Waiting for my Motorcycle to Heal in Guatemala City

For the next week I waited for my motorcycle to heal in Guatemala City :-).


In the morning I would go to Bavaria Motors to check in to see how my motorcycle was feeling :-). We are working on her the “Dr.” would say.

With that it was off to the Starbucks at the Oakland Mall to work on posts and answer emails.



The Starbucks here had a daily special for 25 Q or about $4.60 Cdn. That consisted of a small coffee and a bagel or a ham and cheese croissant. Considering the prospects of my mechanic bill I was in a saving money mood. Plus I knew that on Saturday I would be at a restaurant to have a few beers and watch the Champion’s League Final. So I was saving for that too.

By late afternoon I would have finished a post and it was time to hit the Oakland Mall.

Oakland Mall

This mall is huge and ultra modern.

oakland mall

oakland mall 3

oakland mall

oakland mall 2

Oakland mall train

I wasn’t expecting this in Guatemala. You know how you have visions of certain countries? Often they are wrong. Like me and Guatemala. Yes there is a lot of poverty here but also lots of modern conveniences too.

The mall also had a big restaurant court for those with money.

oakland mall restaurant court

oakland mall restaurant court 2

And a regular fast food court for those who don’t have lots of money … like me 🙂

So I would hit the Panda Express everyday to get my vegetables and a cheap meal.

panda express


Comfort Hostel

After Panda Express I sometimes would hit the market and then home to the Comfort Hostel. The Comfort Hostel wasn’t really a hostel. I had my own room and washroom. It was basic. But the people were really nice!!! Even if I didn’t always understand them. A couple though spoke English.

The Comfort Hostel was over my budget, but as I found out, Guatemala City is expensive. At least compared to Mexico.

I would spend the evening and night, watching TV, reading, and cleaning up my stuff.

This went on until Friday.

The Motorcycle Bill

On Friday Bavaria Motors emailed and said my motorcycle was ready. I braced myself as I walked there. What would the bill be?

When I arrived my motorcycle was waiting for me. It was beautiful! All cleaned up and repaired.

Now the bill. As you may recall, they originally gave me an estimate of 28,833.48 Q or about $5338 Cdn.

The bill they gave me was for 18,594.25 Q or about $3,442 Cdn! About $2,000 less!!! I was soooo happy. Still a lot, but this fit into my budget. Here was the breakdown:

1) Change of the front rim – 650 Q or about $120 Cdn
2) Replacement of front brake pads – 150 Q or about $28 Cdn
3) Change of my front left turn signal bulb – 50 Q or about $9 Cdn
4) Washing of the motorcycle – 0 Q 🙂
5) Change of the front forks – 800 Q or about $148 Cdn
6) Rim – 6,000 Q or about $1,111 Cdn
7) Rim weights – 9.84 Q or about $2 Cdn
8) Turn signal bulb – 19.26 Q or about $4 Cdn
9) Shock absorber oil – 214.41 Q or about $40 Cdn
10) Shock absorbers – 1,792.50 Q or about $332 Cdn
11) Shock absorber retainers – 329.71 Q or about $61 Cdn
12) New front tire Continental Trail Attack 2 – 1,571.02 Q or about $291 Cdn
13) Shampoo – 1.41 Q or about 25 cents Cdn
14) Support Tubes – 7,006.11 Q or about $1,297 Cdn

They had made a few changes from the estimate to lower the cost. First, they got me a used rim that actually looked pretty good. Second, instead of replacing both forks, they just replaced the bent tubes.

As I rode my bike home I had a big smile on my face. The ride and wind felt wonderful. Plus … I made it! From the side of the road totally discouraged with a broken motorcycle by Lake Atitlan, to riding home on a shiny fixed bike in Guatemala City. I made it! Kind of a confidence builder.

My Location from May 28 to June 2, 2017


Made it to the Mechanic – Bavaria Motors, Guatemala City

I woke up this morning thinking how will I get my motorcycle to Bavaria Motors in Guatemala City from Antigua.

