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Trip Paperwork Covers all documentation, carnets, customs and country requirements, how to deal with insurance etc.
Photo by Josephine Flohr, Elephant at Camp, Namibia

I haven't been everywhere...
but it's on my list!


Photo by Josephine Flohr,
Elephant at Camp, Namibia



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Old 30 Aug 2011
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How to import a non-EU bike into the UK - A guide...

How to import a non-EU motorbike into the UK.


I've just been through the process of importing my bike into the UK and thought it might be useful to highlight the process here.


Go to this website Registering an imported vehicle : Directgov - Motoring Scroll down to the section “Previously used vehicle” and click on “Order and import pack” You will then want to click the box that says “Import Pack - Application to register an imported vehicle for use in Great Britain.”
You should then get, through the post a V55/5 form and a leaflet telling you what to do. Obviously it's all explained there but I'll summarise.




You will need to send all of the following to your local DVLA.


  1. The V55/5 form.
  2. A cheque to cover the registration fee (£55) and fee for tax disc (currently £74). You can write one cheque to cover both.
  3. A copy of a current insurance policy. It can be difficult to get insurance cover as most companies require a UK registration number which, of course, you don't yet have. I went through Motorbike & Motorcycle Insurance | Scooter Insurance & Moped Insurance - Bikesure. They got me insurance for my bike with Equity Red star. You use the VIN number on your bike.
  4. A current MOT certificate. To get this you have to take your bike to a MOT test centre but you're not legally allowed to ride on the road until you have a new registration number. Catch-22.
  5. Enclose all and any documents/certificates you have showing original registration of the bike in the country you bought it. I had these so I don't know how serious it is if you no longer have these documents.
  6. Original documents confirming your name and address (ie passport. Driving license, bank statements, it tells you in the leaflet what you need)
  7. Evidence of type approval. This is a certificate showing that the bike passes EU road standards. I didn't have this (and I'm sure you won't either) so I had to get what's called a MSVA (Motorbike Single Vehicle Approval). Basically it's like an MOT test. I had to get in touch with the DVLA and find my nearest VOSA office (Vehicle and Operator Services Agency). I then booked the bike in for a half hour test. They measure distances between things, whether the lights work, emissions test etc. Costs about £70 I think. There is a link to it on the page I mentioned earlier. The link will take you here What is the Single Vehicle Approval scheme? : Directgov - Motoring If you scroll down you will find a section called “Motorcycle Single Vehicle Approval Scheme (MSVA)”
  8. Finally you need to enclose the appropriate HM Revenue and Customs form. Mine was called a C and E 389 form. This proves that I had paid 20% VAT and 6% sales tax on the current value of the bike when importing it.(Note it's the current value, I had to go to my local bike shop and get them to print a short letter saying what they valued the bike at, scan it and email to DLVA. Again I had to get my bike to the bike shop without riding it on the road!) Hopefully, for you, this will be sorted out quickly by your importing agent. Mine wasn't and was a real hassle but eventually I got it done.






In all this took me over 2 months to complete. I took everything to my local DVLA office. A week later I got a registration number and road tax certificate.


The frustrating thing is you CAN'T ride your bike while this is going on. Except, that is, when you are taking it to VOSA for the MSVA. Then (as long as you have insurance) you're allowed on the road.


All of this IS explained in the information you get but I thought it might be useful to know this in advance. I wasn't aware that I'd have to pay 20% VAT, for example, not that it would have have made any difference to what I did and how I did it
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Old 30 Aug 2011
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Thanks George
This is a really interesting and informative posting. From i t I deduce it would be possible to register and Indian Home market bike in the UK.
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