We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

What type of license do you need to ride a scooter

victoria
Level Contributor
91 posts
38 reviews
Save Topic
What type of license do you need to ride a scooter

Do you need to have an Motorcycle license that is valid in your own currently to be able to drive a motorcycle in Thailand and still be covered by our travel insurance? I have heard that even if you have an international license, you are not covered to drive a motorcycle in Thailand if you do not have a motorcycle license in your own country.

perth
Destination Expert
for Ko Samui, Thailand
Level Contributor
20,288 posts
64 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: What type of license do you need to ride a scooter

Hi

Any one can ride motorbike /scooter in Thailand. However if you don't have motorbike license in your own country you **may not cover **by your travel insurance if any accident happens. The international driving permit will only translate of what you have on your own driving license in your home country. Best to Read your travel insurance fine prints or ask your travel insurance provider.

Gold Coast
Destination Expert
for Ko Pha Ngan, Ko Samui, Thailand
Level Contributor
25,539 posts
65 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: What type of license do you need to ride a scooter

If you can't ride a motorcyle/scooter in your own country, Samui is not the place to learn!

Udon Thani
Level Contributor
137 posts
142 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: What type of license do you need to ride a scooter

You need an international drivers permit (a motorcycle one) or a Thai motorcycle license to drive the bike legally.

In Thailand the fine for driving without a license is only 200-500 baht in most provinces. In tourist locations, they almost never check westerners to see if they have a license. If one however were to drive a motorbike in Bangkok, or anywhere else besides the tourist areas without a license and hit a traffic stop they will get fined just the same. If don't have money the officer keeps motorbike keys until paid.

If driving without the proper license you're often not covered by insurance period. Be that travel insurance, or for living in Thai. the insurance that came with the motorbike's financing agreement, or policy they often give for 1-year or 2-years free with a new motorbike purchase. If don't have a license, most all those policies have a clause that it only covers legal drivers.

edit to add: scooter is called motor-cye in Thai language or motor-bike in English here. Same thing, this is what I'm referring to in post above.

Edited: 12 June 2014, 04:34
Koh Tao, Thailand
Destination Expert
for Koh Tao
Level Contributor
1,277 posts
Save Reply
4. Re: What type of license do you need to ride a scooter

Most rental places in tourist locations will not be bothered if you have the correct licence or not. This does not mean that renting one is a good idea though.

The best advice is not to rent a bike unless you already have some experience and are comfortable with coping with everyone else's driving style on the roads here (fairly erratic most of the time!). Unfortunately, there are far too many people with little or no experience of driving a scooter, bike, or quad who arrive on Thai islands and deem this a suitable place to start! The roads are not all drivable or complete in many cases, especially away from the main roads. This leads to accidents, resulting in scrapes and damages - and lots of injuries, not to mention grossly inflated fines for any repairs.

Udon Thani
Level Contributor
137 posts
142 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: What type of license do you need to ride a scooter

Correction: too late to edit. In addition to what was posted also:

Motorcycle licenses from Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the UK and the USA are valid for driving a motorbike (scotter) in Thailand when here for short term tourism purposes without need for an international drivers permit.

Licenses from Mynamar, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, Brunei, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore and the Philippines licenses are always valid in Thailand, thus no need for an international permit, no matter what the purpose or duration of visit.

perth
Destination Expert
for Ko Samui, Thailand
Level Contributor
20,288 posts
64 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: What type of license do you need to ride a scooter

Additions to post # 5. It might be ok to use those license in Thailand. But the issues here is not about which license from which country are valid to ride motorbike in Thailand. The main issue here is travel insurance. Many travel insurance providers make it clear that no license/ no IDP no claims.

Norfolk, United...
Destination Expert
for Chaweng, Ko Samui
Level Contributor
36,417 posts
349 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: What type of license do you need to ride a scooter

Yes agree.

Your licence should show you are licenced to ride a bike up to a certain cc, as I know we can in the uk (up to 125cc)

Then read the small print on your travel insurance. For example, my annual policy says that I am covered for personal accidents but not for personal liability if I ride a bike up to 125cc, we are not required to have an IDP in our policy.

Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
1,737 posts
79 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: What type of license do you need to ride a scooter

Sweetpeas answer in post #1 pretty much answers you question.

If you dont have a bike license in Aus then your Aus travel insurance most likely not cover you if you have an accident in Thailand. Be it personal injury or third party property.

For $25 a day you can hire a car. Get an IDP before you travel to cover insurance. Rent a car for a couple days, tour the island and drive carefully. Much safer than a scooter.

victoria
Level Contributor
91 posts
38 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: What type of license do you need to ride a scooter

This is great feedback. Not just for me but for others thinking of hiring scooters/motorcycles or even cars for that matter. Yep, the rule is strict and making sure that your travel insurance policy covers it in the first place is also important. If you keep in line with both of these factors, you should be ok of course still making sure you drive very carefully. I don't actual drive a scooter in Thailand, only my husband does because firstly he has a motorcycle license and I am only covered as a passenger ad only if he drives under our travel insurance. My husband just needs his International license and we are good to go. Take care all out there that ignore all the above advise. Ride at your own risk.

victoria
Level Contributor
91 posts
38 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: What type of license do you need to ride a scooter

Hi. Do you have a contact company name and number to hire a car for $25 a day? I could not find anything lower than $40.