If you’re ready to start riding but you’re not ready to buy a bike of your own (or you simply can’t afford one yet), there’s always the option to rent a motorcycle.
If you’ve never rented a motorcycle before, the process may feel slightly confusing. Below are a few steps you can take to make sure everything goes smoothly.
Step 1: Make sure everything is ready on your end
Renting a motorcycle isn’t as simple as walking into a dealership, selecting a bike and signing on the dotted line. There are things you must do beforehand. First and foremost, make sure your driver’s license is up to date. You’ll need a class M license to operate a motorcycle, and this license may require that you take a test or attend a class through your local department of motor vehicles.
Step 2: Learn about any restrictions
If you’ve ever rented a car, you know there can be mileage and other restrictions. The same goes for motorcycles.
Before you rent a motorcycle, try to learn more about these restrictions. For example, if you plan to take the bike on a cross-country road trip, renting a motorcycle that cannot leave state lines will halt your journey before it begins. Before you sign anything, make sure to think about how you’ll use the motorcycle and then ask the right questions.
Step 3: Compare costs
Renting a motorcycle is certainly more inexpensive than buying one. But that doesn’t mean it’s cheap.
Some rental companies may charge by the mile, while others may charge by the day. Look at these price options and estimate how much you plan to use the bike– especially if you’re paying per mile. Try to be honest with yourself so the bill at the end of the rental doesn’t surprise you.
If the cost becomes prohibitive, reevaluate what type of bike you need. Smaller bikes can often be had for less than larger bikes.
Step 4: Check your insurance.
If you already have a motorcycle that’s insured, you will likely have the same coverage on a rental motorcycle as you do on your owned motorcycle. (Always check with your insurance agent to be sure, though.)
If you don’t have a motorcycle and you want to rent one, consider purchasing the optional insurance package from the rental company. (Sometimes your credit card company offers coverages as well, so also check in with them.) An accident could cost you thousands of dollars to repair or replace the bike. You may also be liable for others’ medical bills. Without the right protection, you could face serious financial consequences if there was an accident.