Which scooter? Dream? Super Cub? Chaly? Daelim?

27 Jan

Day 1 by Dean

This morning we headed out full of enthusiasm to start the search for the scooters, to find another hotel and also buy some doxycycline.

The doxy was easy, $10 for 100 pills from the first pharmacy we came across (no prescription needed), but the hotel and scooters were more of challenge.

After looking at more than 10 alternatives, in classic travel mode we concluded that the place we are already staying at will do just fine, and since it’s is in a lively area we’ve booked 4 extra rooms for Sunday and Monday night for the rest of the gang. Rooms are twin share for $18/night, clean, with AC, hot water and wifi. The only downside is that they dont have any windows… but we aren’t planning to be in them much so this is no big deal just as long as the place doesn’t catch fire! If you want a room to yourself just let us know and we’ll book you an extra one. The name of the place is Royal Mekong Palace, on the riverfront. (if you want to stay elsewhere that’s cool too, just let us know and we’ll cancel the booking).

Scooters… so we eventually found ourselves walking a stretch of the city where the was shop after shop of scooter places, all selling Honda dreams, albeit new. (A new one is $US1200 in case you’re curious). We quizzed some shop owners about the price of second hand bikes but the language barrier makes it a bit difficult, and being a foreigner the prices were hard to take seriously.

Happy couple working at one of the scooter shops. She insisted we take her photo.

We did work out that the older version of the Dream, called a Honda Super Cub, is being imported second hand from Japan, and are held in high esteem by the locals as a strong reliable bike. They are available with engines ranging from 50cc to 100cc, (90cc is quite common), and prices paid by locals are about US600. We really like these bikes.


Then there is the Honda Chaly, much cheaper than the Cub, we were offered 9 of them for $400 each without much negotiation, so they must be available for half that in the right place. Down side is that they have little wheels and a 50cc motor, top speed of 60 or 70km/hr (think ‘Dumb and Dumber’). We think it would be hilarious to do the ride on these – but it’s a last resort.


Last night we met some locals who were helpful with advice on where to go looking for bikes, so today we have a list of 4 different markets and shops where we should be more successful in finding older bikes for sale.

Dave test driving a Daelim

Also quite interestingly, we were offered a buyback arrangement on new Dreams at one of the shops, buy at 1200, sell back for 1000 (depending on the condition). This could be an option too, but we’re worried about the potential loss if we sink a bike, or when we fall off them, so buying an old one is still the preference. It might be that we buy secondhand for a little more than originally budgeted, then sell them back to the same shop and then make whatever donation to SC from the proceeds that each person can afford.

We also found a great local produce market, (complete with slabs of meat covered in flies), and adjacent Khmer food district where we’ll eat on Sunday night. While sitting on the street drinking Angkor beers for 75c each, we were spotted looking at bikes by one of the kids parking them. He promptly brought over a chinese copy of a supercub and told us we could have it for $200!! It was old and very tired looking, (and only 50cc), but still this was really encouraging that it should be possible to pick something up for a good price.

The plan for tomorrow: Go to the Russian Market to look for some second hand bike shops, and try to find a source for offroad tyres 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *