Come March 19, those who haven’t yet received their provisional motorcycle license will be tested under a new scheme in Victoria. It’s a further refinement of the already introduced VicRoads Motorcycle Graduated Licensing System which introduced standardised testing across the industry. And for young riders looking to get their license, it’s not going to be cheap.
While the introduction of these new courses has been known for some time, pricing was until earlier this week unknown. Armstrongs, one of the largest providers of training courses for a range of vehicles was the first to announce their pricing this week and it wasn’t pretty:
- Stage 1 – 2 Day Learners Permit Course $795
- Stage 2 – Check Ride $220
- Stage 3 – 2 Hour License Course (including 45min Training Session) $345
Given the extended amount of training involved in the new scheme there should be no surprise that fees would rise – it’s just the amount of the increase that has caught most by surprise. The announcement by Armstrong was met with much alarm across the community in Victoria given the prospective costs new riders would face. Other providers haven’t published their fees yet, but a quick ring around seems to indicate that Armstrong is at the extreme end of the scale.
HART Honda quoted us a total of between $743 and $837 for the all courses depending on whether you do them on weekdays or weekends. Stay Upright hasn’t yet finalised their new fees but are anticipating that their new two day training course will cost around $580 alone, so expect another $400 or so for the check ride and license course. We rang two other providers – both who asked not to be quoted at this stage because they still hadn’t finalised their pricing either – but both expected to be charging around $800 in total. While still not cheap, it is in comparison to what Armstrong is quoting.
It’s hard to argue that training programs in Victoria did need improvement and the Victorian government often quotes statistics that learner and younger riders make up nearly a third of all motorcycle related fatalities and injuries each year. At the same time, high prices will have either the effect of limiting the amount of people who can actually afford to get their license, or even if they can afford it, cause them to skimp on gear which may now be outside their budget.