The United Kingdom has four different kinds of motorcycle licenses. If you’re thinking of upgrading your bike, you need to know what type of license you need. Here’s a quick guide plus information on how to get the full motorcycle license so you can drive any bike you want.
THE MOTORCYCLE ENTITLEMENT SYSTEM
• The AM license only allows you to drive a moped. The minimum age for this license is 16 years old.
• The AI license enables you to ride a motorcycle up to 125cc. To qualify for this, you need to be at least 17 years old.
• The A2 license allows you to ride a larger bike of up to 35kW or 47 bhp. The minimum age is 19 years old.
• The A license is the full motorcycle license where you can drive any motorcycle or scooter of any size. You need to be at least 24 years old.
HOW TO GET THE FULL MOTORCYCLE LICENSE OR “A” LICENSE
Most motorcycle riders will want the freedom of having an A license. There are two ways to get this. First, hold an “A2” Motorcycle License for at least two years, and then apply for it by taking a test. Second, fast-track Your “A” Motorcycle License by taking the Direct Access Scheme (DAS)
DAS lets you get a full motorcycle license even if you haven’t had a license for smaller motorcycles. To qualify you need to be at least 24 years old and take DAS motorcycle training. You will need to present proof or certifications that you have passed the course, and then take a practical test.
HOW TO GET DAS MOTORCYCLE TRAINING
Many motorcycle training schools will offer individual DAS courses. They will first give you a skills assessment test to see if you have already mastered basic driving and understand the rules and safety precautions. Don’t be annoyed by this initial evaluation – in fact, you should be worried if the school doesn’t perform this necessary step because it means that selling classes is more important to them than your safety.
The DAS courses will cover the training and skills you need to drive larger bikes. You’ll also learn more about how to drive safely when you’re riding with a passenger, or how to manoeuvre your bike through difficult driving conditions (dark roads, bad weather, rough terrain).
Aside from classroom lectures, you will be getting hands-on experience in pre-selected roads. You will be accompanied and monitored by someone who has the proper experience and credentials to give DAS motorcycle training. When he is not riding alongside you on another motorcycle, he may be in radio contact.
HOW TO FIND DAS MOTORCYCLE TRAINING COURSES
It’s important to get your DAS training from a reputable motorcycle driving school. Be sure to check that they are accredited. Ask about the instructor’s background, and what topics will be covered in the course. You should also find out how practical driving will be conducted, and whether you can borrow or rent a bike or need to use your own. Check motorcycle forums to find out more about the best DAS motorcycle training near you.