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Which Bike Should I Bring To Thailand? Mtb Or Roadbike?


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Hi there,

I'm moving to Bangkok later this year and now I'm considering which one of my bikes, I should bring along. Mountainbike or roadbike?

Of course I could bring both, but I think it might be too much of a hassle... or what do you think? As for now, I have not found out how to transport them?

Both of them are worth more than 100,000 THB each (so it's decent bikes). Should I sell them before moving to Thailand and buy new ones (or second hand) there to avoid the transportation issue? It seems as if the prices of good bikes in Thailand are high though...

I do not wish to start a discussion of what kind of cycling is "best" ;-)

But I would like to hear some thoughts/experiences about what kind of bike I am likely to get most joy from and use most often while being in Thailand/Bangkok?

Thanks in advance!


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If you're planning on living here permanently I would bring both bikes especially if as you say they're both high end bikes. Bikes here range in price from the very cheap steel framed to the very high (very expensive) end carbon fiber. You'll encounter all kinds of riding conditions here as well once you get out of Bangkok. I'm riding a Merida MTB with Schwalbe Marathon Extreme tires which gives me the capability to handle just about anything.

Here's a link to a well known bike shop in Bangkok: www.probike.co.th The site lists all kinds of bikes along with the price. They're are many bike shops throughout the country which offer better prices but this will give you an idea about pricing.

Import duty can be high as well.

Check with your airline to determine what is required to ship a bicycle with you. Most will tell you it has to be boxed up. Pricing varies considerably.

I hope this helps.

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Hi - I brought a road/triathlon bike with me, after 2yrs here traded it on a new MTB for mainly road use; in the end I decided getting around on 23mm rims on often potholed roads, as well as riding position, was not best suited for the roads I encountered.

Went for a big frame mtb, it suits me, i still do the kms, see more of the scenery, safer - I have better visibility, and other vehicles are more likely to see me, upright, also slower as many times people miscalculated my speed - see a bicycle approaching and not realise just how fast I was going.

There's a thread here somewhere on bike packaging; I flew Thai Air and bubble-wrapped the frame with wheels either side, then all wrapped again, made it very easy to carry at airport, they didn't charge anything extra; customs only question was - is it new? - and I was waved through.

Good luck for your Thai cycling adventures.

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Hi Alan, you ask a bit of an open question, a little like, "how long is a piece of string?'

Basically all disciplines of bike riding are catered forhere…..To one degree or another.

I think the largest group of riders in Thailand are on MTB, however the Thais, in general tend to stick to the tar-mac, (the Thais seem to like trawling up and down 4 lane highways :blink: ) which I still find very strange considering the most excellent off-road to be had all over Thailand, (not sure about BKK)

As far as selling, bringing with, one, (which one) or both….buyingnew, second hand….and so on! Well, I think if I were you I would do the following; If I was coming to Thailand long term, I would try and sell my present bikes, move here, have a good look around and see which discipline you think you will do the most….Buy a bike…….And ride, job done.

As for bikes being more expensive in Thailand, I'm on my 3rd bike here, (mid to high end) and I've paid well below the UK price for each ofthe same bikes, (same spec) Check this price for yourself; Trek EX5, you can get in Thailand, Probike, 46,000 Baht = 968 Pounds. In the UK this bike will cost, 1500 Pounds = 71,000 Baht.

Why not email Probike, in BKK tell them what you're doing, pick some bikes you like and talk to them about prices.

Happy riding!

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^ interesting re prices;

I had similar exp, my Specialized cost me the equivalent of about 75,000 baht in New Zealand, saw a newer model on sale for 50,000 in Phuket and they'd likely have discounted for cash

when I sold it I kept the pedals and shoes for the new bike, didn't ask but suspect i may have had some problems getting shoes the right size/fit here in Chanthaburi, though have found the probike store here very helpful

and doing my bit to encourage cycling, some threads on day rides in the Eastern Thailand forum, including Bicycle Riding On The Chanthaburi Coast

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I ride a MTB but about half the members of my club are on road bikes. I would recommend bringing both.

Unless you are thinking of upgrading one or both. Another good place to get bikes here is www.BikeZone.co.th They carry high end rode bikes, tri bikes and mirida MTB's. What others say about the roads is true. I ride them a lot in Bangkok. They have pot holes, roads higher then the man covers by 2 or 3 inches, rain covers with the slits in the same direction as traffic (as in hit at the wrong angle and the front wheel of a road bike will fall in), Steel plates that seem to have been forgotten about, what I can only describe as small speed bumps randomly placed in the road, and the list goes on. There are places for road bikes, and there are even those who use them in Bangkok, but having even just a front end suspension helps. Have fun!

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I can't really help you with which bike to ride in Bangkok since I'm up in Chiang Mai where you can find plenty of riding with either but really need both.

I have no idea where you are from but my experience in shopping for road bikes, MTB's and fixed gear bikes is that you can get much better deals in the US on road bikes than you can in Thailand because of import duties. I have no idea about UK and European prices. You can get decent prices on MTB's here though. Most of the fixed gear bikes sold here are pure junk. Between my wife and I we've brought 4 of our 5 bikes with us from the US. Based on that, I'd bring the road bike and buy the MTB here.

I agree with almost all the info above. My only advice is that rather than asking your airline about their bike handling fees, you should choose your airline based on those fees. One way fees for a bike range from zero to $300.

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I moved here from the U.S. in June of this year. Brought one bike with me on the plane and shipped one which arrived with household items six weeks later. I'm glad I brought two, and extra wheels (more on that below). In my case, one is a road bike, with CF frame, etc. I'm finding good rides in the Chiang Mai area, some potholes, but not too bad; I haven't dented a rim yet. The other bike is my cyclocross bike. There's no CX here, but it's a very versatile bike: fits a rack, takes knobby tires up to 38mm. I consider that one to be my "town" bike, mainly because running errands often requires carrying something on the rack. I also use it when I expect bad roads, gravel, or offroad. And I switch to road tires when a friend (who is my size) goes with me on road rides. I think if you bring them both, you'll be glad you did. The reasons you bought two in the first place apply here as well. I'm thinking about getting a mountain bike, too.

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