Most states require you to take both a written and moving test. Grab a copy of your state’s Motorcycle Operators Manual. Reading the manual thoroughly will provide the information you need to know to pass the written test. For Texas riders, visit the DMV website for details.
If you’ve never ridden a motorcycle before, motorcycle lessons and a safety course must be at the top of your list.
During your rider training classes you’ll likely learn about the right safety gear. Safety gear: Tip top of your list too!
Once you’ve been on a bike or two, you may consider borrowing or renting a motorcycle or two before putting too much thought into the big purchase.
One common mistake new riders make is purchasing a bike with far more performance than they can handle. Stay away from crotch rockets, especially anything with an engine larger than 600cc; when you learn to ride on a slower bike, you’ll become a better rider because of it. Plus, after you’ve honed your skills and gained experience, you’ll be ready to upgrade and truly appreciate a faster bike.
Consider your needs.
Will you be riding in lots of traffic? Traveling long distances? Motorcycles come in many shapes and sizes, and you must consider your individual needs when picking a bike.
Consider how you’ll be using your bike, and how riding it will impact your experience; for instance, if you’re looking for a weekend toy, you might be more tolerant of a sexy bike that happens to be less comfortable then one you’re going to ride to work every day.
Recognizing your needs will make choosing your future bike become infinitely easier.
Consider features and choose wisely.
Bikes have become increasingly specialized and the features each motorcycle offers can be both empowering and daunting.
To give you some ideas of what you may want, take a look at our online Vehicle Showroom. Once you’ve become acquainted with what’s available, stop by the dealership. While you’re here, you’ll begin interacting with different bikes and will probably develop distinct likes and dislikes, which will get you one step closer to making a purchasing decision.
Consider your body type.
This point is less obvious than it might sound. Bikes come in dramatically different shapes and sizes, and so does the human body. Try a bike on for size, and if possible, take it for a spin; you’ll find that the ergonomic experience of riding will differ dramatically from bike to bike. That sport bike you thought was so cool, for instance, might strain your wrists to the point of discomfort. Conversely, that cruiser might win you over with its low seat and manageable center of gravity. You won’t know until you try one on for size!
Consider New or Used.
Consider your long-term budget.
When committing to buy a motorcycle, don’t forget to estimate all the added expenses associated with riding.
- Insurance rates: Pick a plan that works with your budget; in general, the higher the deductible, the lower the premium.
- Safety gear: A quality helmet (helmets save lives), jacket, gloves, and pants can add up to a substantial amount of money.
- Routine maintenance and service: Varies wildly, depending on make and type of motorcycle.