Maltese drivers spend almost 52 hours in traffic every year, which is hardly surprising considering that there are over 340,000 cars on Maltese roads. The increase in traffic certainly isn’t news, however the government’s new legislation regarding motorbikes under 125cc is. In this blog, we attempt to demystify the new legislation by looking at the questions many have been asking.
How much is the road license fee?
In the recent budget, the government announced that road license fees for motorbikes under 125cc will be cut to €10, down from €60 last year. This low fee is meant to attract more people to buy motorbikes, with an engine capacity of under 125cc, and hopefully reduce the number of cars on the road. As with most changes proposed in the budget, this change comes into effect as of January 2016.
I’ve got a B license, can I also drive a motorbike?
This was the question on many people’s lips after the Finance Ministry accidentally uploaded a working document of the budget. The answer is yes. If you have a B license, you can drive a motorbike as long as it’s under 125cc. This law is popular in many European countries, such as Italy, where motorinos are a popular mode of transport, especially amongst young people.
Does this mean I can start riding a motorbike as of January?
There are still some uncertainties surrounding the possibility. The government recently announced that an educational campaign on how to use motorbikes of less than 125cc, and a road safety campaign is going to be launched. Apart from this, there have been talks surrounding the need for a set number of lessons before being able to head out onto the road.
Will having more motorcycles on the road really solve the traffic issue?
No one knows for sure, however reducing the amount of cars on the road is certainly a step in the right direction. Motorbikes take up less space than cars, so that certainly helps when it comes to parking. Apart from this, motorbikes can be a convenient mode of transport for many Maltese because of the short distances between one place and another. Ultimately, the aim of this new legislation is to encourage people to use motorbikes over cars, and perhaps this could be one thing that helps many Maltese beat traffic.