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Old 03-29-2013, 12:50 PM   #1
rickypanecatyl OP
SE Asia adventure tours
Joined: Jan 2008
Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Oddometer: 1,170
Any expat take a Thai bike into Malaysia?

Was curious what documents you need etc and if they give you a time limited on the bike.

Reason for the question is I am an American, living in Malaysia and was thinking of trading in my old KLX250 for a Honda CRF250. They are just over 1/2 the price in Thailand and so I was wondering what would happen if I bought a bike in Thailand and then rode it into Malaysia?

I remember years ago riding thru central America without a carne and they stamped the bikes in the passport giving the bikes the same amount of time they gave the people.
But Malaysia seems really slack to me with motorcycles and I'm wondering if I could just ride thru and show them my passport as I do when on my Malaysian bike...

For 1/2 price that gets you thinking...
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Old 03-29-2013, 09:45 PM   #2
Farang Paul
A Late Convert
Joined: Mar 2013
Location: Krabi, Thailand
Oddometer: 17
Not Easy


You need a green book for the bike + translation (obtainable from your local vehicle licencing office). Without these there is no legal way to take a bike out.

If the green book is not in your name (it won't be, since you don't have residence in Thailand) then you need written permission from the stated owner + translation. You then are allowed 30 days temporary export

You then have to purchase 30 days temporary insurance in Malaysia + a number plate translation once you are over the border.

Since you are not the only one who recognises the price disparity (and the ones that go the other way where some vehicles are cheaper in Malaysia) don't think that the authorities aren't wise to people trying to do this.

If you get picked up later in Malaysia without a local number plate the bike will be confiscated and you will be charged with a range of offences including driving without valid insurance, driving a vehicle without a valid plate. Evasion of import tax etc.

Apart from which you can't sell it in Malaysia and will have to bring it back through to sell it in Thailand.

Not a good idea all round!
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Old 04-02-2013, 06:14 AM   #3
rickypanecatyl OP
SE Asia adventure tours
Joined: Jan 2008
Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Oddometer: 1,170
Thanks Paul,

I just crossed the southern border into Malaysia and it struck me that Malaysia at the border doesn't seem to care at all and the issue as you said would more be leaving Thailand than entering Malaysia.

I do think the Southern border at Sadao is pretty lax compared to other borders. Last year I rode on up thru Thailand, met some of the GT rider guys in Chaing Mai and then tried to enter Laos. It was only then I realized I needed some import paper from Thai customs to bring my bike in. I had ridden the whole country without even knowing my bike wasn't in legally.

David and some of the other GT rider guys thought I was in big trouble and I did to; How could I leave Thailand without the paper... I got hooked up with some understanding Thai customs guy at the Laos border but he couldn't help.

Turns out no one noticed or cared when I came back; rode thru the border, parked in no mans land, walked back and checked out my personal passport and rode back into Malaysia.
Of course the stress of what could have happened wrecked a lot of my trip on the way back!
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Old 04-08-2013, 08:12 PM   #4
bush pilot
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Joined: Jun 2006
Location: Thailand
Oddometer: 2,526
I've entered Malaysia several times (with Thai plated bike) at the crossing near Satun without the having to go through the Thai export permit process, as you do when entering Cambodia. Reentering Thailand there is also easy.
So much so that the last time I did it I forgot to bring my green book, and didn't realize until I was back in Thailand. No one once asked to look at it.
Seems to me you could just roll into Malaysia with a Thai bike as you please.
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Old 04-20-2013, 09:25 PM   #5
Joined: Jan 2012
Oddometer: 28
We went through around 2 years ago at Betong.. Nearly didn't get through.
They are not use to bikes riding through the deep south and going out this exit.

Strongly recommend you follow all the procedures.. export etc..
We had to buy 6 months insurance for Malaysia.. We didn't realise in Betong that you can't buy this at the border.. so the Malay guys called up someone that came over.. took our money and details then headed back and sorted it all out in Betong.

We had a interview with about 4 people in an office.. after a while all Boleh.. and off we went.. but it ended up taking half the day..

It was only a few days later the bomb went off wiping out the hotel in Hat Yai.. We didn't feel do good after all the riding we had done in the back country after that happened.. Everyone was fine to us.. very very quiet and don't speak Thai amongst themselves.. As a foreigner I think you are fine.. just don't go near Police / Army or other public buildings as these are the targets.
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