New Regulations

Licensing requirements and safety regulations that apply to motorcycles and mopeds

Licensing categories

There are three licensing categories for motorcycles:

Category

Details

A motorcycles with or without a sidecar. Minimum driving age: 20 (progressive access) or 24 (direct access)
A2 Motorcycles with a power rating not exceeding 35 kW, with a power to weight ratio not exceeding 0.2 kW/kg and not derived from a vehicle of more than double its power. Minimum driving age: 18
A1 motorcycles with an engine capacity not exceeding 125cc and with a power rating not exceeding 11kW with or without sidecar. Minimum driving age: 16
AM mopeds – engine capacity not exceeding 49cc and maximum speed of 45kph. Minimum driving age: 16

 

Direct Access

Direct access is where you have not previously held a full licence in a lower category of motorcycle.

Progressive Access

Progressive access applies to categories A2 and A. This means that you may be entitled to complete a course of training in order to obtain the higher motorcycle category full licence. For example, if you are 18 years of age and you have held a full Category A1 licence for 2 years, you can complete a training course (or progression module) of Initial Basic Training on an A2 motorcycle, and upon satisfactory completion of the training, you can get your full Category A2 licence.

Other regulations

Helmets:
Both rider and pillion must wear helmets while on a public road.

Licences:
You must hold a current driving licence or learner permit for a motorcycle or moped.

Tax/insurance:
You must display a current motor tax disc and have insurance cover before you can take your motorcycle or moped on a public road.

Pillion passengers:
It is a penal offence to carry a passenger if you hold a learner permit. And if you have a full licence, make sure your licence and insurance policy allow you to do so.

Alcohol:
The current limit for drink driving for fully licenced drivers in Category B are:

  • 50 milligrammes (mg) of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood (0.05)
  • 67 milligrammes (mg) of alcohol per 100 millilitres of urine or
  • 22 microgrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of breath

The legal limits for professional, learner and novice drivers are:

  • 20 milligrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood (0.02)
  • 27 milligrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of urine or
  • 9 microgrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of breath

Sidecars:
These are permissible but must be properly constructed and fitted. They must have correct lighting and be adjoining the left side of the motorcycle.
Check this page regularly for new safety regulations for motorcyclists.