DOCUMENTS TO TAKE WITH YOU
It’s important to make sure you have the correct documentation for you and your motorcycle when travelling abroad. You must ensure you carry the following documents when riding.
1. Passport – Non-European Union citizens may also require a Visa.
2. Driving Licence – Full UK Licence with paper counterpart if a photo licence. (An International Driving Permit is not necessary).
3. MOT Certificate – If your motorcycle is more than 3 years old.
4. Registration Document (V5) – Sometimes referred to as a Log Book.
5. Insurance Certificate for your motorcycle – In line with European Union directives your vehicle insurance will automatically cover you to the minimum requirement of third party only while in other EU countries (a green card is not necessary). If you want to maintain the same level of cover you have in the UK you will need to contact your insurance company or broker before your departure. Your insurance company will normally make a small charge to extend your existing cover to other EU countries.
Make sure all your documents are up to date and will cover you for the length of time you spend abroad. Also ensure your motorcycle has a current Road Tax, and is otherwise road legal.
Ride on the right-hand side of the road (except in Malta and Cyprus). If you don’t have a rear-view mirror on the left-hand side of your motorcycle, have one fitted to aid in riding on the right.
The wearing of a suitable crash helmet is compulsory throughout all European Union countries.
A suitable GB sticker must be displayed at the rear of your motorcycle. Since 2001, if you have a number plate displaying the blue GB euro-symbol, a conventional sticker is no longer necessary.
For many motorcycles, headlamp deflectors or readjustment is not necessary (the headlamp beam pattern is different to that of cars). If in doubt, ask your local MOT station to check.
Riding with dipped headlights is compulsory at all times in most European countries.
Although not a legal requirement, the following will give you peace of mind and could be essential should the worst happen.
1. European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) – In order to receive health care treatment in any other EU country you will need a European Health Insurance Card. As from 1st January 2006 this card replaced the E111 and entitles the holder to state-medical treatment for injuries and illnesses. You can apply for a EHIC by picking up a form at your local post office, there’s no charge. The EHIC may not cover all the services you might expect in the UK, so it’s a good idea to take out a suitable Personal Travel Insurance.
2. Personal Travel Insurance – Make sure the policy covers motorcyclists. Some insurance companies consider motorcycling a dangerous pass time. As always, if in doubt, ask.
3. European Breakdown Insurance – None of us expect to breakdown, but a suitable insurance could save a lot of hassle and money should you have the misfortune to suffer mechanical problems.
It’s also a good idea to carry a spare set of bulbs and fuses, a basic tool kit, a puncture repair kit, chain lube (if applicable) and a spare set of keys.