South I say... In Ecuador

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by battdoc, Sep 15, 2018.

  1. battdoc

    battdoc Old Enough

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    I did get the bike back on Wednesday, but it took all day to get SOAT yesterday. Really happy to be on the move again.
  2. battdoc

    battdoc Old Enough

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    The Gap Problem -ACT II (Colombian Side)

    Sharing a container to ship your vehicle


    Total cost to free the bike and SOAT in Colombia - $155.

    This brings my share of the container to $375.

    Panama side prepayment - $260.

    Colombian Port and logistics - $115

    SOAT -$39.72

    Total - $414.72

    Flight - $113.

    Personal Injury Coverage to enter the Port - $22.

    Extra hotel stay in Colombia - $52.

    Extra stay meals and taxi etc -$70.

    Grand total - $620.72 (all inclusive)

    Now the frustrating part (mostly Colombian side)

    We packed the container on Tuesday, rec’d and e-mail from logistics company on Saturday that the container was at the harbor. We took a flight to Cartagena on Sunday. Then we rec’d an e-mail from our logistics contact in Cartagena that container will be arriving on Tuesday morning and we can start the process then. So Tuesday came, all four of us went to the port, rec’d our badges and went hunting. None of this is instructed in succession. So you have to figure it out. Port Authority requires you to have an accidental coverage. Some of us have other policies, but we were told to get a local coverage for ease of paperwork.

    No problem, ioverlander showed Banco de Bogota by the clock tower, took a taxi there and two hours later we had our protection plans. Now it is lunch time (from 11:30-2:00), yes 2-½ hours. Remember every desk jockey works very hard here, they need their siestas.

    Then we went back to the port to fetch bill of lading and an invoice, that has to be paid at banco de Occidente only. That bank is not at the port, so another taxi ride. Pay the bill, bring the receipt back to logistics company and get a receipt. Bring all the receipts and bill of lading to the customer support at the port to get an appointment to open the container. Rafael at the customer support is actually a very nice and helpful young man. By the time we got sorted out, it was 5:00 pm. But we walked away with an appointment at 9:00 am on Wednesday.

    All of us decided to stay at the same hotel (Hotel Casa Isla de Manga) walking distance to the port and DIAN office. We were in the lobby at 9:00 am. Rafael told us to wait while he went to find an inspector. Around 10:00 am we were walked to the container. Everyone got excited to see the container. Bolt cutter came out and the seal went flying with a sharp sound. I picked it up as a memento.

    Doors swing open and a beautiful sight of my horse all in one piece still held on the same spot with straps. Containers were on the ground, so off- loading was quick. Everyone checked out their rigs and there were high fives and knuckle bumps among the group.

    Well don’t get too excited the inspector says, you can’t leave till I see your TVIP. We park our bike and vehicles in a parking area and left for DIAN. It took two hour to get the TVIP. Back to Rafael, wait again to find the inspector. An hour later, we were walked to a checkpoint to get a pin code for the scales. Are we free to go, NO says the inspector and disappears with our paperwork for some sort of entry somewhere.

    It is getting dark and cloudy around 6:00 pm, he comes back and tells us to go through the scales and we are free. Juan is first in line at the scale, the reader doesn’t work. Worker is poking at the buttons as hard as he could. Finally it worked and we went through. We parked at the hotel, cleaned up and went out for celebratory dinner.

    Thursday morning came, Jaun and Ricardo wanted to clean their rigs, Lukasz and I decided to go get SOAT so we can leave. We had checked ioverlander the night before and went to the place everyone suggested. We were there 9:00am, a lady behind the counter told us, SOAT system is down. The only place we get it is at the banco de Bogota. We taxied to banco de Bogota and got in line. The receptionist there probably has the hardest job in the building. She handles receptionist duties as well as issues SOAT policies. We met another overlander who told us he has been sitting there for an hour.

