Motorcycle Insurance FAQs
Frequently Asked Questions for Motorcycle Insurance
Should I wear a helmet when riding my motorcycle?
Yes. A helmet is the best protective gear you can wear while riding a motorcycle. Not only is it safer, in many states it's the law. When considering that a helmetless rider involved in an accident is 3 times as likely to suffer a brain injury as a motorcyclist wearing a helmet, wearing a helmet is a smart proposition.
Other potential benefits of helmets include: cutting down on wind noise, reducing wind blast on your face and eyes, and deflecting bugs and other debris that flies through the air. It can even protect you from changing weather conditions and reduce rider fatigue.
Wearing a helmet also shows your attitude toward riding and shows you're a responsible rider who takes motorcycle riding seriously.
How should I choose my motorcycle helmet?
When choosing a motorcycle helmet, consider a full-face helmet with a visor. These helmets provide the best protection for your head and eyes. Additionally, helmets today are made of lightweight materials that generally make them more comfortable.
You should also make sure to look for the DOT or SNELL sticker inside or outside the helmet. The sticker means that the helmet adheres to the safety standards of the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) and/or the Snell Memorial Foundation, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to research, education, testing, and development of helmet safety standards.
What should I wear when riding my motorcycle?
Make sure to wear protective gear and clothing that will help minimize injuries in case of an accident or a skid. Wearing leather clothing, boots with nonskid soles, and gloves can protect your body from severe injuries. Consider attaching reflective tape to your clothing to make it easier for other drivers to see you.
How can I ride my motorcycle defensively?
Don't assume that a driver can see you, as nearly two-thirds of all motorcycle accidents are caused by a driver violating a rider's right of way. You should always ride with your headlights on; stay out of a driver's blind spot; signal well in advance of any change in direction; and watch for turning vehicles in addition to keeping an eye out for road debris and potholes.
How can I keep up with motorcycle safety?
Complete a formal riding education program, get licensed, and take riding courses from time to time to develop riding techniques and to sharpen your street-riding strategies.
When should I not ride my motorcycle?
Don't drink and ride, you could cause harm to yourself and others. Additionally, fatigue and drowsiness can impair your ability to react, so make sure that you are well rested when you hit the road.
How can I make sure my motorcycle is good for my next ride?
Making sure that your motorcycle is fit for the road is just as important as practicing safe riding. Make sure to check the following:
- Tires: Check for cracks or bulges, or signs of wear in the treads (low tire pressure or any defects could cause a blowout)
- Under the motorcycle: Look for signs of oil or gas leaks
- Headlight, taillight, and signals: Test for high and low beams (make sure that all lights are functioning)
- Hydraulic and coolant fluids: Level should be checked weekly
- Once you've mounted the motorcycle, complete the following checks:
- Clutch and throttle: Make sure they are working smoothly (throttle should snap back when released)
- Mirrors: Clean and adjust all mirrors to ensure sharpest viewing
- Brakes: Test front and rear brakes (each brake should feel firm and hold the motorcycle still when fully applied)
- Horn: Test the horn
How can I help prevent my motorcycle from being stolen?
There are many ways to secure your motorcycle to prevent theft. The best deterrent is to use more than one security measure. The more a thief has to defeat, the lower potential for success. Here are some easy tips to help keep your bike safe:
- Always keep the ignition locked and handlebars/forks locked
- Secure your motorcycle to a fixed, or anchored object, or another motorcycle
- Park in a secure and well-lit area (if in doubt, don't park there)
- If your bike is not garaged, keep it covered; non-name brand covers are preferable to prevent advertising the type of bike that lies beneath
- Limit the amount of time your bike is left unattended, or unsupervised
- Vary your routes and routines to prevent being followed
- Use a high quality lock and chain
- Secure the chain through the bike frame versus the wheels which can be easily removed
- Consider adding a motorcycle anti-theft, or security system
If your bike is stolen contact the police and GEICO immediately.
How can I avoid common motorcycle insurance mistakes?
Here are a few common things you should try to avoid when looking for motorcycle insurance that's right for you.
- Don't be deceived by excessively low rate quotes. Some discount motorcycle insurance providers will tell you the "best case" scenario, not an actual quote for you. Make sure you're getting a quote built for you.
- Get a motorcycle insurance quote in advance of the expiration date of your current policy especially if you need to update the information on your current insurance policy.
- Think twice before canceling your policy mid-term. Some people think they can save a few dollars by canceling their insurance during the "off" season, but that just might be a costly mistake. If your motorcycle is stolen or you opt to take an afternoon ride on a nice day, you're completely at risk without any insurance.
What should I do before my next motorcycle trip?
Here are some things you should consider doing before your next big ride.
- Find out if you need a motorcycle endorsement on your driver's license
- Know the helmet and other safety requirements for each state or country you'll travel through
- Update your policy with your GEICO representative and consider additional coverage for other people who may ride your bike
- Talk to your GEICO representative about the possibility of getting proof of coverage for an international trip instead of buying extra coverage
- Take time to plan your trip in advance, and then get ready to have the time of your life
The above is meant as general information and as general policy descriptions to help you understand the different types of coverages. These descriptions do not refer to any specific contract of insurance and they do not modify any definitions, exclusions or any other provision expressly stated in any contracts of insurance. We encourage you to speak to your insurance representative and to read your policy contract to fully understand your coverages.
When you click on the “Snell Memorial Foundation” link, you will be taken to a site owned by Snell Foundation, not GEICO.