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  1. #1
    Senior Member parcoju's Avatar
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    So close to buying a Tikit . . .

    So I visited my local Bike Friday dealer and test rode the Tikit and it was a really fun ride.

    I was so close to buying it . . . . .

    But I currently live in South Korea, not the United States . . .

    And the stock Tikit costs $500 USD MORE than one from the US!!!

    So the total cost would be about $2000 USD for a STOCK Tikit . . . . .
    http://www.basports.co.kr/front/php/...isplay_group=1
    As much as I want a Tikit, I don't think I want to pay $500 more.

    If you didn't know, South Korea is a heavily protectionist country and aggressively tax, tariff, and apply customs duties to anything not made in South Korea.

    So now I'm sad and a little distraught.

    My birthday is this month and I thought about treating myself to a nice bike.

    I don't think buying one from the US and shipping it to Korea would work either since it would get taxed to hell and back.

    One a more positive note, folding bikes and minivelos are quite popular here, at least in Seoul.

    I've seen Montagues, Bike Fridays, Dahons, Bromptons, Stridas, Moultons (!), and even Flamingo Bikes (Brompton-clones)

    But anyways, I still want a Tikit. For about $1400, yes. For 2,180,000원 (about $1950), I'll pass.

    What do you all think? Should I bite the bullet and pay the markup or should I check out some cheaper options?

  2. #2
    Senior Member mtalinm's Avatar
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    Wow sorry to hear that. Maybe ask the folks at Xootr if they have ideas? They will happily shipbthere I'm sure. The Swift is pretty similar to th Tikit I think ... Seems like the Tikit may hade been a BF response to the Swift...
    Trek Domane 4.5 (commute/distance), Specialized Roubaix (climber), Xootr Swift (winter/travel), Trek Soho (around town)

  3. #3
    Senior Member parcoju's Avatar
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    There is a shop in Seoul that sells the Xootr. (You pretty much have to go to Seoul or the big cities to get a good selection of folding bikes)

    It costs 1,200,000원, about $1065 USD, about $200-300 more than a new Swift in the US.

    Protectionism is the norm here, and if you don't "buy Korean," the government slaps you with a big markup.

    I thought this was a bit ironic, considering that the G20 Summit, held in Seoul this past weekend, was about trade liberalization.

    Anyways, I guess I'll check out Korean made bikes and, heck, maybe even the Flamingo. We'll see, we'll see.

    The reason I don't want to buy the Swift is because I'm a small guy, 5'3" on a good day, and I like the low step-over of the Tikit and Brompton. Though the tinkerer in me does have an itch for the Swift xD.

    I also take the bus quite frequently in my area and the Subway when I'm in Seoul, so it's pretty much Brompton or Tikit for me.

  4. #4
    These go to eleven kegoguinness's Avatar
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    That stinks, sorry! Tikits cost enough here in the States. I bought one used. I, too ride bus and train a lot so the Tikit is great for that. There are threads where people disparrage the rolling method of the Tikit, but for my money, it's the easiest folder to roll while folded. Rather than little rack wheels, you have a full-size 16" wheel to roll over pavement cracks, off the bus and onto the curb (no need to lift the Tikit), over the gap between the platform and train (again, no need to lift), and on and on.

    I assume you've been watching craigslist seoul for one? Currently if you search for "bike friday" you get a link to for sale "big, imperfect mountain bike" . Oh well, keep watching I guess.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtalinm View Post
    he Swift is pretty similar to th Tikit I think ... Seems like the Tikit may hade been a BF response to the Swift...
    Quite unlikely.

    Hint: early Tikit designs had a folding hinge in the top tube in addition to the swinging rear triangle.

  6. #6
    Senior Member mtalinm's Avatar
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    I meant more that it is a sub-$1k bike with limited gearing
    Trek Domane 4.5 (commute/distance), Specialized Roubaix (climber), Xootr Swift (winter/travel), Trek Soho (around town)

  7. #7
    Senior Member Lalato's Avatar
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    How about becoming friends with someone in the US military. I bet if you buy the Tikit through that person, you might avoid some of the tariffs and taxes. That said, I'm not sure if you can get in trouble for doing that as I've never been to S. Korea and I'm not familiar with any laws there.

  8. #8
    Senior Member parcoju's Avatar
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    I do have some friends in the US army stationed over here, and one of them has kindly offered to have stuff shipped to him and he'll give them to me.

    I don't know if or how much a bike would be taxed, but from personal experience, it would probably still come up to around $2000 -_-

  9. #9
    cyclopath vik's Avatar
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    There is no easy answer. I live in Canada and often I have to pay quite a bit more for something than if I lived in the US. Sometimes there are practical reasons for the difference and some times there are not any. Recently I paid about 25% more to buy a surfboard than it would have cost in the US. I could have driven there [2hrs away] bought it and tried to bring it back without paying tax [illegal] to save the $$. I ended up supporting my local surf shop and buying it locally. That was a better option when I factored in the travel costs, risk of not declaring it and the good will generated at my local shop.

