For general tips on how to deal with the police, the local driving style, some basic driver’s Russian, see the driving overview page. Here we discuss the state of the roads, where to find parts, repair shops, and how to deal with transporting, customs and selling a car.
Traffic is generally not too busy; especially if you just came from Iran, it will be a pleasant surprise. That’s not counting Baku, though!
The roads are generally in a good state, definitely the major ones. The Lagodekhi – Baku road is very scenic, we recommend it if you have little time in Azerbaijan.
The road up the mountain to Lahic is under construction (June 2013). Currently a 1 hour ride from the main road.
Insurance, border payments and police checks
The latest report from April 2017 says the old customs regimes have been cancelled. There are now no longer any hefty deposits to be paid. Total payment at the border was 20$ import tax and 20$ mandatory insurance.
We are looking for further confirmation.
History of the customs regimes
Since the April 2017 report, it seems this info is now out of date. We keep it here for archival purposes for the moment.
There are 2 customs regimes for entering with a vehicle to Azerbaijan; a 72 hour regime and a 30 day regime. The duration for which your car may enter the country is limited by your visa – if your visa is valid for less than 30 days, you will only have 72 hours in the country.
Under the 72 hour regime with a transit visa, the transit fee is $20. You are not obliged to get insurance at the border. The rules to enter the exclave of Nakhchivan are the same as entering ‘mainland’ Azerbaijan.
The rule has not been changed (latest report December 2016.)
With a tourist visa, you need to pay a deposit of $4000 to 10000$ if your car is not a “euro class 4” which means any car built after 2006. If you do not want to pay this deposit you get a 3 days transit for the car. With a tourist visa, at the border you will need to pay an entry tax for your vehicle and insurance. The amount seems to vary between 25$ and 70$, around 5$ for motorbikes. You can pay in dollar, manat, lari or euro.
So does this mean you can get an e-visa or tourist visa for yourself, and a transit visa for the car? We are not sure and the discussion is raging on our forum.
Police is everywhere in Azerbaijan and the main roads are a giant speed trap, especially the ones coming from Georgia. Be very careful with your speed as there are no road signs indicating how fast you can go. From locals we deducted you can drive 50 (or 60) km/h in towns, and 90 (or 100) km/h on intercity roads. If you get pulled over, expect to pay a stiff fine in the hundreds of dollars.
Car parts, motorcycle parts and mechanics
We cannot recommend anyone yet. If you know of a reliable mechanic anywhere in Azerbaijan, please let us know in the comments!