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

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  #1  
Old 16 Dec 2008
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Iran-Pakistan-India

Hi, I couldn't find any recent news on this road crossing which I intend to do next summer. Is it still do-able despite the recent tensions etc? British PP and bike etc......

Kind regards


Muzz
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  #2  
Old 16 Dec 2008
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If you can get the Pakistan and Iran visas then no problem, but there are reports here on HUBB about the Iranians sometimes refusing them now and the Pakistanis demand the notorious 'letter of non-objection' from your embassy, routinely refused by some embassies now. Both are best obtained at home, perhaps it's time to get a second passport just for the purpose, as the visas are only valid for 3 months from date of issue.
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  #3  
Old 20 Dec 2008
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Thanks Beddhist, yes I was intending to get the visa's back in the UK. What do you mean though about the second passport and the letter of non-objection????

Thanks

Muzz
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  #4  
Old 20 Dec 2008
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Hi

The second passport that beddhist is talking about is obtaining a second UK passport but I can't see how this would benifit you as you won't be able to swap passports between neighbouring countries for obvious reasons - we never needed to use our 2nd passport in the end.

Letter of no objection from your embassy is basically a letter from the british embassy that says they are aware of your trip, itinery etc and have no objection to you travelling in that particular country - wether or not they would provide one is another matter but you should try and apply without one first. The pakistan embassy in london was incredibly helpful with supply all visas.

Good Luck

Becky
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  #5  
Old 8 Jan 2009
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The traffic between india-pak is still allowed. Not sure how long will that continue
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  #6  
Old 8 Jan 2009
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Guys, the letter.o.n.o. which goverment agency do I need to approach for this as a UK citizen ? Off that way later in the year and thought it might be a good idea to sound them out before we apply for visas for Iran, Pakistan and India, the other worry is that we are going to travel round India for 4 months ( can we just keep renewing our visas during this period ? ) and then travel back though the same countries on the way back to the UK so will need new visas for the return journey and will obviously have to apply for them in the previous country, do you see this as and issue ?

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Pete
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  #7  
Old 10 Jan 2009
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Hello there,

We are Ukrainian bikers and would like to travel across Iran.
Any information regarding bike rent or crossing border on own bikes, etc. will be appreciated.
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  #8  
Old 15 Jan 2009
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G2K Iran-Pakistan-India. Visas

G2K Glasgow to Kathmandu by Triumph Bonneville.
Riding for Nepal. Child Welfare Scheme Nepal Child Welfare Scheme - Welcome to CWS

Before I started my trip last September I got my visas for Iran, Pakistan and India here in London.

Iran through Magic Carpet (see website). Two weeks for the Visa Number then two days for the visa to be entered in my passport. (30 days).

Pakistan went up to the High Commission on a Monday morning waited for an hour-a-half very helpful (15 days, but I could have asked for 30 days).

India went to the new office in Victoria - very efficient took two days. (6 months).

Nepal get it at the border (30 days).

If you are planning to be out of your own country without getting all the visas first: forget hanging around in the country you have reached get on a flt back to your home country and apply for your visas from there. Believe me it will save you a lot of time, money, and heartache.

Riding through Turkey, Iran, Pakistan last Sep/Oct was wonderful! The hospitality Ian and I received was humbling at times.

You will get police escorts in southern Iran and Pakistan - again they were all very friendly and courtesy.

The police are only doing their job, so please don't upset them as it could make it difficult for you and future travellers.

India is still hardwork and you will get crowds, and...

...I would do it all again tomorrrow.

Ferg
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  #9  
Old 15 Jan 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AshaBlue View Post
G2K Glasgow to Kathmandu by Triumph Bonneville.
Riding for Nepal. Child Welfare Scheme Nepal Child Welfare Scheme - Welcome to CWS

Before I started my trip last September I got my visas for Iran, Pakistan and India here in London.

Iran through Magic Carpet (see website). Two weeks for the Visa Number then two days for the visa to be entered in my passport. (30 days).

Pakistan went up to the High Commission on a Monday morning waited for an hour-a-half very helpful (15 days, but I could have asked for 30 days).

India went to the new office in Victoria - very efficient took two days. (6 months).

Nepal get it at the border (30 days).

If you are planning to be out of your own country without getting all the visas first: forget hanging around in the country you have reached get on a flt back to your home country and apply for your visas from there. Believe me it will save you a lot of time, money, and heartache.

Riding through Turkey, Iran, Pakistan last Sep/Oct was wonderful! The hospitality Ian and I received was humbling at times.

You will get police escorts in southern Iran and Pakistan - again they were all very friendly and courtesy.

The police are only doing their job, so please don't upset them as it could make it difficult for you and future travellers.

India is still hardwork and you will get crowds, and...

...I would do it all again tomorrrow.

Ferg
Please advise how one gets the bike via Iranian border&
What are regulations& How long does it take?
Thanks in advance!
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  #10  
Old 16 Jan 2009
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Iran-Pakistan-India

