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Offline Tonteldoos

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Bike Touring in Europe
« on: October 09, 2007, 01:47:42 pm »
Hi  I am considering doing a Europe bike tour.
Who has done this before??

Is it possible to buy and register the bike in Europe, and afterwards ship it back to SA.
How do prices compare??

Cheaper to buy in SA and fly the bike to Europe??

Also need some pointers on musts see's, countrys, places where to stay Backpacker lodges?? duration required to do this.

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David van Breda

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Re: Bike Touring in Europe
« Reply #1 on: October 09, 2007, 02:16:19 pm »
TD,

This is still one of the to-do's in my life's!

A quick search on Google leaves you with a lot of options.  One part of my family lives in the south of Bavaria and some of them are BWM biker freaks!  I can involve them to set something up.  Let me know when we're going!! ;D
« Last Edit: October 09, 2007, 02:17:37 pm by Davy »
 

Offline CrazyPorra

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Re: Bike Touring in Europe
« Reply #2 on: October 09, 2007, 04:22:27 pm »
I am planning on buying for the trip and then seling it again when I,m finished, must say that I have a mate in London that will help source the bike and then sell it once I have left.
 

Offline Colyn

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Re: Bike Touring in Europe
« Reply #3 on: October 09, 2007, 04:35:10 pm »
On the BMW site is a link to Tour Operators that operate globally. The rentals looks reasonable. Friend of mine shipped his bike there and back and said he will never do it again. Another friend bought, toured and sold and he was happy but he said there were some issues with the insurance etc. because he was not a native.
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Offline Frank Warner

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Re: Bike Touring in Europe
« Reply #4 on: October 10, 2007, 05:06:31 am »
There are some gudies ..

If your going for a short time .. say 3 weeks then renting is probably the cheapest option .. you don't want to 'waste time' buying and selling, nor money in transporting the bike to and fro.

If your going for a long time ... then buying and selling there is good. Provided you are buying and selling in the same country there will be no paperwork (money) with customs duty, compliance to rules etc etc.

If you start in one country and end up a far way away in another country then taking your own bike becomes the method ..

Bring a bike back means registering it at home ..take a look at improtation fees, regs on compliance .. usually just too much work and money ..

--------------------- Chose youyr trip perameters and that will set he best option.

--- I've spent some months (8?) touring Europe by bike ..
Must sees .. have you not been before? Nowhere in Europe ..?! Then you want to see the measums in London, you can do those with out a bike - just the tube... Paris, .. Athens .. err the Munich one umm Technical Measum .. any bike rider would be happy to spend some days there..

Roads .. The Prinese between France and Spain (Andora) .. The Alps (swiss, austria .. the Domomites (italy ....

Err tooo much .. now at lest it is mostly euros .. changing countries and having to get new money all the time was a hastle .. umm

Backpackers/YHAs .. some of these are very good .. like an underground atomic bomb shelter .. spent an hour looking for a multistory Hotel with 600 beds .. to find it under a sports ground .. ! These can be the cheapest way .. even cheaper than camping grounds .. for one .. with two B&Bs can be cheaper .. 
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Offline Hermanator

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Re: Bike Touring in Europe
« Reply #5 on: October 10, 2007, 09:35:59 am »
There are no import duties on bikes brought from overseas. You could expect to pay VAT (on the purchase value) and an Ad Valorem duty of approximately 7%.

If you get in touch with one of the international shipping companies, your bike can be shipped in a shared container. My RT came across before the container with furniture and so had to share a container. It cost me 620 pounds for shipping. This was through European Van Lines who I would strongly advise against using.

So, you could pick up a reasonable bike for say 3900 pounds. So, your landed cost (without registration and SA Handling fees) will be R 74718.00. The bike I've used as an example is a 2003/4 BMW R1150R. You can buy the same bike here in SA for between R59 and 65K.

When the exhange rate was R10/1pound, importing made a lot of sense, but right now, I'd say that this isn't the most logical step.

I've a dealer friend in St Albans (UK) who may sell he bike you buy for the tour, on a consignment basis, which means he doesn't buy the bike off you, but sells it on your behalf. You agree a price that you want for it, whatever he sells it for over that is his.

Bear in mind, though, Ebay has killed the 2nd hand car and bike market in the UK. Many dealers don't even take trade ins anymore (and an outright sell, you can forget about). People buy and sell on Ebay and consumer confidence is high. Bear this in mind if you buy a bike, this may be your best route to market.

