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On Yer Bike - Tips from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office for motorcycling overseas

15 Sep 2010 at 07:55

By Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Guest blogger

Hiring a moped abroad may seem very tempting – a chance to feel the wind in your face as you enjoy the scenery.

However, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) staff often have to deal with British holiday-makers who have hired a two-wheeler abroad and come off, sometimes with very serious consequences.

So, the FCO has the following motorcycling tips to ensure you have a safe trip:

  • If you don't a motorbike or moped regularly in the UK, think twice before jumping on one abroad – it doesn’t get easier when driving on the other side of the road!
  • Make sure your travel insurance covers you before you decide to drive or be a passenger on a motorbike - check the exclusions carefully and ensure it covers third party cover. Our recent research shows that a quarter of young travellers admit to driving or being the passenger of a moped or quad bike without checking if their insurance covers them first!
  • Check your travel insurance includes repatriation in case of serious injury.
  • Travelling by motorcycle, scooter or moped is significantly more dangerous than by car - if you're not accustomed to riding a motorcycle you should not attempt to ride one for the first time abroad on unfamiliar roads.
  • Check the road conditions carefully – remember that braking distances can change in wet conditions.
  • If you do decide to hire a motorcycle or scooter, make sure you use a reputable hire company – check that they are licensed to hire bikes to tourists.
  • Always wear a helmet and protective clothing, whether you're the driver or a passenger.
  • Never have more than two people on a bike – even if the locals do!
  • Never ride your bike when you have been drinking alcohol.
  • If you hire quad bikes check your travel insurance covers you for their use.  Only hire them from a reputable company and find out whether it's legal to ride them on the public road.
  • Check www.fco.gov.uk/drivingabroad for more advice and RAC’s driving abroad pages.

Links

RAC Travel Insurance - http://www.rac.co.uk/travel-insurance/