Originally Posted by Eli Pasquali
Firstly I'd like to thank "doc" from a different forum for introducing me to this site. Great stuff on here! I'm currently in Santiago Chile with a newly purchased Euromot GXT200, Love the bike for the price. I'm planning on heading over to Argentina and checking out Aconcagua before heading down route 40 to Patagonia. I've hit a slight snag and had my Credit Card lost (entirely my fault, left it at a gas station in santiago, no extra charges on it, but cancelled it as soon as I discovered it was lost). I'll have a friend bring a new one down in February for me. Until then I'm stuck with Debit and Cash. A couple questions for you more experienced bike travelers in the area:
1) When Heading into Argentina from Chile, is it better to arrive at the boarder with Argentinian Pesos, Chilean or US dollars, Ideally Id like to use chillean Pesos for the reciprocity fee but I can hit up a bank for other currencies if needed.
2) With the 8L jerry can strapped to the back of the bike I figure about a 400km range, with A LOT of padding. Route 40, is easy to find gas on the trip down?
3) I've had nothing but good experiences with the police in Chile, in Argentina from what I've read it's "different", is it advisable to carry some cash on you?
4) As cool as GPS is, I've decided not to go that route, can someone recommend a place in Santiago that sells road maps, my Spanish is unfortunately non-existent, and I've had trouble finding a good road map for Argentina and Chile.
Any Help would be greatly appreciated, if you happen to be in the Santiago area, I think I'm around for another week and am always up for a coffee or a pint!
1. US dollars will do the trick everywhere. You'll get better exchange rate in Argentina compared to CH$.
2. 400 km is a pretty good range. But don´t forget the number one rule for riding (or driving) in Patagonia: fill your tank at EVERY gas station you find. Even if you just filled 50 km ago. You never know when you are going to find another station (and in Argentina, if it's going to have gas available).
3. Never offer to bribe a police officer in Chile. You will end up in jail. In other countries, do not take the initiative but be willing to play their game. Carry just a little cash in one of your pockets and bargain saying it's all you have.
4. You can find good road maps at any COPEC service station in Chile. Or just download from the internet and print. Google for images of "Mapa Turistel"