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Old 12-29-2018, 12:11 PM   #1
creech
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Shipping to vs renting in Europe

My girlfriend and I want to do a three week ride through Europe. Mostly around Germany but have no real set plan or requirements. Iíve got a r1200gsa that we could ship over, but wondered if itís cheaper or easier to just rent a similar bike over there.


Anyone ever ship their bike from SF to somewhere in Europe? Anyone have recommendations for renting?

Whatís the best option?
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Old 12-29-2018, 01:11 PM   #2
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Sounds like youíre asking other people to do your research for you.
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Old 12-29-2018, 01:39 PM   #3
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Sounds like youíre asking other people to do your research for you.


Your response makes no sense to me. Why WOULDN'T one ask for for advice from people who have already done this ?

I suppose you could just be trolling though...in that case, congratulations, you got me
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Old 12-29-2018, 03:22 PM   #4
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It would probably be cheaper to rent but not by much I'm thinking. Because you'd have to ship em and then ship em back. Then there's all the customs headaches. I think if you were there for a month or longer would be worth it. Or if you can somehow buy a bike and sell it when you leave.

It very expensive to ship, I thought about shipping my bike to Japan and tour Japan but so much $$$ and I think you need a Carnet in Japan and those are expensive. It so much easier to just rent a bike.

Last edited by HadesOmega; 12-29-2018 at 03:23 PM..
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Old 12-29-2018, 05:05 PM   #5
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If you don't have a residence in Germany you can't easily register a bike there. You can rent a 1200 GSA in most bigger cities. It may be possible to "visit" Germany with CA plates, but they would definitely stick out. Been in Germany for > 40 years, visiting well worth it.
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Old 12-29-2018, 05:21 PM   #6
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In 2012, I rented a R1150R in Venice for 10 days at just under $100 per day.

It was seem less, the dropped the bike off at my hotel and picked it up at the hotel.

We had no issues like shipping time, customs, licensing and insurance, that I have heard about from folks that shopped their bike back and forth.

I have heard wonderful seem less stories and nightmares. For me, rental was cheap and simple enough to rule the day by a very long shot.
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Old 12-29-2018, 05:37 PM   #7
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Sounds like youíre asking other people to do your research for you.
Wow.
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Old 12-29-2018, 06:56 PM   #8
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I have a buddy that goes to the EU every year for two months just to ride motorcycles with his Blue Knight buddies. Years ago he shipped a bike back to Germany and registered it for his trips. He said that because he was going every year that it made sense. This year he said I should go with him in 2019 for a month to show me the fun. I asked him if I should ship my FZ09, or rent. He said I should absolutely rent if it was a one off because it would save me a huge hassle in insurance, shipping, delays, and even having to spend the exorbitant fees on fluids. Most people don't know that you can't ship a motorcycle with any fluids in it. Just in brake fluid, oil, and petrol to get going you've spent a days rent because of the cost of oil in the EU.

He also said to never take a paid tour. Apparently it's a giant waste of money if you are capable of reading a map. His words not mine.

Another way to look at it. Even if you look at all the costs of shipping, and it's goes perfectly shipping in each direction. You don't mind having your bike away from you for a few weeks, the costs of shipping, two fluid changes, and you didn't crash or have your bike stolen is less than renting for the time you're there. You'll still have a set of tires to replace when you get back.

Last edited by shouldnthave; 12-29-2018 at 07:04 PM..
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Old 12-29-2018, 07:15 PM   #9
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My buddy stores an american bike with a California Plate in Europe. If you're planning on an extended stay or repeat visits then this makes sense. For a one-time trip, it's probably easier to rent a bike and not have to worry about getting your bike in and out of customs/shipping and such.

If that floats your boat, I could ask about the guy my friend uses. He apparently makes a business out of receiving and having ready, people's shipped bikes. I think he even rents some of them out as a service to offset people's storage fees.

I think this all happens in Hamburg, but could be mistaken.
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Old 12-29-2018, 11:14 PM   #10
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Buy while you're there.. Check out Moto Feirme - Martin aka WheatWacker on ADV the guy who invented the WeatWacker mod on the KLR.. Great guy (Sold me a lot of KLR parts when he lived in SF)


He buys bikes and stores them - You fly in and buy it and ride it for a while and I think you sell it back to him or something.. He's in Ireland

From his website:
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I have created this site to help non European citizens seek, purchase, insure and store their own bikes in Europe.

With the high cost of shipping and renting expensive for an extended trip, we here at motofeirme will help you find, store and prep your bike for your European motorcycle adventure.
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Old 12-30-2018, 07:06 AM   #11
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Iíve been wanting to go ride around England for awhile. After a lot of reading and thinking, I came to the conclusion renting would be best.....not because of cost, but just a lot less hassle than shipping.

The biggest determining factor was if something happen like a mechincal issue, a tire issue and so on.

If a mechincal......itís really not my problem to fix. The inconvenience of a mechincal is still there, but not the burden on getting it fixed.

Shipping just added another level of hassles in getting there and back.

FWIW
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Old 12-30-2018, 02:00 PM   #12
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I rented from cimt.it both times I rode in Italy. It's easy and inexpensive. No wasting time grabbing your bike from the port or being subject to customs delays.
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Old 12-30-2018, 03:11 PM   #13
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Check out these guys, and you can get an online quote:
https://www.motorcycleexpress.com

This place ships bikes from the US to Europe all the time and they arrange the import papers and insurance. Iíve shipped my bike to Europe and itís easy if done by air. Donít even consider shipping by boat for a short trip. Motorcycle Express is not the cheapest option but one of the best if time is limited. Also look at the Horizons Unlimited website for more info on shipping.

Renting is often cheaper and easier but there is nothing better than having your own bike. For three weeks you may not save much by renting.
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Old 12-31-2018, 10:59 AM   #14
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Check out Air Canada. They have crazy shipping deals for you and your bike BUT you've got to fly out of Canada. My riding buddy just did that this summer. It was far less than renting for the length of time.
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Old 12-31-2018, 05:39 PM   #15
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Check out Air Canada. They have crazy shipping deals for you and your bike BUT you've got to fly out of Canada. My riding buddy just did that this summer. It was far less than renting for the length of time.
They mentioned this at Horizon's Unlimited meeting. Air Canada has the least strict shipping regulations. I think the bike has to have most of the fuel drained out of it and the battery disconnected and taped. You pretty much fly with your bike also.
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