    What I'd suggest is not looking at what the Tikit costs in the US vs. Korea, but rather look at what the Tikit costs vs. other folders you would ride that are available in Korea. That's the real situation.
    safe riding - Vik
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  10. #10
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Of course you could fly to Eugene From Korea, via Seattle, ride the bike around a bit,
    make a few parts picks for fitting to you in the shop at BF ..

    maybe as a used bike and accompanied luggage you could bring it home for less,
    than shipping coming thru customs as freight and paying Import Duty.

  11. #11
    Senior Member
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    What can you get for that money where you live?
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  12. #12
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    Flying to US from Korea round trip would be the cost of bike and some... (the lost time, etc)

    There are some "shops" that will help you ship things to Korea, etc but I presume that would probably be illegal.

  13. #13
    Senior Member parcoju's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vik View Post
    What I'd suggest is not looking at what the Tikit costs in the US vs. Korea, but rather look at what the Tikit costs vs. other folders you would ride that are available in Korea. That's the real situation.
    That's solid advice. If I recall correctly, here in Korea, a Brompton M6R is about USD $1600 and the tikit is about USD $2000.

    There are also folding bikes here that most of us have probably never heard of: dahon clones, kmart look-a-likes, and bikes that look like the ones you see on ebay.

    They are still quite expensive, about Stateside Dahon pricing, but of unknown brand or origin.

    Dahons also seem to cost more too. About $200 more stateside.

    Conclusion: basically all folding bikes here in Korea cost more.

    And I have to agree with you Vik, I've already shipped some stuff from the US and it's quite a hassle. I'd much rather avoid it.

    Also, I do agree with you on the goodwill part. I don't speak Korean extremely well, but the guys at the shop were very helpful and showed me around and let me test ride lots of bikes.

    And I think biking with Korean people in Korea would be pretty awesome. There are amazing bike routes and Korea is a very scenic place, so it would be awesome to have some Korean people to show me around. 8)

    Quote Originally Posted by Dynocoaster View Post
    What can you get for that money where you live?
    I'm not sure what you mean >.< Do you mean where I live now, in Korea, or where I lived in the United States?

    My personal cost of living is very low here in Korea. In two months I only spent $1000 USD and I could have lived on even less if I didn't do so many fun and awesome things. But what kind of life would that be? xD

    So USD $2000 is big money here, if that answers your question. Just to throw a guesstimate out there, I'd say I could buy 1 tikit, 1 Brompton (with about $400 left over), 2 Xootrs (hmmmm) 3-5 Dahons (low to mid-range), 7-8 Dahon clones, and 9-10 no name folders.


    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    Of course you could fly to Eugene From Korea, via Seattle, ride the bike around a bit,
    make a few parts picks for fitting to you in the shop at BF ..

    maybe as a used bike and accompanied luggage you could bring it home for less,
    than shipping coming thru customs as freight and paying Import Duty.
    Yeah . . . I've thought about this, but I think it will be more hassle than it's worth xD
    Last edited by parcoju; 11-16-10 at 02:15 AM.

  14. #14
    cyclopath vik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by parcoju View Post
    That's solid advice. If I recall correctly, here in Korea, a Brompton M6R is about USD $1600 and the tikit is about USD $2000.

    There are also folding bikes here that most of us have probably never heard of: dahon clones, kmart look-a-likes, and bikes that look like the ones you see on ebay.

    They are still quite expensive, about Stateside Dahon pricing, but of unknown brand or origin.

    Dahons also seem to cost more too. About $200 more stateside.

    Conclusion: basically all folding bikes here in Korea cost more.

    And I have to agree with you Vik, I've already shipped some stuff from the US and it's quite a hassle. I'd much rather avoid it.

    Also, I do agree with you on the goodwill part. I don't speak Korean extremely well, but the guys at the shop were very helpful and showed me around and let me test ride lots of bikes.

    And I think biking with Korean people in Korea would be pretty awesome. There are amazing bike routes and Korea is a very scenic place, so it would be awesome to have some Korean people to show me around. 8)



    I'm not sure what you mean >.< Do you mean where I live now, in Korea, or where I lived in the United States?

    My personal cost of living is very low here in Korea. In two months I only spent $1000 USD and I could have lived on even less if I didn't do so many fun and awesome things. But what kind of life would that be? xD


    Well based on that get the bike you want...saving a few hundred dollars is a false economy if the bike you get isn't something you love. As I said in another recent post when comparing Bromptons to a Tikit - they are both high quality bikes, but very different so be sure you understand the differences because they will be evident every time you hope aboard. I had an option to buy a Brompton at wholesale when I ended up buying my Tikit. The Tikit cost me more, but I love it and it's been 3yrs of great riding and many more to come so it was a good investment for me.

