Using the US Dollar as the benchmark, where's the best country to buy a bike???
There are literally hundreds of bike shops in Munich, Germany, and this year bikes have generally sold for the same amount in Euros, or more, than the equivalent US Dollar amount. This generally equates to at least a 50% price increase. It helps a little if you are not a resident in that you can get a 19% VAT refund at the airport, but that is offset by oversized luggage charges.
Golf club and equipment trading can be even more lucrative.
I frequent the dealers of Specialized, Trek, Cannondale, Scott, Rocky Mountain and Kona, and slow moving models are slowly being discounted to make room for 2009. To of the dealer/owners I know really well, and they still can't match USD equivalent prices. I don't fault them because the supplier system is really tight here for the name brands. Mail order of off-brands are often maybe 30% cheaper and better overall part mix, but still not much less than buying a name brand from the USA.
Munich is friggin expensive in General, but I haven't see much difference in the Euro Zone. I'm not as well versed, but even though the UK Pound is stronger against the Dollar, the prices there are lower and go farther than spending your dollar in Euros.
Good deals to be found in China and Hong Kong, but I haven't taken the time to shop for bike stuff. The best place in the world to buy a premium watch is definitely Hong Kong IMO.
In Bogota, Colombia and surrounding countries, these name brands are about the same price as in Europe, sometimes higher, in a US Dollar equivalent, and MUCH harder to find and get high end parts. The physical risk of owning one is much higher too...
So my current vote is the USA based on my experience.
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