7 Things You Need to Know About Motorcycle Insurance
Whether you ride a touring motorcycle, a cruiser or a sport bike, there’s one thing every type of motorcycle has in common: It needs to be insured. Both Washington and Idaho are now among the majority of states that require liability insurance for all motorcycles. But there’s muchmore to know about motorcycle insurance beyond the minimum mandatory coverage. Here are seven things to keep in mind before you hit the road.
1. More Speed, More Expensive
The type of motorcycle you ride can have a surprisingly significant effect on your insurance premiums. While a cruiser designed for comfort may be quite reasonable to insure, a high-powered sport bike capable of performing wheelies, endos and incredibly high speeds can cost as much as five times more to cover.
2. Total Loss Is Totally Smart
According to the old saying, a car loses 10 percent of its value the moment it drives off the lot. Motorcycles are no different. If you buy a brand-new ride and crash it two weeks later, your insurance company is likely to pay you thousands less than what you originally paid for the bike. If you get total loss replacement coverage, your insurance coverage is exactly what it will cost to buy a brand-new replacement bike.
3. Cover Costly Customizations
If you take pride in customizing your ride, choose your insurance provider carefully. Some are better than others at offering protections for your chrome, leather, electronics and the like. Look for special coverage that explicitly protects these kinds ofadd-ons.
4. Don’t Skip the Medical
The feeling of freedom that comes with motorcycle riding comes at a price; being so exposed means you’re much more likely to be injured in an accident compared to riding in a car or truck. That’s why insurance coverage that helps pay for injury-related expenses, like Personal Injury Protection and Underinsured Motorist, are even more important for motorcycles.
5. Layaway in the Off-season
Motorcycle owners often choose to ride their bikes seasonally; hitting the road in the winter can be less comfortable and less safe than in the drier, warmer summer months. This is why most insurance providers offer “layaway” programs that allow you to save money by paring down your coverage during the winter, keeping only comprehensive and liability intact. Once the riding season starts again, your insurance restores the stronger coverage, so you’re ready to ride.
6. Be Safer and Save
If you’re older than 17 in Washington or 21 in Idaho, you don’t always haveto take a motorcycle safety class to attain a motorcycle endorsement on your license. A safety class is required in Washington if your bike can operate over 30 mph. There are still a number of great reasons to take a safety class. Obviously, learning to be a safer rider is priceless, but you also can receive a discount on your motorcycle insurance for up to two years after successfully passing a class.
7. Protect Your Stuff
“Carried contents” is a type of insurance that protects the things you carry in or on a vehicle. This type of protection is especially important for a motorcycle: Your possessions are more likely to be damaged in a crash and are more easily stolen, simply because they are less protected on a bike than they are in a car or truck. This coverage is particularly important for riders of big touring bikes that have lots of storage, and who are likely to take valuable items along on the rides.
Whether you’re a seasoned biker or a first-time motorcycle rider, AAA Washington Insurance Agency is here to help.
– Written by Matt Forrest