Cost of Importing RV

Discussion in 'American RV's' started by Garvie, May 11, 2009.

  1. Garvie

    Garvie

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    We plan to spent 3 to 6 months touring Europe next Spring/Summer (2010). We are full timers in the US but don't think our 40 ft fifth wheel pulled by a Medium Duty truck will fit well. We're debating buying a motor home in the UK or buying one here and RO/RO shipping it to Europe. The market is depressed here and MH's are cheap. We could save the cost of shipping it back if we sold it in the UK. How much is the tariff and the cost of conversion to meet MOT?


    Thanks for any advice,

    Garvie
     
  2. Bulletguy

    Bulletguy Read Only Funster

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    The market here is also 'depressed'.....likewise with plenty of folk.

    Anything big (which means most things USA) is dirt cheap because what you are used to paying per gallon...here we pay that per litre! The only vehicles which fetch a good price here in UK are small cars. Any used vehicles with an engine much over 2.5ltr and owners find themselves having to practically give them away because nobody wants them.

    Good luck in buying a motorhome here......just be prepared for a huge culture shock in price differentials!
     
  3. Geo

    Geo Trader - Funster

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    Hi garvie
    Have you looked at buying in Germany/Holland and selling in the UK:thumb:
     
  4. dazzer

    dazzer Read Only Funster

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    Decent used RVs are reasonably cheap here (similar price to shipping one from USA then paying to ship it back), ready to go and converted for UK use. If you have a reasonable budget get a UK registered LPG converted bus for much better fuel economy. Insurance will be a HUGE problem whatever you decide to do and may well be better sorted out in the USA if possible.

    If you ship from USA dont plan on keeping it in the UK and dont live here why do you want to MOT it? Just ship it from USA and drive it on USA plates, after all you are simply touring in it. You will need a simple 240v-110v transformer and a new hook up cable for UK/Euro use. Also your USA TV wont work in Europe.

    If your used to a 40` 5er dont consider a Eurobox especially for a long tour they will only disappoint (spelling!!!) you.
     
  5. Garvie

    Garvie

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    Thanks for the comments.

    We know the fuel prices will be scary, our 9.5 liter truck engine gets 6 mpg; so we're used to bleeding at the pump. Luckily we only use the big truck to relocate and drive the 1.8 liter Scion for every day touring.

    We've toured by car in Italy for 30 days and didn't like changing beds every night. We vowed that the next time we did Europe we would sleep in the same bed each night.

    If we buy in Europe, as I understand it, we can only register a vehicle in the Netherlands and the UK. If we bought elsewhere, I suspect we'd be up to our back ends in trouble getting it registered.

    The biggest cost in bringing one from the US and driving on the USA plates is $5k USD each way shipping and 2% shipping insurance. Except for the cost of shipping and insurance, it would be nice to live in an RV we had used here before shipping it over.

    I've corresponded with a Kent company that quoted me 75% buy back after 6 months. That's attractive; I'm a little nervous about buying a used vehicle in another country.

    At 74 and being in good health, it seems like a good idea to "get it done."

    Thanks again for any suggests,

    Garvie and Elinor
    Home is Where We Park Our House
     
  6. scotjimland

    scotjimland Funster Life Member

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    Hi Garvie and Elinor

    We live in our 36ft RV full time and have travelled extensively in Europe but yearn to travel in the States but as you have found out there is no easy or economical way .. We looked at shipping versus buying, shipping is expensive and buying with a view to reselling is fraught with difficulties and uncertainty..

    A 25% hit on a resell doesn't sound too bad, but it may be a better idea to contact a rental company and negotiate a long term deal .. it may work out cheaper .. and you won't have the hassle of registering and insuring ..
    We have a trade member on here, Peter, who has his own motorhome sales and rental business, Johns_Cross_Motorhomes, he may be able to help or advise on rental..

    Another option is to advertise for an exchange .. not something we would consider but there are plenty that do ..

    Good luck and if you need any other help please shout out..

    Jim n Jan
     
  7. IanH

    IanH Read Only Funster

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    Hi Garvie

    For the cost of shipping an RV both ways you could buy a decent European motorhome,use it for you trip then sell it on,even at loss you should be $$$$ better off

    It would be easier to shift a smaller motorhome than a RV plus more campground friendly.