Before my accident I had already booked an appointment there for Monday to repair a leaking fork seal. Now both seals were totally gone, at least one fork tube bent, my tire rim bent, and I had a destroyed tire.

Hotel San Jorge

The staff at the Hotel San Jorge were great during my stay in Antigua. Now I needed them more than ever. I asked them if they could find a truck for me to haul my motorcycle and me to my hotel in Guatemala City.

Within a hour they found someone that would do it for 500 Q, or about $100 Cdn., without an invoice ha ha ha. I really don’t like that because obviously he is trying to avoid taxes. But I didn’t need an invoice and I did need a truck. So I accepted.

Trip to Guatemala City

At noon the guy showed up to pick up my motorcycle.


Off we went.


It isn’t far to Gautemala City from Antigua, only 43 km. Soon we were at my hotel and had unloaded my bike.


Another successful day of getting my motorcycle and me to our next destination. There was just one more trip to get us to Bavaria Motors.

Bavaria Motors

I had specifically chosen my hotel because it was close to Bavaria Motors. So the next day I walked to the Bavaria Motors and explained my new predicament.

They arranged to have a truck come, take me back to my hotel, pick up my motorcycle, and bring us back.

The truck was small. But it made it easy to load my motorcycle 🙂




Back to Bavaria Motors we went.

They have an interesting set up there. The mechanic shop is actually on the second floor and they have a lift that takes the motorcycle up there.



I walked away from the dealership with a sense of relief and a smile. I did it. With the help of lots of people I managed to get my broken motorcycle from the side of the road by Lake Atitlan to the BMW mechanic in Guatemala City!


The Estimate

My smile was short lived though. I walked to Starbucks to celebrate :-). But while there Bavaria Motors sent me the estimate for the repairs – 28,833.48 Q or about $5,340 Cdn!!!! I was in shock! This was A LOT of money! I suppose I could afford it, but it would do serious damage to my budget. But what choice did I have?

The break down was as follows:

1) Change of front rim – 650 Q or $120 Cdn
2) Change of front bars – 500 Q or $93 Cdn
3) Change of front light bulb – 50 Q or $9 Cdn
4) Replace front brake pads – 150 Q or $28 Cdn
5) A new front tire rim which had to be ordered from Germany – 10,000 Q or $1,850
6) CdnBulb 19.26 Q or $4 Cdn
7) Front Shock Absorber 8,099.35 Q or $1,500 Cdn
8) Front Shock Absorber 8,099.35 Q or $1,500 Cdn
9) Front brake pads 1,265.52 Q or $234 Cdn

What to do Now

In this situation I know some would haggle, yell, scream etc. to get the price down.

Others would tell me to take my motorcycle elsewhere. There are a lot of corner mechanics around in Guatemala.

And I did receive the suggestion of flying to the US, finding a BMW motorcycle used part place, buy the parts and fly back to Guatemala with them to save money.

Contrary to what many believe, I don’t believe there is a single right way to respond to this situation. There is only the right way FOR YOU. And I don’t believe in being critical of people who choose the way that is best for them.

My decision may turn out to be a mistake, but it is my mistake. Everyone has their own mistakes to think about rather than criticizing my mistake. If it even is one.

So what did I choose to do?

I stayed with Bavaria Motors because they are use to working on BMW motorcycles and have the parts. Plus they have a good rep among adventure motorcyclists.

For me I like to be nice and develop a relationship with people so that they will want to do the best they can for me. I believe that Bavaria Motors should make a reasonable profit, and that I should receive a reasonable deal.

Sooooo after the initial shock I responded to their email saying it was expensive and did they have a used rim available to put on to lower the price.

The response back was that they would do their best to lower the price.

For the next couple of days I went in to say hello and develop a relationship with them. We’ll see what the final outcome is. Fingers crossed.

My Route for May 28, 2017


My Location for May, 29, 2017

My hotel is where the blue dot is. So close to Bavaria Motors.


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