Being inside Europe, we’re generally used to being able to transition from one country to the next with ease. However, when you venture further afield, border crossings on 2-wheels can become rather more complicated.

On paper it seems so simple:

  • Enter yourself into the country via immigration.
  • Enter your bike into said country with customs.
  • On leaving, get yourself stamped out.
  • Finally, exit your bike.

From experience, the team at GlobeBusters know that it can be anything but simple, and in the March 2017 edition of RiDE Magazine they’ve been giving readers some tips to help them prepare for the potential ordeal.

  • Ignore That Queue

Don’t do the very British thing and wait in line. Instead, ride straight to the front of any line.

  • Using Fixers

A fixer can, for a fee, help to make the process much more efficient – but watch out for the strange array of characters at any border who will be attracted to the foreign rider on a big bike, and choose wisely. You’ll also need to accept that under-the-table payments are just part of the process, and taking a stand on principle will just delay things further.

  • Check Your Documents

Before you even think of setting off, check all of the documents you will need. Ensure your chassis number matches the V5C, and that the name on the V5C matches your passport. As well as originals, have plenty of colour copies on hand, for every entry and exit. You’ll also need to check if any countries on your route require a Carnet de Passage.

  • Additional Procedures

Some borders will check for food, which can see you throwing away fresh meat, dairy and fruit. Putting some smelly laundry at the top of your panniers can stop them from looking too closely. At other crossings, your bike may be fumigated to stop insects moving from one country to another. The police may also carry out a final check of your paperwork before you cross the border.

  • Re-Check Your Paperwork

Once you’ve made it through, carry on riding until you find a quiet spot where you can double-check all your documents, as the process will start all over again at the next crossing.

The experts in guided motorcycle expeditions, the GlobeBusters team have a wealth of experience leading riders across countries and continents, running trips including the Pan American Highway and London to Beijing.

As an official partner of Continental tyres, they have tried and tested our full range of adventure tyres – with options to suit all terrain types!

You can view the full range here.