Overnight parking and motorbike insurance

Where you keep your motorbike overnight will affect your insurance premiums, so find out more about storage and where to park your bike after dark.

Amanda Bathory-Griffiths
Amanda Bathory-Griffiths
Updated 12 February 2021  | 4 min read

What’s parking got to do with motorbike insurance?

Choosing secure overnight parking for your bike can prevent theft and reduce the cost of your motorbike insurance.

Motorbikes are attractive, easy targets to thieves due to their size and weight and, unlike cars, they don’t need to be broken into to be stolen - they can be lifted and loaded onto a van.

When you get motorbike insurance quotes, you have to tell the insurer where the bike’s kept overnight, and usually that’s at home, on a driveway, on the street or in a car park.

Key points

  • Park your motorbike in a locked garage to reduce the cost of your motorbike insurance
  • If you have to park your bike on the road or in a public car park, invest in extra security, such as chains, locks and alarms
  • Look out for security clauses in your insurance policy - if you don’t meet them you might not be covered if your bike’s stolen

Does where you park affect the price of insurance?

Yes - where you keep your bike overnight will affect your motorbike insurance premiums.

The insurer will calculate risk based on the level of security and price your quote accordingly.

If the bike is parked in a locked garage or shed you reduce the risk of theft so your quotes will be cheaper.

Don’t be tempted to lie about where you keep your bike to get cheaper insurance - if your bike is stolen while parked on the street when it should have been in the garage, your insurer will refuse to pay your claim.

Where can I park my motorbike overnight?

If you store your bike inside, it won’t just deter thieves. You're improving the bike's safety and longevity because it's protected from harsh weather conditions like rain, frost and heat.

Keeping your motorbike in a garage

Pros Cons
The garage can be locked It’s not as convenient as being parked on the road
The motorbike is out of sight of thieves If it’s not locked to something, the motorbike is still at risk of theft
You avoid damage from pedestrians and other drivers A garage cloaks determined thieves trying steal your bike unnoticed
The bike is protected from harsh weather You’re not usually covered if your bike is stolen while parked near the garage but not in it
Your motorbike insurance will be cheaper
You can fit ground or wall anchors for extra security

Insurers look favourably on motorbikes being kept in a garage and it's reflected by cheaper premiums.

Premiums are only cheaper if your garage locks. If it doesn't, it might keep your bike away from thieves' prying eyes, but it'll do little to keep it more secure and an unlocked garage gives thieves the chance to work unobserved.

Another advantage of garage storage is that you can add extra physical security like ground anchors and sturdy chains.

Parking a motorbike on the driveaway

Pros Cons
It’s off the street and less likely to be damaged by other vehicles It’s in full view of thieves
Convenient for you to ride away It can’t be locked away
You need additional weather protection

If your bike must be kept out in the open, use a waterproof cover to protect it from the elements and hide it from thieves.

There are pop up shelters for motorbikes too. An inconspicuous black tent is less likely to catch the eye of thieves.

Many insurers will give a discount on premiums if you keep your bike on a driveway at your home, or just park it off the road on your property.

Motorbikes stored in a communal car park

Pros Cons
It’s off the street and less likely to be damaged If it’s a public car park, non-resident drivers and pedestrians could damage your bike
A private or residents car park could be protected by a fob key or gate You don’t know who has access to your bike when you’re not there
There could be CCTV

If you’re leaving your motorbike in a communal car park, look for CCTV and park in view of the cameras.

Get the right cover for your bike

What’s the garage clause?

If you tell your insurer that the bike is kept in the garage overnight, you have to actually park it there to avoid invalidating your cover.

If it’s stolen or damaged overnight and it was parked on the street as a one-off, your insurer won’t honour your claim.

If you do keep your bike in the garage, read your policy documents carefully and take note of garaging clauses - these define how you need to use your garage and whether claims will be refused if you don’t in some circumstances.

Out of 49 comprehensive motorcycle insurance policies on Defaqto, 18% had a garaging clause of some sort – so make sure you know what you’re agreeing to[1]

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[1]Last checked 27 February 2023