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Laos forum

Buying a bicycle in Vientiane

Posted by laos2010 on 4/10/2010 at 11:47

Where can a buy a decent bicycle in vientiane for $50 - $75 max? I tried looking in the morning market but all I saw were kids bikes, while the massive bike hold at the corner of dong palan and khongvieng is a total rip off. The little punk kid was quoting me prices of 500,000 kip for the sketchiest pieces of **** they had -while the better looking mountain bikes were upwards of 2000000 kip (and everything was used - it was ridiculous.). This is becoming a huge hassle - does anyone have tips where I can get a decently priced use bike????

#1 laos2010 has been a member since 4/10/2010. Posts: 7

Posted by laos2010 on 4/10/2010 at 12:10

I meant to say Khouvieng and dongpalane

#2 laos2010 has been a member since 4/10/2010. Posts: 7


Posted by Captain_Bob on 5/10/2010 at 02:38

Ask your question on
http://www.lonelyplanet.com/thorntree/forum.jspa?forumID=24
and I'm sure you'll get some local current accurate replies

#3 Captain_Bob has been a member since 27/5/2006. Location: Thailand. Posts: 1,918

Posted by Rufus on 6/10/2010 at 10:55

You are highly unlikely to get a bicycle for that price. Second hand bikes around town are sold by expats and if the bike has two wheels they generally want a lot ,ore than you appear to be prepared to pay.
Look in the windows of Phimphone mini Mart and Simuang mini mart. You might be able to pick up something. The bike shops around town only sell new bikes.
PS Why was the kid a "punk kid"?

#4 Rufus has been a member since 22/4/2007. Location: Laos. Posts: 976
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Posted by laos2010 on 11/10/2010 at 15:16

He was a 'punk kid' because he was trying to sell me the biggest piece of **** he had for $80. Prices went up for bikes that were still (though slightly less so) pieces of ****. That bike would sell for $10 back home in the West, if that. He saw a foreigner and decided it was time to cash in. I walked away and he got nothing.

The prices for used bikes here is ridiculous. These are the shittiest, most run down, uglist bikes I have ever seen and they are selling for prices of $70 at a minimum. It's crazy. Where the hell am I? The twilight zone?

#5 laos2010 has been a member since 4/10/2010. Posts: 7

Posted by exacto on 11/10/2010 at 23:16

bikes are expensive in laos because there is a large demand and a short supply. pretty simple really. things that are produced in laos, like food and handicrafts and the world-class Beer Lao are cheap. really cheap. things that are imported are expensive. it doesn't matter what that bicycle might cost in the west. and you certainly wouldn't get that hotel room or that beer in a restaurant for as little money in the west as you would in Vientiane.

you aren't in the twilight zone, but you definitely seem out of place.

#6 exacto has been a member since 12/2/2006. Location: United States. Posts: 2,685
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Posted by Rufus on 12/10/2010 at 07:03

I agree with Exacto. I think you should leave Laos, as you don't fit in here. $10 for a bike back home? roflmao.

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Posted by laos2010 on 12/10/2010 at 11:31

Yeah, ok, I don't 'fit in' in Laos because I think paying $80 for a used, rusted, beated up 1970s era bicycle is ridiculous. Gotcha.

$10 is precisely what any reasonable person would pay back home for many of these used, old, dilapidated bikes I am seeing. I am not talking about imported, shiny new mountain bikes, or even bikes that were manufactured within the past 10 or 15 years. Learn to read. The kid at dongpalane tried to sell me on of these death rides for $80 - it didn't even have a seat.

#8 laos2010 has been a member since 4/10/2010. Posts: 7

Posted by laos2010 on 12/10/2010 at 11:45

I might add these prices are in place for foreigners. There is no way the average Lao could afford to drop 600,000 -1000000 LAK for a simple used, Soviet era bicycle. No way. And I accept that I am going to have to pay more than the locals, and I certainly don't expect to actually pay $10 for even the most run-down bike I could find, but the prices I am being quoted for what the quality of these used bikes are, is absurd.

I enjoy living in Laos so far. I like the people, the culture, the food and what I am doing here. Just because I am pissed about one tiny aspect of the marketplace doesn't mean I don't fit in or that I am out of place. I am entitled to have a gripe about something without have holy-than-though expats shaking their fingers at me.

#9 laos2010 has been a member since 4/10/2010. Posts: 7

Posted by laos2010 on 12/10/2010 at 11:46

edit: holier than thou

#10 laos2010 has been a member since 4/10/2010. Posts: 7

Posted by Rufus on 12/10/2010 at 12:07

"I might add these prices are in place for foreigners." No they're not; now you are posting nonsense.

#11 Rufus has been a member since 22/4/2007. Location: Laos. Posts: 976
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Posted by exacto on 12/10/2010 at 12:11

easy now. i'm glad to read that you are enjoying your time in Laos. the magic of the place is exactly the slow, easy-going pace. but there are things to remind you that you aren't in Kansas anymore either.

definitely got the message that you are pissed about bicycle prices, but unfortunately that is all you've had to say so far, which is kind of a put off. hopefully you won't be shy about sharing some insights and experiences and details about the things you're doing and the good as well as the bad, and ease up on the name calling and swearing. best wishes.

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Posted by laos2010 on 12/10/2010 at 13:11

"I might add these prices are in place for foreigners." No they're not; now you are posting nonsense.

--

I am not. I work with Lao people and they laughed hysterically when I showed them the bikes and the prices I was being quoted. German expats. They have to be among the most irritating breed.

Anyways, they helped me find a bicycle for a decent and reasonable price. It helps to go shopping with a local.

Rufus, you are full of yourself. For that matter, you're both pompous and condescending. I was being ripped off, and my Lao colleagues agreed. You two are just full of ****.

#13 laos2010 has been a member since 4/10/2010. Posts: 7

Posted by Rufus on 12/10/2010 at 15:16

Well I am afraid you sojourn in Laos has not improved your vocabulary or your manners. One would have thought that by now you had learned a little jai yen yen from the Laos. Now you are even insulting the Germans. I suggest you have a Beer Laos and a long hard think.

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Posted by exacto on 13/10/2010 at 00:58

oh well. can't win 'em all i guess...

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