There are as many as 22 possible insurance groups that your motorbike could fall into, though most bikes in the UK will be classed between groups three and 17. The lower the number, the cheaper your insurance is likely to be, though there’s no hard and fast rule on what group your bike will fall into – different insurers have different criteria and as such will categorise your bike differently.
That said, the scale normally depends on the performance and engine size of the motorcycle, so 125cc motorbikes will usually be in the lower insurance groups (typically between groups three and six), while high-performance bikes of 700cc and above will generally be in higher-numbered groups (17+). Though the exact placement of your bike will always depend on the individual insurer.
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Fully comprehensive motorbike insurance will cover you against any damage caused to a third party, or to your bike as a result of fire damage or theft, and will also provide cover in the event of you causing an accident or where no-one was at fault. This will include cover for damage done to yourself as well as your bike, with any repair costs included in the policy. It’s the most expensive kind of motorbike insurance, because you’re getting the highest level of financial protection.
Fully comprehensive policies may provide additional levels of protection too, either as standard or as paid-for extras, such as legal cover, personal accident cover, breakdown assistance and pillion cover. You may also find cover for your leathers and helmet, and even lost keys, and some policies will offer European cover for an additional cost.
One of the best ways to reduce the cost of your motorbike insurance over time is to build up a few years of no claims bonuses. This shows that you’re less of a risk to insure, and your premiums could be lower accordingly. Other things you can do include improving your motorbike’s security with alarms and immobilisers, parking it in a locked garage rather than a driveway, and avoiding modified or rare bikes. You may also want to consider taking additional motorbike training as some insurers will offer a discount if you’ve taken an advanced riding course, or even increasing the voluntary excess, if you’ll be able to afford to cover the cost in the even of a claim.
Yet you also need to make sure that you compare quotes every year when it’s time to renew. Providers rarely reward loyalty when it comes to insurance, so never sign a contract (or forget and see it renew automatically) before seeing what else is out there.
Gap insurance is a specific type of protection that covers the difference between the amount you paid for your motorbike, and the amount you’d be offered by the insurance company to replace it if it was stolen or written off. It can be useful if you bought your bike brand new, for example, when depreciation means there’s likely to be a dramatic difference between the price you paid and what it could be worth in a few years’ time. It could also be beneficial if you bought your bike on finance, and would therefore still owe the full loan amount even if it was written off. Yet it won’t be essential for everyone, it’s important to carefully consider the options available to ensure you’re getting the best deal.
Read more in our guide to gap insurance.
Yes. In fact you’re legally required to insure any motorbike you own and intend to ride, whether or not you’ve got a licence. This may apply if you’re a learner rider, as you’ll need to insure your bike while you’re practicing, though you’ll still be required to have a provisional driving licence (with motorbike entitlement) before you’ll be allowed on the road. If you own a motorbike but don’t plan to ride it for a while – perhaps you’re not ready to start learning or have had your licence suspended – your only option to avoid insurance is to declare it off the road via the SORN (Statutory Off Road Notification) process.
No. You’ll need to have your motorbike insured before you can tax it; the DVLA will require proof before you can tax the bike.
No. You’ll need a separate motorbike insurance policy in order to legally ride on the road.
Yes! Temporary motorbike insurance can cover you for as little as a day to a few months and beyond, so it’s perfectly possible to arrange motorbike insurance for a weekend. This kind of cover can be particularly suitable if you’re borrowing a friend’s bike for a weekend, or perhaps only ride seasonally, and don’t want the expense of an annual policy.
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The list of motorcycle insurance providers on this page is a selection of services available and gives you an idea of the kind of options available. You can find out more about the individual products by visiting any of the providers listed. All information is subject to change without notice. Please check all terms before making any decisions. This information is intended solely to provide guidance and is not financial advice. Moneyfactscompare.co.uk will not be liable for any loss arising from your use or reliance on this information. If you are in any doubt, Moneyfactscompare.co.uk recommends you obtain independent financial advice.