Tag Archives: South America

Selling your USA regestered vehicle in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

A step by step guide to selling your USA registered vehicle in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

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Everybody’s situation for selling a USA registered vehicle in Argentina may be different, depending on a variety of circumstances. In my specific situation: I drove my 2001 Toyota Tacoma to Argentina from the USA, then I sold my vehicle in Buenos Aires to another traveler from Germany and his girlfriend from the USA. Given these circumstances, from what I researched, this was the only way I was able to transfer my paperwork to someone else’s name. Most of this information is courtesy of Dan, from The Road Chose Me. It was posted on Wikioverland in the Argentina section. Wikioverland has been a great information source regarding Pan-Am travel, crossing the borders, etc. I highly recommend it. The entire selling process was relatively painless and stress free. The most difficult part travelers might face will be to actually find a buyer. I posted the truck for sale several months in advance on a variety of online resources, including: Craigslist (I got the most action on craigslist), Facebook travel groups, Expedition Portal, and my personal blog (Sardinetaco).

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The customs woman was freindly and extremely helpful.

 

1. Go to a Public Notary (Escribano Publico) and have a Power of Attorney (Poder) made authorizing the buyer to drive the vehicle in Argentina and all countries for an unlimited time period. (I found an English speaking notary where I got the power of attorney, They charged me $300 USD, Kier Joffe)

2. Go to a customs office (Google Map for downtown Buenos Aires) to cancel the current temporary import papers and have new ones made in the name of the new owner. This cost nothing.

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The customs office.

 

3. The new owner can now drive the vehicle in Argentina for as long as the temporary import papers allow. They can also leave and re-enter as many times as they like to get new papers, and they can drive to any other country they wish. The original owner can now legally exit Argentina. (Although, from what I concluded, there is no information in my passport that says I entered with a vehicle. I think I could have left the country via airplane without any of this new paperwork.)

4. For more info on selling your vehicle in Argentina, please visit Wikioverland Argentina.

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The deal is done!

 

Using this method was fairly easy, but you must remember, your vehicle is not officially sold, and you are really just giving somebody else permission, for an unlimited time, to travel with the vehicle. There is still a chance you could be held responsible (as the owner) if your vehicle is involved in criminal activity, vehicular homicide, etc. Let’s hope that doesn’t happen. I am not very comfortable with my name still attached to the vehicle, but my only other option was to ship the vehicle back to the USA, and that was out of the budget. The new drivers of the vehicle and I made a written and verbal agreement, to work together once they were in a position to sell the vehicle, including, possibly shipping it back to the states (or doing whatever means necessary to remove both our names from the vehicles history.) I put a certain amount of trust in the new drivers that these things will be considered when they are ready to end their trip and sell the vehicle. I think it’s important, if you use this method, to trust the people you are dealing with (for obvious reasons). To some this may sound like a risky deal, but then again this was a risky trip. If your not a risk taker you probably won’t go on a trip like this to begin with. The entire trip was an amazing adventure and we have no regrets with anything we have done regarding the trip, except eating the airline food on the plane ride home, yikes!…

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This was the last time I saw the Taco in person… Sigh…

 

South America… a short video

Our bags are packed and we’re ready to fly home today. As this trip comes to an end, and another trip is in the planning stages, we will continue to tell tales from the road. So stay tuned…

Here is a short video showcasing some of the things we encountered during our travels in South America. Without cheating, can anyone name what 80’s movie this song is from? If you enjoyed this video please share it on your feed. Thanks everyone for following…

McDonalds in Colombia Video

As some of you already know, we have a love/hate relationship with McDonalds. Although we don’t eat McDonalds back home, while traveling we have definitely taken advantage of the free internet and familiar paper cup of coffee. “Im loving’ it,” as the catch phrase goes. Sometimes its just easier.

