Commuting

A recent study by the RAC estimated that the average commuter travelling by motorbike saves up to 3 hours of travelling time in a week, compared to those in a car. And we can see why this option appeals to so many! With the amount of traffic on the roads building each year, any way to cut your journey time seems like a good choice.

Why should I commute by motorcycle?

The biggest advantage of travelling on a motorbike is being able to weave through traffic created by cars easing the congestion and emissions, but there are plenty more including:

  • There are no congestion charges for riding through London currently due to motorcycles producing low carbon emissions compared to other vehicles.
  • No toll charges meaning it makes travelling around the UK a lot cheaper and you won’t need to be worrying about having change on you!
  • Many public car parks offer free parking for motorcyclists due to many motorbikes being small and easy to fit multiple bikes in a smaller space.
  • Commuting by motorcycle can work out cheaper in the long run with it being cheaper to fill up your tank.

This all makes using your motorbike to commute a quicker, cost effective mode of transport.

Although there are disadvantages to commuting on a motorbike (a possible reason that some people are not doing it),  there are measures you can take to cut risks while on the road and while using your motorbike to travel to and from your place of work. These include the following:

  • Be wary of other road users – such as newly parked vehicles that may open their door without looking, if you expect the worst up ahead you will be prepared to deal with anything that happens and you are more likely to stay alert.
  • Stay a safe distance away from the vehicle in front. Don’t ride too close to the car in front or in their blind spot.
  • Avoid weaving through moving cars as it can be very risky but riding past a stationary traffic jam can be very satisfying.
  • Don’t travel when tired; take regular breaks!

Suggestions…

We’ve compiled some of the best bikes that have been recommended for commuting below…

Honda CBF 125

[Total: 122    Average: 2.7/5]

This Honda isn’t the most exciting or the best looking motorbike on the market, but it is cheap to run which makes it a popular choice for commuters. They start at £2699 for a new model and is quoted by Honda to do 130+ mpg making it very fuel efficient. This motorbike is very appealing as it also has cheap insurance and as it has a 125cc engine, it can also be ridden with L plates.

Honda CBF 125

Honda CBF 125

New: £2699
Used (2010): £1250

BMW R1200GS

[Total: 122    Average: 2.7/5]

Despite this motorbike being big and bulky it is regularly chosen by riders wishing to commute as it sits high above the traffic making them clearly seen and has other rider aids such as ABS, traction control and semi-active suspension.

BMW R1200GS

BMW R1200GS

New: From £11,095
Used (2010): From £7,000

“BMW 650GS commuted for 6 years and never let me down once! Single cylinder rotax engine was a gem.” David Sutcliffe

Moto Guzzi V7 Stone

[Total: 122    Average: 2.7/5]

This is a very attractive motorbike which is typical of Italian designers. The V7 is affordable for commuters and is very appealing with a low seat, light weight and substantial power making it an easy motorbike to control and manoeuvre.

Moto Guzzi V7 Stone

Moto Guzzi V7 Stone

New: £6999
Used (2010): £3000

KTM 200 Duke

[Total: 122    Average: 2.7/5]

This motorbike is quirky, light, economical and learner-friendly. It is stylish and fun to ride although you will need to fit new tyres at a local dealer as the Indian (these motorbikes are built in India) standard-fit ones are of poor quality. The Duke is unbeatable with its sensational power-to-weight ratio coming from an ultra-low dry weight of 129.5 kg.

KTM 200 Duke. Credit: KTM

KTM 200 Duke. Credit: KTM

New: £4,199
Used (2012): £2,500

“A bike that is comfortable and reliable. Something with a bit of power, so you can move swiftly with the flow of traffic.” Christine Sadler

Kawasaki Ninja 300

[Total: 122    Average: 2.7/5]

This sporty and aggressive looking motorbike isn’t as powerful as it appears and is very learner-friendly and a fraction of the cost of the bigger sized engine sports bikes. It has a parallel twin engine providing excellent fuel economy and still has a top speed of 110 mph and goes from 0-60 in under 10 seconds, although you won’t get much use out of this speed while commuting on busy roads, but it’s great to play with on the weekends.

Kawasaki Ninja 300

Kawasaki Ninja 300

New: £4,799
Used (2013): £2,799

“Kawasaki ER6 very easy round town with its excellent torque!” Julie Swift

Honda CBR500R

[Total: 122    Average: 2.7/5]

Despite the powerful look this motorbike is ideal for commuting as it is easy to ride, and is much like the Kawasaki Ninja 300. Honda has designed 3 models in the CBR500 range and they all share the same 500cc parallel twin engine, frame, wheels, breaks and suspension but they all vary slightly in style. The CBR500X is the same price as the 500R but is styled to look more like an adventure motorbike and the CBR500F has a street racer look about it.

Honda CBR500R

Honda CBR500R

New: £4950
Used (2013): £3000

“Honda Deauville is a fair choice but fit a tall screen. Very flexible motor, low saddle height and adequate performance.” Michael Wilkinson

Vespa GTS Super 300

[Total: 122    Average: 2.7/5]

This Vespa has a reliable 278cc four-stroke engine and is very well built. This little Italian number is full of style and a very popular choice in European cities for commuting and city riding as it is comfortable and very ‘nippy’.

Vespa GTS Super

Vespa GTS Super

New: £4670
Used (2009): £2100

Triumph Bonneville

[Total: 122    Average: 2.7/5]

This motorbike is inspired by the Triumphs of the 60’s and even though it appears as a classic old school design, this triumph has modern features e.g. dummy carburettors hide a modern fuel injection system and there are modern disc brakes to improve stopping distances. This is an easy and comfortable bike to ride due to it having wide bars and a low seat providing a great riding position. The Bonneville is a lovely, simple, economical commuter motorbike.

Triumph Bonneville

Triumph Bonneville

New: £6399
Used (2009): £4395

“Commuting into the city: a tall and fairly narrow bike. My Tiger 800xc is ideal.” Paul Jones

Suzuki Burgman 125

[Total: 122    Average: 2.7/5]

The Suzuki Burgman is a refined scooter that is learner and city friendly with a 125cc four-stroke engine making it great on fuel consumption, therefore cost effective. There is extra storage space under the seat for your essential items and it is slightly bigger than other 125 scooters making it more comfortable and easier to control.

Suzuki Burgman 125

Suzuki Burgman 125

New:£3465
Used (2009): £1495

By taking advice on the best motorcycle to use for commuting and by taking the practical steps necessary to maintain your safety, you can save time, money and hassle by travelling to work on a motorbike.