When I moved to the UK in 1998, I had been driving for almost ten years. Still, I found getting my UK license to be tremendously difficult. The pass rate is pretty low for the practical exam (somewhere around 50%) and I seemed to have a lot of problems with habits I picked up while driving in the States. It costs about Â£48 (about $70) to take an exam and it usually involved a lengthy waiting list to get an exam scheduled. I took the test 7 times before I passed. It took me nearly two years to do it. The upside is that my UK license doesn’t expire until I’m 70 years old.
So, with all the trouble I had with the car driving license, I was reluctant to try to get a motorcycle license. The test is similar to driving a car, but with the added worry of controlling the 500cc motorcycle while being alert for traffic. This time, I went with professional instruction and took the motorcycle course offered by Riding In Action in Abingdon. I passed the motorcycle test last Friday on my first try.
I highly recommend Riding in Action if you are considering getting into riding.
I had a 250cc Honda Interceptor back when we lived in Hawaii (about twelve years ago), but was astonished how much I had forgotten about riding a proper motorcycle. I loved being able to ride around Oahu on my bike and it definitely felt a lot freer than sitting in a car. I had one accident where I did considerable damage to the bike and scared myself to death, but really enjoyed all the other riding I was able to do.
I started out the weeklong course worried that I wouldn’t be able to learn quickly enough. Now, I have the license and am looking for a decent (but not flashy) second-hand motorcycle.
I look forward to getting back out on the road.