Departed the hotel by 8:30am and stopped for breakfast on the way out of the city. There was a place called Bagels & Beans which made some very good sandwiches. It was very different than the “New York” style bagel, in regards to taste, but still delicious.
Today was drop off day in Bremerhaven, also called “Bimmer Heaven” since the cars ship out of this port city. The drive was an estimated 4 hours to Bremerhaven from Amsterdam. Once we drove through the border into Germany, there was a checkpoint. I am still unsure of what they were looking for, but we were one of the cars that got pulled to the side. I guess the export plates and shiny blue car stood out. The German Police were very polite, asked me for our passports and cart documents. I provided them with my license and the registration/insurance cards BMW provided me. They were back in about 10 minutes and set us on our way.
Since we had to drive through Bremen on the way to Bremerhaven, we stopped in to our hotel and checked in. Main reason being that for once the navigation had failed us; it could not locate the address provided by BMW on the drop off list. The receptionist was able to provide us turn by turn directions that she had printed out. I don’t know if it was a glitch in the navigation or simply hadn’t been updated in a while, but I wasn’t too happy about it. It took us about 45 mins to get up to Bremerhaven drop off, which was called BLG Logistics Autotec Center. We got the front gate, and an escort car had to come and we followed it to the building where they take care of all the paperwork. Once we got to the building I removed the front license plate so I could take it as a souvenir. I was surprised how easily it came off. We were greeted by the employees when we sat down; everyone was very nice and inviting. A lady approached us and I gave them the documents that BMW provided me with. She asked to give her a few minutes to type up the paperwork. Once she came back she had everything taken car of. I just needed to sign a few documents. I was very pleased with the service at this drop off point. Originally I was a little worried because it had seemed no one really spoke that well of English at this location, but once I saw all the documents she prepared I was relived. There was a notice from BMW and it listed the correct port the car was being shipped too, which was Newark NJ.
We asked when the car would be leaving the port, and she said by next Thursday or Friday, which was about a week wait. If it is indeed a week, I will be very pleased. Another 10 days or so to cross the Atlantic, then another week through customs and vehicle preparation, which is looking like about 4 weeks total from drop off to dealership. I will definitely keep you all updated to when I actually receive the car. I think its best to be reasonable and not set your expectation on receiving the car very soon. Delays seem to be a usual thing with the European Delivery cars, but I plan to stay hopeful of a quick turn around.
They took a condition report of the car, and gave me copies of all the documents. I had to give them one key, and then parked the car in the parking lot and said goodbye. I was relieved no one asked about what happened with the front plate, I think they understood I wanted to keep it. The escort car came back around to pick us up and drop us off at the front gate. The man at the gate called for a taxi and we took it to the local central train station.
The tickets back to Bremen were 10.70 Euros each, which was great considering how much a taxi would have cost us. The train took about 45 mins to reach Bremen since it had local stops, but it was a very smooth and relaxing ride. The train stopped at Bremen’s Central train station, which happened to be right next to our Marriot hotel. We stopped in for a drink, and then got directions to the downtown area. It was a 15 minute walk to downtown. Downtown Bremen had a nice charm to it all, it was very European; a city that I would recommend to anyone visiting Germany.
We settled in pretty early to get some rest and prepare for our departure in the morning. Our flight departs at 10:20am in Bremen Airport, which has a connecting flight in Frankfurt, back on our way to Newark NJ.