We recently hired a bike in Chiang Mai that we are paying for on a month to month basis. Hiring a bike works out cheeper than buying one outright and it is also a lot cheeper than taking Grab’s and tuktuks everywhere.
It is very common for travellers to hire a motorbike or scooter while visiting Thailand and choosing the right place to hire from can be overwhelming. There are so many places to choose from. Hiring a bike in Thailand is the best way to get around and explore the off the beaten track locations.
How to rent a motorbike in Chiang Mai?
There are so many motorbike rental shops in Chiang Mai. Before you rent we recommend you do your research and read some online reviews before you choose which company to go with.
We rent our bike from Mango Bike Chiang Mai. They have excellent reviews online and we were very impressed with their selection of bikes and service. All bike rentals include helmets and make sure you do not leave with out taking a helmet! Try on a few to make sure you get the right fit.
When you are renting a bike you will need to provide your passport. The shop will scan your passport to keep it on record. Some shops will request your passport as a security deposit. In our opinion we are not comfortable leaving our passport with anyone. You can offer another form off ID or cash deposit can also be accepted. It is typical to be asked for a 1,000 – 3,000 baht cash deposit that is 100% refundable if you return the bike in the same condition as you received it.
TOP TIP: Always take photos of all angles of the bike before leaving the shop.
Do I need a licence to drive a bike in Thailand?
Technically yes, the law in Thailand requires you to have a bike licence (Thai licence or international permit are accepted). However, when you rent a bike you won’t be asked to show you licence by the rental company. It is common knowledge that tourist come to Thailand and hire bikes with out the appropriate bike licence or international driving permit.
If the police pull you over and you can’t produce a motorbike licence you will be fined a small fee (around 500 baht). If you are not wearing a helmet you will most defiantly be stoped at a police check point and the fine for not wearing a helmet is around 200 – 500 baht.
Does the motorbike rental include insurance?
Insurance is not always included when you rent a bike. Some rental companies will offer you accident insurance which covers a portion of any hospital bill.
Is it safe to ride a motorbike in Chiang Mai?
Like driving anywhere in the world it is important to be aware of your surroundings when driving. Thailand has a very high rate of road accidents so always err on the side of caution, take your time and do not speed.
How much will renting a motorbike cost?
Prices will vary based on the type of bike you choose to rent. The longer you rent the bike for the better price you will get. Typically expect to pay around 200 – 400 baht per day or around 2000 baht per month. Don’t be afraid to haggle on the price. As we are renting a bike for the year we haggled the price from 2000 baht per month to 1700 baht per month.