Is cheap motorcycle rental a myth?

During our research to understand motorcycle subscription v motorcycle rental or rather cheap motorcycle rental, we discovered interesting facts.

Cheap motorcycle rental doesn’t exist. Especially in cities such as Sydney, Los Angeles, New York, Singapore or London (many more can join this list). This is because these cities take quality, safety and customer service extremely seriously. These are also cities where maintenance is expensive due to high labour charges, making cheap motorbike rental nearly impossible.

During our research we spoke to some motorbike rental shops or agencies in Sydney, who identified motorbike rentals as an extremely difficult business. The motorcycle rental shops seem to attract those customers who want to have all the fun on one day with their rented motorbike. This sometimes leads to total loss for the motorcycle and usually these motorcycles are not covered by insurance, as insurance companies (in Australia) have not yet warmed up to the motorcycle rental or subscription concept. Hence the motorbike agency needs to charge exorbitant prices which becomes a catch 22 situation. The customer feels entitled to ride it like he stole it due to the rental price he pays.

Motorcycle subscription can be seen as the alternative to expensive motorcycle rental , i.e. cheap motorcycle rental. Not only does it allow customers to hire out motorbikes for less price (when compared with motorbike rental), it also come with full insurance. Subscribes by committing to 4 weeks starting term, have significant time to get accustomed to the motorcycle before letting loose on the throttle. The model naturally works for both the subscriber and the motorcycle subscription service (such as Turning Radius).

Cheap motorcycle rental however, does exists. My first time riding a sport motorcycle was in Phuket, Thailand. Clearly I wanted to rent the fastest motorcycle. It was 2010, and I chose the Yamaha R1 that was much heavier than the 2021 model. I nearly dropped the motorbike within the first 1 km as it was too fast and heavy to handle for an inexperienced rider such as me. Then I chose the Honda CBR600 that was much more appropriate for me and had a blast. It was an example of cheap motorbike rental.

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