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I don't think you will have a problem with your licence for short term visits, less than 6 months, to the UK or Europe. Registering and insuring a UK bike might be more tricky as you won't be considered a resident. Try contacting someone like Carole Nash insurance ( www.carolenash.com) They're very bike friendly and should be able to tell you one way or the other.
 

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I'd consider buying here and shipping it, and then keeping it there. Air shipping is remarkably inexpensive considering what it entails. I'm looking at shipping to Germany next year, and from what I understand, Lufthansa is very understanding to the point of arranging you to be on the smae plane as you bike as a passenger.



You'll have to look at how closely imports are regulated, and what they consider an import of a bike. I'm willing to bet that if you're only there for 2 months of a year, you could easily slip under the radar regardless of what the laws are.



On the other hand, this could be a neat opportunity to buy a bike you can't get in the US.



--The Fox
 

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i am an american who lives and bikes in europe - so here goes...

because of the UN convention of 1949, your american drivers license is valid in the most of the current european states for up to six months from your date of entry. in eastern europe (where i am) this six month rule is generally ignored by the police, because the average police officer doesn't want to bother with the paperwork. anywho...basically, all of our allies and conquered territories from world war two agreed to honor each other's driving licenses from 1949 on. however, if there is any question as to the validity of your license in the UK (i do not live in the UK and can't therefore tell you definitively what the current status of their laws are), you can get an international driving permit with around 15 dollars and very little hassle from AAA. the international driving permit (IDP) will allow you to drive for a period of one year from issue date in just about any civilized country on earth, and some that aren't as well. here is a link to their online application form for the IDP. you'll need to send in a passport photo, a copy of your license front and back, and 15 dollars to the address indicated on the form.

here is also a warning about falsified IDP's from the US government...

INTERNATIONAL DRIVING PERMITS ISSUED BY UNAUTHORIZED PERSONS:

The Department of State is aware that IDPs are being sold over the Internet and in person by persons not authorized by the Department of State pursuant to the requirements of the U.N. Convention of 1949. Moreover, many of these IDPs are being sold for large sums of money, far greater than the sum charged by entities authorized by the Department of State. Consumers experiencing problems should report problems to their local office of the U.S. Postal Inspector, Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the Better Business Bureau, or their state or local Attorney General’s Office.


here is what the government has to say about auto insurance...

Auto Insurance

Car rental agencies overseas usually provide auto insurance, but in some countries, the required coverage is minimal. When renting a car overseas, consider purchasing insurance coverage that is at least equivalent to that which you carry at home. In general, your U.S. auto insurance does not cover you abroad. However, your policy may apply when you drive to countries neighboring the United States. Check with your insurer to see if your policy covers you in Canada, Mexico, or countries south of Mexico. Even if your policy is valid in one of these countries, it may not meet that country’s minimum requirements. For instance, in most of Canada, you must carry at least $200,000 in liability insurance, and Mexico requires that, if vehicles do not carry theft, third party liability, and comprehensive insurance, the owner must post a bond that could be as high as 50% of the value of the vehicle. If you are under-insured for a country, auto insurance can usually be purchased on either side of the border.


i hope that helps somewhat. cheers :)
 

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Motorcycle Services can help call 800-245-8726



I sell their coverage or you can call direct.
 

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"On the other hand, this could be a neat opportunity to buy a bike you can't get in the US."

fox is right on the money with that. yamaha and suzuki make some nakeds for the european market that you won't find in the states :(
 

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If you buy a bike in the US and ship it to the UK make sure that the bike is in totally stock form when it arrives in the UK. UK Customs and Excise is notoriously picky on things like after market pipes, mirrors, turn signals and headlights (they need to point the opposite way).



Also the bike (depending on year) should at least comply to Euro 3 pollution standards.



The above points will save you a BUNCH of hassle and expense, trust me.
 

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I lived in the Uk from 2000-2002 and rode a mc there the entire time. As long as the law hasn't changed your US license is good for up to 12 consecutive months as a resident. Since you plan to only be there a short period of time each year it should be no problem (BTW, obtaining a UK MC license is a long and somewhat expensive ordeal but it made me a better rider).



I think the problem you might have is if you buy a bike over there and don't keep it insured year-round. You have to buy a tax disk every year and you have to maintain insurance for that. If you let the tax disk expire I'm pretty sure there is a penalty.



However, I knew some other Americans who brought their own vehicle (an SUV) over from the states and it took a while and some expense to get it to pass UK spec.



Hope this helps.



Chris
 
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