If you’re 16 years old or over and you want to ride a moped or motorcycle in the UK then you will have to complete a compulsory basic training course, also known as the CBT Test, before riding on the road.
Although it’s sometimes referred to as a test, don’t think of it that way as it’s mostly training and ensuring that you will be a safe rider when you finally get on the open road. It only takes a day so what’s stopping you?
You may not need to take it if you passed your full driving licence before before February 2001 or passed a full moped test after December 1990 but it is highly recommended that you complete the training anyway to ensure you are safe on the road and are driving to the best of your abilities.
The CBT is not a full motorcycle licence and instead is training that ensures you are safe to ride on the road as a learner. Once you complete the training it will last for 2 years and in this time you will be expected to try and complete your full motorcycle licence but of course there is nothing stopping you from retaking your CBT every 2 years and continuing as a learner.
What does the CBT involve?
The aim of the training and test is to ensure that you are a competent rider, know how to handle your machine, understand road safety and most of all get real-life practical experience with a fully qualified instructor. The days training comprises of the following elements:
- A. Introduction to CBT – Your eyesight and provisional licence will be checked and you will also go through the basics of the CBT and what the course entails so that you understand the purpose and content of the training.
- B. Practical on-site training – You will be introduced to the motorcycle and given the knowledge of how it works but won’t actually be riding it at this stage.
- C. Practical on-site riding – This is where you actually get on the motorcycle and learn the basic skills to allow you to ride a motorcycle, and if your trainer is confident then you can move onto the next stage.
- D. Practical on-road training – You will be given a theory session on how to ride legally and safely on the road.
- E. Practical on-road riding – This final section involves a two hour ride on the road with a trainer who will be in radio contact with you and you will have to prove that you can cope safely with a variety of road and traffic conditions.
At the end of the training your instructor will decide whether they are happy that you are safe to continue learning alone then they will give you a certificate of completion (DL196) which will validate your provisional licence and entitle you to ride a moped on the road as a learner with L-plates.
Visit the ‘What does the CBT involve?‘ page to find out more about these elements.
CBT Test Prices
The cost varies from provider to provider but the average cost you will be looking at will be around £100-£130 which should include training, bike hire, helmet, and gloves. Factors that can effect the price can include location and whether you bring your own moped or motorcycle or use one supplied by them.
Although you may be able to get a discount for using your own moped it’s recommended that you simply use ones supplied by the training provider so you don’t have to deal with insurance, MOT, tax, etc as well as getting the moped there in the first place as you won’t be able to ride it there!
Please note: In order to take the CBT you will also need to have a provisional moped or motorcycle licence unless you already have a full car licence with provisional category A entitlement (provisional motorcycle licence). The provisional licence will cost £50 so take this into account.
How long does a CBT take?
The CBT takes only 1 day to complete and after completing it a 16 year old will be allowed to legally ride a 50cc moped and 17 year olds and older can ride a learner legal 125cc machine. The certificate of completion is valid for 2 years in which time you are expected to progress with getting your full motorcycle licence and this training enables you to improve your skills out on the road.
How to book a CBT Test
There are plenty of testing centres around the country and more than likely there will be one located near to where you live so there isn’t much stopping you from getting trained and taking to the road. You don’t even need to own your own moped as this is usually included in the price.
In any instance when booking your CBT please check to make sure is is being provided by approved training bodies (ATBs) whose trainers and sites will have been checked and approved by the Driving Standards Agency (DSA).