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-   -   Australia to India (http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hubb/trip-transport/australia-to-india-36581)

DaveSmith 17 Jul 2008 06:25

Australia to India
Someone here must've done this. I'm having problems with my shipper in Melbourne. I've got a 1965 Ducati that has an expired NSW Aussie plate on it that I bought in NSW. I've got a current California plate with me in Delhi and am about 2 days from getting a carnet.

I was told that India doesn't let you bring bikes in that are older than 3 years but baksheesh should take care of that. My shipper says Australia won't let the bike go if it wasn't brought in on a carnet. That doesn't make sense to me. They sell old bikes on eBay all the time and they get shipped. I didn't have a problem taking my bike to NZ.

Has anyone shipped a bike from Oz to India? Any weird problems with it?


Simon Kennedy 17 Jul 2008 08:04


It is pretty hard to understand this post. Where is the bike? In Australia? Where are you? In India? What is the California plate for? The same bike that has an expired Australian plate?

India let in any bike that has a carnet. There is no three years rule on vehicles with a carnet.

From what I can understand, the shipper is talking rot. Tell him it is parts rather than a bike, because the wheels are off....


DaveSmith 17 Jul 2008 08:10

Sorry about the confusion. I'm from California but I'm in India. My bike is in Australia with expired NSW plates. I've got a valid California plate with me here that I'll use with the carnet.

I'll let him know the wheels are off so it's a parts bike and see if that works. He doesn't ship bikes. He ships overseas and is shipping the bike as a favor for a friend.

dotcaf 17 Jul 2008 08:44

I wouldn't try positioning as being parts in India. They'll tax you to high heaven. If the US plates are still valid, put them on. You WILL need a carnet (or to leave a cash deposit!) if you take it to India. See here on my website: Transporting the bike for a clearing agent in Chennai/Madras called Govias that may be able to help at the other end. Admin in India is a nightmare if you're not riding across a border. Keep it simple and you won't have any problems...

DaveSmith 17 Jul 2008 08:57

All I need to do to get a carnet now is just deposit Canadian $5,000 into a non-interest bearing account. It seems it'd be cheaper to leave a deposit but I've heard (oh so many things I've heard) that it's best to have a carnet instead of paying the deposit.

Thanks for your link. I think part of my problem is the shipper in Melbourne doesn't ship bikes.

RogerM 17 Jul 2008 11:38

Just to clarify - the California plate is for your bike in Sydney?

The carnet will have the California plate?

The bike will have the NSW plate on it when it arrives in India?

The shipping documents from Australia will need to match the carnet, I would see a problem with the bill of lading stating one Ducati Rego #ABC123, VIN xxxxxxx and you have a carnet with the rego showing as 123XYZ with a VIN xxxxxxx and then the bike turning up in India with the NSW plate.

Asking for a nightmare if you ask me. Get everything to match before you ship it from Australia.

pecha72 17 Jul 2008 12:31

Yes, if you pay a deposit, if I know anything about India, it´ll probably turn out to be just that - something you payed!!

Agree with others, Indian customs are very complicated (even though you might have a common language) and I wouldnt want to try importing any bike, unless its documents match the vehicle 100%.

We actually had no problems importing our bike on a carnet, but that was at the Wagah/Attari land border, its probably a whole different story at a seaport.

DaveSmith 17 Jul 2008 14:57

California bike in Melbourne that was bought and plated in Australia. I can get the expired NSW plates removed and put California plates on the bike in Delhi. The carnet is for California registration. Trust me, I really know how much of a pain in the ass this is. It just makes sense to me that a bike with a Canadian carnet for a California plated bike should pass with a carnet.

Of course, I also know that it would be much cheaper and easier for me to buy an Enfield here but switching bikes sort of loses the common thread. I completely understand that it makes more sense to switch bikes but I would like to use the Ducati. But switching is a last resort ad that I realize I'm making it more difficult for myself.

If you think I'm ****ed, please let me know. I'm not willing to spend that much to do this trip on my bike of choice but I'm willing to go out of my way to make the attempt.


beddhist 17 Jul 2008 15:28


Originally Posted by Dave_Smith (Post 198930)
I can get the expired NSW plates removed and put California plates on the bike in Delhi.

If the bike arrives in Delhi with plates fitted not matching the carnet I think you may have a problem.

If you are shipping by air consider shipping to Kathmandu instead, it's said to be a lot easier in Nepal.

Simon Kennedy 17 Jul 2008 17:38

"I wouldn't try positioning as being parts in India. They'll tax you to high heaven."

Hadn't thought of that - good point.

If you can get the Californian plate on the carnet and the same plate on the bike, then you shouldn't have a devastating problem in India (although you should prepare yourself for a minor nightmare). That's just how it is.

You don't appear to have a big problem, if I understand your situation properly. It is just the inexperience of the shipper that has thrown you. CA plate; CA ownership documents; CA carnet - off you go.

Given your shipper hasn't experience with bikes, might this be the time to mention the certificate for dangerous goods? You need this. Better to get the process started sooner than later.


DaveSmith 18 Jul 2008 03:08

If I ship it by air, then Kathmandu it will be. I've heard that Nepal is easier too.

Thanks for reminding me about the dangerous goods thing. I'll make sure this guy knows about that. It's not a company I'd recommend but I don't think they advertise that they ship bikes either.

Frank Warner 18 Jul 2008 04:42

Before you ship the bike - take the NSW plate off and have the other plate put on ..

That way the shipping docs will match the bike, you won't be changing plates infront of the officials (in any place). It may confuse the OZ customs people .. but as they won't be paying out money on it they won't be too concerned (no carnet docs and no deposit to refund.... in OZ )

Don't know about the cost to Kathmandu .. no direct flights .. might be cheaper to Delhi as there are direct flights to there.

Simon Kennedy 18 Jul 2008 10:32

Sea ports have a culture all of their own with traditions and payment systems going back generations, particularly in India. Prepare for weeks of waiting. There have been quite a few horrible experiences reported in these pages.

Airports are a lot easier. Plenty of people have flown in and out of Delhi without problems. I cannot speak from experience, but personally I wouldn't worry too much about using any airport on India, or just about anywhere in the world for that matter.

If you can afford it, flying is ALWAYS better. Weeks of agony saved. If you factor in the wasted time, hotel costs, and hair-tearing, a few hundred dollars more makes a lot of sense.

Sounds like you are close to a solution now - good luck.


dotcaf 18 Jul 2008 14:47


Originally Posted by Dave_Smith (Post 198876)
Thanks for your link. I think part of my problem is the shipper in Melbourne doesn't ship bikes.

It may be helpful to speak with Stewart at Tradelanes Global on 03 9330 0090 or 0418 730 676. He arranged my shipping back to the UK and is based in Melbourne.

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