Motorcycling is a fun and exciting activity to do solo, but it is even more fun to do with a friend. If you are thinking about going for a joy ride with a motorcyclist, make sure that you understand how to keep yourself safe on the back of a bike.
Riding as a passenger on a motorcycle is very different from being a passenger in a typical passenger vehicle. Wearing proper safety gear and understanding how to interact with the driver is paramount for safety, as per Motorcycle Habit.
What should I wear?
Passengers should be wearing as much safety gear as their drivers are. And the driver should, at minimum, be wearing a helmet, armored jacket, long pants and shoes that protect the ankle.
It is very possible that you may not own a lot of specialized motorcycle gear as a passenger. However, you should absolutely be able to borrow a helmet and a jacket from a prepared motorcycle driver. You can choose to wear hiking boots and long jeans if you own them.
Many times, passengers go out with zero protective gear and are on the back of a motorcycle wearing shorts, t-shirts and flip-flops. This is very dangerous.
How should I interact with the driver?
As a passenger, you should sit close to the driver and move with him or her. Do not throw your weight from side to side; however, if the driver leans, you should lean. You should also have an agreed-upon communication system setup with your driver, especially if you do not have access to Bluetooth headsets. Often, a simple thumbs-up thumbs-down system for checking in with each other is sufficient.