Because of the competitive nature of Ebay, you're vying for the same seller that 20,000 other bike sellers are after. This has caused the "blue-book" values to become nothing more than academical in relation to the true value realised for the vehicle. Oh, what wondrous power the internet has!  :3some:

Hope this info helps.

Lawrence
 

Offline Tonteldoos

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Re: Bike Touring in Europe
« Reply #6 on: October 10, 2007, 12:56:26 pm »
Thanx for all the comments and advice so far.
My initial think is/was as follows,

Going to Europe in summer - longer days & less clothing... but not in high peak season whenever that is but say between May & August.
Touring for bout 3 weeks,
Starting say in Spain - France - Germany -Austria - Italy  - RSA..

Staying in BB or backpacker or "value for money hotels" ETAP versions??

I have been to Barcelona, Paris, Rome, Vienna & Praque before and realised that I would like to see more of the various countries - not only city life.

Either I can buy a new  / second hand bike 650 or 1000 where we start, possible problem to get it kitted with panniers?? (2 up touring being a possible issue with a 650??) or ship my bike there???

At the end either sell the bike - if I have bought it there, or ship it back to RSA.

And the nice one, the cost of the trippie..

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Offline H00dlum

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Re: Bike Touring in Europe
« Reply #7 on: October 10, 2007, 02:30:16 pm »
Hey Tonteldoos

It's all about what you want to do ??  One thing is for sure, you are going to do some huge miles...  Are you just looking for on road, or are you looking to do both ??  Just on road there are a few bikes here that you could get for around £2500 - £3500 that will do everything you are looking for.. It's when you want to go off road that the price starts to climb..  Average B&B is going to cost about between R700 and R1000 a night and the food is very expensive if you are not earning £££'s. A  cheap meal will set you back about R200 ( for two people ) without drinks and that will be nothing fantastic. Our average Nando's bill here in London comes to around R300 without alcohol... If we go out and have 2 bottles of wine to a normal restaurant ( not a cheap eats like Nando's ) then we spend around R630 and up....  Fuel here is about R13 to a litre but all of this is not the killer... It's the insurance.. It's a must have here and I would also get travel insurance.. Bike insurance with a South African licence will cost anything from R7000 to R14000 depending on the bike so choose carefully... You might be entitled to a refund so only take the insurance if you are sure you can get one, but you can loose up to half the amount paid.  It is illegal to ride here without Insurance and an MOT ( RWC ), if you are caught they can have the bike crushed..    Ferry to France or where ever your journey starts cost about  R2800.. On top of all of this you will need Visa's and depending on where you go you will also need for you bike and camera's and and and... 

A few of my XJR1300 club members here go to Europe every year. They camp and spend two weeks on average in Europe and it cost them about R11 500 ( each ). Some of the other members do the whole B&B thing with 2 up and they are in for around R30 000..

If you need any info give me a shout mate

Cheers

H
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Offline CrazyPorra

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Re: Bike Touring in Europe
« Reply #8 on: October 10, 2007, 02:37:04 pm »
Hej hoodlum, can't you use the tunnel from England to France?
 

Offline LuckyStriker

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Re: Bike Touring in Europe
« Reply #9 on: October 10, 2007, 02:41:45 pm »
I think the ferry is cheaper than LeShuttle
 

Offline H00dlum

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Re: Bike Touring in Europe
« Reply #10 on: October 10, 2007, 02:44:08 pm »
Hej hoodlum, can't you use the tunnel from England to France?

Yes, it's on a train ( no vehicle drive through tunnel )  and more than not it cost more than the bloody ferry  >:( >:( >:(
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Offline CrazyPorra

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Re: Bike Touring in Europe
« Reply #11 on: October 10, 2007, 04:01:00 pm »
Oh Ok. guess I will be shipping across, but at +/- R2800 each way I might give England a miss and buy and sell my bike on the main land.
 

Offline H00dlum

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Re: Bike Touring in Europe
« Reply #12 on: October 10, 2007, 06:00:34 pm »
Oh Ok. guess I will be shipping across, but at +/- R2800 each way I might give England a miss and buy and sell my bike on the main land.


That R2800 would be a return ticket mate ..

cheers

H
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Offline Goose

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Re: Bike Touring in Europe
« Reply #13 on: October 10, 2007, 08:26:39 pm »
Hej hoodlum, can't you use the tunnel from England to France?

