Problem at Lao-Thai border

Discussion in 'Laos Road Trip Reports' started by alen, Aug 10, 2005.

  1. alen

    alen Member

    Hi, my name is Alex iam travelling by Yamaha TTR 250 that i bought in Siamsuperbike(Bangkok). I had a problem in Laos-Thai border near Non-Khai . My bike has abook but registered on Thi resident name and not on my name,so at the Thi side that didnt want to give me pass the border,and only after some discussion they agree to let me pass but i have to come back to Thialand by Non-Khai border after a month .
    When i bought abike the owner of the shop told me that it is no problem and i dont have to have registration on my name. It is very strange, it is something new or i just got wrong information?
    Thanks for help
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  3. BobS

    BobS Ol'Timer


    According to the green book, the bike legally belongs to someone else. You have to show that you have permission to take it out of country.

    This would be a signed letter from them, and a signed copy of their ID card.

    You should transfer the bike into your name when you return. It is not difficult or expensive, and can be done if you only have a tourist visa. All you need is an address to use, and get a residence form from immigration.

    There are lots of posts about this on the board. Also check the link to the laws about motorcycles.

    You have described what happened on the Thai side - what happened on the Lao side of the bridge? You may not have permission to keep the bike in Laos for a month, even if you have a 30 day visa for yourself. Be prepared to pay some overstay fines.


    "The true secret of giving advice is, after you have honestly given it, to be perfectly indifferent whether it is taken or not and never persist in trying to set people right."
  4. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator Staff Member

    If you take a look at

    it might clear the air a bit

    Thai people require an ID card plus a copy of their house registration paper to register a vehicle in their own name.
    Foreigners need the "same" - confirmation of ID and local address. This means a copy of your passport and a letter from your local immigration office or consul confirming your Thailand address.
    To get this, you should have a 3-month non-immigrant visa, suggesting that you live in Thailand. However there are exceptions to the rule and the Chiang Mai immigration office does issue these letters.
    Note too, that the originals must be presented at the vehicle licensing office, not photocopies.

    It is possible to take a vehicle out of the country, if it does not belong to you, but is in the name of another person. To do this you must have permission from the vehicle owner to export it. There is a standard form you can use for this. Click here ( to see what it looks like.
    Under this system, it is possible to buy a motorcycle in another person's name and ride it out. To do this, you must have signed copies of the real owner's valid / current (not expired) Thai ID card and Thai house registration.
    This normally works, however it is open to the duty Customs officer's personal discretion; and if you have a communication problem or a personality clash (I have good experience of this) it might not go down so well. For foreign riders with Thai registered bikes this is a not uncommon problem on the border.
    One of the Customs concern is that the motorcycle may be stolen, or may not be returned. So, be patient, tolerant and understanding of the system.
    Don't believe the shop, where you buy the bike, that you only need a receipt & / or a photocopy of the bike registration. You won't get out of the country. It is no fun riding all the way to the border, to discover that you've wasted your time and money & probably stuffed up your holiday.

    Keep The Power On
  5. alen

    alen Member

    Thanks for information.
    Anyway ihave the originally book of bike and copy of thi resident that owns the bike i.d .I already passed the border,and the main problem was at Thi side ,and i think because i didnt have the letter of permissoin from owner, for riding the bike .
    So i been asked by the poliseman to come back after month to same border at Nong-Khai.
    At the Lao in Customer offise i met polise man that knew russian as iam so we had very plesant convirsation , and he gave me 30 days for motorbike.
    Anyway the visa at the border for me is only for 15 days , and you can get extension for 2$ per day,so it is better to make visa at bangkok , i think it for twise cheeper.
    Thanks anyway for your replies.
  6. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator Staff Member

    Your experience seems to confirm my feelings that the staff on the Laos side are nearly always more friendly than the Thai side!
    The Thai customs official was probably asking you to come back in a month as the Temporary Export Permit is most likely only valid for a month. If you are late, the fine should be 200 baht a day, with a maximum of 2,000 baht. But it may well depend on the officers mood on the day, whether they enforce the rules or not.
    Good luck with your trip & pls keep us informed with some road & trip reports.

    Keep The Power On

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