“Im hating it,” when I walk in hungry and eat a little too much, more than I initially intended to. I exit the colorful building, hunched over and shamed. Its even hard to look in the eyes of the homeless parking attendant, but I hand him some pesos anyway. Then I would drive down the road and wonder where it all went wrong.

After visiting McDonalds on an international level, its cool to see the different food specific to each country. In Colombia you can order yucca fries while in New Mexico you can get green chile on your burger. For breakfast in Buenos Aires you will order a media luna, (Argentine croissant) and in New York you will get bagels. The little differences are nice, but the one thing they all have in common is the shame and regret you feel after eating a meal at McDonalds.

Bonsai Asado

We were lucky to be guests to an asado (Argentine BBQ & national dish) being hosted by our friend Jorge, one of South America’s top bonsai masters. Jorge’s garden is like a bonsai forest, with a number of pint sized trees that will consume whoever enters. He walked us through the forest and showed us some prize winning bonsais, along with a bonsai he planted from a seed as a child.

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We met Alan (Jorge’s son) back in the states when he was traveling. Now that we are in Buenos Aires he invited us to his family home for the asado. The asado included various cuts of meat, both beef and pork, as well as blood sausage, chorizo and plenty of bread and wine. We stumbled out their door as full as can be.

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Be careful not to step on Penelope when roaming the garden. She may be a tortoise over 40 years old, but she deserves respect.

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Photos of the Buenos Aires Streets

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Wandering aimlessly around Buenos Aires you might come across a nicknack strewn mercado, Che Guevara merch, doll heads, and old buildings plastered with graffiti. When you want to take a break from that, there are plenty of museums to peep, or just enter one of the several salami shops and gaze at the selection. Theres nothing like relaxing in a grassy well manicured park, cutting up salami and bread after a day of street walking.

Rain Soaked in Uruguay

It was three in the morning as I sat naked, confused, disoriented, and a bit groggy from the drinks of the evening. I was sitting in the reclined driver seat of my truck in a major city in South America, downtown, in an upscale neighborhood.

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It started as a travel day like any other, moving from one place to the next, just like we’ve been doing for the past fourteen months. We spent the past two nights camped at “The Point” of Punta Del Diablo on the Northern coast of Uruguay. We shot up to the border town in Brazil to fill up with gas and load up on some tax free goods. The skies were clear, the color of the ocean resembled chocolate, the wind was howling through a windowless structure. Its was a weekday, so the beaches were lonely.

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Hours were spent driving south down the coast, the landscape in Uruguay mostly rolling hills where cattle roam the fields waiting to be consumed by humans, the small crowds of tall trees growing close to one another in the wide open fields bearing resemblance to socially awkward teens in an auditorium at a junior high dance. The climate is not tropical, but palm trees grow wild. We would occasionally see small flocks of kermit-green birds spastically flying in close proximity to our faces. We watched for whales while surfing, the occasional startle from a curious seal as it popped its head out of the water only a few feet from where we floated.

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Then there was the drive through upscale Maldonado and Punta Del Este, the bright white skyscrapers contrasted against the blue sky. The sea was choppy and wind blown, so surfing was out of the agenda. There was a certain comfort provided by the upscale communities we had traveled through. The surroundings felt safe, the off season kept the crowds in check, and well groomed beach combers wished us well. This was all too easy, but the entire day still lay ahead. So we decided to go to Montevideo, the largest city in the country.

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Navigating large foreign cities in the truck is not our strong point. On any given day we would drive into a big sprawl, I would get an anxiety attack, and we would quickly drive out. But Montevideo was clean, organized with courteous drivers steering through the streets while locals exercised up and down the malecón. The clean city beaches below the high-rises, were separated by well-manicured lawns littered with mate sipping bystanders. Although we were in South America, it felt more like Europe.

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Camping in urban areas where we come from is often referred to as “homeless.” Our roof top tent attracts unwanted attention and firing up exotic curry dishes in the rear of the Toyota also attracts wandering eyes. Sometimes I wish we had a van.

