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Top Tips For Riding In a Group


IAM RoadSmart · September 14, 2023

While there’s nothing quite like cruising on your own down the open road, having time with your thoughts and enjoying what nature has to offer, you may find a new love in riding by talking with fellow bikers. 

The UK’s leading road safety charity, IAM RoadSmart, has motorbike communities across the country that unite people from all walks of life through their shared passion for all things two-wheeled. 

Riding with a group of bikes can be great fun but riding safely with others requires a degree of discipline – and sometimes restraint too – if everyone is going to enjoy the experience. So, before you head out on the road with other motorcyclists, there are a few things you should think about to make sure your trip is as enjoyable and safe as possible. 

Riding brief

Before setting off on your ride, make sure you’ve discussed the route you plan to take, make sure each rider is aware of any known road closers or diversions, and agree your refreshment stops. At least one rider in the group should carry a mobile phone, first aid kit and toolkit in case of problems.

A briefing will ensure all riders know who has been allocated as a marker bike, what is expected of them and understand what other riders in the group are likely to do. This improves the chances of all members of the riding group reaching the required destination without getting lost and in the safest way possible. 

A standardised approach 

The advantage of using a standardised approach to riding in a group is that all riders will know what’s expected of them and understand what other riders in the group are likely to do. It also means that, should a rider take a wrong turn, for example, they and the rest of the group have a method of locating each other again.


The paramount consideration when riding in a group is always safety. At no time should the safety of riders, or any third party be compromised. It always remains the personal responsibility of all riders within the group to exercise their own judgement about every course of action that they take. Each rider is responsible for their safety, actions, and any consequences that those actions may have.

Riding in formation 

Riding in a staggered formation is better for everyone, and it compresses the group to make it easier to stick together. It also allows the group to take up a smaller amount of the road, which is more considerate for other road users. 

Looking out for each other 

It’s important to keep an eye on each of the riders around you and remember to always keep a safe gap, and if you notice someone is falling behind slow down to let them catch up again. When everyone in the group does this, it helps to keep the group together and maintain a steady speed. 

Contingency plan

If you find yourself separated from the group, don’t panic. There should be an agreed way to get the group back together, so don’t try to ride faster than you feel comfortable doing, or over the speed limit, to catch up.

10 Top tips

  1. Remember- Safety first!
  2. At all times, every rider is responsible for their own safety, their actions, and any consequences that those actions may have.
  3. Always obey traffic laws.
  4. Ride at a pace that is legal and at no time ride faster than you consider safe for the conditions, always ride smoothly and predictably, try to avoid harsh acceleration, sudden braking, or changes in direction.
  5. At junctions take the obvious straight-ahead route unless a marker bike indicates otherwise.
  6. At roundabouts, the marker bike should be on the exit route, if you cannot see the marker on the approach be prepared to circle the roundabout to confirm the correct exit (mainly large roundabouts).
  7. Overtaking within the group should be facilitated where safe and legal. A rider should not be pressured into going any faster than they feel safe, and the following rider should not pressure the rider in front. The following rider can make their intentions known and where appropriate the rider in front can yield allowing for a safe and courteous overtake. The tail-end rider will not overtake others in the group.
  8. If you intend to leave the group, allow all riders pass you and indicate to the tail-end rider your intentions. Preferably this will have been communicated at the briefing stage if possible, however circumstances may change during the ride.
  9. When on the open road, ride in staggered formation when near other group riders.
  10. Allow other road users to overtake the group if they wish. Where it is safe make space for them to do so.

This information is given to you as a guide to support you in your choice of licence and RideTo has made every attempt to ensure the accuracy and reliability of the information provided about motorcycle licence and training requirements. However, RideTo cannot guarantee the information is up to date, correct and complete and is therefore provided on an "as is" basis only. RideTo accepts no liability whatsoever for any loss or damage howsoever arising. We recommend that you verify the current licence and training requirements by checking the DVSA website.