Anyone today who owns or leases any type of vehicle for everyday transportation knows that gas costs can rip out a huge chunk of your budget. After all, prices continue to be very high, even if they are no longer steeply rising. Saving gas is just one of many reasons that more people are turning to scooters (what they lack in speed they make up for in other areas). Like all vehicles, however, you’ll want to have the added protection of insurance.
First made popular in Italy and Japan, and then worldwide after World War II (the main manufacturers continue to be Italian and Japanese) a scooter is basically a type of motorcycle with an open frame and platform for the rider’s feet. Basically, the rider sits with their feet facing forward, as opposed to straddling the seat like a traditional motorcycle. Scooters are comparatively low in maintenance in addition to guzzling a lot less gas, and they are also cheaper in overall price than other vehicles. Fortunately, insurance is another thing that tends to be cheaper for scooters.
In fact, you are obligated by law to buy scooter insurance for any scooter that is required by state law to be registered. A good scooter insurance policy will include physical damage, liability and uninsured/underinsured driver protection on its coverage plan. If you have auto insurance, coverage for your scooter should match the amount that you have on your auto insurance policy. Speaking of coverage, many scooter insurance plans also cover safety gear— helmets, riding gloves, goggles, sometimes jackets, etc. The exact details are going to vary with each plan and insurer, but don’t be afraid to ask about it. Chances are, insurers will be more than willing to discuss it with you. After all, the insurance business is a gambling game for both you and them, and they’re more likely to come out on top (having to pay less) the safer you are.
Now, where to get insured? Your scooter insurance will come from an auto insurance company, and in general, that company is one that offers motorcycle insurance (it is very rare that their motorcycle insurance packages will not also cover scooters). As far as the insurance company is concerned, a scooter is a motorcycle, so for instance, State Farm scooter insurance really is a form of State Farm motorcycle insurance. This is because scooter policies are essentially the same as traditional motorcycle insurance policies, as the two types of vehicles carry very similar risks.
But how much is scooter insurance in terms of cost? Naturally this will depend on the kind of coverage you get, although going off of the previous paragraph, you should never skimp on the coverage just to get a lower scooter insurance quote. Just because scooters may be cheaper than other vehicles doesn’t mean you don’t need as much coverage—liability coverage protects your assets against the damage your scooter may do to others should an accident occur, and you will want the same protection level that you have with any vehicle. After all, accidents can happen regardless of the vehicle you are driving on any given day.
That being said, in addition to the type of coverage you get, the actual type of scooter you have is another very important factor when it comes to determining scooter insurance cost. For example, a 150cc scooter typically costs more than a 50cc scooter, so 150cc scooter insurance is likely to be higher. Additionally, the year the scooter was manufactured also counts, as newer models are bound to have higher scooter insurance rates. Basically, the rules for figuring out your scooter insurance price are very similar to those that apply for autos.
Your accident and safety history also plays a role. For example, an average scooter insurance price falls anywhere between as low as $30 and as high as $300 (in yearly payments). However, just one accident or speeding ticket could make your scooter insurance increase by another $100 or more per year. The lesson here? Drive safely and keep your record as clean as possible.
Also like auto insurance, your personal demographic can affect the price of your scooter insurance. For example, a higher percentage of male drivers get into vehicle accidents than female drivers, so men usually end up paying more insurance (although the difference isn’t very great— usually just a few dollars more per month than females). If you are under the age of 25, you are also likely to find yourself being charged more for scooter insurance. According to the nation’s major insurance companies, this younger demographic of drivers are far more likely to engage in risky driving habits, including disobeying driving regulations such as running a stop sign or talking and texting on their phone while behind the wheel. Those under 25 can expect their scooter insurance costs to range toward the upper end of the scale. If you are under 25 and have already been convicted of one or more traffic violations, your scooter insurance may even be higher than $300. In any case, it will definitely be higher. After all, drivers of any vehicle with fewer years of experience are more likely to get in accidents
If you want to reduce your scooter insurance cost even further (which you obviously want to do), be sure to look for policies that offer discounts for being part of an affinity group, taking driver safety courses, anti-theft measures, use of safety gear and multiline coverage (insuring your home and scooter, as well as any other vehicle with the same company). You should also keep an eye open for an insurance company that offers perks like accident forgiveness and customer-loyalty incentives.
Even though you may be concerned about paying for scooter insurance, always remember that an accident without insurance will end up costing you a lot more in the long run. Besides, scooter insurance overall is still among the cheapest vehicle insurance to be found today, and it is well worth the investment.