The wind in your face, the open road lying ahead, the insurance payments... OK, so it's not how we usually like to think about our motorbikes, but where you get your bike insurance is worth considering if only once a year. Take the cost of your renewal into your own hands, here are ten things you can do to help you spend less on your motorcycle insurance:
The most important tip is shop around. Don't just go for the first deal you're offered. Ask your current provider for a renewal quote, and then before agreeing, check out the competition. Use online comparison services like Confused.com or Beat that Quote, where you can enter your details and get quotes from an extensive range of insurers to find the best deal.
Don't claim unless you have to
Claiming on your insurance means losing your no claims discount and will push up the rate of future renewals. Minor accident repairs, scratches or dents, won't be that expensive to fix. It could even be cheaper than your excess, and the amount you will save in future premiums by paying for it yourself might well be cheaper in the long run.
Step down your spec
According to insurers, the more powerful your bike, the more likely it is to be involved in an accident. If you're in the market for a new bike, use a little practicality. Expensive bikes aren't a one-off cost, the high insurance payments means that you will continue to pay for that bike long after the hire purchase is paid off.
If you choose to pay monthly premiums, you will find that the total payment will be higher than if you pay an up-front annual fee. If you can afford it, you should pay the full annual amount when you take out the policy, and you will save overall.
The more secure you keep your bike, the less likely it is to get stolen, and the lower your insurance rate will be. If you have access to a garage, store your bike there. High quality locks and immobilisers are also a good investment.
Who else rides your bike?
Your insurance rate may be affected by other named drivers on your policy. Young male riders or learner riders can shoot your rates way up, whereas an older, experienced rider with no claims history can keep your rates low. If another driver is radically affecting your insurance rate, perhaps you should have separate policies.
Advanced Riding Courses
There are courses you can take that will both improve your driving, and also lower your insurance rates. The Institute of Advanced Motorists, for example, provides advanced or pass plus riding courses that are recognised by many insurance providers.
Running red lights, speeding, and other driving offences will not only land you with police fines, but they will also give you points on your license, which will make your insurance quotes shoot right up. It may sound like common sense, but try not to break the law. On top of everything else, being legal is fiscally responsible.
If you have a motorbike, chances are you enjoy riding it, and want to ride it whenever you can. But be aware, the less miles you travel on your bike per year, the lower your insurance rate will be. The logic behind this is: the more time you spend riding, the more likely you are to be involved in an accident.
Once you have the best deal from your chosen comparison site (Confused.com, Beat that Quote etc.), go back to your current provider. They might be able to match or even beat your new quote. If they beat it, go back to whomever provided you with that deal, and see if they can drop it even more. Playing the insurers against each other, you might find they bid lower to win your business.