Motorbike or car: which to choose for driving in Cyprus?

Мотоцикл или автомобиль: что выбрать для езды на Кипре?
17 June 2023 Irina Zholnirova
1555

A little spoiler at the start of this article: there will be no definitive answer at the end. But as you read on, you'll know exactly which mode of transport you prefer - especially if you're new to Cyprus or just moving here.

Assessing Cyprus' climate from a driving perspective

The first thought that comes to mind is "Cyprus doesn't have a winter as such, so motorcycles can be used all year round!

That's not unreasonable, but it's worth considering the nuances before making the final decision to switch to two-wheeled transport.

So, there is no snow in Cyprus - this is not a true statement. In the mountains of Cyprus, snow does not just fall, it lies in layers until February. There is even a ski resort in the highlands. Wet snow with rain is not uncommon in the foothills of Cyprus from December to the end of January.

It is important to note that the mountain roads are not open to all vehicles in winter. Certain stretches of road are only accessible to four-wheel drive vehicles or those fitted with snow chains (studded tyres are rare in Cyprus). Similarly, motorcycles can only be used in winter in coastal areas, i.e. where there is no snow.

It also rains a lot in Cyprus during the winter. This is not a problem for car drivers, but can be uncomfortable for motorcyclists. Especially if it is the same southerly downpour that brings almost a month's worth of rain in one go.

Spring and autumn are fertile times for motorcyclists. The roads are dry and clean, the weather is fine and there are no inconveniences for the motorcyclist. And for a car driver, there are many advantages: you don't have to wash your car as often, you can go almost anywhere (especially if you have a high suspension), and the roads are not as busy as they are in the high season.

Summer is a controversial time of year for those who want to ride two wheels. It can be not just hot, but very hot in Cyprus, especially for those who have come from colder parts of the world and have not yet adapted. Even without motorbike gear, it is uncomfortable to be out in the sun, even without protective clothing. You can get heat stroke. An air-conditioned car is much more comfortable.

Remember: cities are hotter in the summer than the countryside.

Another vote against motorcycling in Cyprus in the summer is the drought and dust storms. On normal days it can be very dusty, especially on busy roads. Of course, your respiratory tract is well protected by a helmet (you can't ride without one), but the dust settles on your skin, hair and clothes.

In a dust storm, you are not supposed to be outdoors for long. This makes it even more unwise to ride a bike during such a storm. A car is a more reliable protection. Fortunately, dust storms are not very common in Cyprus.

Traffic in Cyprus

In general, there is nothing supernatural about traffic on the island. The rules are simple and clear and are no different from those in other countries. The most important thing to get used to is driving on the left. It happens differently for everyone, but on average it takes 1-3 weeks to get used to it.

Do the peculiarities of traffic in Cyprus affect the choice of vehicle Probably not. There are two nuances to consider: traffic and one-way streets.

Traffic is simple: it is regularly observed in the main cities of Cyprus (Limassol, Paphos, Nicosia, Larnaca), especially during rush hours. There is nothing new here - motorbike transport will be perfect for those who are not used to waiting. On a bike you can take shortcuts, avoid traffic jams and not get stuck for long, even if the motorway is blocked. Of course, there are fewer traffic jams on motorways and trunk roads, so you can choose any mode of transport for long journeys.

One-way streets are not a problem for a motorist, but (!) they can cause a lot of inconvenience at first. If you have not explored the area, it is possible to "miss" something and make a long detour by car. On a motorbike, there are almost no mistakes - you can literally turn around on a square metre.

There is another problem that worries many people who have moved to Cyprus - the narrow and winding roads, which also rise steeply. But the type of transport is not the issue here - only driving experience is important. An experienced driver will get used to the usual transport and will not notice the peculiarities of the relief after a few weeks.

Interesting: which mororcicle to choose for a beginner - you can read about it here

Parking

The next important question facing every car owner is where to park. Both close to home and close to work/frequently visited places. For residents of private houses or complexes with their own guarded car park, the problem is half solved - their "iron horses" are safe, and sometimes under video surveillance.

If you live in a city, you will need to find somewhere to park your car. This is usually much easier for motorcyclists: a bike does not take up much space and can be parked almost anywhere. With a car, you'll either have to find a paid parking space or park wherever you can find a space.

The central areas of busy cities are another story. It can be very difficult and sometimes expensive to park there (especially for long periods). The same goes for places near beaches. Here, too, motorised transport wins because of its compactness. In fact, a bike can be parked almost anywhere, whereas a car needs a specific space.

Cost and maintenance

If you only look at fuel consumption, a motorcycle is much more economical. The smaller the vehicle, the less fuel it consumes. But fuel consumption is only the beginning of the cost.

The owner of the bike will save on parking, but that's about it. Oil changes, maintenance and unscheduled checks, repairs and spare parts. At the end of the day, all this is about the same for a motorbike and a car in the same segment. Of course, a basic moped will cost less than a Lexus, but the classes are different, so it is very difficult to compare.

It is worth noting that some motorcycles are difficult to repair. They are not very common in Cyprus, so spare parts and maintenance for certain models can be very expensive. Cars are easier: every adult Cypriot has a car, there are more services on the island and it is much easier to repair them.

You can read more about looking after your motorbike here.

Personal circumstances

Of course, personal preference is the first thing to consider. However, it is worth going through them again to make sure that nothing is forgotten.

The first is how often the rider will be carrying other people. Young, healthy people are fine with any vehicle, but if there are children or elderly family members - or just a lot of them - a bicycle is out of the question.

The second is the health of the rider. It is obvious that certain physical conditions or illnesses can make cycling uncomfortable or even dangerous. The same applies to a minor illness: it is possible to drive a car, but it is better not to get behind the wheel of a motorbike.

The third is the distance and purpose of the journey. Some people's work allows them to cycle, others not. In addition, regular intercity journeys (e.g. from Paphos to Nicosia) will require something more comfortable, i.e. a car.

Finally, it is always worth remembering that a car is safer than a motorbike. This can be a decisive factor in the choice of transport, and is often put almost at the top of the list when choosing a mode of transport.

To sum up

So, from all the above, it is worth making a short extract in the form of a list. This will make it easier to see all the advantages and disadvantages of each type of transport.

The advantages of motorised transport are:

  1. Compact, so it's easier to park;
  2. It's easy to get around traffic jams and certain obstacles;
  3. Creates a certain image for its owner;
  4. Can be cheaper to maintain;
  5. Ideal for leisure and extreme sports;
  6. Suitable as a second family car.

And that's where the car wins:

  1. Comfortable in all weathers and seasons;
  2. Safer and more comfortable;
  3. Easier to maintain as there are more services in Cyprus;
  4. Suitable for family transport;
  5. suitable for long journeys.

On the last point. Cyprus is a small island, the distance between neighbouring towns is only 40-50 km. Therefore, it is often possible to travel by motorbike to "distant" places, according to the Cypriots. But no one is willing to sacrifice comfort when travelling, so only a few motorcyclists use the highways - the rest opt for cars.

Many people solve the problem of car and motorbike very simply: they buy a car for business and a motorbike - for the soul. Maybe this option suits you!

Choose from a wide range of cars on the DOMCar website
Source: DOM
Photos: Flickr
No one has left a comment yet
Place qoute
Компания «Dom Real Estate» Контакты:
Адрес: Limassol, Cyprus,
Телефон:+357 25 212 212, Электронная почта: info@dom.com.cy