Forecasted to amount to about $5.3 billion by the end of the year, the ever-growing U.S. motorcycle market has risen to over 8.5 million vehicles and is bound to continue its expansion in the years to come.
But you cannot jump on the bandwagon of speed driving just like that. To experience one of the greatest joys in life – which is riding a bike is, according to the happy owners of hogs – you have to get the right motorcycle insurance in the first place.
Speaking of which, choosing the proper coverage for your bike is no less important – and no simpler for that matter – than choosing the vehicle itself. Not only do you have to follow the rules of your state (most states do require some basic liability coverage, making other types of coverage optional), but you also have to find a golden mean between your budget, needs, and maybe even whims.
So what’s the recipe for success? Let’s unveil it step by step, starting with what motorcycle insurance is.
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What Is Motorcycle Insurance?
No one expects to get into a road accident, not to say be liable for damage or injuries incurred. But life has its own plans. More than 35,000 people die every year in traffic-related accidents on U.S. roads, a gruesome piece of statistics clearly showing there are no guarantees in life.
But something you can do. You can safeguard yourself from almost all consequences of road accidents by purchasing motorcycle insurance, the one covering bodily injuries, property damage, medical payments, collision, and more. An all-encompassing motorcycle insurance package can make you virtually financially invulnerable to road adversities.
What Does Motorcycle Insurance Cover?
In addition to liability insurance, which is mandatory in all U.S. states for it pays for any damage you caused to others, there are about a half dozen popular types of motorcycle insurance to choose from depending on your location, driving history and experience, and other factors:
- Collision coverage. In an unfortunate case of collision of your hog with its peer, car, tree, or even a building, a collision package would help you recover your motorcycle with no personal expenses.
- Comprehensive coverage. Sometimes the damage may come from a cause too unexpected, such as vandalism, flood, wind, or even theft. A comprehensive insurance package would take care of all the mentioned. Note, however, that it wouldn’t compensate for the losses caused by a crash with another vehicle.
- Property damage. Should you damage other vehicles or structures, the property damage insurance will come in handy, as it pays for any type of damage to a third-party property but the damage to your own motorcycle.
- Personal injury. State-specific (not available in all states), this type of insurance would compensate you for lost income, medical bills, childcare, and other unfavorable consequences of an accident.
- Coverage for non-standard parts. While comprehensive and collision packages will only cover the standard parts of your bike, coverage for non-standard motorcycle parts will take care of the rest, including sidecars, trailers, chrome parts, and other tailor-made accessories.
What Doesn’t Motorcycle Insurance Cover?
In a nutshell, you can get literally any protection you can imagine as long as you’re diligent enough to research the insurance market and weigh all the pros and cons of the insurance package offered by your insurer.
The two exceptions, however, are competitive and commercial use. Most insurance companies frown upon both types of activity, and rightfully so, as both significantly increase the probability of an insurance case. So if you’re a professional motorcycle racer, or you’re going to sell ice cream off your bike, make sure those cases are included in your insurance package.
How Much Does It Cost to Insure a Motorcycle?
An average American motorcycle owner spends just a little over $1,000 annually on full motorbike insurance, which encompasses comprehensive and collision coverage. But then again, the actual cost of insurance will depend on your location, age, type of your bike (chopper, standard, cruiser, touring, sport-touring, supersport, sport, unclad sport, scooter, dual-purpose, etc.), its age, mileage, storage conditions, and more.
Last but not least, there are a few proven tricks to decrease your insurance premiums. First, make sure to compare the quotes of various insurers and ask for a discount regardless of whether it is on the menu. Second, drop the coverage you don’t need – for example, it may be collision coverage if your bike is cheap and old. Finally, try to keep a clean driving record and secure your bike so that it would look safe in the eyes of your insurer.