Way to go, you aced your motorcycle test after a lot of hard work and now you are ready to hop on that bike and ride into the sunset (or to work). Before you head out, there are still a few things to take care of to make sure you are safe, legal, and well prepared out on the road. So, what’s next?
Motorcycle Insurance is a legal requirement for motorcyclists on the road in the UK. If you are in an accident, you need to protect yourself against damages incurred by third parties. It is recommended that you get a more extensive policy that covers yourself and equipment as well. To get the best deal, compare insurance policies on an insurance comparison website, these types of websites can easily compare policies of all the major UK companies to find you the cheapest price. Here are the three main types of motorcycle insurance.
– Third Party Insurance
This type of policy will cover any damages to third parties caused by yourself. It does not typically cover you or any damages to your bike. This is the most inexpensive policy, and the minimum required coverage by law.
– Third Party, Fire and Theft Insurance
This policy includes the standard third party coverage but also protects your bike against theft and fire. Over 26,000 bikes are stolen in the UK every year, so unless you want to risk falling victim to theft you should consider this policy.
– Comprehensive Insurance
A Comprehensive policy tends to be the more expensive of the three, but it also covers damages against you or your equipment. If you are in accident, whether or not it is your fault, and your bike is totalled- the Comprehensive policy would cover the cost to either repair the damage or replace it completely. It also protects you against uninsured drivers, and includes everything in the Third Party, Fire and Theft policy. Comprehensive Insurance is highly recommended for new and seasoned motorcyclists alike.
Pay Your Taxes
Every driver on the road is responsible for paying their share of vehicle tax, formally Vehicle Excise Duty, and sometimes incorrectly referred to as ‘road tax’. While most vehicles on the road are charged vehicle tax by the amount of their emissions, motorcycle tax is calculated by the size of the engine.
Don’t skip out on your taxes. Those lovely cameras along the roadways are snap happy, and will run your registration number against the DVLA database. If you are uninsured, they will know and you will get a hefty fee sent your way in the post. These are the latest tax rates for motorcycles in the UK, last updated November 2013.
– >150, no applicable 6 month rate, £17 annually
– 151-400, no applicable 6 month rate, £37 annually
– 401-600, £31.35 bi-annually, £57 annually
– <600, £42.90 bi-annually, £78 annually
Become an Advanced Rider
Once you have passed your Motorcycle Theory Test, purchased Motorcycle Insurance, and paid your Motorcycle Tax, you are officially ready to be on the road. You should, however, consider taking advanced riding classes. Motorcyclists who have undertaken advanced training are 61% less likely to be involved in an accident, and 90% more confident drivers.
Taking advanced riding classes will not only make you a better motorcyclist, it can lower your insurance premiums as well. Insurance companies like knowing that they are covering a safer, and more informed driver, and will in most cases reward you for it.
Riding a motorcycle is a freeing experience, but there can be a cost to that freedom. Cover your bases and make sure you are fully covered in case something unforeseen comes your way. Never stop learning how to be a better driver, and you will reap the rewards in more ways than one.