Is it better to buy or rent a motorcycle? Everything you need to know to make this decision

To buy or rent a motorcycle
Get firsthand insights into the pros and cons you need to know to decide whether buying or renting a motorcycle is the right choice for you. Both options have their advantages and disadvantages, and we're here to unveil them all.

The question of whether it’s better to buy or rent a motorcycle is a common dilemma for many motorcycle enthusiasts. Making a decision about buying or renting can depend on various personal and situational factors, resulting in a significant decision for anyone.

If you find yourself pondering this question and are in the process of deciding whether to buy or rent a motorcycle is best for you, we’re confident that this post will help clarify things for you. Both buying and renting a motorcycle are entirely personal decisions that should always be based on the current needs. Therefore, there is no correct answer to this question; instead, you must evaluate which alternative suits you best.

For this reason, in this article, we’ve decided to provide a comprehensive summary of the advantages and limitations offered by each of these options. Both to buy and rent a motorcycle involve considering different factors such as maintenance, costs, or the initial investment. We’ll analyze them thoroughly so you can make the most informed decision for yourself.

Buying a Motorcycle

Buying a motorcycle, besides being a significant financial commitment, is a long-term commitment. This is usually a more thoughtful decision that may take more time to figure out, such as which model suits you best or fits within your budget. It’s undoubtedly a choice with various advantages and disadvantages that will ultimately lead you to make a completely definitive decision about the type of motorcycle that will accompany you in the coming years. To buy a motorcycle, as mentioned, is a long-term commitment in which you are solely responsible for everything. This can be significantly positive for many people but limiting for others.

Advantages of buying a motorcycle:

  • Exclusive ownership.
  • Long-term investment.
  • The best value for money.

The main advantage of buying a motorcycle is that you automatically become its sole owner, allowing you to customize it entirely to your tastes and needs. Whether you’re looking for a motorcycle for daily use or planning to reserve it for travel, buying a motorcycle allows you to have complete ownership and control. You can add improvements to the equipment, incorporate saddlebags or safety and comfort devices, or simply choose the engine displacement you desire.

Buy a motorcycle

In addition to this, consider that buying a motorcycle can be considered a long-term investment, where you won’t have to worry about changing vehicles for a long time. With proper maintenance, a purchased motorcycle can last for many years, allowing you to even sell it once you no longer need it and recoup part of the initial investment. Moreover, once you’ve finished paying for it, you can enjoy the financial freedom of not having monthly payments and only worrying about maintenance.

Finally, the last main advantage of buying a motorcycle instead of renting it is that you can own the model and brand of motorcycle you’ve always dreamed of. You can choose from all the specific brands and models on the market and find one that offers the best value for money, providing you with the best features within your budget.

Disadvantages of buying a motorcycle:

  • High initial expenditure.
  • Maintenance costs.
  • Vehicle depreciation.

Regarding the disadvantages you may encounter when buying a motorcycle, undoubtedly, the first one is the significant initial investment you must make. Keep in mind that expenses can be quite high initially, as you’ll have to manage and pay for paperwork fees and taxes at the traffic office, get insurance, pass the vehicle inspection, and, of course, pay for the motorcycle itself. These expenses repeat year after year and will increase as the motorcycle ages.

Additionally, you should also consider that, as the sole owner of the vehicle, all maintenance will be your responsibility. You must take care of the necessary inspections at the mechanic, replace consumable parts such as tires or the clutch periodically, or deal with other types of unpredictable breakdowns that may occur at the worst time.

Finally, you should also consider that the value of motorcycles tends to depreciate over time, which can affect the resale value. Thus, even if you’ve purchased a state-of-the-art motorcycle, over the years, the resale price may decrease.

Renting a Motorcycle

On the other hand, nowadays, renting a motorcycle is presented as one of the most chosen options among both young and veteran drivers. The freedom to choose from a wide variety of models, prices, and features, coupled with the negligible maintenance costs or insurance hiring costs, has positioned motorcycle rental as a more than viable alternative today. In fact, the most recent data point to a particularly significant increase in new motorcycle registrations for rental, both for tourism and motorcycle sharing, which experienced a growth of 126.5% last year in 2022.

Advantages of renting a motorcycle:

  • Greater decision freedom regarding models and brands.
  • Lower initial investment.
  • You pay only when you use the motorcycle.
  • No insurance or maintenance costs.

There’s no doubt that hire a rented motorcycle is, nowadays, a decision that increasingly aligns with users’ demands who don’t want to commit to excessive fees or, for example, have to apply for a loan or get into debt to own a motorcycle. In this sense, the significant advantage of using rental motorcycles, like those we work with at REVV Ultimate Bike Tours, is that you won’t be dependent on a single model or company. Instead, you can change quickly and easily depending on your needs without committing to a single type of motorcycle in the long run.

Additionally, thanks to motorcycle rental, you can save a considerable amount of money, especially considering that the initial investment to drive a motorcycle is much lower compared to buying. This can also allow you to try different motorcycle models until you find the one that truly suits you, being able to test practically any brand or model until you find the one that completely meets your needs.

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Another advantage of motorcycle rental is that you can decide the period of time you want to use the motorcycle. For example, if you live in a climate that limits motorcycle use during the fall or winter, or if you only want to have a motorcycle available for a specific trip or vacation period, you can choose the number of rental days and pay only when you’re going to use the vehicle.

Finally, the last advantage of renting a motorcycle is that you won’t have to worry about insurance or maintenance costs. The maintenance of the motorcycle, mechanical inspections, replacement of components, or hiring the insurance policy will be taken care of by the leasing company, so with the rental, you’ll avoid all these expenses. You’ll always have a good motorcycle available to drive in perfect condition.

Disadvantages of renting a motorcycle:

  • You can’t be the owner.
  • More cost-effective for short periods of use.

In reality, the disadvantages of renting a motorcycle are more related to not being the owner of it. Once the lease contract ends, you won’t own the motorcycle, so you won’t be able to design alternatives to customize it to your liking.

On the other hand, on a monthly basis, renting a motorcycle can be more expensive if you’re looking for a vehicle for daily use. Perhaps motorcycle rental is more cost-effective for relatively short periods or for vacation rentals and not for making it your daily-use motorcycle. Still, nowadays, there are increasingly more rental options within the motorcycle sharing format, with competitive rates offering hourly rentals, especially within large cities.

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In conclusion, the choice between to buy or rent a motorcycle will always depend on your personal preferences and needs. If you value ownership, customization capability, and if you plan to keep your motorcycle for many years, buying may be the best option. On the other hand, if you’re looking for flexibility, fewer maintenance worries, low initial costs, or valuing a motorcycle only for a specific trip, renting could be the most suitable decision. Evaluate your circumstances and decide which option aligns best with your goals and lifestyle to continue enjoying riding on two wheels.

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