Questions about driver's license for motorcykles

I’ve heard that getting a driver’s license for small bikes in Taiwan is very cheap. However, is it expensive for one for “real” bikes? And is it easy to take? What’s the average cost with all the tests one has to take? I only have a driver’s license for cars in my home country.

Define “real”.

you need a separate license for anything 250cc and over. This is more difficult to attain when compared to under 250cc bikes. Anyone have any details?

While we’re at it, anyone thinking of selling their current big bike or know of any for sale?

From what I have heard and some of my friends here who have a red plated bike, recently , they passed a law, where foreigners who hold valid driver’s licenses from other countries, regardless if it is approved by the “embassy” or cultural office, you cannot transfer your driver’s license to a Taiwan driver’s license, BUT you don’t have to wait. An average Taiwanese has to wait several months before taking the written test and driving test, but if you have a valid drivers license and the right papers, you can just go to the DMV and take the written test and driving test, for a car or anything under 249cc right away. Now, for a car, its separated into a manual and automatic transmission license, but its still basically only for cars. If you take the driving test for automatic, your car license is only allowable for auto, if you take it in manual, then your license permits you to drive both. pretty stupid regulation, like every cop whos gonna pull you over, is gonna check whats your trans LoL. Bikes now , are semi complicated. If you get a car license, you can take a written test for a bike/scooter less than 90cc I believe? Basically a green plated bike/scooter. Anything over 90cc, or 100cc I think, or whatever is a white plate , needs to have a written test done, AND a road test. And after you pass it, your allowed to drive anything up to 249cc. Now, anything after 250cc, requires you to have possessed a white plated license, or basically the license that lets you drive up to 249cc for a year, AND from what I have heard, you have to be at least of 20 years of age. The license is seperated into a yellow plate and a red plate, yellow plate is 250cc to I believe 500 or 549cc?? And then the red plates, are 550cc+. Both need the same requirements, and you have to spend a couple thousand NT for the big bike license, AND the road test, is more complicated than a white plated license.

That is just about as I understand the Rules also.
It reinforces my daily quote about Taiwan generally, which is: “Why make it easy,when you can make it really complicated?” This applies to many things here. :whistle:

Red plate riders not only need to pass a more difficult test but need to take a one or two weeks course. Perhaps this course is what they do at the circuit that shidoa mentions.

Ohh yeah, I forgot to include that one too ! They also have to actually give u a certificate that you passed right ?? Sounds like a stupid question, but i mean, if they just wanted you to take the courses only, and didn’t care if you passed or not, just as long as you passed their DMV road test .

It says on the government website that you need an “A.R.C card(at least one year residence period)”

Does the “at least one year residence period” mean if my ARC expires in October then I can’t get one?

Also, my ARC is only valid for a total of 11 months because of my contract length (it’s my 3rd ARC though), is that going to be a problem?

You must hold a valid Taiwanese motorcycle license 249cc or under (white plate) for a year until you can apply for your “red plate” license. The best way to get it is to go through a company that makes you take a class or a weekend. I few of my foreigner friends have done it. It is BS, and doesn’t matter if you can’t speak Chinese. You automatically get the license when you are finished. Anyway, this is what I have been told.

Regarding the ARC 1 year requirement/question, I initially thought that it meant the ARC had to be valid for at least one year, however that might mean you have lived here (been a resident) for at least 1 year and have an ARC (not sure). My ARC was for 6 months with only 3 remaining when I applied, however I had lived/worked here for over 2 years (also on my 3rd ARC). After 2-3 of the employees at the DMV looked at my documents (passport, ARC, US drivers license, Intl license including MC) and had some discussions, they said OK, go take the the tests. So if you want a license, it would not hurt to go to the DMV and see if they will let you take the test. Before you go, you need the Driving Test Form, 2-3 photos, and a physical exam. You get the form at the hospital (or where you take the physical), they will check your ID, stick the photo on the form, give you the physical. You then go to the DMV. The physical takes about 1 minute, the doctor ask you to move you arms and legs and do a squat, then your good to go.

“A.R.C card (at least one year residence period and a valid passport).”

You need ARC for any kind of license here in Taiwan. Passport won’t do you any good.