    So Lukasz and I share stories with him. Finally he got called up and his policy was printed in five minutes. Lukasz was up next, he is done. My turn, getting excited, almost ...NO she says. I ran out of allotted time from Bogota. I’ll have to request more time, coma back at 2:00pm. WTF, what do you mean, it is only 10:30, how can you run out of time. Then another employee Antonio who spoke some English appears and explained that their headquarters only allows so many policies at a time. He took my whatsapp number and told me to come back at 2:00.

    I told Lukasz that he can leave because he wanted to buy tires for his KLR. I went to walk around and some lunch. While I was eating lunch, Juan sent me a message that he went to another SOAT agent got a policy in five minutes. I quickly finished my lunch and jumped in a taxi, went to that place just to here the receptionist say no more SOAT today, come back tomorrow. Frustrated, hot, sweaty, I walked back two KM to banco de Bogota to find another flock of overlanders that we have bumping into for few days.

    We all waited for the doors to open and rush inside, just to sit down. Antonio promised me that I’ll be first in line after lunch. So I patiently waited till 2:30 to be called up and had my SOAT in my hands. While I was waiting Lukasz sent me message that someone told him, on last Friday of the month no motorcycles on the road in Cartagena. I thought travelers will be excused, but who knows. I rushed to hotel and packed my bike quickly and wanted to get away from Cartagena, I aimed north and got to Barranquilla. It felt really good to ride again.
  3. lifetravelled

    lifetravelled Been here awhile

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    Melbourne

    Good job mate, great too see you back on the road.

    Stay safe
    battdoc likes this.
  4. battdoc

    battdoc Old Enough

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    Okay, let us sort out the whole Colombian side of the mess again. Having gone through the process, this is my recommendation to avoid some of the frustration;
    1. First of all use Ever Logistics, I think they did an admirable job, securing our bikes and we were part of the loading process. I have heard so many horrible stories of bikes getting damaged in transit from other companies.
    2. Once you have a confirmation of your container reaching the port, get an accidental coverage from banco de Bogota by the clock tower in old town. Get coverage according to the day your process starts. My policy was for five days ($22.00)
    3. Then go to your logistics company and get an invoice and pay it. After that stop by DIAN to get a TVIP form.
    4. Go back to logistics company and get a receipt.
    5.Then find Rafael at the customer support desk and schedule your appointment to open the container. All shipping parties are required to be present at the same time, otherwise container stays sealed. Also no shorts and sandals. Need to wear pants and shoes, port will provide hard hats and a safety vest.
    6. Un-load, inspect and secure your stuff.
    7. Go to DIAN office. You will need copies of the following;
    a) Passport photo page and Colombian visa stamp page
    b) Driver's license
    c) Vehicle title
    d) Vehicle registration
    e) Copy of bill of lading
    f) Copy of Dian form filled out
    7. Once you receive your TVIP, go back to Rafael and ride to your hotel. Some people will tell you that your need SOAT to leave the port, not true.
    8. Leave your hotel at 7:00 to buy SOAT, check iOverlander for places to buy it.

    In the end I was able to save some money, I hope this helps you to keep your stress level low.

    Cheers!
    SavannahCapt and Trekking36 like this.
  5. battdoc

    battdoc Old Enough

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    Container of goodies. Feel free to ask any questions about shipping. I'll do my best to answer them.
    P1040147.JPG P1040151.JPG P1040154.JPG P1040156.JPG
  6. battdoc

    battdoc Old Enough

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    For now the plan is to air cargo the bike and fly back. I'll share all details as my trip progresses. BTW I'm in central valley CA not Compton.
    Cheers!
    lifetravelled likes this.
  7. battdoc

    battdoc Old Enough

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    Forgive for being confused, are you asking about the fees if someone does not pick up their vehicle from the port in allotted time?
  8. battdoc

    battdoc Old Enough

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    This morning I got up and went for a little walk, I was soaked in 5 minutes at 5:30 am. Caribbean coast is very hot and humid. At first I was planing to go to the northern tip, but decided to head south and find mountains. In Monteria for the night and will be in Medellin tomorrow. Staying in Hostel Meridiano (ioverlander recommended) for $12.29 a night. Okay place, with bike inside the lobby.

