Philippines Retiree – Motorcycle a life line!

When you get around you start to see people making most of life here and others that seem to be gaining weight due to boredom which often means the beer and food are in constant need and supply. Getting a motorbike keeps people active it also means that generally people will limit their alcohol consumption because of going on treks around the Philippines. Here in Cebu there are several active biker groups who do visit other islands and most have either been organized by expats or have expats within in them which helps on the social front but also keeps people active and off the beer (at least in some form of self moderation).

What I would advise though as a Philippines Retiree looking for a motorcycle is to not buy Chinese I am currently about to strip the electrics on mine and my father in-law has at least 5 times now had various electrical faults due to corrosion including the replacement of a headlamp. The climate here plays havoc with machines which is why his 3 year old motorcycle and mine which is just over 1 year are partly falling apart the other reason being Chinese quality motorbikes. Only way I can describe the quality is that it seems like they are built by Chinese toy manufacturers and although they look all shiny and the same as an original (as most copy engines etc.) you will find the chrome cracks and peels, the bolts sheer and regularly undo themselves and you end up with something similar to a clowns car where driving it there is always something falling off.

Honda, Kawasaki and Suzuki all do bikes here although generally most are in the 125cc range but you can find bigger bikes on special order or look around and get your hands on a nice secondhand Harley or recently I have noticed several people buying Taiwanese Harley Davidson styled bikes which generally are based on 250cc – 350cc engines looking and sounding bigger than they are but with a bit less fuel consumption than their bigger American counterparts.

Either way if you haven’t ridden a motorcycle I would advise learning before you come here because doing it on these roads from scratch isn’t safe and if you spend a bit of time and money learning about bikes before you come you can do the maintenance yourself as well as know how to ride safely.