    I met some Korean Bike Friday riders in Calgary [learning English] and we went on some great rides that were immortalized in a Korean bike mag. They loved riding and I would definitely encourage you to get some wheels and enjoy their bike stoke. I assume your time in Korea is limited and you won't feel bad about the money spent on a bike 10 years from now.
    safe riding - Vik
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  15. #15
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Yeah . . . I've thought about this, but I think it will be more hassle than it's worth xD
    Well, Timing to visit Oregon in the late summer would be more pleasant than during the wet dark season.

    Though We still have people riding the Oregon Coast, cycling in their rain gear in other than ideal weather.

  16. #16
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    I meant what could you get in South Korea for that money?
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  17. #17
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    Vik, is there larger copy of that article? I would like to read it

  18. #18
    cyclopath vik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bored117 View Post
    Vik, is there larger copy of that article? I would like to read it
    Sure there are actually two articles. Click on the link below you can view each page at a high rez. Since I don't read Korean I've never actually read these articles so spare my feelings if they say anything unflattering about me....hahaha...

    http://www.flickr.com/search/?q=maga...=9932605%40N08
    safe riding - Vik
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by vik View Post
    Sure there are actually two articles. Click on the link below you can view each page at a high rez. Since I don't read Korean I've never actually read these articles so spare my feelings if they say anything unflattering about me....hahaha...

    http://www.flickr.com/search/?q=maga...=9932605%40N08
    They had great fun with you. I guess you have a place to hang if you ever visit Korea looking at amount of gratitude and fun they had

  20. #20
    Senior Member parcoju's Avatar
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    quick update: winter break is coming up soon and that means vacationing!

    So . . . my family from the United States and I are meeting up during vacation . . .

    So this opens up some new options. I could have my family buy the bike and bring it with them as checked luggage or something and they could give it to me when we meet!

    Hmmmmm . . . . What do you all think?

  21. #21
    cyclopath vik's Avatar
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    Check out if BF has any winter sales on - particularly on their stock bikes. You might get an even nicer deal. Good luck...whatever you get I hope you are riding something you love soon...
    safe riding - Vik
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  22. #22
    Erudite white trash lexm's Avatar
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    Black Friday only: Buy a Bike Friday and get 15% of the purchase price toward accessories and upgrades. Got the email a day or two ago. Must place order by 10.00p Pacific time today, I think they said.

    And now I can't find that email anywhere. Did I just dream it?
    Last edited by lexm; 11-26-10 at 08:49 AM. Reason: Confusion and bewilderment

  23. #23
    Erudite white trash lexm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lexm View Post
    Black Friday only: Buy a Bike Friday and get 15% of the purchase price toward accessories and upgrades. Got the email a day or two ago. Must place order by 10.00p Pacific time today, I think they said.

    And now I can't find that email anywhere. Did I just dream it?
    Okay, I didn't dream it:

    The Friday Countdown
    You've waited 51 Fridays for this:
    Buy any Bike Friday on BLACK FRIDAY
    And you'll earn back 15% of your Bike Cost to apply to
    ACCESSORIES and/or UPGRADES and/or SHIPPING*

    A rainbow of colors for Black Friday
    *Here's how it works:

    Pick the Bike Friday you've had your eye on forever, and we'll give you an additional credit of 15% of that bike price to apply toward accessories and/or upgrades and/or shipping. So Paint It (Stealth) Black, or SRAM Red It, or Ship it to Nome, and don't think twice.

    Contact our Bike Friday Experts at 1-800-777-0258 or sales@bikefriday.com.

    Our team will be available all day Friday to take your order, even though our No. 1 ranked Oregon Ducks will be playing across town (feel free to offer score updates during your ordering process).
    Offer expires at midnight Friday, Nov. 26th Pacific Time. As long as we receive your email by midnight November 26th and your payment by 6 p.m. Monday, Nov 29th, the deal is yours. If you have a local Bike Friday dealer, the order will be shipped to that store and your dealer duly credited. Discount applies to Bike Friday accessories, paint upgrades, shipping or components.

    Please quote Black Magic code 1715

  24. #24
    Senior Member parcoju's Avatar
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    Gosh! I just missed it >.<

    My friends and I are celebrating Thanksgiving so we were occupied. Oh well! That won't stop me from getting a bike!

  25. #25
    cyclopath vik's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by parcoju View Post
    Gosh! I just missed it >.<

    My friends and I are celebrating Thanksgiving so we were occupied. Oh well! That won't stop me from getting a bike!
    Let BF know about your desire to ride a Tikit in Korea and I wouldn't be surprised if they worked out a deal for you. Almost every bike related business I know of offers their most flexible pricing in the dead of winter to help with cash flow at a low point in the bike industries year. It wouldn't be bad form to as if they'd extend the sale price an extra day or two.
    safe riding - Vik
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