Finally got my bike out of customs!

I got my bike out of customs!
So I’m officially in Australia now! 🙂

The famous and very strict quarantine inspection was not that bad in the end. She didn’t check everything, just wanted to see some specific things of the luggage. Mainly camping gear like tent, sleeping bag, boots and camping chair.  But she did look into all of my panniers to see if there’s any soil or sand in there. She saw that I cleaned them thorougly.

The bike itself got a deeper inspection, with a flashlight and tweezers. She was looking for sand, soil and plant residues in the motor area, down at the center stand and between the motor and rear wheel. There she found some dirt! But said it’s not much and cleaned it right away with a small brush.
The only thing I needed to take off was the seat and there she also checked my first aid kit.
She said that’s the cleanest bike she had seen in a long time! 🙂

So the horror stories about the inspection where they check the exhaust pipes and air filters seem to be exaggerated.
Which doesn’t mean you don’t need to clean it very good! I guess if it looks not good enough on the first sight, they will check deeper…

I cleaned my bike for three days! but I didn’t took off the wheels or the tank (like some others did). But I degreased almost everything (breaks, chain, sprockets…), which I guess helped a lot. And I told her right away that I took off and cleaned under all the pastic covers, the air filters and so on.

The whole process of getting my bike out of customs costed me about 1600AUD (1200CHF)!

Crocodiles and Litchfield National Park

While waiting for my bike I did a one day trip to the Litchfield National Park. I need to get used to the Australian prices, it was 145$ !

As usual in Australia, more than half of the day was spent just driving in a bus…
But the crocs, waterfalls and (easy) hiking were really great!
Officially it was not allowed to go swimming, but our guide knew a spot where it was safe.

Waiting in Darwin for customs to release my bike

I’m in Darwin, Australia!

Australia seems to be very bureaucratic! I knew it is hard to get the bike through the inspection and customs. But I’m already here for a week and I don’t even had the first appointment with them!!
And nobody wants to tell you, what is needed and where to go. They want you to hire an agent, which will do the paperwork and appointments for you (for about 250$!).
I thought the main paperwork processing will be done by the company which shipped my bike and would be included in the shipping price. But the local Bollore/SDV office does not communicate with the one in Dili, they didn’t even know that a container is coming and I had to relay all information by myself!

I will keep you updated next week how it’s going…

Cleaning my bike for shipping to Darwin

I‘m in Dili for a weak now, been visiting multiple shipping agencies to get quotes for shipping my bike to Darwin in Australia.

unfortunaltely, I did not find any other bikers to share a container, so I have to pay the full prize 🙁  I may do another post with all the costs of the shipping when I arrive in Australia.

To get the bike into australia, it has to be VERY clean! Fortunately I could clean my bike at the local Ford dealership „Entreposto“! I cleaned it for about three days, took apart half of the bike. Antonio and ‚his boys‘ helped me out with tools and the pressure washer!

Thank you so much Antonio and your team!!

If everything goes like planned, the ship will leave on Friday or Saturday and arrives two days later in Darwin. There it will be a big bureaucracy to get it out of customs and inspected…


Border crossing from Indonesia to East Timor

I crossed the border from Indonesia to East Timor/Timor Leste!
My Indonesian visa expires in two days, so this was a close one with the ferry!

On the Indonesian side they are building a complete new border crossing area. It’s all still under construction, but already in use.
The entrance to the area is here, it’s not on OpenStreetMap yet.

The first building is the immigration. You have to go in there, they won’t stamp the passport in the boothes outside. It was pretty quick, as I was the only one there (Wednesday morning at 8:30).
Then I had to look for the customs. It’s the building on the right side, take the third exit of the roundabout. It looks just like a construction site than an active building, but the customs office is in there.
It took only about 10 minutes to stamp my carnet.

And off I went to the Timor Leste border!

Directly at the booth they stamped my carnet, quick and easy!
Then I needed to put my bike on the parking lot and walk back to the immigration, which is the building on the left.
I had to fill out the usual form and customs declaration, which they give right at the entrance at a small table.

The customs officer asked if Switzerland is in the European Union and I said it is 🙂
Because citizens of the European Union can get into Timor Leste without a visa and fees. Switzerland and Iceland do have the same agreement, but he only knew about the EU and I didn’t want to complicate things…

I read so much about issues to enter Timor Leste on the landborder from Indonesia and the required Visa permission in Kupang or online, that I was not sure if I really can go in without it.

But the whole process on both sides took less than one hour!