Your annual Sturgis Rally ride is three days away, and the critical part you need for your bike is on backorder for two weeks.
You’re thinking about buying a different-style bike, but don’t want to plunk down your hard-earned cash without spending a full day on one first.
A motorcycle rental through Twisted Road is a gateway to new experiences.
I wanted to get into adventure riding now that I am in the Pacific Northwest, but the only bike in my stable is a 900-pound Yamaha Venture. I know some very talented riders can ride my bike in an enduro race, but I am not one of them. I researched motorcycle rentals near me and decided to give a peer-to-peer rental a try. Peer-to-peer is simply you renting your motorcycle to me through a reputable third party—like Air BnB, but for motorcycles.
After reviewing its website, reading reviews, and examining the insurance coverages they offer, I selected Twisted Road. I’ll start by stating that I had a terrific rental experience.
Renting a motorcycle from Twisted Road is easy. Renting your motorcycle through Twisted Road is also easy. If you are a motorcycle owner who wants to make some extra money by renting your bike, you will find Twisted Road safe and has you covered with insurance.
Give the initial setup about 48 hours, unless you are near one of the many motorcycle sales storefronts contracted with Twisted Road. To rent a motorcycle, you upload your driver’s license to Twisted Road. They check your driving history, your motorcycle endorsement, and check for any personal criminal background.
While the checking is going on in the background, the website walks you through the rental process. You pick a rental location city, plus pickup and return dates. You are renting from an individual, so there are no one-way rentals.
Based on the location and dates, you are presented with photos, descriptions, and prices of available bikes. Your choice of motorcycles is limited to who is offering a bike for rental. Fortunately, there are 2100 bikes currently available all over the United States at the time this story is written. I had a choice of 56 in my city.
Twisted Road is signing up new owners daily. If you don’t ride your bike all the time, you can post your bike and rent it for extra income. If you have a personal ride planned, you simply block out that time on their calendar. If you are an owner renting your bike out, Twisted Road has you covered under its insurance policy. The process is well-honed.
The website shows a map of where the local motorcycles are situated. I wasn’t picky about which “adventure” bike I wanted to try out, so I chose the bike closest to my home for convenience—the BMW R 1200 GS Adventure I reserved was only two miles from my home.
After making the selection, you go to the insurance page. You can use your own insurance, if it covers rentals. The whole transaction, including the insurances, is tied to the original renter. You cannot let anyone else ride the motorcycle.
If you are using your own insurance, Twisted Road will verify coverage. You can opt for decreased deductibles ($1000 is the minimum), Tire Protection (get a flat, buy a new tire and get reimbursed), Roadside Protection (if the bike breaks down through no fault of your own, they will haul you and the bike back to your origin). At checkout, you confirm all options you chose.
Twisted Road adds a charge of 20 percent of the daily rental amount for its services. If any part of the rental agreement is violated—Twisted Road provides an extensive list of prohibited uses—there is a $750 fee (and a $1000 hold on your credit card to enforce it).
I got an email confirming my rental request, and then an email confirming my payment. A short while later, I got an email confirming the booking with the owner’s contact info and pickup address. The owner gave me a call to discuss my plans, my experience, and make sure I knew the seat height is 33 inches. The owner and I both have the right to back out if either of us is not comfortable with the transaction.
I showed up at the owner’s home at the agreed time, and he had it waiting in the driveway facing out toward the street. We exchanged socially distanced masked greetings. I handed him my driver’s license to photograph and confirm my identity.
He went over the operation of the GS, and respectfully answered my questions. When we were both satisfied that I was good to go, he took several high-res photos of the bike to document the rental condition. He confirmed I was comfortable with the operation of the GS, and off I rode.
I had a blast, putting on about 184 miles during the rental. I stopped at a close gas station to fill up the tank and headed home. While I was home, I cleaned all the bugs off, like I would on my own bike. I called the owner in the early evening, and he was fine with me bringing his GS back.
When I got to the owner’s home, he documented the mileage and condition for uploading to the Twisted Road site. He thanked me for the bike looking so nice, and we parted company. Because it was a residential exchange, I was able to leave my car parked in front of his house.
For a limited time, this Twisted Road link is offering a free day with a rental three days or longer, or a 25 percent discount for a short rental.
Twisted Road has peer-to-peer rental all figured out. Everyone’s interests are protected, and the process is convenient and smooth. I posted a 5-star review on their website because I had a 5 Star experience. You will notice that most of their renters feel the same. No one asked me to give them a 5-star rating—Twisted Road deserved it. If you are thinking of renting a motorcycle, Twisted Road offers a compelling option outside of the traditional rental business model.