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Discussion in 'Asia Pacific' started by marakesh express, Feb 1, 2008.
Does anyone know if you can get into China on a bike?
I don't know, but I recall a couple of ride reports. If my memory serves, people found it simpler to just buy a bike in China and then sell it after the trip. There seemed to be a lot of roadblocks to bringing a vehicle in.
Have you done any searches?
I am actually in China, I can ask around if you specific questions. I know that if you plan on riding on the road at all then you are going to have to get a Chinese drivers liscence. They do not recognize our international licenses.
Check out Horizons Unlimited forums... all KINDS of world-travelers there, most on motos.
I'm moving you up
Thanks for your help guys.
I`ll be investigating all avenue`s but it`s not looking too good. Not going until June/July 09 so there is plenty of time for the friendly Chinese bureaucrats to open up the country......yeah, right
What does one need to get a Chinese DL? Can this be done before getting into China?
I am in the initial stages of my planning but am thinking of buying a bike in China and would like to get this done before i land. I have some American friends working as teachers in Hong Kong that i am hoping will help me do this. I have not contacted them yet.
I am applying for my visa this week.
I can ask my dad for this by the time if nobody respond to this.
( I am originally from HK, my dad is a driver and he travels back to China. Even for HK citizens, it was a PAIN to get a Chinese Driver's license)
I tought that the Chinese government recognize the International DL. My dad used to drive in China with a International DL (that was a long time ago may be he was driving illegally back there. :S)
Will try to get back to you ASAP
I would appreciate it. I checked my IDL when I got home and Hong Kong is listed but not China. I wonder if this is something left over from the British rule.
+1 HU is the place for this. The short answer is NO, you can't ride your own bike into China (well, it's been done but this is the short answer remember). You can do tons of red tape and finally pay a guide (guard) tons and tons of money to escort you around, but I'd rather just ride somewhere else.
If you really want to spend the money on a guide, there are plenty of people who have done that. check out www.tuktotheroad.com These kooky chicks drove a Thai tuktuk from Bangkok to Brighton right through China. Paid thousands and thousands of dollars for the privilage though.
Where in China are you? I have a son living in Beijing. He is looking for a sidecar type bike. He says he will be riding around China when not working.
P.S. He was born in Dallas.
You can probably find them cheaper, but these are places to start
Here's what I did when I got mine in Shanghai.
1. Get your U.S. license officially translated. Be sure you have your motorcycle endorsement before you get here.
2. Take the sealed envelope with your translation, your original drivers license, passport with resident visa and work permit to the DMV. Be sure you have someone to help translate and to fill out the application in Chinese including your Chinese name (have someone give you one before you go). While you are there, you will have pictures taken and a test for hearing and colorblindess. Each station will stamp your application as you complete the task. Turn in the application when completed. They will give you a study guide in english and a date for the test. Mine was 2 weeks out.
Make sure that if you plan on driving a sidecar bike while here you get the "D" license. When I did mine, the official translation of my license stated only 2-wheel moto. My guy here changed it to 3 wheel as we were walking to have my picture taken
3. Return to DMV at your appointed date and time and take the test in english. 100 questions identical to those in your study guide. You must make at least a 90%.
If you pass then you take your license home with you that day, if not then plan on trying again in a couple weeks. The license you get is good for 6 years.
Hope this helps.
I'm just starting to plan my next ride. This thread helped.
The plan is still in the fuzzy fuzzy stages.
althought I haven't been back to my native country for 14 years, I would recommend you to stay far far far away from cities. Avoid accidents and other potential issues. It's so crowded, man powered bikes runs faster -.-
Is it true that large (>700cc) bikes aren't allowed the cities?
Yeah... But it's quite a bit more strict than that. ALL motorcycles are banned from most big cities (big as in 1million + people).
Quick Facts about China's moto situation:
1. 95% of Chinese motos are 125cc bikes. Until maybe 2-3 years ago, there weren't any 200cc or 250cc Chinese bikes made. Now they are available and can be plated freely (just get a local Chinese dude, maybe even the dealer, to put it in their name). As a tourist, you won't have the residency card needed to plate the bike yourself.
2. All imported motorcycles are in fact illegal smuggled goods.* That means any bike over 250cc, as there are only 2 bikes (to my knowledge) that are Chinese made and over 250cc. The new Jialing JH600 and the CJ750 sidecar bike. Yes, you can see japanese race bikes, etc, around and see plates on them, and if you get caught riding one they can confiscate it. Technically, no matter if you have the right plates or not (plates for imported bikes must be done by a shady police station through relationships) they can still confiscate your ride. I'm not afraid of that... its up to you if you are or not.
*except for some new harleys sold in the beijing shop. How many ADVers are gonna shell out 2x the cost of a USA harley to buy it here? (import tax is insane)
My advice: Come here, buy an inexpensive but relatively reliable new Chinese made dual sport, 150cc to 200cc, get it plated with the help of your new Chinese friends, don't worry about getting a license cause it's darn near impossible anyway (plus out in the countryside none of the peasants have drivers licenses or even plates on their motos), ride and have a blast, don't worry about guides and police escorts telling you where to go, just ride...sell your bike when its time to go home... You'll get a decent price for your moto when you leave and you will save yourself tons of cash than if you tried to get your own bike in and out of China.
Oh, and my biggest advice: Don't ride in China like you do back home. That will only get you into an accident right quick and into trouble with the other driver and with the police when they show up. Chinese drive much slower and much more erratic than they do in the US. Give everyone on the road a wide bearth. Most trucks have no working brake lights or signals. Some drivers drive at night with no lights on (or at best just side marker running lights on). Everyone on the road will cut you off. It's useless to get mad at them - they got no clue that they did anything wrong! The level of education in China is much lower than what you are used to and everyone is very naive to the dangers on the road. No offense to the Chinese but that's just true.
What Ugh wrote in post #14 is spot on in my experience, but then again, I don't think tourists can get the Chinese drivers license without having a residency permit. Residency permits are held by "Foreign Experts" - those with a working permit here. I don't think getting a Chinese driver's license is important... driving extremely defensively in China is the most important.
Dhfox, thanks for info, I'll translate this information for russian forum (many bikers asked somethig like this).
Thanks, dhfox. Really well written.
I'm going to find out how to take my bike across China. I don't want to just ride China- I want it to be part of my transcontimental journey.
And I want to ride to Tibet.