While Phuket is much easier to navigate and much more fun on a motorbike, you do have to be prepared to face the unique driving environment that is Thailand. You also have to be aware of the different rules and regulations surrounding motorbikes and how to make sure you remain compliant at all times. In this article, we’re going to give you a few simple tips that will help you on your next trip.
Find a Good Place to Rent a Bike
Before you go, you should already know how you’re going to go about renting a motorbike. You can find places to rent motorbikes everywhere in and around the city, but finding a reputable service is easier said than done.
If you’re going to Patong, only rent bike Phuket Patong from providers who take safety seriously. Make sure you get some references from other customers as well. Also, refrain from renting from someone who doesn’t at least understand English. There are some important clauses that you’ll need to know about and a rental service that didn’t even take the time to know some basic English to serve their clientele might be lacking in other areas.
Prepare for the Driving Style
Before you decide to hit the road, you have to be aware that drivers in Thailand tend to be more aggressive and often have a different interpretation of road signs and rules. For instance, it’s not uncommon for drivers to go through a red light. Also, drivers don’t really believe in leaving distance between them and other vehicles, so if you’re used to driving five meters behind the car in front, be ready for an opportunistic rider to fill that gap for you.
You Will Need a Permit
Even though thousands of people are riding in Thailand with absolutely no license, it doesn’t mean you should too. Not only is it dangerous, but you, as a foreigner, cannot afford to get caught driving without a license. You never know when something might happen or when you’ll have to go through a police checkpoint. So, you’ll either need an international driver’s license, one from home, or a local one if you want to ride in Thailand unencumbered.
You should also make sure you pay for some travel insurance as well. International insurance often seems like a detail when traveling, but medical bills can add up pretty quickly while you’re abroad, so make sure that you have solid coverage to avoid any issues.
Wear your Helmet!
Yes, we know that literally no one in Thailand wears their helmet and it’s 105 in the shade, but make sure that you wear your helmet at all times when driving in Phuket. Sand spots and potholes are just part of everyday life here and one wrong move could send you flying. Take all the precautions necessary so you can leave the country in one piece.
Thailand can be a great place to visit and renting a motorbike could make the experience even better. Just remember the few tips in this article and get prepared before you even land to make sure you get the most out of your trip.