Motorcycle Licenses. How to learn to ride a motorcycle in London

London Motorcycle Training provide 1 day basic rider training courses, called CBT courses, 7 days a week in central London locations. They cost between £90 and £130 and the price includes everything - Bike, Helmets and Gloves hire and Insurance. If you already hold a Provisional or Full UK car license, this CBT course is all you need to start legally riding a scooter or a motorcycle of up to 125cc in the UK.

If you hold an International driving license(other than an EU license), you will need to apply for a provisional driving license first.

If you hold an EU license you need to either:
- exchange it for a UK one first, or

- apply to DVLA to register a non UK driving license. You will need your original driving license, together with the registration document you will get from the DVLA, to book a CBT training course.

Where to start

First, you need to decide on what type of motorcycle you would like to be able to ride, taking into consideration what it would be used for and the distance you will travel on a regular basis.

Click here to browse our great selection of Motorcycles and Scooters. Our experienced staff at Motoden and Scooterden would be happy to answer any questions you might have regarding the Bikes.

There are different types of motorcycle licenses with different restrictions. They range from a CBT certificate that only allows you to ride machines up to 125cc with L plates, with no passengers or riding on motorways, to a Full Motorcycle cat A license that has no restrictions.

Compulsory Basic Training (CBT)

If you passed a car test before February 2001 you can legally ride a 49cc moped with a passenger. You don't need L-plates. You are restricted to 28mph. If you haven't ridden before, we would strongly suggest that you still take a basic rider training course (Compulsory Basic Training - CBT).

Anyone else must take a basic motorcycle training course called Compulsory Basic Training (CBT). This is a 1 day training course that can be taken with a UK provisional driving license, Full UK driving licence or an EU driving license that has been registered with the DVLA (apply here). You have to be 17 years old or over. You are not required to pass the Motorcycle Theory or Practical tests, but if you do, you will be able to ride with fewer restrictions. After you have obtained your CBT certificate, you will be entitled to ride any motorcycle or scooter up to 125cc. This entitlement lasts for 2 years and you will not be able to take passengers or go on motorways. You must also display L - plates.

Click here to read more about CBT, and here to book your CBT course in London today!

Type of Bike Licenses

  • 'AM' Moped License (with CBT course only)

  • If you are 16 years old and pass a CBT with a provisional licence, you will be entitled to ride any 49cc scooter or motorcycle restricted to 28mph. You must display L-plates, cannot carry passengers or go on motorways. This entitlement lasts for 2 years. After 2 years you either have to do it again or progress towards another category of Motorcycle license.

  • 'AM' Moped License (with theory and practical tests passed)

  • The minimum age requirement for this type of license is 16 years old. First, you have to complete your CBT. You then have to pass the Motorcycle Theory Test and undertake training and a Practical Test on a machine up to 50cc. The advantages over just passing a CBT course alone, are that you can ride any Moped (up to 50cc) without L-plates and you may carry a pillion passenger.

  • 'A1' Light Motorcycle Licence (max power 11kW)

  • The minimum age requirement for this type of license is 17 years old. First, you have to complete your CBT. You then have to pass the Motorcycle Theory Test and undertake training and a Practical Test on a motorcycle between 75cc & 125cc. Once you have passed your Practical Test, you will have a licence to ride any machine of up to 125cc, so long as it's power is restricted to 11kW, without L-plates and you may carry a pillion passenger. After you have held this license for a minimum of 2 years, you can retake the Module 1 and Module 2 practical tests on a biger bike, and upgrade to a 'A2' Restricted License at the age of 19.

  • 'A2' Restricted Licence (max power 25kW)

  • The minimum age requirement for this type of license is 19 years old. First, you have to complete your CBT. You then have to pass the Motorcycle Theory Test and undertake training and a Practical Test on a motorcycle exceeding 395cc with a power output of between 25kW and 35kW. Once you have passed your Practical Test, you will have a licence to ride any machine (so long as its power is restricted to 35kW) without L-plates and you may carry a pillion passenger. After you have held this license for a minimum of 2 years, you can retake the Module 1 and Module 2 practical tests on a bigger bike and upgrade to a Full Unrestricted category 'A' License at the age of 21.

  • Full Unrestricted Category 'A' Licence (Direct Access)

  • The minimum age requirement for this type of license is 24 years old. First, you have to complete your CBT. You then have to pass the Motorcycle Theory Test and undertake training and a Practical Test on a motorcycle with a minimum power output of 35KW. Once you have passed your Practical Test, you will have a licence to ride any motorcycle without any restrictions.

    If you have held a category 'A2' License for at least 2 years, the minimum age is reduced to 21. In that case you only have to take the Module 1 and Module 2 Practical tests on the bigger bike. You are not required to retake the CBT course or the Motorcycle Theory test.

Motorcycle Theory and Practical tests

  • Motorcycle Theory test

  • If you wish to gain a licence in any of the above categories you must pass the Motorcycle Theory Test before taking the Practical Test. You don't need to pass the Bike theory test for the 'AM' Moped License (with CBT course only).

  • Motorcycle Practical test

  • Once you have passed your motorcycle theory test, there is a Practical test that is split into two elements - Module 1 and Module 2. The first is an off road manoeuvres test which lasts approximately 20 minutes and takes place at designated testing centres. The second is the on road practical test which lasts approximately 40 min. You need to pass both to get your Motorcycle license.

Click here to read more about our Full Motorbike Training Courses...


Motorcycle Driving License categories and Motorcycle tests