Thai registered 125cc Honda Sonic traveling to Phnom Penh.Where to enter the country?

blackwolf

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Honda Sonic 125cc, 4 wheels, about to buy a 250cc dirt bike
As the title says, if I'm driving my own Thai registered Honda Sonic 125cc road bike from Thailand, fully paid off with a green book in my name, translation of the green book (assuming it's necessary), up to date Thai third party insurance and up to date road tax, in good mechanical condition with recent service, new tires etc. which crossing would be the best for hassle free entrance into Cambodia?

I know that for Thai cars, Koh Kong and O'Smach have been mentioned. I've been to Koh Kong, never did see any Thai motorcycles crossing, but Thai cars were crossing in large numbers. Would Koh Kong be OK for me to enter on my bike, or would O'Smach be better? I want to ride to Phnom Penh and back, spending about a week. I will also go onto Vietnam, but plan to leave my bike parked in a secure location in Phnom Penh (probably a hotel) as I have a friend in Vietnam with a car anyway, plus I have read about the hassles of trying to drive any vehicle into Vietnam from Cambodia, which is essentially not possible anymore.
 

Nightrider70

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I think Baan Pakkhad <-> Prom is easy. If you buy your VISA from the "fixers" they help you deal with Cambodia's customs which increases your chances, otherwise avoid Cambodia's customs if possible. This crossing is the choice of most VISA runners from Pattaya.

 

blackwolf

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Honda Sonic 125cc, 4 wheels, about to buy a 250cc dirt bike
I think Baan Pakkhad <-> Prom is easy. If you buy your VISA from the "fixers" they help you deal with Cambodia's customs which increases your chances, otherwise avoid Cambodia's customs if possible. This crossing is the choice of most VISA runners from Pattaya.

I possess a multiple entry 1 year Cambodian visa already. However, I know that crossing and have seen lots of Thai cars cross there. Thanks for the tip.
 

LivinLOS

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The problem with Cambo is what works one day/week/month may not the next.. Always unpredictable, crossed many different crossings a few multiple times, every time something different..
 

blackwolf

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What way are you going from by the way?
I actually plan to enter the country at Koh Kong, where I have been before. It seems that crossing is relatively hassle-free. Saw a report over on GT-rider about a guy on a larger bike who crossed over there earlier in May with Thai plates, he mentioned the crossing was "easy enough" but didn't elaborate on any procedures. Another couple of Thai guys crossed in April of last year also at Koh Kong (coming back the same way) and were riding scooters also without trouble. They were mostly concerned with being told by customs "not to go further than Koh Kong province". However, the guys managed to drive over to Sihanoukville and Kampot. They wanted to go further but didn't have any more time due to having to go back to work.
 

LivinLOS

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Koh Kong was a shit fight for me, but what can be a shitfight one week is fine the next.. thats the problem.

My crossing was in a car.. And I had a Khmer with me, so the guy wanted to tell her in Khmer not struggle to deal with me, and she was going to bow down to authority, if he said you cant do something she would obey.. Started out he said the standard "have to stay in the province" and that means you cant even claim to go to Snooky from KK.. So because I had heard this palaver before I was yeah yeah ok, we stay in the province lets go.. But he wanted to keep my (vital and dont ever let go of them) Thai temp export docs to make sure I returned there and didnt leave the province. That wasnt happening.

So then the fight starts.. he gets shouty, refusing me my own paperwork back.. I had to get shouty.. In the end I had to lean in through the little box window and snatch them back from his desk, where he was trying to keep them out of arms reach. Much commotion and upset on all sides. He is saying I have to display a plate in my car window, to show I am legally incountry, or every policeman is going to give me hell and fine me non stop.. I had driven around in cambo enough to know ignore cops and dont stop, I also knew guys crossing recently there on motorbikes, but then they couldnt put a plate in the windscreen, so I was fearful I was walking into an extortion trap.. You could even see a bunch of cops at the side of the road about 300m into cambo who I was just betting were waiting there to cause me strife..

Anyway, he gets super huffy.. Says along the lines of.. Go on then, try it and see what happens, you will have big problem, and when they arrest you dont tell them I let you through this border (like my passport stamps wouldnt tell the story !!) and I would be lieing if I said I didnt have some doubts.. I just got in the car drove fast but not loudly past the cop cluster, and floored it fairly nervous all the way down to the toll bridge and didnt relax until into Koh Kong.. the Khmer girl I was with properly freaking at me doing the opposite of what I had been told to do, but we had to get home to PP.

