USA to EU - ship or buy
I've done some reading but have not gotten a definitive feeling about what might be most economically feasible. My wife and I are contemplating a 6 month tour of Europe next year, each riding our own bike. We live in on the west coast of the US. We'd like to ride new or fairly new BMW F650 and F800 bikes, or something similar (though not sure what that'd be). We are open to any option from buying here in the US and shipping (from west or east coast) to Europe and back, or buying in Europe and selling before returning to US. Relative costs and hassle factors to be considered. Advice? Thanks.
Any way of taking advantage of this twist to my circumstances: I am a dual US/Finnish citizen; my wife is US only. Would "moving" to Finland offer any advantage, even if we "decide" to move back to the US after "living" there for 6 months or so? A "permanent" address in Finland would be no problem for me to get. Would we be able to bring US registered bikes with us? I seem to remember something about needing to own them for at least a year to avoid import taxes.
Under your particular circumstances (dual US/FI citizen w/ ease of
securing FI address), it would probably be much less hassle to
buy new or used in FI, re-sell at end of your ride.
You need to explore cost dynamics a bit more.
Go to BMW Finland/ Suomi website:
BMW Motorrad Suomi
click on "Käytetyt moottoripyörät" (Used Bikes)
Contact any of the listed dealers for more details, both in terms of
pricing/ taxes and FI paperwork details for registration/ insurance/ etc.
You can also get FI new bike prices on same website.
You may also find Finish websites for private owner used bike sales;
depending on Finland VAT rules, private owner sales may be cheaper
This also assumes you are willing/ intending to start--and end--your
6 month ride itinerary in Finland
Yes, you can sea or airfreight from US West or East Coast, but the
cost & hassle of that is likely to be relatively much higher than FI purchase/ re-sale, under your particular circumstances--assuming you do not want/ intend to return the bike(s) to the US--even if the initial purchase
price of the bike(s) is likely to be higher in FI than US.
If you sea or airfreight a US-rego bike to EU, you can ride it as a "temporary"
import throughout the EU for 6-12 months, without paying EU permanent import taxes. "Temporary" imports of US-rego vehicles are supposed to
be returned to US (or re-exported from EU) at end of allowed temporary
import period; but the enforcement reality is that many US owners keep
US-rego bikes in Euro semi-permanently.
It also depends on your plan/ intention for the bike(s) at the end of your
6 month ride. Do you want to return/ have those bikes in US at the end
of the 6 months ? If so, DON'T buy a FI/ EU-spec bike, because there are
strictly enforced & expensive US DOT/ EPA rules about importing EU-spec bikes (back) to US. If your intention is to have those bike(s) back in the
US after a 6 mos EU ride, then buy in the US and plan to air/seafreight
There are many HUBB threads/ posts about these detailed options, including
sea/airfreight, and required temporary insurance for US-rego vehicles ridden
in the EU.
Thanks much for the info. It's something we will definitely consider. Keeping the bikes after the trip is not something we necessarily plan on doing, though we might or would if we couldn't/didn't sell them. We generally don't have larger DS bikes but rather street and dirt bikes ...
I will have to weigh the costs. It very well might end up cheaper to buy slightly used here in the US and kit it up with luggage and accessories; and be able to do some test runs to make sure they are set up just the way we want them. Adding shipping to/from Europe might end up cheaper. Cheers.
I can set you up with an Irish registered motorcycle as cheap as you can buy in the USA.
Here is the selection.
Motorbikes For Sale in Ireland - DoneDeal.ie
Let me know if there is something you like.
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