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Old 01-04-2013, 08:18 PM   #1
katalyst OP
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Bike for Panama to the US

Hi all,

I'm in the planning stages of a possible trip from Panama to San Fran.

I'm looking at the legalities/practicalities of buying a bike in Panama, with the idea of then selling it in the US/San Francisco. It looks as though I won't be able to buy a Panama-registered bike in Panama then have it registered in my name, because I'm not a resident/citizen. The alternative seems to be to buy a US-registered bike in Panama, which would allow me to register it in my name in the US then sell it, but I wouldn't be able to take it over borders because it would be in the original owner's name at that point.

Buying a bike without being able to sell it (unless I could find something really cheap) is a bit of a deal-breaker, so if anyone has any advice or experience, it would be greatly appreciated - thanks!
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Old 01-05-2013, 08:23 AM   #2
Airhead Wrangler
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If you're planning on bringing it back to the US and riding it there indefinitely, it'll have to be a US model bike with all the EPA stamps, etc on it. Titling and plating a foreign market bike in the US is a nightmare. You'd be best off buying a US titled bike off of a traveller in Panama at the end of their trip.
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Old 01-05-2013, 09:47 AM   #3
TeeVee
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not to mention import nightmares, title issues etc etc...
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Old 01-06-2013, 06:39 AM   #4
kantuckid
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In the unlikely event that its a vintage bike, many states would allow title application using a notarized bill of sale.
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Old 01-06-2013, 06:09 PM   #5
katalyst OP
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Thanks for the replies.

If I were able to find a US-registered bike, would title documents (in the seller's name) plus a notarized bill of sale enough to pass over borders with the bike, or would I actually need it to be in my name?
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