Motorists in Favour of licensing for cyclists

March 2009

More than half of motorists in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane believe cyclists should require a licence to travel on main roads, with close to 70% of these respondents saying they too should be held accountable for offences like drink riding and disobeying road rules, according to leading low cost car insurance provider Budget Direct.

Over the past month Budget Direct, with the help of market researcher footprints, asked drivers in Sydney, Melbourne and Queensland how they felt about cyclists on the road and if they see a need for registration fees and/or cyclist licensing.

Budget Direct spokeswoman Richelle Ward said the statistics gathered from respondents indicated that on the whole, motorists not only saw a need for rider licensing, but were also frustrated by cyclists on the road.

“Motorists are generally frustrated by road cyclists, particularly when cyclists break road rules such as running red lights or if motorists are required to slow down or wait to pass cyclists,” Ms Ward said.

“We found it very interesting how the responses about bicycle registration fees differed between Sydney and Melbourne, with Melbourne much more in favour of the fees.

“Seventeen per cent of Sydney motorists saw the need for cyclists to pay registration fees for identification and security purposes, compared to twenty-seven per cent in Melbourne. Also, just thirteen per cent of Sydney motorists said bicycle registration fees were required to help pay for road infrastructure, compared to twenty-three per cent in Melbourne.

“In addition, 62% of Sydney respondents believed there was a need for cyclists to be licensed, compared to only 55% in Melbourne. These figures suggest while support varies, there is still a demand for tighter laws surrounding dangerous behaviour on our roads when riding a bicycle, regardless of location,” Ms Ward said.

Despite these differences, respondents in the two cities shared a frustration with cyclists on the roads – 52% in Sydney and 50% in Melbourne.

“Overall most cyclists are pretty good and understand the difficulties of sharing roads but there will always be a novice cyclist and as cyclists do have a right to be on our roads the utmost care should be taken at all times”.

About Budget Direct

Budget Direct is a cheap car insurance provider that offers competitive car insurance to drivers in Australia. Budget Direct is a wholly owned Australian insurance provider and is part of the international Budget Insurance group of companies headquartered in the British Isles. The Budget Insurance group of companies administers more than 3 million policies and $1 billion in premium. Auto & General Insurance Company Ltd underwrites Budget Direct’s policies.

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For further information or interviews please contact Jonathan Kerr, Director, Marketing & Digital, Budget Direct (Auto & General) at 07 3377 8801 or

Budget Direct was established as an insurance provider in Australia in 2000.  It is part of the international BHL Group of companies headquartered in the British Isles. The group provides more than 6.8 million policies to insurance customers and administers $2 billion in premiums annually. Budget Direct offers Motor, Home & Contents, Health, Life and Travel Insurance as well as Roadside Assistance.