Carole Nash
Content Writer
Published: 4th July 2017

If you’re new to the world of bikes and want to take your CBT, then it can be helpful to understand motorbike law and the different types of tests you need to pass to ride a specific model. Before riding a moped, scooter or motorbike, passing CBT is essential. It’s not a test you can pass or fail, but an instructor will assess your skills to make sure you’re safe to be on the road.

There are five stages involved and when all of them have been completed, you’ll be given a DL196 certificate. The DL196 certificate is valid for two years, and if you’ve not gained a full motorbike or moped license, you’ll have to repeat CBT.

So, what licenses are there and how old do you have to be to be eligible?

Age 16, moped license

When you’re 16 and have completed CBT, you can ride a moped with L-plates on. You could opt for a new AM licence by taking a theory test and practical. This lets you ride a 50cc moped with a top speed of 28mph. You won’t have to wear L-plates and pillions are acceptable.

Even if you decide against getting your full moped licence, it’s recommended you continue training to improve your riding skills. Age 17 to 19, A1 motorbike license

For an A1 motorcycle license, you’ll need to be 17 or over and have passed your CBT. Once you’ve taken a 2-stage practical test you’ll be able to ride a 125cc motorbike or scooter without L-plates. Also, pillions are allowed.

After two years of holding an A1 motorbike license, you can apply for an A2 license. If you choose not to get an A1, we’d still suggest getting additional training so you can be more confident on the road.

Age 19 to 24, A2 motorbike license

You can qualify for an A2 license in two ways:

  • By holding an A1 license for 2 years
  • Taking the Direct Access route by completing CBT, theory tests and a practical test

An A2 license grants you the ability to ride a motorbike or scooter with a power of up to 46.6bhp. This means the engine size will typically be up to 500cc, or a restricted version of a more powerful model. In addition, pillions are allowed and you can ride without L-plates.

Once you’ve held an A2 for 2 years, you become eligible for an A motorbike license.

Age 24 and over, A motorbike license

There are two ways to qualify for an A license:

  • By holding an A2 license for 2 years and taking another practical test
  • By being 24 or over and taking the Direct Access route

After you’ve passed, you can ride a motorbike or scooter of any size and power. You won’t be required to wear L-plates and pillions are allowed.