If you plan to bring your motorcycle to a foreign country for a tour, you may be required to purchase international motorcycle insurance or a temporary “green card” motorcycle insurance. It is possible that your current document does not cover international travel, so it is important to determine if:
a) the country you are traveling to requires insurance and
b) the new policy you will be purchasing.
Note that most countries, including the United States, will not release a motorcycle from customs without proof of insurance.
International Motorcycle Insurance for the United States and Canada
If you are interested in purchasing motorbike insurance for the US or Canada, it is important to know that US and Canadian law requires it. This type of temporary insurance will meet the minimum requirements for every state in the United States and will comply with any Canadian province. Temporary coverage can be purchased for the duration of your trip and should include a variety of options including liability (only) or liability for fire, theft and vandalism coverage.
The minimum coverage in the US is $50-500k per accident in liability insurance, plus bodily injury/property damage coverage. Optional coverage includes:
- guest traveler
- Uninsured motorist
International Motorcycle Insurance in Europe
When traveling to Europe, US and Canadian citizens will need to purchase temporary “green card” motorcycle insurance. This policy will cover the duration of your trip and will meet foreign regulations for tourists. You will need to purchase temporary liability coverage for the number of months you will travel, and you may also consider purchasing bodily injury, collision, or comprehensive coverage. In addition, it is important to note that many foreign policies cannot be purchased internationally, so you should contact a local insurance broker in the European country you will be traveling to.
When buying insurance packages for foreign trips, it is important to consider your comfort level as a driver – be honest with yourself! If you are anxious about the trip, or occasionally experience a lack of focus or heightened anxiety while driving, you may be more likely to be involved in an accident in a foreign area due to a combination of factors, including new surroundings, new road laws and new sights.
Be sure to assess your condition and comfort levels before riding to ensure a safe ride! It’s always smart to play it safe and plan as much as possible for the unexpected. If you are anxious or worried about touring a foreign country, buy extra protection for you and your motorcycle. Good luck and stay safe out there!