I would say KK is a fairly tight border.. The customs hut is right next to the gate and its not a border you can do your passport and then just gun it through like Poipet is.. Your more forced to deal with them there than some others.
 

Nightrider70

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My experience from Koh Kong is good but I drove my bike and it has been a while since the last time (2012). Cambodia customs told us that we did not need any papers for the bikes.

In general it seems like Thai registered cars attract more issues than bikes when crossing into Cambodia.
 

LivinLOS

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In general it seems like Thai registered cars attract more issues than bikes when crossing into Cambodia.
This may be true.. I had 2 easy bike crossings and a whole bunch of variable problems in cars..

The main issue is, there is no system, I dont mind complying with rules, but I hate the never knowing, and room for bribery and problems..
 

blackwolf

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Honda Sonic 125cc, 4 wheels, about to buy a 250cc dirt bike
This may be true.. I had 2 easy bike crossings and a whole bunch of variable problems in cars..

The main issue is, there is no system, I dont mind complying with rules, but I hate the never knowing, and room for bribery and problems..
Thanks for your reports. However, in every case you were let in though, right? And you're referring only to Koh Kong? That is, at no time were you ever told you couldn't enter, instead they merely said you couldn't leave the province blah blah blah. Anyway, even if a small bribe were requested I'd be happy to pay it. I would also be heading back across the same border because I will be bringing my bike on the back of my pickup, which will be parked right next to the border. I will only be driving my bike whilst inside Cambodia thus I need to come back the same way when I leave.

The last thing I would be able to accept would be a refusal of entry of my bike, necessitating me to go back to the Thai side to store it, something which would make me seriously unhappy. Also a nuisance would be having to re-enter Thailand for a short time without going through immigration (which would be OK as I have had to do that before in Chiang Khong due to missing a stamp for my car passport at that time) but the whole explaining everything and my frustration of having brought my motorcycle all the way to the border just to store it and still be forced to catch a cab to PP which is what I want to avoid, would seriously suck. I don't want the Cambo customs guys to hold onto my papers either, but I won't let them hold them in the first place - whatever they say I'll agree to regarding not leaving the province etc. (even if I eventually don't follow these instructions). Anyway, I haven't read any reports of outright refusal at this border so I shouldn't have to worry about that. Besides, paying a bribe (if requested) would help and besides, as I've seen Thai cars there back in February of this year so clearly Thai vehicles are being let in there.

Still, what you experienced doesn't sound like the fight I had at the Vietnamese border of Bo Y coming from Laos back in October 2012 when attempting to drive a Lao car owned by a rental company in (all the documents were in order though). Vietnam customs there just basically said no after first examining all the documents I had and asking for more, all of which I could produce. Never mind that a few months earlier, I successfully drove a Lao car from the same company through the same crossing, no problems. They came up with some stupid excuse about needing a Lao driver (my Vietnamese friend wasn't allowed to have his name on the paperwork either, go figure) and then claimed it was a new rule relating to Lao cars. To me it sounded like a rule they made up as they went along, even after they showed me a small paragraph written in Vietnamese about the new "rule", which my friend translated for me, but weeks later other foreigners also driving Lao cars from this company were apparently permitted across that and other Lao/Vietnamese borders driving Lao cars, so it seems it depends on the whims of the officers. Perhaps a little bit of patience would have helped me get across too.
 

blackwolf

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Joined
Mar 7, 2014
Bikes
Honda Sonic 125cc, 4 wheels, about to buy a 250cc dirt bike
Koh Kong was a shit fight for me, but what can be a shitfight one week is fine the next.. thats the problem.

My crossing was in a car.. And I had a Khmer with me, so the guy wanted to tell her in Khmer not struggle to deal with me, and she was going to bow down to authority, if he said you cant do something she would obey.. Started out he said the standard "have to stay in the province" and that means you cant even claim to go to Snooky from KK.. So because I had heard this palaver before I was yeah yeah ok, we stay in the province lets go.. But he wanted to keep my (vital and dont ever let go of them) Thai temp export docs to make sure I returned there and didnt leave the province. That wasnt happening.

So then the fight starts.. he gets shouty, refusing me my own paperwork back.. I had to get shouty.. In the end I had to lean in through the little box window and snatch them back from his desk, where he was trying to keep them out of arms reach. Much commotion and upset on all sides. He is saying I have to display a plate in my car window, to show I am legally incountry, or every policeman is going to give me hell and fine me non stop.. I had driven around in cambo enough to know ignore cops and dont stop, I also knew guys crossing recently there on motorbikes, but then they couldnt put a plate in the windscreen, so I was fearful I was walking into an extortion trap.. You could even see a bunch of cops at the side of the road about 300m into cambo who I was just betting were waiting there to cause me strife..

