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what does motorcycle insurance cover?

Riding a motorcycle is a great way to (metaphorically) become one with the road. But just in case you or your bike ever actually meet the pavement, motorcycle insurance is there for you. We'll explain how to select the best motorcycle insurance coverage levels to suit you and your bike.

types of vehicles protected by motorcycle insurance

If you're crazy for bikes, trikes, and sporty rides, we've got good news: no matter your choice, chances are you can cover it with motorcycle insurance.

In addition to standard motorcycles, the following typically can be insured:

  • Scooters
  • Mopeds
  • Street-sport bikes
  • High-performance bikes
  • Limited-production and custom bikes
  • Cruisers
  • Touring and sport-touring bikes
  • Vintage bikes
  • Motocross bikes
  • Off-road/dual-purpose bikes
  • ATVs

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how much motorcycle insurance do I need?

This varies by state, but standard motorcycle insurance requires at least bodily injury and property damage liability coverage.

Bodily injury and property damage liability cover you in the event of an at-fault accident. Comprehensive and collision coverage for motorcycles will help you repair or replace a damaged or stolen bike.

Other states may require additional motorcycle coverage, such as uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. Some states could require Personal Injury Protection (PIP), also known as no-fault insurance. In general, motorcycle PIP insurance covers the medical expenses of people riding on the insured motorcycle and pedestrians who are struck by the insured motorcycle in an accident.

You can customize limits and deductibles and see all of your coverage options in one place when you get your free motorcycle insurance quote.

types of motorcycle insurance coverage

With so many types of bikes to choose from, there are plenty of chances to revel in the open road — which also means plenty of ways to run into trouble. Not to fear! Outfitting your policy with the right coverages will help you stay protected no matter what arises.

Liability insurance

Liability includes bodily injury and property damage protection and is almost always required. If you ever cause an accident with your motorcycle, liability coverage helps protect you from having to pay others' injury or repair bills.

When deciding how much liability insurance to get, a good rule of thumb is to get as much protection as you can comfortably afford. It's also important to know your surroundings and riding ability. For instance, someone who lives in a crowded city and is new to motorcycles will probably want higher limits than someone who lives in a rural area and has years of experience.

Comprehensive and collision coverage

While liability is all about covering the other driver's expenses after an accident, collision coverage helps repair your bike if you cause an accident. Collision also helps cover the cost of riding apparel and helmets damaged in a covered incident.

Comprehensive coverage, on the other hand, kicks in after a non-collision incident such as a stolen motorcycle or that dead tree limb crashing down on your ride. Comprehensive can help pay the damage or even replace your motorcycle altogether.

For both of these motorcycle overages, you select a deductible and we cover any costs that surpass it.

Total loss coverage

If your bike gets totaled, total loss coverage will pay the manufacturer's suggested retail price of a current model year motorcycle of the same make and model. If you do not have total loss coverage, actual cash value coverage ensures that your bike is covered for its current-day worth. For a limited-production motorcycle, agreed value coverage might be required.

Medical payments coverage

If you're getting a motorcycle, you're probably already aware of the unique injury risks that go along with it (so we'll spare you any lectures). Just know that having an adequate amount of medical payments coverage can be a lifesaver after an accident, especially if you don't have health insurance or your plan doesn't cover all your needs. This coverage kicks in regardless of who caused the incident.

You can typically use medical payments coverage on accident injuries that occurred within the past 3 years. Some plans might require you to reach your health insurance limit before tapping into medical payments coverage.

Optional equipment coverage

Adding personal touches to your bike is a great way to enhance your riding experience. But these customizations don't come cheap — so you'll likely want to protect them, just like the rest of your ride.

Customized parts and equipment coverage (also called accessory coverage) can provide up to $30,000 worth of protection for most bike models less than 25 years old whose resale values are listed in the National Automobile Dealers Association appraisal guide. These settlements are based on the actual cash value (original value minus depreciation) of the motorcycle.

In most states, you'll receive an automatic $3,000 in accessory coverage just for purchasing collision or comprehensive (sweet).

Trip interruption coverage

If your dream motorcycle ride is hundreds of gorgeous miles over a few days, don't let a mechanical breakdown, collision, or comprehensive claim slow you down. Protect yourself with trip interruption coverage and we'll cover:

  • $100 for lodging
  • $50 for alternate transportation
  • $50 for food

Just think, that's per day until your bike is fixed (up to $500 per incident).

Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage

While a motorcycle's small size makes it fun and sporty, it can also make it tough to spot. So what happens if an uninsured or underinsured driver fails to see you at an intersection and runs into your bike?

If you have UM protection for your motorcycle, it will kick in to cover your property damage, injury bills, and even extra stuff like lost wages if the at-fault driver has no liability protection (or not enough). Choose limits high enough so you're confident of being covered in any loss.

Towing and labor coverage

Motorcycle towing and labor coverage kicks in if you're stranded, your bike breaks down, or you need a tow. It can even cover labor costs if the mishap is due to any of the following:

  • Dead battery
  • Flat tire
  • Lost keys
  • Low fluid (including fuel)
  • Bike is stuck within 100 feet of roadway

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managing your motorcycle insurance policy

What factors should I compare to be sure I get the most coverage for my dollar?

If you compare policies side by side, make sure the deductibles, limits, and optional coverages match up as well. That way you can compare apples to apples and see which policy fits you best.

Choosing higher deductibles generally translates into a lower insurance premium, but keep in mind that you'll be assuming added financial risk.

Limits work in a similar way. The lower the limits you choose on certain coverages, the lower your premium. If you do need to file a claim, however, you risk not having the amount of coverage you need.

If I buy a motorcycle insurance policy today, when can I start my coverage?

You can specify your policy effective date when you get a motorcycle quote.

If you were previously insured, make sure your prior policy's end date is on or after the new policy's start date to avoid a lapse in coverage.

How many vehicles can I have on one motorcycle insurance policy?

Motorcycle insurance offered from Esurance and through our partners gives you the option to insure up to 4 vehicles on the same policy. Plus, when you insure more than one ride on the same policy, you could qualify for a Multi-Vehicle discount.

How many riders can I insure on one motorcycle insurance policy?

A typical motorcycle insurance policy allows you to insure up to 5 riders on the same policy.

Does my motorcycle insurance policy cover me to ride other bikes?

This depends on the bike you're riding. If it's a rental, parts or all of your motorcycle insurance coverage typically still apply. If you're riding a bike you own or can regularly use but that isn't included in your policy, coverage might not apply. Check your policy contract for details.

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