Get Your Licence

What is involved in a basic handling skills test?

The BHS test is the practical part of getting your learners motorcycle license you do this first.

The basic handling skills test consists of four stages:
  • Basic Turn and Stop
  • Figure of Eight and Park
  • Linking Figures of Eight
  • Increased Speed and Emergency Stop
Each stage is broken down into varying combinations of the following tasks:
  • Move Off
  • Straight Ride
  • Corner
  • Stop
  • Park
In completing the tasks above you will be assessed against the relevant assessment items below:
  • Looking in the Correct Direction
  • Signalling Correctly
  • Making Head Checks before Changing Position
  • Lateral Position of Motorcycle
  • Control of Motorcycle
  • Using Appropriate Speed
  • Parking Observation
  • Parking Movement

As the new basic handling skills test is a more difficult test it is recommended that you discuss with your selected provider any training and practice you may have undertaken. This will help you to determine if you are ready to sit the test or if you require additional training and practice (your provider will be able to help you with this).

See more about the criteria for these skills in The official New Zealand road code for motorcyclists. You can buy a copy from any of our licensing agents or booksellers.

What is competency-based training and assessment (CBTA)?

CBTA is a new training and assessment option for people getting their motorcycle licence. Instead of taking a practical test at each stage of your licence, you can choose to have your riding skills assessed by an approved CBTA assessor.

Although training isn't compulsory, we recommend you complete training before attempting the assessment ride. This will ensure that you have the necessary riding skills and you're fully prepared to do the assessment.

The assessments are designed to ensure you're competent in a prescribed range of riding skills, which are important to keep you safe when riding on our roads.

What are the benefits of CBTA?
If you choose the CBTA option, there are a number of benefits:

It can reduce the time it takes you to gain your restricted and/or full motorcycle licence - completing the CBTA course is the only way you can reduce the required minimum time during the learner and restricted licence stages

It improves your riding skill levels by targeting high-risk riding behaviours, which allows for a safer road system for you and other road users

If you choose to do your training through an approved CBTA assessor, you'll get feedback on your riding skills and you'll get tips on how to ride smarter and safer. These improvements will help prepare you for the CBTA assessment, and help you make smarter choices.

Training and assessment
Training

You can do your training with any qualified motorcycle riding instructor. All approved CBTA assessors are qualified motorcycle instructors and are able to tailor training programmes to suit the stage of riding you're currently at.

There are also government-subsidised and tailored training courses available through the Ride Forever National Training Programme. Ride Forever courses provide extensive on-road training. The core competencies covered are based on the skills required for the assessments. The courses are available throughout New Zealand. Visit the Ride Forever website at www.rideforever.co.nz/training for more information.

You can start training for either stage at any time after getting your learner or restricted licence, so you're fully prepared to undertake the assessment. Once you're satisfied that you're competent in the skills required for the assessment, you can book and undertake the assessment ride.

Assessment

CBTA uses the knowledge and experience of industry based assessors who have been approved by the Transport Agency to train and assess motorcyclists riding skills.