HOW To Learn to RIde
You must have a provisional Category A licence. This is either included in your full car licence or
as part of a provisional licence. You can apply for a provisional licence online or by filling in the
D1 application form from the DVLA or Post Office®
Before taking any practical motorcycle test you must pass a motorcycle theory test, even if you
have a full car licence. The Theory Test Pass Certificate is valid for 2 years in which time you
must pass your motorcycle practical test. If you the Theory Test Pass Certificate expires and
you not passed your practical test you must re-take it. If you have passed a two part moped
test or a lower category motorcycle test since 1st July 1996 you need not take the theory test.
Before you ride any moped, scooter or motorcycle on the road you must complete Compulsory
Basic Training at an approved training body (ATB). If you have a full car licence issued before
1st February 2001 you may ride a restricted 50cc moped on the road without L plates (and
carry a passenger), but you still need to pass CBT to ride any motorcycle over 50cc.
Once you have completed the above, there are three ways to get your full licence:
A1 Motorcycle Licence:
If you only want to ride a 125cc motorcycle, you can train and take the test on a machine of 75cc
– 125cc and get a Category A1 motorcycle licence. This lets you ride a motorcycle up to 125cc
and 14.6 bhp (11kw).
• You can carry a passenger and use motorways, but your licence will not automatically convert in
to a full Category A licence.
• You will have to complete one of the other routes if you want to ride a bigger motorbike.
A2 Motorcycle Licence
You will learn and take your test on a motorcycle of 120cc – 125cc, capable of reaching at least
100kph (62 mph) but not more than 14.6 bhp (11kw). Passing the practical test gets you a
restricted Category A2 motorcycle licence, which lets you ride any motorcycle up to 33 bhp
You can carry a passenger and use the motorways, and don’t need L plates. After 2 years your
A2 licence becomes a full Category A licence and you can ride any size motorcycle, even if you
are under 21.
*Not exceeding 0.16kw/kg power-to-weight.
You must be over 21 to do Direct Access; training and testing use a combination of 125cc and
larger motorcycles, which you are allowed to ride on the road with a qualified instructor. Your
test must be done on a machine of at least 46.6 bhp (35kw), probably around 500cc.
If you pass, you immediately have a full category A motorcycle licence, can ride a machine of
any size, carry a passenger and use motorways.
We have gone to great lengths to ensure that information provided here is up to date and
correct, however for the latest information please visit www.dvla.gov.uk