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How To Lower Insurance Rates With A Motorcycle Safety Course
How to Lower Insurance Rates with a Motorcycle Safety Course
If you are a motorcycle rider, you know that many of the factors that affect your motorcycle insurance rates are similar to those that affect your car insurance rates. Your age, the type of vehicle you drive, and your driving history all influence your insurance premiums.
A motorcycle safety course is a common way of lowering your insurance rates. In some states, motorcycle safety courses are even required for drivers under age 21. Courses are more likely to be optional for older drivers.
Why Take a Motorcycle Safety Course?
A motorcycle safety course is designed to make you a safer driver. As a safer driver, you lessen your insurance company's risk of having to pay out a claim. For that reason alone, insurance companies often offer discounts (often between 10% and 15%) to riders who complete an approved motorcycle safety course.
Of course, motorcycle safety courses provide benefits outside of insurance discounts. Being a safer motorcycle rider makes you less likely to:
- Have an accident.
- Get injured.
- Damage your motorcycle.
- Incur hefty fines for traffic violations.
In some states, such a course can even be used to waive the motorcycle license skill test and/or knowledge test required to get your motorcycle license.
Finding a Motorcycle Safety Course
Look for a course that is at the appropriate level for your current motorcycle driving skills.
Beginner courses will help you improve basic skills that are often required for obtaining your motorcycle license.
Basic courses can include training on the following skills:
- Mounting the motorcycle.
- Safe riding techniques.
- Street strategies.
- Proper riding gear.
- Stopping and braking.
- Increasing visibility.
- Clutch control.
- Throttle control.
Advanced classes typically go over additional skills that are more in-depth and appropriate for very experienced riders. Skills taught often include:
- Threshold braking.
- Decreasing radius curves.
- Cornering adjustment.
- Negotiating multiple curves.
- Space management.
- Defensive riding techniques in traffic.
- Swerving techniques.
Your motorcycle insurance company will likely only grant you a discount in your insurance rates if you complete an approved motorcycle safety course.
Usually, courses offered by the non-profit organization Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) are approved. You can check the MSF website to look for courses in your area.
You can also check with your state's DMV to find which courses and providers are approved in your state.
What You'll Need
Before the Class
Before beginning a motorcycle class, check to make sure that you bring everything you need to class so that you can successfully complete the course.
The Motorcycle Safety Foundation asks students to bring the following to class:
- Enough food and beverages for breaks and lunch.
- A pen for classroom instruction sessions.
- Suitable riding attire, including a long-sleeve top, long pants, boots, full-face helmet, and full-finger gloves.
In some cases, you may need to bring your own bike. Make sure you check the requirements to see if one will be provided.
After the Class
Once you've taken your course, contact your insurance company to notify them of completion.
Be sure that you keep your course completion card handy after completing a course, since your insurance company may require your card as proof of completion.
Note that a completion card from another state is not likely to be accepted in your current state of residence.