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We found a spot to camp amongst other overland vehicles, sandwiched between a gas station and the Atlantic Ocean. The situation was suspiciously perfect. The gas station provided bathrooms and free wifi. The green grassy field we parked in had other overlanders (safety in numbers) and a horizontal view of the Atlantic lightning storm which we would later find out, would unexpectedly changed our night’s plans.

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The wind was strong all day, but the rain came around midnight, soaking the tent and shaking the truck violently. It was about 2am when the wind clocked in at over 30 mph, the roof top tent resembling a giant clam shell closing down on us while we helplessly tried to sleep inside. At this point Sara feared for her safety and retreated to the cab of the truck, pleading for us to join her. Lupe and I stayed in the tent giving in to the comfort of warm wet blankets and a half drunken slumber. The tent was on the cusp of eating us alive and then blowing away in the night sea.

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Rational thinking finally kicked in, the tent was on the verge of explosion, we needed to get the hell out, and quickly. I cradled the dog and exited the tent, instantly soaked we entered the truck and hatched a quick scheme. Wearing only a bathing suit and a rain coat, blinded by wind and rain, shivering cold, Sara and I struggled to break camp while Lupe laid comfortably on her bed in the cab of the truck. It was 2:30 am, the truck was now running, the streets were flooded, the downpour was torrential. Police barricades blocked flooded streets and we noticed were the only ones out in the city of 1.5 million people.

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We retreated deep into the city streets, wind blocked by apartment buildings, rain intercepted by tree. It was still uncomfortable, but compared to where we came from it was a better situation. We striped off our wet cloths, tired and disoriented, this was where the story began. How long could we sit here in the truck, naked, drying off, in an upscale neighborhood, and not get arrested. The storm was bad, no one was around so we had the night to ourselves. We re-setup the tent, laid in wet blankets in the soaked clamshell of a tent and surprisingly, we slept the rest of the early morning in downtown Montevideo.

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Waking up to the light of day, we climbed down the ladder from the roof of our truck, in a neighborhood where respectable citizens were on their way to work. They give us the “button eye” while they briskly walked past. I didn’t blame them, we looked pathetic. Then driving through the city we spotted the golden arches. There is no better place for a couple of pathetic Americans than a McDonalds. Americans seem to be the only people who travel thousands of miles to eat the same hormone injected protein we could get in our local shopping mall parking lots back home. We try not to make this a habit, but free internet, clean bathrooms, and hot coffee was hard to resist after a tiring night exposed to the elements.

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It looked like rain for the rest of the day in the entire country. All hopes of exploring the city were denied, everything was shut down. We were wet, everything was soaked, and we needed to find a room somewhere. So we headed towards the Argentinian border in hopes of crossing over within a few days. We drove towards Colonia, only a few hours away. The gasoline light illuminated; I had 30 miles left until empty but Colonia was only 10 miles away––no problem. Five miles from town, the traffic stopped. Then, cars ahead began to turn around. I was in desperate need of gas. I passed the line of traffic only to discover that the road had turned to a rapidly flowing river over 1/2 mile across. We headed back to where we came from, finding a gas station just as the last fumes were consumed by our engine.

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The next several hours were spent exploring the surrounding area, where we searched for a safe route to Colonia, only to be disappointed with more flooded highways. There was no way in or out of Colonia by vehicle. So after more hours of driving we pulled into the riverside town of Mercedes. The river was swollen but the town sits safety on a hill, protected from the waterlogged river bank and flooded parks. The day ended and the sun sank on the horizon. The sky and buildings turned the color of salmon, a rainbow spanned the late afternoon sky. The worst was over, we could sense it in the air. As the last few raindrops fell from above, we sipped wine and looked out the window of our rented room. Exhausted and relieved, we embraced our hard earned relaxation, the wine too good to describe. Tomorrow would be another day, one of drying wet clothes and gear. Such is life on the road.