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Frequently asked questions on motorbike insurance

Get the answers to FAQs on motorbike insurance policies, then compare quotes to find the right deal for you.

What factors will determine the price of my policy?

Motorbike insurance companies will look at a number of factors when calculating your premium including:

  • Age of rider
  • Riding history
  • Mileage
  • Type of use
  • Address
  • Where the vehicle is kept
  • Motorbike type
  • Security system
  • Level of voluntary excess

Read more in our beginners' guide to bike insurance.

What types of motorbike insurance policies are available?

The three main policy types are comprehensive cover, third party, fire and theft and third party only. Third party policies are not necessarily the cheapest option and provide only a limited amount of cover, so make sure you shop around to find the right deal for you. Telematics policies have yet to make an impact in the bike market.Motorbike

What is CBT?

CBT is short for Compulsory Basic Training which all learner motorbike and moped riders must have. In certain circumstances they're not required, for example if you've held a driving or moped licence for a long time, although even then CBT is recommended. For more information, visit the Gov.UK website.

Am I covered to ride other motorcycles?

Some comprehensive cover will allow this with the bike owner's permission, or you could purchase cover as an add-on to your policy. Check your terms and conditions.

Do I need to insure my motorbike for the entire year?

Yes, unless it has been declared as off road and a Statutory Off Road Notification (SORN) has been received and accepted by the DVLA. If you require short-term motorbike insurance there are a variety of options to consider.

Can I use my car no claims bonus on my motorbike?

A small number of insurers may allow the transfer of your car's no claims bonus to your motorbike, but the majority won't. You're not able to transfer your motorbike's no claims bonus to your car.

Can I apply my no claims bonus to a second motorbike?

We're sorry but we can't give you a motorbike insurance quote until you're actually 16 years of age

No, the no claims bonus applies to a single motorbike; it can be transferred to an alternative bike but it can’t be applied to an additional motorcycle or another vehicle.

A number of insurers will give discounts or allow you to mirror your no claims bonus on a second motorbike, but you need to check with individual insurers to find out if they offer such incentives.

Does my insurance cover a passenger?

This will depend on your policy - note that premiums may be cheaper if you exclude insurance for pillion passengers. Remember that it will then be illegal to give a lift to anyone on your motorbike.

Can I use my motorbike for work?

When you apply for insurance you need to declare how you use your motorcycle - the main options are social, domestic and pleasure; commuting; business use; courier and delivery. Read more about insuring a motorbike for work use.

Is my riding gear covered?

Helmet and leather insurance could offer cover for all your riding gear, but don't assume it's included on your policy and be aware that protection levels vary widely.

Can I ride my bike abroad?

Again this will depend on your policy so read our guide to European cover and be aware of issues such as the countries you're insured for, the number of days of continuous cover and whether you have the same protection as when you're in the UK.Scooter

Can 16-year-olds ride scooters and mopeds?

If you're aged 16 and want to ride a moped or scooter on the road you'll need to hold a provisional licence, have completed a CBT course, and you'll need to display L plates (D plates in Wales). You must not carry a passenger or ride on a motorway.

I'm under 16, can I get a quote?

We're sorry but we can't give you a scooter insurance quote until you're actually 16 years of age.

We've approached the insurance companies on our panel to ask if they'd consider providing prices to under 16s, but they'd prefer us not to accept these quotes on our website. On your 16th birthday you'll be able to get a quote.

What's the difference between a scooter and a moped?

The Motorcycle Industry Association (MCIA) defines a scooter as having an engine that's an integral part of the rear suspension, or a chassis that's a step-through type. This is regardless of engine capacity or wheel size.

A moped is defined as a motorised two-wheel vehicle with an engine capacity of less than 50cc and a top speed of approximately 31mph.

Can you insure imported motorbikes?

Like any other vehicle, imported motorbikes need to be insured before being taken on the road. Parallel imports should be easy enough to insure, grey imports could prove more problematic. Enter your details in our easy-to-use quotes process and you'll get a list of any insurers on our panel able to offer quotes.

How do I insure a three-wheeler or quad bike?

Three-wheelers and quad-bikes tend to be individual beasts and to require individual consideration - read more in our articles on insuring a three-wheeler and quad-bike insurance.

Are sidecars covered by motorbike insurance?

Sidecar insurance may be included on policies as a standard feature or an optional extra. If you search for quotes through Gocompare.com you'll be asked if your motorbike has been fitted with a sidecar. Due to the unique nature of a motorcycle sidecar outfit, it's advisable to speak to your chosen cover provider directly before agreeing to any policy. This is to confirm they have the specific details of your individual outfit and of any modifications you may have made to your bike in order to attach the sidecar safely.

Did you know...?

  • Advanced training courses may lead to a cut in your insurance premium and have many other advantages, but savings will not necessarily cover the cost of the course

What additional options can I consider?

Check to see what your policy already covers as standard before adding extras. Add-ons that you may want to consider include:

How can I get cheaper motorbike insurance?

There are a few ways in which you could lower your motorbike insurance including:

Any other questions?

See if you can find the answers in our motorbike insurance guides.

By Sean Davies