Where can I hire a motorbike in Pattaya?
You don’t have to look far to find a motorbike renter in Pattaya. Many hotels and guest houses in Pattaya have their own motorcycles for rent, and there are many independent motorbike rental vendors and companies, including long-established family-run businesses such as Jan’s motorcycle rentals in Pattaya.
Popular places to seek out motorcycle rental businesses are Pattaya Beach Road, Second (2nd) Road, and along Soi Buakhao, where you will see rows of rental motorbikes lined up, usually with a price per day displayed on them. The best thing to do is use a motorbike rental service which has been recommended to you. There are many unscrupulous rip-off merchants in Pattaya, including motorbike rental vendors.
How much does it cost to hire a motorcycle in Pattaya?
The costs range from about 200–600 Baht per day for 100–160cc automatic (twist & go) scooters. Basically, the bigger the bike, the more it costs. To hire superbikes, tourers, or a Harley Davidson in Pattaya costs 1000–6000++ baht per day.
Renting a motorbike long-term, weekly or monthly works out much cheaper, with monthly rates for scooters from as little as 3000 baht per month.
A deposit is usually required, which you get back when the bike is returned, providing there is no damage to the bike. The amount of the deposit depends on the rental period, so may be anything from a few hundred baht to the monthly rental rate.
What do I need to hire a motorcycle in Pattaya?
To keep within the law when renting a motorcycle in Thailand, you need the appropriate driving/motorcycle license from your home country and an international driving permit. Or a Thai motorcycle driving license.
In reality, many Pattaya motorcycle rental companies will only ask for a copy of your passport, your address, and your assurance that you are a competent rider.
Safely and legally hire a motorcycle in Pattaya.
Get an international driving permit that covers the class of bike you want to hire in Pattaya.
Wear a crash helmet; it’s required by law for the driver and passengers, as is driving with your lights on at all times.
Wear sensible shoes (no flip-flops or sandals).’Wear sensible shoes (no flip-flops or sandals).
Do not drink and drive, it is illegal, and it’s pretty irresponsible.
If you are staying in Pattaya for a long period, get a Thai motorcycle driving license.
Get accident/travel insurance that covers you for motorcycle hire and that it covers the class and engine size of the motorcycle.
Keep your personal health/accident insurance details on you at all times.
Keep the compulsory insurance document under the motorcycle seat.
Keep a copy of the rental agreement and the vendor/renter’s contact details under the seat or about your person.
Things you should check before hiring a motorcycle in Thailand
The motorbike should have a minimum of road tax, registration papers, and compulsory third-party insurance.
Ask the vendor if they supply any additional insurance benefits.
Make sure a helmet is supplied. Most crash helmets are basic or ill-fitting. You would be well advised to buy a full-face helmet instead.
Take photos of the bike before you ride it away in case the vendor tries to charge you for damage you did not cause. Include the vendor/renter in the photos so there can be no denying any damage already existed.
Check the small print of your insurance policy. Many insurance companies will not cover you if you do not have a full motorbike license from your own country and will not even recognize an international driving license. Some may insist you have a full license for the country where you ride or hire the motorbike.
Read the terms of the motorcycle rental contract, especially the fine print.
Confirm if there are any maximum distance/area restrictions you can travel.
Driving your motorbike around Pattaya.
Drive defensively, and always expect the unexpected and the opposite of logic. It’s best to imagine that everything and everyone else on the road is conspiring to harm or hinder you.
Avoid riding a motorcycle during Songkran. It looks like fun, but the Songkran period is when Thailand records its highest number of annual deaths due to traffic accidents.
Be especially careful around baht buses (songthaews); they have a habit of cutting you up or stopping unexpectedly.
Watch for other motorcyclists passing you on the wrong side as you are about to make a turn.
In summary, it’s easy to hire a motorbike. It’s one of the cheapest, most convenient ways to get around Pattaya, but be reminded of the risks. It is far better to be covered legally in the form of a license and financially in the form of insurance.
Take a look at the clip below; this is an example case from the U.K. It’s an old article from the B.B.C, but still relevant.
Travelers warned over insurance. British standards are being applied unfairly overseas as a basis for rejecting travel insurance claims, according to a consumer watchdog. It cites the case of a 19-year-old who crashed a moped in Vietnam but his insurer refused to pay out. The insurance company involved said the policy “clearly stated” that the driver must have a full UK motorcycle licence. The group has highlighted the example of gap year student James Pinnington, 19, who crashed his moped in Vietnam in May breaking both his legs. Although James had what he thought was comprehensive travel insurance and a full driving licence and was wearing a helmet, his insurer refused to honour the claim because he did not have a full UK Class A motorcycle licence. A licence is not required in Vietnam to ride some smaller mopeds on public thoroughfares, and helmets only became mandatory in December 2007. James’s father Chris had to pay £25,000 to transport his son from a remote village in Vietnam to London via Bangkok. Source: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/7479520.stm