    Also remember your not going to get the full service of Electricity ,water ,sewer , cable conections and WIFI at the campgrounds
     
  8. Wildman

    Wildman Read Only Funster

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    at the age of 70 one is restricted to 3.500kg approx 3.5 ton in the UK unless you have an extencive medical which costs around £80 and takes time to sort out. Not sure what the position is driving on a visitors licence. Just one more thing to check up on.
     
  9. passionwagon

    passionwagon Read Only Funster

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    If we buy in Europe, as I understand it, we can only register a vehicle in the Netherlands and the UK. If we bought elsewhere, I suspect we'd be up to our back ends in trouble getting it registered.

    Very interested in the above-
    Where did you get this information as a vehicle has to be registered and insured at an address the UK. To get insurance you will also need to have a UK residential address. ?
     
  10. Garvie

    Garvie

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    Age and Motor Home Operation

    Wildman wrote: "at the age of 70 one is restricted to 3.500kg approx 3.5 ton in the UK"

    Now that's a wake up call, I never thought of that.

    In a camp ground in Texas last month I met a 90 year old with a Freightliner truck, a triple axle 40 foot trailer and an Impala om a tow dolly behind that; our 53' rig seemed small. It never occurred to me that 74 was old, sic.

    Thanks for the heads up,

    Garvie

     
  11. Garvie

    Garvie

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    Renting versus Buying

    Jim n Jan Wrote:

    A 25% hit on a resell doesn't sound too bad, but it may be a better idea to contact a rental company and negotiate a long term deal .. it may work out cheaper .. and you won't have the hassle of registering and insuring ..


    Thanks for your response. I made a couple of checks on Motor Home rentals, even with "long term" discounts, it cost around $30k USD to rent a MH for six months. We'd like to tour but not that much.

    As you've discovered, there are some issues jumping the pond and motor homing. We looked into exchanging MH's. Our current rig isn't suited for that, a 40 foot fifth wheel with three axles has a turning radius of about mile. I'm a little nervous about trading RV's. We have run into quite a few Europeans who have bought RV's on the East Coast with a guaranteed buy back on the West coast.

    We have a while to find the best approach.
     
  12. Garvie

    Garvie

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    Registering MH in the UK

    passionwagon wrote:

    Where did you get this information as a vehicle has to be registered and insured at an address the UK. To get insurance you will also need to have a UK residential address. ?

    I've been reading blogs by people who have bought and registered MH's like KarmaBum Travelogues. When you register it, you give them an address where to mail the title. Some people use dealer addresses. You can take the temporary title and use it to get insurance.

    I suspect that a dealer has no problem registering it for you, several offer buy back schemes.

    Is it "letter of the law", I don't know. Obviously, we're not interested in doing anything illegal.

    Garvie

     
  13. passionwagon

    passionwagon Read Only Funster

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    :Smile:If the dealer is the registered owner or @keeper@ as we call it, you will be leasing the vehicle even if you have paid in full.They will have to be the insured to get it registeerd.
    Do not accept the word of dealers etc. Ask your specific questions of the insurance company suggested.
    For the driving licence rules access and send a question- Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency

    The rules for ownership and insurance are very strict and should you be stopped for paperwork examination then any discrepancy could see the vehicle being seized! Yes, someone will come into this and say it has not happened but it does!

    There are people who ignore the rules -the law- and hope not to get stopped and with anything in life some get away with it, but to the detriment of the majority.

    There are companies in UK, Belgium and Germany who will properly hire you a mh and I am sure a long term trip of six months may well give a favourable hire charge. Remember with the current economic challenges will the company you buy from exist six months later.
     
  14. Garvie

    Garvie

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    Long MH Hire

    I'll look again, I haven't found an affordable rate on a long term rental.

    You're right, by the Fall of 2010, many MH companies may be gone.

    Thanks for the insight,

    Garvie
     
  15. IanH

    IanH Read Only Funster

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    Hi Garvie
    take a visit to RVforum.net they are on your side of the pond,you should find someone that has done what you are planning.

    I found the site full of information when i first went to the States
     
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