    Later
  9. slackline

    slackline Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2009
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    109
    Location:
    Inland PNW
    Enjoying your RR so far. Very informative, and really appreciate the step by step info on the gap! Keep it up!
    battdoc likes this.
  10. holckster

    holckster dougholck Supporter

    Joined:
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    Your making great progress.
    Your report is epic.

    Did DAIN really want the registration ?
    Wonder why ?
    NO other SA country has asked us for it, just "Original" Title ?
    battdoc likes this.
  11. Rubinski

    Rubinski Been here awhile

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    Phoenix AZ
    Thank you very much Battoc. I really appreciate all the valuable information. The cost doesn't seem to bad compared to the Stalhratte of $1200 for this season. They were not sure what it would cost next season 2019. Your trip is amazing and gives me lots of time to begin my planning! I lived in Oakland and left 5 years ago, so when I saw or misread that you were from Compton it brought back memories. Any way, keep posting for us that want to make this trip soon. Be safe my friend!
    battdoc likes this.
  12. battdoc

    battdoc Old Enough

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    Hi Doug - From my experience, it just depends on who you ask and deal with. Everyone has their own rules and criteria. Thanks for following along.
  13. battdoc

    battdoc Old Enough

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    Yesterday was a great day of riding, made some distance and more importantly in cooler temperatures. Left Monteria before 8:00 to beat the heat, it ended up being a long day, but felt very nice. Ruta 25 is nice especially when it follows the Cauca river. There were a few construction and repair stops along the way. After Yarumal the roads started climbing up, scenery got better and better. Right hand relaxed, neck swiveled and eye gorged on beautiful mountains. It felt very refreshing to see the mountains again since Mexico. I had booked a room via Airbnb away from Medellin. Nice place and the owner Cesar was a great host.
    I left his place and went to Medellin centro this morning. I did not get a good vibe in Medellin and left after a bit of walking. Did not see anything of historical value. Now in Guatape to climb the monolith tomorrow. Can't post any pics today, Wifi is really weak. Staying at Rock a Town Hostel, clean private room for $12. Juan at the reception speaks some English.
    95Monster likes this.
  14. yokesman

    yokesman Long timer

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    just a comment regarding business practices from one country to another. thanks for the detailed gap jump info, enjoying the report greatly.
    battdoc likes this.
  15. 'Bob'

    'Bob' Been here awhile

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    Thank you battdoc! Your photos and narrative make this an exceptionally human travelogue. Always great to read a RR from an Inmate who is comfortable in his own skin. Thank you for sharing your experiences, thoughts, and feelings.
    "Dime con quién andas, y te diré quién Peres... " Tell me who you walk with, and I’ll tell you who you are.
    Ride safe!
    'Bob'
  16. anotherbmw

    anotherbmw Adventurer

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    Austin, TX
    Great ride report! A couple more years for me and the kids will be out of school, hopefully be then I'll be doing something similar.
  17. ScotsFire

    ScotsFire And then a stranger rode into town...

    Joined:
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    Here and there... but more there than here
    I also thank you for the work you are putting into the report. It is helping me with planning for my trip next year. Already been a couple reroutes based upon your trip.

    And I love your wandering around/people watching pics.
  18. battdoc

    battdoc Old Enough

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    Certainly, there are differences. I think politics plays a big part in these countries, some places positively and other not so.
  19. Ohio_Danimal

    Ohio_Danimal If I die trying, at least I tried

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    thanks battdoc for keeping my mind in the game. Very much appreciated. Stay safe and best wishes
  20. battdoc

    battdoc Old Enough

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    You are welcome brother. Ride safe!