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Old 25 Oct 2001
Ian Ian is offline
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Shipping Yourself and Bike By Ship?

Anyone know if travelling on the same ship as your bike is possible? The routes I'm interested in are Southern Africa to Australia, Australia to South America and Canada to Iceland.

Thanks in advance
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Old 27 Oct 2001
Susan Johnson's Avatar
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Hi Ian

Not necessarily a cheap way to travel ($70-130 per day per Freighter World Cruises), but it has attractions. Their website has a map which you can click on to see routings available. You might find your particular routes are unusual, especially since the focus seems to be on routes originating or finishing in US - e.g. Los Angeles to Sydney.

P&O Nedlloyd has some details at: http://www.ponl.com/topic/home_page/...assenger_ships

If you want to get into serious research on this topic, see our Book pages for: Travel by Cargo Ship, which has a number of contact details. You can buy it from Amazon.co.uk directly from the Travel Books page.

Good luck and safe travels!

Susan Johnson
Share the Dream at www.HorizonsUnlimited.com

[This message has been edited by Susan (edited 26 October 2001).]
Susan Johnson

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Old 5 Nov 2001
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Location: Kiwi formerly working in Germany, now sitting on touratech seat of an F650....
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Hi Ian and Susan,

While on my own mission of trying to find a reasonable deal to ship 3 bikes from Germany to Buenos Aires, I found an interesting alternative with http://www.freighter-voyages.com

They offer the combination of travelling by ship to your destination, with your vehicle. In this it seems that good prices are to be had, but only if you've got plenty of time on your hands, and don't mind paying for a cruise on a freighter.

Example Germany to Buenos Aires, Personal ticket 2,500 DM, Bike cost 1,400 DM

If anyone has a hint on cheap freighting to Buenos Aires, I'd love to hear it !


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Old 6 Nov 2001
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It seems to me that if you want to travel (and ship your bike) cheap... You should fly.

It's strange, but flying is cheaper than sailing.

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Old 2 Jan 2002
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I agree with Maartin, it costs no more to ship by air than it does by sea, and it is a heck of a lot simpler to ship by air.

The 'base price' by sea might appear to be fractionally cheaper, but once you add in all the port charges, it's the same or more than air.

The trick seems to be to find a charter airline that uses wide body aircraft (e.g. L-1011, DC-10, MD-11, B-747 or similar). The charter carriers ususally fill the main deck with passengers who are limited to two bags each. This often leaves a great deal of cubic space available on the lower deck.

A motorcycle inside a container (typically a LD-6) takes up a lot of space, but does not weigh very much, relative to normal air cargo. For example, a 350 kg motorcycle is equal to the baggage checked by only 6 or 8 passengers. The charter carriers will often carry motorcycles on a 'space available' basis for very attractive rates (e.g. less than US$ 1,000 each way across the Atlantic).

You could shop yourself, or contact a consolidator, or contact a company that specializes in motorcycle shipping. I have used Motorcycle Express (www.motorcycleexpress.com) and was very pleased with their prices and their service.
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Old 5 Jan 2002
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A postscript: I do agree with Maartin that it would most likely be less expensive and less complex (fewer administrative headaches) to ship by air freight, however, as Jeremy has brought up one interesting link to sea freighter travel, here is another one: Freighter Cruise & Travel.

I have no idea whether or not the ships they represent would entertain the prospect of taking a motorcycle along as well. Keep in mind, though, that the air freight business is primarily oriented towards rapid clearance of individual items of high value cargo (e.g. motorcycles), and the sea freight business is primarily oriented towards slow movement of bulk quantities of low value cargo.

In other words, when your motorcycle shows up at an air freight warehouse, no-one in the warehouse or customs office will raise an eyebrow - they probably see one a week. When you need to clear a single used motorcycle through a shipping port that is oriented towards clearing shipments of thousands of new vehicles on one manifest, you might present a 'unique problem'.

[This message has been edited by PanEuropean (edited 05 January 2002).]
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