Are you riding your scooter illegally in Vietnam?
Written by Adon Beddoes on July 23, 2019.
4 things that you need to drive legally if you own a scooter / motorbike in Vietnam:
1. Driving Licence - A Local / International Driving Licence for anything above 50cc.
2. Blue Card - proves that you own your scooter.
3. Helmet - always wear a helmet and make sure it’s a good quality one that won’t split in two on impact and that you buckle the head-strap.
4. Motorbike Insurance - 3rd party liability insurance. Considering it costs as little as 86,000 VND for the year, and can stop you from getting into big trouble, why would you be without it!
It’s surprising how many people don’t know that motorbike insurance is a legal requirement, possibly because the law is poorly enforced. However, there is a risk that if you are stopped by the police on a bike or have an accident with someone and you cannot produce proof of insurance, you can be subject to a hefty fine. The law applies to locals and expats alike.
If you have a valid driving license here in Vietnam and you have a blue card for your scooter, email email@example.com to sort out your motorbike insurance now.
I personally would add a 5th point of things to have when driving around Vietnam.
5. Medical Insurance - It is not a legal requirement but it’s definitely sensible to make sure that you have some comprehensive medical insurance in place and carry the card in your wallet.
According to the World Health Organisation an astounding 14,000 people lose their lives each year in Vietnam as a result of road traffic crashes which is the leading cause of death of young people aged between 15 and 29.
59% of those deaths are a result of motorbike accidents. Nevertheless, as anyone who has visited the country will know, motorbikes are ubiquitous in Vietnam and many expats join the masses in purchasing one as it is definitely a cheap and quick way of getting round, particularly in the cities.
Riding a motorbike is extremely hazardous for a number of reasons. They are smaller, hard to see and easily missed by other road users and do not offer the safety features of a more robust vehicle, like air bags and a seat belt. That makes motorcyclists extremely vulnerable anywhere in the world but even more so in a country with such a poor road safety record. Anyone who has navigated the chaotic streets of Saigon or Ho Chi Minh City will be well aware of just how exposed you can feel with bad weather exacerbating the problem in rainy season. Potholes, animals, debris on the road and oil spills frequently also add spice to a journey!
If you’re riding a bike in Vietnam you will be navigating some of the most dangerous roads in the world. Skipping insurance is an extremely bad idea. If you’re looking for competitive quotes to purchase compulsory motorbike insurance, Infinity work with a number of insurance providers and can get you the best possible rates. Contact us for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org