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How to get a motorbike licence
RE: PH2: new licencing laws explained... - PistonHeads

There is little doubt that over recent years, the requirements relating to motorcycle licences have become ever more complicated and sometimes extremely confusing.

Exactly how you go about obtaining a licence depends upon a number of factors, including things such as:

  • the type of existing licence you hold (if any);
  • the type of moped, scooter or motorcycle you wish to ride;
  • if you hold an existing car driving licence, when you obtained it, as your automatic entitlement to ride various forms of motorcycle may vary depending upon when it was issued.

Although the requirements are now fairly complicated, they are intended to try and reduce the number of accidents and fatalities incurred by two wheeled road users each year in the UK.

Unfortunately, space here doesn’t permit a full discussion of all the possible routes open to you but you will be able to find full details and explanations on the DVLA’s site.

There are though, a few basic points to highlight.

For most younger or recently qualified (in car terms) licence holders, what is called the CBT will be obligatory. This stands for compulsory basic training and is now a requirement for all people who wish to ride a motorised two-wheeled vehicle on the road.

In the past, it was possible to ride certain types of bike based upon a provisional licence only but this is now felt to be insufficient and potentially dangerous.

Following on from that, there are various stages of practical and theoretical test that eventually result in you having permission to ride motorbikes and carry pillion passengers.

Once you do have your full licence, you may be advised to consider taking enhanced and eventually advanced rider examinations. Passing those may have a number of benefits, not the least of which may be a reduction in your motorcycle insurance premiums.

Of course, once you own any sort of bike, it will need to be taxed and insured even if you are not qualified to ride it and it sits in your garage. The one exception to this would be in circumstances where you had completed a statutory off road notification (SORN) through the DVLA.

When you are looking for insurance, remember to keep an eye open for categories that may be particularly suited to your requirements.

Some insurance providers might offer things such as younger rider cover or female bike insurance. UK insurance providers will typically work hard to try and identify suitable cover for you, whatever your status is at a given time in license terms.

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  • Avatar Josh If you have a valid CBT certificate when you pass your driving test = no L plates on moped?
    May 20, 2010 by Josh | Posted in Insurance & Registration

    Hi, i have a CBT witch is good for another year and i will be hopefully passing my car test soon so the CBT certifiacte will still be valid. Does this mean if i keep my ped i can drive it with out L plates, take pillions ect? Thanks

    • Unfortunately mate no it does not I wanted to do the same when i was 17 but you have to keep the "L plates" I phoned the dvla to find this out and i did not like the fact i had to keep them on but you do unfortunatley! :/

  • Avatar elliottc1990 Can you hold a full UK moped licence at 16?
    Jul 29, 2006 by elliottc1990 | Posted in Motorcycles

    Therefore allowing you to carry a pillion passenger and drive without L plates.

    • Hiya yeh i think you can your best bet is to contact dvla at or check with your local driving test center