Does anyone have any experiences to share about shipping their motorcycle via plane across the Atlantic to Europe or across the US to California. What were the costs? Did the shipper provide a good or bad experience?
Before you send a bike anywhere or receive it from anywhere you need to know the legal requirements between countries. A bike built outside of the US has to be certified properly or you will never be able to use it in the USA And vice versa. Some countries are so protectionist they will never ever let you use an imported bike under any circumstances.
Airfreight costs about four times as much as surface transport, seeing as Direct Air Service will ship a bike from LAX to JFK via truck for $500.00. You can count on about $4.45 dollars per kilo, which works out to around $2,200.00 for a five hundred lb. motorcycle from JFK to LHR. Domestic rates are slightly lower. The bike has to be drained from all fuel & oil, the battery removed, and nailed into a UN spec crate (Crates run around $200.00). Shipping via boat will run you around $125.00 per weight or measure (volume or weight, whichever is greater) and costs about $1,000.00 after you factor in the terminal handling fees, cartage, Customs clearance, etc. Most bikes sold in the US are not legal in Europe, unless you get a "temporary import bond" that runs about $1,000.00 so you can ride it around Urrip for a while, and then quickly export it back to the US of A. before Customs over there destroys it in a big crusher. Just rent a bike and ferget about all the BS, (I do this for a living btw).
Mine is an 02, no snazzy hollow self destructing rear axle for me. Though my next BMW will probably have a chain, sitting here looking at my wallpaper. The yellow and black GS800... It should make a nice friend for my K.
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