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How to ship a motorbike across country

Transport puncture flat tyre GT10009

(Contributed article for our North American readers)

There are several reasons why you might need to ship a motorbike across country. You might have bought a new bike across the other side of the country and need to get it shipped to your home. It might be because you’re relocating and don’t have the time to ride a long distance. Perhaps you need to get it to a specialist motorbike garage for some serious repairs, or because you’ve got a spot booked at the next Daytona Bike Week. Whatever the reason, shipping a motorbike cross country is easier than you think.

How to choose the best cross country motorbike shipping company

There are lots of companies you can use for shipping a motorbike cross country. But for your precious motorbike, it’s important to choose the right one. Choose a company that specializes in transporting motorcycles and you can be certain they’ve got the right experience, insurance and reputation to get the job done quickly and safely.

  • Compare motorcycle transporters: They must register with the US Department of Transportation (USDOT) and have active DOT and MC numbers.
  • Check insurance coverage: US law requires motorcycle transporters to have both cargo and liability insurance if they want to transport motorbikes across the country legally. Always ask a carrier for written proof of their insurance before deciding which one to hire.
  • Read reviews: You can get a good idea about the reliability of a company by reading reviews left by previous customers. A company’s online reputation is a direct reflection of the experience and professionalism you can expect from a cross country motorbike shipping company.
  • Extra costs and surcharges: Check whether there will be any additional costs or surcharges you need to know about in advance. It’s also a good idea to check whether there are any discounts or promotions you can take advantage of.
  • Request several quotes: Request quotes from several different companies and compare the cost to ship a motorbike across country.

How much does it cost to ship a motorcycle?

The cost to ship a motorbike across country varies depending on several factors. These include:

  • Distance of travel
  • Pick-up and drop off locations
  • Make and model of the motorcycle
  • Whether the shipment is going to be expedited
  • Type of motorbike transport used: Typically, motorbikes are transported using enclosed trailers as these provide much more protection. Open motorcycle transport is available for people with limited budgets or owners in a hurry.

How to prepare your motorcycle for transport

Before the carrier transports your motorcycle, there are some things you have to do to get it ready.

  • Thoroughly clean your motorcycle
  • Make a note of any chips, dings, scratches, or other cosmetic damage
  • Take pictures of your bike from several angles, along with detailed shots of any existing damage
  • Remove all loose items from your motorcycle
  • Ensure your motorbike is in good working condition
  • Inflate tires
  • Charge the battery
  • Fill the gas tank to 1/4 full
  • Check and fix all fluid leaks

Now you know how easy it is to ship a motorbike across country, you don’t need to stress about it.