have to clear the bike at port Klang though, but destination charges are already paid.

I felt frustrated not to be able to cross Myanmar, but maybe in few more years, the situation will be easier. Good luck to you!
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  #6  
Old 1 Feb 2010
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Hello, I have been finding out on the topic of China.

It is necessary to have a license of driving, (300 or 400 dollars and 10 days of wait), but serious possible a license of driving temporarily for maximum 3 months. I believe that this license is alone for cars.

Besides your license of driving internationally you will have to spend(pass) a medical examination in China for the temporary license and to be present at theoretical classes..

But if you want to extract the Chinese driver's licence, you will have to do an examination in English with questions as these:

  • For an open abdominal wound, such as protrusion of the small intestine tube, we should:
a) Put it back
b) No treatment
c) Not put it back, but cover it with a bowl or jar, and bind the bowl or jar with a cloth belt.

  • The effect of a road attachment coefficient on the brake performance of a vehicle is:
a) The smaller the road attachment coefficient, the lower the effect.
b) The bigger the road attachment coefficient, the lower the effect.
c) The smaller the road attachment coefficient, the higher the effect.

You will have to answer well, at least 90 questions of the 100 that exist in the examination.

Nevertheless, I have put in touch with a friend who was in the south of Asia it does little and I comment to myself that in China a guide was not necessary, whereas in the TIBET it is obligatory.

Web Beijing traffic management Bureau

Web: Beijing Traffic Management Bureau


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  #7  
Old 2 Feb 2010
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With all these countries it is probably better to ship your big bike onwards and ride these countries on smaller local bikes, unless you want serious restrictions on movement and pay load$$$$.

Forget what Luis HD is saying, only residents (those working in China) can get Chinese licenses. Temporary driving (car is really possible) licenses are theoretically possible, but in practice the guide companies, have a monopoly on these (for motorcycles), so as to keep making lots of money, if independent travelers could get these that would be bad for business.
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  #8  
Old 2 Feb 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vincek100 View Post

Vietnam: you can forget about it. China is completely possible, but very costly.
well, according to gt-rider dot com, this would now need to be corrected to: China and Vietnam are possible, but very costly (+ will require preparations long in advance.)

It used to be so that you could forget about Vietnam... I was part of a group trying to enter with 115cc ´scooters´ in 2006, we tried a total 5 times from 4 different intl borders (from Cambodia & Laos) with no success. Several times we were close, though - but even if we´d got in, our scooters would´ve been more or less illegally in the country.

Burma, sadly, seems to remain almost impossible... (but naturally our biggest worry should not be, whether or not us rich Westerners will be able to take our bikes or cars into Burma, but rather how much the Burmese people have suffered under this ruthless military dictatorship).
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  #9  
Old 2 Feb 2010
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It is actually really easy to get a legitimate temporary driving licence in China. The PSB give them out (for a tiny fee) at Beijing airport. The drawbacks are that it is only valid for cars and is valid only as long as your visa is valid, in my case 30 days (the class of vehicle is printed on the licence: "C1"). Theoretically, they are also valid only for rental cars within the Beijing area (they tell you this, but this is not stated on the licence itself). All you have to do is fill in a form with your details, have your photo taken for the licence and have a "medical". The medical is hilarious: a 30 second eye test (testing for colour blindness and acuity), then they ask you how tall you are and that's it (as I remember, it cost about 20 RMB). They give you a "passed medical" form to take back to the main office and you have a licence. In all it takes about 45 minutes. While this is a legal licence; it is only for rental cars. If you choose to use it for a motorbike; it may be better than having no licence at all or maybe not. It all depends on the disposition of the nice Mr. PSB who stops you. I don't recommend or discourage this route to riding in China. This is for information purposes only. See this link for more detail: Vehicle Management Service Station of Terminal Building 3 of the Beijing Capital International Airport Resumes Work From This Day
China is a wonderful place, but you really need to get as informed as possible before deciding if you want to risk it or not.
Enjoy
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  #10  
Old 2 Feb 2010
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Thanks for the information update Wuming!
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  #11  
Old 2 Feb 2010
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interested in china updates

Am looking at crossing from Kyrgyzstan to Pakistan as part of a RTW trip... looking at ways to get from Europe to India really... so am interested in anyone here that has done this recently.

Would love to go through Iran/Pakistan, but seems problematic on motorcycle as an American.

Thanks!
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  #12  
Old 10 Feb 2010
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Vietnam and China

I have done a lot of research I am going to ship my bike to Singapore from Darwin then ride up the penninsula around into Cambodia, Vietnam and China then onto Mongolia and Russia onto Europe.
I am presently talking to a chinese resident who has been to the transport department and been told there a 5 steps to riding in China and it is doable
Vietnam I can't ship it in but I can ride it in Looking for others to travel with I want to be in Vietnam end of March, China for 2 months, Mongolia and then Russia to Europe by August
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  #13  
Old 10 Feb 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kangaaussie View Post
I have done a lot of research I am going to ship my bike to Singapore from Darwin then ride up the penninsula around into Cambodia, Vietnam and China then onto Mongolia and Russia onto Europe.
I am presently talking to a chinese resident who has been to the transport department and been told there a 5 steps to riding in China and it is doable
Vietnam I can't ship it in but I can ride it in Looking for others to travel with I want to be in Vietnam end of March, China for 2 months, Mongolia and then Russia to Europe by August
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  #14  
Old 10 Feb 2010
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Originally Posted by kangaaussie View Post
Vietnam I can't ship it in but I can ride it in
maybe some further info on that could be useful to many. Like ride what into Vietnam, from which border, and how.
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  #15  
Old 12 Feb 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kangaaussie View Post
I have done a lot of research I am going to ship my bike to Singapore from Darwin then ride up the penninsula around into Cambodia, Vietnam and China then onto Mongolia and Russia onto Europe.
I am presently talking to a chinese resident who has been to the transport department and been told there a 5 steps to riding in China and it is doable
Vietnam I can't ship it in but I can ride it in Looking for others to travel with I want to be in Vietnam end of March, China for 2 months, Mongolia and then Russia to Europe by August
I will buy you a meal anywhere in China if you can enter Vietnam & China on your Aussie registered motorcycle without paying a fortune or have a 'special connection' with the government.
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