Yes, it's on a train ( no vehicle drive through tunnel )  and more than not it cost more than the bloody ferry  >:( >:( >:(

I disagree.... the Eurotunnel costs about GBP 22.00 (R 300) for a one-way trip... and that's for a car. Took us 20min from riding onto the train at Folkstone... to driving off the train in Calais ... what a pleasure. Will do it again any day!!
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Offline H00dlum

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Re: Bike Touring in Europe
« Reply #14 on: October 11, 2007, 01:52:45 pm »
Hi GoosePilot

You are quite right  ;)

Seems that the prices I got for the ferries are also up the wall...  Sorry mate...   :-[ :-[ :-[ :-[


Dover to Calais  is a much cheaper price of about R800 - R900 depending on the times you leave.. Other ferries are about the same sort of prices but start and go to different places ..  People tend not to use the train because it is not as flexible as the ferry..  From what I understand if you miss your train slot, you have to buy another ticket and then you still go on standby until there is a place, unless you take a flexi ticket and that will set you back about £2800 or £99 each way.. The flexi allows you to travel at any time you wish during the allotted times you have given and most of the people I have spoken to use this option. Although there normally is a charge if you miss your ferry slot it is quite small ( R50 - R100 ).  You can also buy a ticket on the day but I do recommend that you rather book it on-line.


From about May to September it is going to be busy here ( our spring / summer ), and also check and make sure that the time you want to travel is not during the school holidays as the train and the ferries get very very busy. 


cheers

H
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Offline CrazyPorra

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Re: Bike Touring in Europe
« Reply #15 on: October 11, 2007, 02:10:46 pm »
That is why I am planning my trip over the Soccer World cup time, then most of the English will be in SA leaving me to travel on the Ferry alone at any time I wish. :)
 

Offline Jaqhama

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Re: Bike Touring in Europe
« Reply #16 on: October 13, 2007, 01:18:56 pm »
I rode a BMW 1000cc Boxer for 3 months around Eastern Europe.

Dead cheap countries to visit and stay in.
Saw a million things that tourists in Western Europe don't.
Prettiest women in the world are in Czech and Poland. (Just thought you'd want to know that ;D)
And they love exotic (to them) blokes from South Africa and Australia. ;D

Summer in the UK ain't summer like we know it. Froze my balls off there for a month riding around.

Summer in Europe is much more acceptable. Warm to hot.

If you're into museums and stuff, then sure do London and Paris etc.
If you're into a million cars and bikes in the summer...do western europe.
If you're into almost empty secondary roads, friendly people, and places with names no one's ever heard of...do Eastern Europe.

It's not just a mode of transport, it's a fking adventure!
 

Offline Goose

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Re: Bike Touring in Europe
« Reply #17 on: October 13, 2007, 06:56:10 pm »
Hi GoosePilot

You are quite right  ;)

Seems that the prices I got for the ferries are also up the wall...  Sorry mate...   :-[ :-[ :-[ :-[


Dover to Calais  is a much cheaper price of about R800 - R900 depending on the times you leave.. Other ferries are about the same sort of prices but start and go to different places ..  People tend not to use the train because it is not as flexible as the ferry..  From what I understand if you miss your train slot, you have to buy another ticket and then you still go on standby until there is a place, unless you take a flexi ticket and that will set you back about £2800 or £99 each way.. The flexi allows you to travel at any time you wish during the allotted times you have given and most of the people I have spoken to use this option. Although there normally is a charge if you miss your ferry slot it is quite small ( R50 - R100 ).  You can also buy a ticket on the day but I do recommend that you rather book it on-line.


From about May to September it is going to be busy here ( our spring / summer ), and also check and make sure that the time you want to travel is not during the school holidays as the train and the ferries get very very busy. 


cheers

H


Nooit mate - don't apologise at all.....   :P times/things & prices change...   :-[
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Offline Sehun

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Re: Bike Touring in Europe
« Reply #18 on: October 16, 2007, 01:21:47 pm »
Hi Tonteldoos,

I totally agree with Jaqhma! Try to travel eastern Europe as long as it still is quiet. Especcially if you want a little more than just city life I would recommend you former eastern Germany, Poland, Czech Republic, or further South Romania, the remainders of Jugoslavia, especially Croatia and so on. The Highways and especially the Autobahn are fun in a car, but not by bike- too crowded. But the alleys and country roads in the east are just beauitful. And it will cost you half of western Europe!

Felix.