Hey! So the aim for this part of our blog is to make sure you don’t make the same mistakes we did, and to prepare you for some of the ‘situations’ you may find yourself in, as we did, but nobody seems to talk about. We do NOT want to put anyone off travelling as we said before it is literally the best decision we have ever made, but we want people to go in knowing exactly what to expect, as that’s exactly what we wanted to know before we left the UK.
Hiring A Moped!!
We have made the mistakes guys so you don’t have too! The first thing to mention when hiring a moped is the golden rule that we most definatly stand by…
DO NOT LEAVE YOUR PASSPORT WITH THE HIRE COMPANY!
Sounds daft right? Well, some companies ask for your passport as a deposit. If something happens while it is in your possession, YOU are liable to pay to get the bike fixed regardless of the price, so this means – they can literally charge you anything because you have to pay it in order to get your passport back! Leave a cash deposit, money is better to loose then the risk of paying the world to get your passport back! Also, your leaving you passport with god knows who, in a random place for at least a day, if they lose it then your also screwed. Just don’t risk it!
CHECK YOUR MOPED THOROHLY AND TAKE PICTURES/VIDEOS OF ANY DAMAGES BEFORE YOU RIDE OFF!
This is for your proof, again you are liable for damages while it is in your possession, if you can prove it was there before then nobody can say/try anything! We tend to do videos of the damages (cause there will be many scuffs ect on them!) and then show the place you hired it from on the video too, so your covering all bases and no one can say you took the video after you left! I have a video of someone driving straight into me running me over! haha! See, always good to have proof you never know what could happen!
Also check your tire pressure! We hired a moped in Pai…..oohhhhh well, we got about 2 miles up the road and the tire went completely flat! Pair of di*kheads! So we had to walk back 2 miles in the 35 degree heat pushing the bike back to the hire company! Don’t be stupid like us!
Another very stupid mistake we made was not checking we had fuel…. quite a standard thing the check right? But presuming you have fuel, will not get you to your destination! Yep, again right pair of dic*heads! So the companies do not fill up the tank, its left on whatever the last person left it on! So that could literally be nothing as we found out! We were so very lucky and we actually broke down opposite a petrol station… (Some companies do like you to return the bike back with the same amount of fuel too…some!) Petrol doesn’t always mean its going to be a station! Some locals sell fuel on the side of the road or in their little shops, depending where you are in SE Asia!
Last thing of the matter of mopeds! Personally, as uncool as you look in helmets, is it really worth the risk hitting a bump in the road and smashing your head in? While in a different country? Probs not! Being foreign in South east asia your more then likely to get pulled over and if you don’t have an helmet even more so !! Don’t forget you need an international drivers license and your original driving license on you at all times while driving!
As a general rule, we found driving in SE Asia great! It is such an experience but also depending where you are can be quite hectic! You have people driving down the wrong side of roads, animals just walking around in the road or people just pull out to join traffic, But its all part of the experience, and if your carful enough you will be fine!