Apply for visas before you leave, they are valid from date of issue, and are not so easy to renew on the road. The border red tape is mind-boggeling at the best of times, and Iran is famous for procrastinating. The consular officials really don't care, they just hope you will give up and go away. I met 'overlanders' who were stranded on both sides of Iran, already waiting for many days. Some contacted agencies hoping they would grease a few palms, though that didn't seem to help much. My advice is to time your trip, if possible, to get through without having to extend or renew.
The Iranians take their borders and internal security very seriously, expect to be interviewed several times about the purpose of your visit, and be polite and patient. The police escorts are a pain in the ass, just want you out of their district, and are very unwilling to stop for food, petrol, or even worse, sightseeing. 'Next escort!'. They like to wave their guns around, and fire shots in the air, but they are definatly not going to shoot you....too much paperwork. Just be firm and polite, not easy when you sense they are losing it.
Speed traps, with fines payable on the spot in Euros or US dollars are another hassel. I just kept on argueing, friendly and firm. One time we started at Eu 100, when he got down to Eu 20 we both started laughing, and he sent me on my way with a handshake.
Only two effekts of the international boikott, petrol is cheaper than water, but rationed, fill when you can, over 10 liters at a time can cause problems. The other effect is food, big menus, but usually only kebap available. The chicken is usually the belly skin or livers (must be really cooked through), neither of which is very appetising.
Roads are generally good, and speeds dangerously high. Lots of crashes, and no mercy about cutting you off, but it's a good school for whats waiting over the border in Pak, and even worse, India.
You must have carnet, registration doc, insurance and international driving licence(no-one asked for this, but it is mandatory), and plenty of time to spare. It's a cash economy for westerner's, and it's very hard to get rid of Iranian notes outside Iran, so the last few days you budget carefully. No alcohol, just tea houses, empty restaurants, and hordes of young people on the streets with nothing to do. Strange place, police everywhere, it's easy to be paranoid, but they do keep an eye on foreigners, 'for your own safety'.
Pakistan is more chaotic, lots of police escorts in the strangest places, generally bad roads, terrible driving, guns everywhere, a lot in private hands, and a general air of being on the brink of civil war. The army and police are a law unto themselves, but usually just want to drink chai and chat. You can arrive on the last day your visa is valid, and it runs three months from then, which is very liberal. There is a lot of tension around the borders and tribal areas, and the escorts vary from two men on a 150cc bike to the Punjabi Special Police Unit or the VIP Escort. Again, they dont want to stop for anything, but if you tell them which hotel you want they find it for you, and fetch you next morning and get you on the right road, even though you can manage yourself.
Your paperwork must be in order, same as Iran, and you have to be very firm in queues when people push their papers/parcels/goods etc in front/on top of yours. This is really annoying, but they do it to eachother too, not just tourists, and the guy behind the desk/counter usually drops your stuff and begins on the newest. Strange!
India is also big on paperwork, enormous ledgers rather than the Iranian online style, and it takes time. Again, a pain in the ass for you, but keep your comments to yourself. I saw two Germans sidetracked at Waghah, and they are probably still there in no-mans land. they certainly didn't get through that day.
Best of luck
Peter, in Oslo
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  #11  
Old 16 Jan 2009
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I am just curious, but do they (iran and pak) provide escort only to westerners?

Being an indian, i am not sure what to expect from Pak. Maybe i will be escorted too
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  #12  
Old 16 Jan 2009
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G2K Turkey-Iran-Pakistan-India-Nepal border crossings...

Border crossings...

Remember guys you are not the first ones to pitch up on a motorbike. If you have a carnet and a visa there is no hassle to it. We had a look in the ledgers that our carnets were entered and there was guys crossing every five days or so...

Turkey-Iran 15 minutes - a guy took my passport and he took me around to see the three guys I had to get signatures from. No payment asked.

Iran - Passport stamped in two minutes. Carnet signed by about five guys then stamped 30 minutes total.

Iran - Pakistan. Passport and carnet stamped within 15 minutes. Got back to the border and it was shut! At 3pm (Iran time). And had to stay the night on the Iran side. No problems. I believe the Pakistan side closed first as they were experimenting with day light saving hours.

Pakistan side - Passport stamped in 3 minutes. Carnet stamped in 15 minutes.

Pakistan to India Passport stamped 2 minutes, carnet 15 minutes.

India - Passport stamped in two minutes - carnet 30 minutes.

Indian - Nepal - 30 minutes total.

You will find that the customs guys are very familiar with carnets.

Oh' and check exchange rates and the Iranians like Euros, but make sure they are new notes or are not ripped or torn - they won't accept them if they are damaged in any way.

Police escorts in Iran and Pakistan.

As a British national our passports were photocopied at every hotel we stayed at and the police informed. But don't know about Indian passport holders.

Your bike will come to the attention of the police as they don't have any big bikes and the numberplate will be unusual. I think you would at least be stopped to discover where your bike is registered.

Remember the speed traps on Iranian motorways. The police are very helpful they park their big Mercedes at right angle to the roads which gives you enough time to slow down.

I was stopped once (not for speeding), I produced my international driving license, showed the map from Glasgow to Kathmandu on the side of my tank, smiled a lot - and he just let me go. He was very nice.

Ferg

Last edited by AshaBlue; 16 Jan 2009 at 16:43. Reason: Not finished!
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  #13  
Old 29 Jan 2009
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One movie says more then 1000 words: Going East - Home

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  #14  
Old 15 Feb 2009
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If you cross from Lahore to Amritsar, the guys there will try to shake you down for a small amount of cash. One of them took me into a larger warehouse type deal, away from the office, and started questioning me on how much money I had etc. I held firm and didn't pay, but a simple $5 will make this process a lot easier. Yes, I know, bad to do that.. but everyone I talked to did it and did not want the risk of them unpacking all your stuff (some of which then goes missing..) etc.

India is a hell-hole, but the traffic in Lahore I think is worse. I crossed India in two days and hopped into Nepal via Mahendranagar. Peace and quiet the moment you cross the border. Of course, they'll have to go find the key to open the gate as next to no vehicles cross there. In 2006, there previous entry was for people who were a few months ahead of me (and who I had run into in Syria earlier). The road from Mahendranagar to Pokhara, especially the first 2 days, is stunning and some of the nicest scenery in Nepal.

I was back in Nepal a few months ago .. a good place to get addicted too.
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