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SE Asia Includes Myanmar, Thailand, Malaysia, Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam, plus Indonesia
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Old 22 Sep 2015
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Vietnam: 2 week trip this november

We're planning a 2 week trip this november. We're planning to buy one motorcycle (we drive two up), travel lightweight and have fun! In the end we'll sell the bike again.

From october 2015 the international drivers licence is being allowed to use over there. So that great news!

We arrive and leave in Ho Chi Minh City. I have found some info that it's easy to buy and sell over there. Any tips where to look especcialy?

We'd like a 100-150cc local(!) bike. We'll take some throw over soft panniers I think. Any tips which bike is suitable?

We've used a 150cc chinese Lifan Venuw in Cameroun. Great bike and I'd like a bike comparable to that.
In Laos we've rented a Honda Wave for a few days. I don't prefer a scooter type bike like that. Bit to small for me...
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Old 22 Oct 2015
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In 2013 I did a similar trip in Vietnam with a friend, except we started in Hanoi and drove to Ho Chi Minh and sold it there.

Watch out to buy a REAL Honda bike and not a fake Chinese one.
The fake Honda Win's are breaking down all the time and worth nothing when selling.
We bought Honda Future Neo 125 cc bikes.
Also a bit like a scooter model, but it was good, a bit bigger then the Wave and none of them broke down during the journey. Very easy on the fuel as well, but the tanks are not very big.

The license plates starting with "29-????" are from Hanoi and worth less in Ho Chi Minh. Plates starting with "52-????" are original from Ho Chi Minh and worth more in Ho Chi Minh when selling.

Are you sure you want to drive with 2 persons on 1 bike?
I had an Austrian tourist at the back of my bike (including 2 big bags) from Hue to Hoi An, which is only around 150 km and I was broken...

It took us a few days to sell the bikes, we put a lot of adverts in the hostels and drove by some shops/dealers etc.
So keep a few days spare for the selling.
The same was true for buying the bike, it took us a few days to find two good ones.

Actually I think it would be easier to hire the bikes and maybe even cheaper too for only two weeks.

Till where are you planning to drive?
Since you depart and end in the same city, you can't go too far up north.
Effectively you can drive maximum one week, so that will probably be till Hoi An? Try to do the Hai Van pass as well. It's near and worth a visit for sure.

BTW: the traffic in Ho Chi Minh is filled with a crazy amount of bikes, but I liked it :-)
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Old 22 Oct 2015
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great reply, thanx!

We gave it a thought and changed the plans to rent a bike. Indeed easier. Yes, we drive two-up, my wife doesn't drive.

I've seen a nice honda 150cc online to rent. Way to expensive, but I assume it's easy to find a nice bike when we're on the ground.

Thanx for the tips where to go. We don't know a route yet. Maybe Cambodya as well...

We did Delhi by bicycle, fun as well .
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Old 14 Nov 2015
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My wife and I are doing a 10 week trip starting in HCMC on January 4th.

We're going to buy 2 small bikes and want to sort the correct paperwork as we will be crossing in to Cambodia, Loas & Thailand.

Does anyone have information on how/where to get it all done?

Vietnam, Cambodia & Thailand 2016
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Old 24 Nov 2015
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I think it's better to open your own thread.

1. it's better buying bikes in Hanoi. You'll find more travelworthy bikes there. In HCM it was really difficult to find anything better then a Honda Win. I found a Suzuki EN150 for $25/day and a Sym Wolf 125 for $15/day (saigonscooterrental.com). But for buying HCMC wasn't a good place, it's all small scooters there!
2. The only easy bike to buy is a Honda win 100cc (copy) and is around $250. But i think it's a bad model for travelling. I've spoken to a few travelers who spend some days at mechanics... and spend money too! It also feels very flimsy.
3. You better get a Honda YBR 125 or Suzuki EN150. These or similar models will cost at least $1500 second hand! Or a Sym Wolf 125cc.
4. For Cambodia you only need the blue card (with any name on it, been there done that), Laos works apperently the same. For Thailand you'll need your name on the papers... I don't think you can arrange that in Vietnam without living there.

Don't forget that de max speed in Vietname is 60kmh (sometimes 80), but cambodia/laos/thailand the speed limit is higher and the traffic moves faster. So you better get a faster bike.
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