My process to import bike (BMW R1200GS) from Sydney (Australia) to Christchurch (New Zealand) by airfreight (December 2013):
- I contacted several airlines (Quantas, Emirates and Air New Zealand), all of them asked me to get in touch with freight forwarder (I got recommendation for two different companies: Matzen Cargo and DB Schenker.
- I also asked several companies regarding sea freight, but overall price was really close to airfreight and quite many were full already.
- DB Schenker was quite slow with their answers (because person who is responsible for these shipments was on holiday). Matzen Cargo answered within few hours.
- Matzen cargo gave a good offer so, next thing was to start planning where to get crate and other needed processes (price was for a crate which is not labeled as “Hazardous material”.
- BMW Sydney (Procycles) said that they can arrange crate, wash the fuel tank and prepare a document which states that all needed actions have been done (to avoid hazardous material treatment).
- I needed to wash the bike, but could not find a place from Sydney where I could properly clean it, so I decided to ride 50km south from Sydney, stay at the campground and do washing there. Before this I went to the customs house in Sydney airport and got my Carnet stamped out from Australia. NOTE: you will need to show your AWB (Air Way Bill) in the customs!
- After washing, I took my bike to Procycles who cleaned the tank with “white alcohol” (or something like that), disconnected the battery and wrote me a document (It stated that tank has been cleaned and battery disconnected). They had some problem to get BMW crate, so they arranged Victory-motorcycles crate (it was metal, so better than wooden BMW crate). I got plenty of straps from them too.
- Procycles transferred my bike and crate to Matzen cargo warehouse where I packed my bike and all the stuff inside the crate (total weight 386kg).
- Service from Matzen cargo was great and I can highly recommend their service to everyone.
- I flew to NZ on Tuesday, bike on Wednesday. REMEMBER: that you will need a return ticket and a proof that you have enough money to get in to NZ!
- On Wednesday in NZ, I went first to the customs house next to Christchurch airport. Got my Carnet stamped, got Customs Delivery order- and Manual Biosecurity Authority/Clearance Certificate -documents. At the same time I paid Inspection fee.
- Next I went to Air New Zealand Cargo to agree how things would go onward over there later that day.
- I could not get my bike out this day because Air New Zealand Cargo needed few hours to get the crate to the warehouse and to fill all needed documents.
- Before 16:30 (closing time) I called to the Biosecurity office +64 3 943 1753 and agreed an inspection time for Thursday morning.
- On Thursday morning I went to the Air NZ Cargo before agreed time (had a Jerry can full of fuel with me). I gave all the papers to the person behind a counter and paid their fees (port fee ?).
- After this was inspection (which I think was tighter than in Australia (so make sure that bike is clean as also your camping gear (tent pegs, tent also from inside)) which I passed without any problems.
- Next thing was to get ACC levy and WoF (Warrant of Fitness) done. For this I went to Vinz (it is close to the airport). Showed my carnet and passport and filled MR2C-form (you can download, print and fill this beforehand). Fees to pay here are ACC and inspection fee. Inspection took around 20 mins, it was tighter than in Australia.
- Last thing was to mount proof of my ACC-levy payment (need to be visible from the back) and tape WoF to the bike
Costs (airfreight + other fees for R1200GS, total weight with a crate 386kg):
- Crate from Procycles: 55AUD
- Bike and crate delilvery to Matzen Cargo warehouse: 59AUD
- Prepare for crating (tank, battery and document): 60AUD
- Shipping (Matzen cargo): 1000AUD
- MPI NZ inspection fee: 51NZD
- Air NZ cargo payment (port fee?): 57NZD
- ACC-levy and inspection fee: Around 85NZD
Thing to note is that by seafreight port fees are much higher.
- NZ Transport Agency – Importing a vehicle temporarily: http://www.nzta.govt.nz/resources/factsheets/35/importing-a-vehicle-temporarily.html
- Ministry for Primary Industries – MPI Clearance Services and Facilities: http://www.biosecurity.govt.nz/biosec/org/structure/clearance
- Vinz – ACC-levy and WoF: https://vinz.co.nz/find-a-service-centre/centre/christchurch
- North South Holiday Park in Christchurch is close to the airport, cabin price is reasonable and they can loan 5l jerry can for you.
- North South Holiday Park, Christchurch: S 43°28.210’ E 172°34.283’
- Vinz, airport Christchurch: S 43°29.146’ E 172°33.064’
- Air NZ Cargo, Christchurch: S 43°29.532’ E 172°32.828’
- Customs house, Christchurch AP: S 43°29.428’ E 172°32.638’
- Sydney customs house: No coordinates, but can be found just opposite of International departures in Sydney AP.