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North America Topics specific to Canada and USA/Alaska only.
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  #1  
Old 6 Dec 2015
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Thumbs down How does a UK citizen buy a Canadian bike and ride it to South America

Good day all,

After working hard for a while I have decided that I will pack it all in and have a good old time and partake in some horse play around the Americas.

I have made a very thorough plan, which is the following:
Step 1: Buy a KLR in Canada (Craiglist or Kijiji).
Step 2: Head South to Argentina.
Step 3: Work out the rest along the way.

I though it would be wise to get a better picture of whats what for Step 1 and was hoping that you, knowledgeable reader, could assist me in this quest.

Question:

1) Is it possible for a non-resident to register as an owner of a Canadian registered motorcycle, Or will it be necessary to register it under a Canadian resident name and address?
2) Can the US/Canadian border easily be crossed as a foreign national on said motorcycle with sufficient insurance?

That is all.

Any tips, tricks or scopes would be appreciated,

George
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  #2  
Old 6 Dec 2015
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You may find it is cheaper to by in the USA. And that foreigner purchases go easier in some states than others.
The same kind of thing may go on in Canada .. but hey don't call them 'states'? Possibly 'districts'? Highly probable that it can be done, just cheaper in the USA.

The bit you need to try and figure out is disposing of the bike at the end .. before you get to the end ... simplest if you ride it back to where you got it from and sell it there. Selling it in another country may see large customs/import costs ... select the country with care.

Crossing the boarders is not a problem .. provided you have the paperwork to say the bike is yours.

Good luck.
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  #3  
Old 6 Dec 2015
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Thanks Warin,

There seems to be a lot oil field hands trying to cash in on their toys in Alberta, including fully kitted out adventure bikes, and are asking low prices.

I was hoping of selling the bike to another traveler who would want to take the bike North.

Ill be sure to gem up on USA bike ownership.

George
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  #4  
Old 6 Dec 2015
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Lots of British Columbia vehicles on the road south driven by foreigners, so it must be relatively easy to buy a vehicle there - BUT the problem comes when you try to sell it down south and the potential buyer wants to do it 100% legally because it is reported to be almost impossible to transfer registration unless both parties are in BC.
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  #5  
Old 11 Jan 2016
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Quote:
Originally Posted by george_frankpitt View Post
1) Is it possible for a non-resident to register as an owner of a Canadian registered motorcycle, Or will it be necessary to register it under a Canadian resident name and address?
Hello George:

You don't need to provide proof of 'right to reside' in Canada to register a vehicle here, but you do need to be able to provide an address that is within the same province that you intend to register the vehicle in. This could be the address of a friend or fellow HUBB member. The rationale behind this is that motor vehicle registrations are a provincial matter, and a province won't register a motor vehicle to a person who does not have an address in that province. You don't, however, need to register it in your friend's name, you can register it in your own name.

There may be some finer details than that depending on what province you register the bike in, but generally speaking, that's how it works.

It might be a little tricky for you to get insurance if you don't have a driving licence from a Canadian province. This is because the insurers want to be able to look up your driving history to see if you have any convictions for speeding, etc., and they can't do this if you have a UK licence. You might be able to smooth that problem over by getting a transcript of your UK licence history, and also by getting a letter from your present UK insurer attesting to your driving and claims history.

Quote:
Originally Posted by george_frankpitt View Post
2) Can the US/Canadian border easily be crossed as a foreign national on said motorcycle with sufficient insurance?
Coming north into Canada, the answer is yes, especially if the vehicle is registered in one of the Canadian provinces. I'm assuming that there would be no immigration problems associated with the entry of the person (yourself) - in other words, that you have a UK passport & therefore don't need a visa, that you have sufficient funds to support your tourism, that you don't have any problems in your background (criminal record, etc.) that would complicate your entry into Canada.

Going south into the USA should not, in theory, present a problem, but the Americans are pretty fearful people and you never know when the officer you encounter at the border might start going down some rabbit hole about your residence in Canada (the address the bike is plated to), etc.

Hope this info helps.

Michael
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  #6  
Old 14 Jan 2016
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Thank you all for your advice. It is all very useful and will help me figure out some sort of plan.

A new option has now been added to the equation.

Air Canada operates a very good deal to fly yourself and your bike to the Americas. Meaning I am in two minds whether to freight my Transalp (ready to go and know it like the back of my hand) or buy a bike out there.

Ultimately cost will be the deciding factor.

I will keep you informed of the path I choose.

TTFN,

George
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  #7  
Old 17 Jan 2016
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George:

When considering the economics of shipping your bike to Canada via Air Canada, do keep in mind that "port fees" at each of the receiving ends of the trip will probably be about $200 per instance. In other words, you likely won't encounter any fees when you drop the bike off (unless you drop it off several days prior to the scheduled flight), but you will encounter warehouse fees when you pick it up at each end.

I've shipped my Canadian bike back and forth to Europe many times. Once you know the ropes, it's generally easy enough to do. Search through the forum section entitled "Shipping the Bike" and look back through the past 5 years or so of posts in that section of HUBB that discuss air freighting between Europe and Canada. You will learn a lot, it will worth your while to do the reading.

Michael

PS: See this discussion here on the HUBB: http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hub...shipping-80713
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  #8  
Old 4 Apr 2016
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PanEuropean View Post
Hello George:

It might be a little tricky for you to get insurance if you don't have a driving licence from a Canadian province. This is because the insurers want to be able to look up your driving history to see if you have any convictions for speeding, etc., and they can't do this if you have a UK licence. You might be able to smooth that problem over by getting a transcript of your UK licence history, and also by getting a letter from your present UK insurer attesting to your driving and claims history.
This it what stumped me when I bought our Jeep here in Quebec. I managed to find an insurance broker who would insure it on the condition that I exchanged my licence as soon as possible.
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  #9  
Old 13 Apr 2016
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Canadian bike

Very easy to buy in BC at least. I have NZ licence and passport. You need an address in the Province as stated above. Insurance is compulsory. You can transfer the ownership and get the insurance at the same place. The state contracts this activity out to agencies a that are everywhere. They just want your money. Not worried how you got the address as long as it exists. Once this is done you have the bike and title in your name and you can go where you like. The insurance is valid in US but not further south. The registration insurance is valid for 12 months. I don't know how you can renew if you are not in Canada.
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