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Motorcycle Licenses

Author: Gregory Nielsen, Issue: July 2004, Topic: Motorcycles

In Japan there are two types of motorcycle licenses, "chugata" and "oogata". "chugata" is for motorcycles up to and including 400 cc engine displacement. "oogata" is for motorcycles with engines larger than 400 cc with no upper limit.

See the Motorcycle Test Course.

This is the course for transferring over a foreign license to a Japanese "oogata" motorcycle license. Depending on what country you came from, you may not need to take any test at all. But, for us who are not so lucky, you need to take a driving test. Also, depending on which country you came from, there is a chance you will need to first take the "chugata" riding test, then after passing take the "oogata" test. Americans, for example, are able to jump directly to the "oogata" test here in Ibaraki, but I've heard of other rules in different prefectures. In addition to what is shown in the course map, you will also need to be able to tip the bike on its side, and be able to lift it back up. Also, you will need to be able to safely walk (push) the bike around a "figure 8" course.

The same documents and identification you needed to transfer over you car license will be needed again. This means you will need to have your foreign license re-translated by JAF.

The motorcycles will be provided for you at the testing center. The standard bike for the "oogata" test is a Honda CB750.

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