Are you planning a trip abroad on your bike?
This can be a huge task and takes a lot of planning. Below is just a simple checklist that could prevent a situation abroad.
Have your bike serviced before your departure date to ensure that it is running smoothly and no problems can occur during your trip.
MOT and Tax
Make sure you have plenty of time left on your MOT and Tax, so it doesn't run out on holiday as it could invalidate your insurance.
Check with your current insurance provider to make you are fully insured to travel within the EU. Also ask details regarding what happens if you have an accident or your bike is stolen during your trip. Its better to know what you are and are not covered for before you go away.
Make sure you always carry your passport. This is not only useful to get back into the country but also required to register at many continental camp sites/hotels and useful to have if you are crossing a number of borders in your trip.
Take your driving licence and keep it with you.
Vehicle Registration Document
All EU countries request that you keep the original V5 document with you during your travels for proof that the vehicle is registered to you. In France the police can actually detain you if you can't prove ownership of your bike.
Make sure you are covered to travel abroad. It is best to use the EHIC form as a back up to your existing travel insurance policy.
The form for the European Health Insurance Card is available at most Post Offices and is useful to have if you are taken ill abroad and need treatment. Always best to take a couple of photocopies with you as if you are treated for illness a copy will be retained and you may need treatment again.
Check with your current breakdown provider that you are definitely covered to travel abroad and exactly what the policy covers. The last thing you want to do is travel abroad, break down and not be able to get you or your bike back to the UK.
Your bike must display a GB Sticker when travelling abroad. Modern number plates tend to have the EU marking on and are accepted in all EU countries instead of a GB sticker.
Other tips include:
If you plan to take your mobile phone with you check with your mobile phone provider to make sure phone calls can be made and received abroad if necessary. Always ask what the charges will be for the country you intend to travel in so that way there are no surprises when you come home to your bill!
Camping Card International
If you're planning to go camping whilst abroad, Camping Card International might be a valuable investment as you receive good discounts at many campsites and tourist attractions. The card is valid for a year and can be obtained from the RAC or the AA.
Always carry spare light bulbs
Handy to keep with you to charge your mobile phone or other electrical items you may carry with you on your journey.
Useful for the ferry crossing to ensure your motorcycle is secure and not going to move.
Bike Theft Abroad
- Don't leave credit cards, passports, travel documentation with your bike. Without them you re in trouble.
- If you have to leave your bike, leave it somewhere where there are lots of people and secure it to something solid.
- Set your alarm
- Use traveller's cheques rather than keeping cash on you. If traveller's cheques go missing they are easy to replace.
- If you stop for lunch, then park somewhere where you can see your bike.
- Choose a hotel that has a secure garage or parking.
- If you are unlucky enough to get something stolen, then report it to the police immediately.