Updated Info on Bangkok Cargo for anyone flying bikes there
I got my bike out of Cargo today and it is a pain free operation. There are guys at the airport hired to help you do not need to pay an agent. From the time the taxi dropped me, to the time I got to the bike was 2.5 hrs, then it took me 1.5hrs to put him all back together. These are the steps:
Take a taxi to the cargo terminal, they cannot go in but will drop you where all the guards are at what looks like a toll gate. Facing the toll gate walk down the left side on the outside of the fence i.e. you do not go into the tollgate area. Walk to the free zone security to get a security pass. You will need to ask someone and they will walk you there. You explain to the people there you need to get your bike out of cargo and they will give you a pass it costs 27bht.
They will introduce you to a guy who will walk you all the way through the process, customs, forms etc etc. The guy who helped me was very nice spoke very good English, he had his truck there so drove to customs warehouse and back it’s quite a bit of moving from here to there and the place is huge.
He will help get all the forms and the Photostats (hundreds everything in triplicate) etc. He took me 2 different cashiers 1 to pay a penalty for an amendment to the form as my address was on there, go figure, it cost me 312bht. The storage for 1 night cost me 1022 bht. These are all legit at the relevant cashiers you get Thai cargo receipts.
The guy who helped me did get very concerned that I did not have a carnet and that I would have to pay import duties, I stood my ground and said I am not buying a caret and I know I do not need to pay import duties (I am not sure if he was trying to pull something or genuinely thought I needed a cart) I just said no carnet take me to customs. He did and that went though in about 1 hr.
Most people speak some English so they just hand you over to English speaking people on the way.
After that you go fetch the bike in the warehouse
They will fork life your bike in the crate to a quite spot out of the way where you can take your time and sort it out. When you put the petrol in do it surreptitiously if you are in the warehouse as they do not like this. Also do not start your bike in the warehouse. Once packed up you must push it outside hand over the2nd last form and hop on you bike and hand over the last form at the gate (that looks like atoll) you must go through toll number 1.
Everyone is very helpful and nice. They even fork lifted my bike to help me put the front wheel on as I don’t have a centre stand. I asked the guy who helped me how much I owed him and he said no you can tip me if you like it is up to you. I gave him 500bht (16usd) as he was a great help and yes I may have been able to do it myself but it would have taken twice as long. and walking from warehouse to customs and back in this heat also worth getting help from a guy with a car :)
So good luck and enjoy
So enjoy Good Luck
Strange, if your 'fixer' wasn't aware, that Thailand is not in the carnet system.
I once flew my bike to Bangkok from India, took about 2-3 hrs to clear it. But I had a thai-speaking friend with me at the airport, this surely helped.
Funnily enough, I did the same as Lorraine but the next day, both bikes arrived from Mongolia on the same plane.
Differences, mine took 6 hours, because they were very busy and I did not have an English speaking chap to guide me through the process, it was just ad hoc asking as I went.
They did ask for a carnet, which I have anyway and never have used yet, but they did not want to use the forms, they wanted 2 photocopies of one form and they then filled that out, go figure!
Th difference up front was that I had engaged an agent to start with, then dismissed them as too expensive once I got the paperwork. If I had known about the above process I would have not bothered at all.
Just as a clarification in Lorraine's description about the direction of travel. When you arrive at the toll gate, or security check in gate, there is a brick building just on the right and is labelled "FREE ZONE SERVICE" Go in here and pay the 27B for your security pass, do this first. Then walk straight ahead until you get to the end of the freight office buildings, about 200m or so, then there is a large building on the left with a walkway under it in the middle, it has a Seven11 store, a Thai cafe and a lady with the photocopy machine in that walkway, as well as many ATM's. After going through that walkway, the next building houses the Customs, that is the beginning of the paperwork trail.
You will need 2 copies each of
Passport entry stamp to Thailand
Letter from Freight airline
they cost 2Baht each so a big cost of 20Baht total
The cafe uses tokens, buy them from the girls to left inside door, the tokens are in several denominations but a book will cost 100Baht, each food stall has the prices and you give them tokens for the stuff you want, no dirty money changing hands :) I found all this out because I had to wait a while, lunch cost 50Baht
1. Go into customs and hand over all the paperwork, they will do stuff with it.
2. Proceed to the next counter, they will point it out to you and the lady there will 'check out' your paperwork and cross you off a customs list
3. Go through to the security section check point, using the security pass you bought, this takes you into the 'bonded goods' area of the airport
4. Find the relevant cargo point, in my case it was Thai Airways, Cargo Building 1, Gate 36.
5. This is important if you do not have a fixer, you must NOW pay for the bike storage, someone will show you where to go but in my case it was on the 3rd floor, go upstairs until you find the payment counter, get a receipt.
6. Take this paperwork downstairs to the 'freight release' office on the loading docks, they will do stuff with the paperwork which will now be put in a queue for one of the handlers to pick up and process, and your bike is now available for retrieving from bond.
They will then bring it to unpack, in my case it was out front on the loading dock in a corner. Putting fuel in was easy out here, just make sure nobody is smoking, although the whole area is a no smoking area, everyone smokes here. During this time a customs official will inspect the bike VIN and engine number and sign and stamp the exit document
Once you ride off, you hand this piece of paper to the guys at the exit check point, a large 'toll' booth looking place, a customs man takes it off you and you are free to go :)
I hope that helps others who are not so lucky as Lorraine and find themselves getting frustrated. If I had of known about going upstairs to pay, I would have saved an hour instead of sitting around waiting!!!
One chap helped me a bit with the manual bits, lifting the bike and generally helping, sometimes he got in the way, but overall he was good, with no English :) I paid him 300Baht for his troubles, it was what he asked for.
Take PLENTY of water, it is hot and steamy work and you will sweat buckets. There are food and drink machines and toilets in this area
Thanks for this info!
Few weeks and I will face this same procedure.
Do you know if customs are open on Saturday?
Remember Helmut the guy did into charge me just said I can tip him if I like, and only after I had asked
Thanks for the info!
At the moment my planned flight to BKK is on Friday, which means that I can do customs clearance on Monday.
This would mean that I need to pay storage fee from the weekend?
Need to discuss with Eagle Express and check if we could send the bike already on Wednesday...
I guess you are shipping from Kathmandu if you are using Eagle? My bike also arrived on the Friday and I tried to get it out on the weekend but it was not possible. They will charge you storage, even though they are not open. I think it was 1000 baht each day (about 20 pounds per day).
Regarding the carnet, we have one because we have travelled to other countries that required it. In Thailand, as others have said, a carnet is not needed but customs like to sight it to get all the bikes details from it.
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