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Riding a motorcycle in Tokyo

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  • Riding a motorcycle in Tokyo

    Hey guys

    I'm moving to Tokyo from Australia (Sydney) next month. I have a Ducati Monster 1100 EVO (almost brand new). I sounds like I'm going to have to sell it as it may be too difficult to bring it into Japan.

    I'm planning on buying exactly the same bike when I get here. I have an Australian drivers' licence (also riders' licence) - how long can I keep that licence without having to switch to a Japanses licence?

    Is there anything I need to be aware of before buying a motorcycle? Eg. I heard that for cars in Tokyo you need to prove that you have a car space before you can register it...

    I would appreciate any tips from Tokyo motorcycle riders!

    Cheers

    Julien

  • #2
    Strictly speaking, 12 months on an international licence. I rode for about 16 years on one though. Getting stricter these days. You don't need a parking space to buy a bike, only a car. Ducati's are much cheaper here than in Oz.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Julius106 View Post
      Hey guys

      I'm moving to Tokyo from Australia (Sydney) next month. I have a Ducati Monster 1100 EVO (almost brand new). I sounds like I'm going to have to sell it as it may be too difficult to bring it into Japan.

      I'm planning on buying exactly the same bike when I get here. I have an Australian drivers' licence (also riders' licence) - how long can I keep that licence without having to switch to a Japanses licence?

      Is there anything I need to be aware of before buying a motorcycle? Eg. I heard that for cars in Tokyo you need to prove that you have a car space before you can register it...

      I would appreciate any tips from Tokyo motorcycle riders!

      Cheers

      Julien
      Get yourself an International Drivers Permit - and make sure that the "unlimited" category for motorcycles is correctly stamped. I believe that you can use that for 3 months after taking up residence. It will be best to identify a drivers school - and take their course, leading to a Japanese license.

      MCs do not require a registered parking space - but with the rash of thefts, you will want a secure parking space.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by TJrandom View Post
        Get yourself an International Drivers Permit - and make sure that the "unlimited" category for motorcycles is correctly stamped. I believe that you can use that for 3 months after taking up residence. It will be best to identify a drivers school - and take their course, leading to a Japanese license.

        MCs do not require a registered parking space - but with the rash of thefts, you will want a secure parking space.
        In Australia we have to have a helmet with the Australian Standards sticker on it. Do I have to have a Japanese standards made helmet or can I use my Australian helmet?

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Julius106 View Post
          In Australia we have to have a helmet with the Australian Standards sticker on it. Do I have to have a Japanese standards made helmet or can I use my Australian helmet?
          Good question - don't know for sure, but this was not covered in the MC license course I took, nor have I ever heard it discussed before... and I brought mine from the US... so I believe you will be fine with your Aussie Hat.... (helmet)

          Comment


          • #6
            Are there many speed cameras in Tokyo? In Sydney, they're everywhere: on trafic lights (speed and red light cameras), fixed on the side of the road, mobile with cops...
            Last edited by Julius106; 2012-04-25, 02:52 PM.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Julius106 View Post
              Are there many seed cameras in Tokyo? In Sydney, they're everywhere: on trafic lights (speed and red light cameras), fixed on the side of the road, mobile with cops...
              Speed - right? And yes - there are some - but mostly on expressways and on a few wide and long roads. I don't think that they are in use these days - but then I don't tend to speed. Just watch the rest of the traffic - and if it suddenly slows - then slow down too. You are generally safe to go with the flow - even if over the speed limit. But MCs do get more than their share of attention - and if the police just need to stop someone, it might as well be a MC (or so I believe they think.)

              Comment


              • #8
                1. dont bring your bike to japan. it is very expensive to register and might not even pass the rediculously tough emissions test.

                2. you can use a valid license with the proper endorsements and an IDP for up to 12 months from the landing date on your gaijin card. they would like for you to convert ASAP, but you have one year.


                3. you will not need to go to a driving school as long as you have had all of your endorsements for more than 3 months in your home country before coming to japan, and you can PROVE that! if this is true, the process of converting to an unlimited license from an unlimited OZ license will be relatively simple. in the past they only converted foreign unlimited licenses to j chugata licenses (up to 400cc), but this is no longer the case


                4. i think technically you should be wearing a j approved helmet probably. however, in reality you can get away with wearing almost any kind of helmet. your Oz spec helmet will not cause problems even if it doesnt have the right J sticker. the cops are gonna know that it is a real helmet and not check further.

                5. there are speed cameras, but very, very few shoot from behind making motorcyclists mostly immune. however, the unmarked cars and shiro bikes WILL get you so watch out!

                i d recommend asking these types of questions on a forum that is more bike specific:

                http://gaijinriders.com/

                Comment


                • #9
                  Good people to ride with..

                  Hi Julian..

                  One of the best forums to hang out with is www.japanriders.com


                  Good bunch of guys that don't go round banning you just because of people you know also they do a lot of events and offer good discount
                  on most bikes and parts...
                  Check out there Great Escape event this weekend..


                  Anthony

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Listen Anthony. You requested your posts be deleted after calling all forum members ______s.
                    Something to do with a bike sale that had nothing to do with the forum. I am sorry your sale
                    fell through, but heck that was almost a year ago.

                    Please move on and get over this.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Not sure what you are talking about ... i only called Jim for what he said...

                      Want to explain why you guys banned slowbike or the reason Trent Banned Darren Yesterday..
                      Want to explain in detail why ony Darren got Banned (Diligaf)

                      You guys need to grow up...


                      Thats the good part about Japanriders we have no control freaks trying to run the world...


                      Have fun Girls....

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                      • #12
                        Thank you for the advice.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Now that is a very nice bike indeed. However, personally I do prefer about a 250 if it mostly for slow city traffic just because it is a little easier to handle compared to the nice big ones. So if you have money, maybe get your big bike for cruising and then just a second hand one for city. Don't worry about the license. It is pretty quick and painless to switch them over. Just make sure to take someone that speaks japanese to the interview and prepare for questions like how long did you drive, what did they teach you, how many questions did you get on your theory test. What type of parking did they teach you, was your training on public roads etc etc. If you honestly cannot remember then tell them. I couldn't remember tons of things because they got into very specific questions, however, they will not penalize you for not remembering exactly. Lying on the other hand will get you not being able to convert.

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