May 6 2009.

Motorcycling abroad: are you covered? Bikesure offers advice and clears up the misconceptions and answers FAQs.

There's a lot of confusion about insurance when it comes to taking a motorbike abroad. Rob Balls of Bikesure, one of the UK's leading motorcycle insurance brokers, offers advice on what's covered, what isn't and how far bikers can go.

Will my UK bike insurance provide cover for motorcycling in Europe?
"Most policies should offer up to 30 days cover in the EU in any 12 month period. At Bikesure we usually offer 90 days. We are also able to give longer periods of cover, depending on the policy. Some offer up to 150 days and one of our underwriters will provide cover in Europe for the full 12 months.

"If you plan to travel much during the year, talk to your insurer when you take out the policy - it may well be that their recommendation will change if you're going to be away for more than 30 days."

What about breakdown cover?
"Many insurers now offer breakdown service insurance as an add-on to motorbike cover. It's just like being a member of a standard roadside assistance service, such as the RAC or AA, but usually it will be cheaper. Bikesure's breakdown policy costs £49 per year and covers roadside assistance, home start and recovery to home. It also covers the policyholder for up to 30 days biking on the continent, in most European destinations, including hotel accommodation and replacement vehicle options."

How far can a rider go?
"Each policy is different so you need to check with your provider. At Bikesure most policies cover the EU plus certain other European countries. We can also cover (depending on the insurer) Israel, Morocco, Tunisia and Turkey. Most insurers will probably want to know how long you are likely to be in any non-EU country. Frankly it's much easier if you can stick to the EU!"

Will travel insurance provide personal accident cover for bikes hired abroad?
"Lots of people hire a bike when they are away. The bike provider should arrange bike insurance, but personal accident (PA) cover is different. If you think you might hire one then be sure to check with your travel insurance provider to see if they'll offer it in the event that you have an accident while riding a hired motorbike. With many policies, PA cover could be invalid while riding a motorcycle.

"At Bikesure we offer a travel insurance policy through our parent company, Adrian Flux Insurance Services, that provides up to £25,000 PA cover as standard, even if riding a hired motorbike. For a motorcycle of 125cc or more the policy requires that the driver holds a current licence which allows them to ride a motorcycle of this size."

Bikesure is 100% British owned and based. It has a huge range of specialist policies for the motorcycle enthusiast, including cheap bike insurance schemes for performance and custom bikes, scooters, trikes, quads and bug riders. For details freephone the Bikesure quote line on 0800 089 2000, email the company at or visit