How will Brexit impact my bike insurance?


How will Brexit impact my bike insurance

Whether you voted leave, remain, or simply stayed at home back when the UK held its EU referendum in 2016, one thing’s clear: over the coming months there’s likely to be some changes to motorbike insurance for riding in Europe.

In this article we take you through the facts, and give you a rundown of what you’re going to have to do whatever the outcome of the current political situation.

Motor insurance green cards

The EU are beginning to advise insurance companies to send communications to customers explaining they’ll need a ‘Green Card’ to ride in the EU, EEA, Switzerland, Serbia or Andorra.

What this means, in practice, is that customers will need to contact their insurance providers and let them know of travel plans for going abroad. Frankly, that’s something we’d always advise regardless of Brexit, but it’s worth reinforcing the point that it’s necessary whenever you plan to take your bike abroad. You’ll either be able to get a Green Card by calling, or by filling in an online form.

European breakdown cover

Both the RAC and AA, two of the biggest breakdown cover providers in the UK, have stated that leaving the EU will not affect breakdown cover in Europe.

The only thing that may change is the cost of policies, which could rise as a result of a predicted change in the exchange rate.

European insurance cover

Some motorcycle insurance providers, like Bennetts, provide cover for 90 days per trip with the same level as their customers have in the UK. Bennetts Managing Director, Vince Chaney has moved to assure customers that the level of cover will not be affected. Yet. Whilst other providers have remained more on the fence, meaning there is a chance your european insurance cover (if you have it) could be affected by our decision to leave.

Health insurance

Unfortunately, if we leave the EU your EHIC (European Health Insurance Card) won’t be valid anymore, so you’ll need to get private health insurance to make sure you’ll qualify for healthcare on the continent in the event of illness or injury.

Other things to consider as a rider regarding Brexit…

Driving permits

Depending on the exit-deal, you may need an IDP, latest information regarding this is available on and Post Office sites.

Confusingly, all countries within Europe can decide between three types of IDP – dated 1926, 1949 and 1968 – so you may well need multiple types to complete that big across-europe trip you’ve been planning!

Riders in Lichenstein will require a 1926 IDP, while those travelling in Cyprus, Malta, Iceland and Spain will need a 1949 one.

The following countries will require a 1968 IDP:

•Czech Republic

To get an IDP, you’ve got to visit a Post Office (there’s no way to get one in the post) and not all Post Office branches can issue them. Good news? It’s a quick process, so you can walk in with your driving licence and come out with an IDP five minutes later. Find out where you can get an IDP here. Bad news, the Post Office will relieve you of £5.50 for the privilege!

Visas required

Once you have acquired the correct IDP/s, green cards and health insurance, the final hurdle concerns the length of time UK bikers would be allowed to continuously travel around Europe.

Without a Visa, UK bikers would be able to stay in Europe for potentially 90-days before a Visa is required, however, the actual number of days is yet to be confirmed.

Leave or remain?

While we don’t know anything for sure and are left playing many guessing games, the current conclusion is that leaving the EU will negatively impact the bike insurance process but it is unclear what financial impact it will have to our insurance as of yet. While the insurance industry’s leading associations and organisations and the Motorcycle Industry Association (MCIA) both believe we are better off remaining in the EU.

What are your thoughts? Comment below and let us know!

Read our next article on cheap bike insurance here.

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Written by Jon Urry, MCN Journalist.
Reviewed on 26th March 2019 by Andrew Campbell, MCN Legal Advisor.
Edited by Sian Daly, MCN Compare content editor.