Anyway, he gets super huffy.. Says along the lines of.. Go on then, try it and see what happens, you will have big problem, and when they arrest you dont tell them I let you through this border (like my passport stamps wouldnt tell the story !!) and I would be lieing if I said I didnt have some doubts.. I just got in the car drove fast but not loudly past the cop cluster, and floored it fairly nervous all the way down to the toll bridge and didnt relax until into Koh Kong.. the Khmer girl I was with properly freaking at me doing the opposite of what I had been told to do, but we had to get home to PP.

I would say KK is a fairly tight border.. The customs hut is right next to the gate and its not a border you can do your passport and then just gun it through like Poipet is.. Your more forced to deal with them there than some others.
Sorry forgot to ask, when did this incident that you are referring to occur? Does one get this plate for motorcycles also? I have never seen this plate and I examined Thai cars inside Koh Kong last time I was there, looking at all the 20 or more Thai plated vehicles I counted not one seemed to have any such plate inside or that I could identify. What does the plate look like, do you have a picture?
 

LivinLOS

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Gas Gas 250 (Trials), YZ250 (enduro), DRZ440 (Supermoto) CBR900 Streetfighter (scary !!)
Thanks for your reports. However, in every case you were let in though, right? And you're referring only to Koh Kong? That is, at no time were you ever told you couldn't enter, instead they merely said you couldn't leave the province blah blah blah
I was given a flat out no in poipet.. After being chased down 10 kms into the country.. No amount of bribery or bluster over a 1 hour period would get permission for my car in.. Every reason and excuse and assurance of the province only etc.. The car was not going past the customs house.

Ultimately I agreed to go back out of the country, then made a run for it had a near 50km high speed chase into Cambodia with them in a camry.. All the way to the Batamabang junction.. Not my wisest choice but managed to get away. Wont be doing poipet for a while.

Poipet problem was around May last year.. I think Koh Kong was around Sept the year before.
 

blackwolf

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Mar 7, 2014
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Honda Sonic 125cc, 4 wheels, about to buy a 250cc dirt bike
I was given a flat out no in poipet.. After being chased down 10 kms into the country.. No amount of bribery or bluster over a 1 hour period would get permission for my car in.. Every reason and excuse and assurance of the province only etc.. The car was not going past the customs house.

Ultimately I agreed to go back out of the country, then made a run for it had a near 50km high speed chase into Cambodia with them in a camry.. All the way to the Batamabang junction.. Not my wisest choice but managed to get away. Wont be doing poipet for a while.

Poipet problem was around May last year.. I think Koh Kong was around Sept the year before.
I have read/heard extensive information about Poipet being a problem, at least for entering Cambodia. Indeed, after many trips across that border in both directions (never attempted to cross with a vehicle though, I either caught a minivan to the Thai border and then caught a share taxi/private taxi from there to PP, or drove my own car to the Thai border, parked it there then caught a taxi on the other side and the same coming back) I have almost never seen any vehicles pass across Thai customs (except for the odd Thai truck or Thai/Cambodian cross border bus, which have official permission anyway). The vast majority of Cambo vehicles don't even cross into the casino zone as they aren't allowed to, after having asked some of the drivers. Very, very occasionally one might see the odd Cambo or Thai vehicle cross there, but I suspect most of those vehicles are owned by either Thai or Cambo immigration or customs officials who never drive more than a km or two inside each others territory.

Haha, sounds like a Cambodian style "LA" type high-speed car chase! I have never seen any car chases involving the cops in Cambodia or even in Thailand or Vietnam, if some vehicle starts running away from a traffic cop after having been caught speeding or whatever, I think the traffic cops just never even bother to make an attempt to chase you (unlike in the states where such an act would be a felony) but apparently Cambo customs take their car chases seriously!
 

LivinLOS

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Gas Gas 250 (Trials), YZ250 (enduro), DRZ440 (Supermoto) CBR900 Streetfighter (scary !!)
Haha, sounds like a Cambodian style "LA" type high-speed car chase! I have never seen any car chases involving the cops in Cambodia or even in Thailand or Vietnam, if some vehicle starts running away from a traffic cop after having been caught speeding or whatever, I think the traffic cops just never even bother to make an attempt to chase you (unlike in the states where such an act would be a felony) but apparently Cambo customs take their car chases seriously!
That was what I thought to.. They wouldnt really do anything would they ?? So took a flyer on it and damn if there wasnt this Camry swerving in and out of traffic in my mirrors..
 
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