Has the crackdown on unregistered bikes arrived?

Discussion in 'General Discussion / News / Information' started by sri, Jan 24, 2005.

  1. sri

    sri Member

    I've heard from a few mates up in Chiang Mai that the long expected crackdown on rental bikes without numbers/registrations has occurred. Not a big bike in site at all the rental places, and apparently bikes without regos are regularly being impounded. Doesn't exactly seem well-timed for the authorities to decide for the first time to enforce registrations, right in the middle of peak tourist rental season.

    So the question is: does anyone know if there is something in the works to make it easier to get registrations on these grey market bikes with no number plates, or are they off the roads forever?
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  3. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator Staff Member

    Yes there is some sort of crack down going on.
    But exactly what the reasons are I'm not sure:
    1. not all the bike hire shops have been hit
    2. none of the shops selling grey imports have been bothered.
    So my wild speculative theory is that a complaint by a disgruntled customer (with an accident & damages bill?) might have been made in Bkk to an embassy about problems with motorcycle hire & they complained to the police who complained in Cnx.
    But for sure it comes at the worst possible time & has really kicked the bike shops in the teeth, as this is the one time of the year when they can actually make money. It is only causing serious bad feeling and is certainly not good for tourism. So why do it?
    After speaking to the affected rental shop owners I know they would only be too happy if they could get their bikes registered & be legit, for a reasonable fee. But to date, there is no indication that this is going to happen, or exactly what they need to negotiate - a serious game of bluff is being played out.
    Another theory could be that some official is up from Bkk for his winter holidays so they decided to have a crack down while he is here & make an impression. Then once his holidays are over, things will return to normal.
    Only time will tell, but wouldn't it be good if there were a sensible compromise and bikes were registered for a realistic fee.

    Keep the power on
  4. vtrman

    vtrman Member

    I'm flying out to Chiang Mai today. In theory, I have big bikes reserved and waiting for me. The intention is to get out of town and disappear up into the hills. Let's just see how it goes.

    I'll give a report when I get back.

  5. cement47

    cement47 Member

    I'm new here, but do you think things will calm down after the elections. This sounds political. Hope so.


    "what's behind me is not important"
  6. Klaus

    Klaus Ol'Timer

    This is one of the reasons why I'm riding a 200cc Phantom, which is an amzing little bike. As much as I'd love to have a big bike, like in the States where I had up to 1400cc and over a hundred horses, my motto in Thailand is: less is more - especially when it's legal....
  7. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator Staff Member

    Just done a bit more digging & it appears as if the action is in deed the result of some complaints made by disgruntled customers, against a couple of shops.
    One of the shops was caught nicking their own bikes & then claiming payment from the customer, & another shop wanted 100,000 baht damages for a crashed bike / 1,000 baht for broken mirrors.
    One of these shops closed a few months ago, & perhaps sensed that something was in the wind?
    So it looks as if a couple of bad eggs have spoiled it for the rest of the good guys.
    The provincial police complained to the local police stations to check on the rental shops in their jurisdiction & the rental shops were hit, although some were luckily missed out.
    An approach has been made to the governor to sort out the mess, with a request for help to get the bikes registered, so that everyone can be legit.
    No news has come back from the gov's office, & the shops are still waiting to decide on their next move, which could be a while………………

    Keep the power on
  8. vtrman

    vtrman Member

    I said I'd report back, so I'd better do that.

    I successfully rented 5 bikes via Joe's Bike Hire (Goodwill), and had no problems whatsoever on a 1000km ride around Northern Thailand. The bikes were 250cc Enduro machines, with no plates. I did an 8 day tour starting on 25th January '05.

    We had no problems with Police at all, although we spent little time actually riding in CNX, as at least 50% of my route uses dirt trails vaguely following the "MHS Loop".

    Tom & Joe said not all bike rental shops had been approached by Police, and certainly from my point of view, it seemed like "business as usual". Their view was that the Police seemed to be on some kind of fact finding mission to see just how many unregistered big bikes there were in CNX. Get an idea of numbers, then decide what to do about it.

  9. gus

    gus Active Member

    I have a Shadow 400 cc and here in Hua Hin I have recently been pulled aside at regualr traffic stops (yes, i had a helmet on) just to check plate and registration. police were very polite and admired the bike and let me go with a wai after seeing plate and stickers. i dont know what would have happened if i hadnt been legal.

    '98 ACE 400

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