Following some good old fashioned bureaucracy (trips to customs office, meetings with import agents, passport inspections, Russian insurance and temporary import registration) – we had the bikes released in just three days.
On the third day we got the call from our agent that we needed to go with him to the shipyard immediately for unloading. With Zane and Alex out shopping for a map of Siberia, it was left to Todd to go alone.
In quick time the Russians had lowered our container from the stack and opened it up. With much relief the bikes were still intact, standing upright, and nothing missing!
Todd rolled the bikes out and got them set up while Zane and Alex made their way to the port. We paid our Russian friends some rubles to get some fuel for us, fuelled them, then went to kick the bikes in the guts – but none of them would start. After some less-than-glamorous push starts and we were away. Time for the adventure to begin!
NB: For anyone shipping motorbikes (or any other vehicle) to Vladivostok, we highly recommend Links Ltd. Yuri and Svetlana were very easy to deal with, trustworthy and have lots of experience in shipping bikes and cars in and out of Vladivostok. You can contact them at www.links-ltd.com.