Welcome to Pillioness!

You love motorcycles.
We love motorcycles.
(And so do our cats.)

We should stay in touch!

Enter your email
Get updates!

Pillioness is supported by our users. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission (at no cost to you). Learn more
8 Types of Motorcycle Passengers You Should Leave Behind

8 Types of Motorcycle Passengers You Should Leave Behind

Some motorcycle passengers were born to sit on the back of a motorbike.

They learn the ropes effortlessly.
They quickly master the basics of getting on and off, and leaning in corners.

They see themselves as co-pilots, so they help with everything from watching out for road hazards, to filling up with gas.
And yes, they even get on the end of a spanner now and then.

And then there are the OTHER types of motorcycle passengers.
You’ve already met a few.

Some shriek in terror.
Others complain constantly.
And some just grit their teeth, roll their eyes, and wish they were somewhere else.


womens motorcycle jacket with pink bits


Know what can make a motorcycle passenger smile?

A jacket like this with a touch of pink!

She’ll HAVE to enjoy the ride now…


Click here to choose the size and color.

(Affiliate link)



Not all motorcycle passengers are going to love sitting on the back of a motorbike.
And a truly miserable passenger will make for a truly miserable ride – for both of you.
These kinds of motorcycle passengers really should stay home on the couch while you hit the open road.

Let’s meet a few of them.

8 Kinds of Motorcycle Passengers That Should Just Stay in the Car

1.  The Princess

A Princess motorcycle passenger is very, VERY high maintenance.

She never, ever, rides in the rain.
A light breeze, and she’s out.
So if there’s one cloud in that perfect blue sky, you’d better cancel the ride.
She does have fantastic motorcycle gear – but in light, pretty, totally impractical colors.

She needs bathroom breaks every 10 minutes.
She pouts when there are bugs on her helmet visor (ewww!).

And, I beg you, don’t point out that she has helmet hair.
If you do, you’ll be needing a divorce lawyer by the end of the ride.


motorcycle passengers - the princess

2.  The Scaredy Cat

The Scaredy Cat motorcycle passenger can sometimes be gently coaxed into getting onto the back of the motorbike.
But this involves wild promises of treats, and a sacred oath not to go over 20 miles an hour.

Let’s face it, she doesn’t really want to do this.
She’s highly suspicious of motorcycles in general.
She often refers to your bike as “that death trap”.

But if you wear her down with repeated invitations to ride through the countryside for home-made pastry in the sunshine, she might reluctantly give in.

Even so, she won’t enjoy the experience.

She’ll cling to you like a terrified monkey all the way.
And you’ll need to prise her off the motorcycle with a crowbar at the end of the ride.

Never mind that she’s wearing full motorcycle safety gear, you’re riding to the speed limit, and you’re on quiet countryside roads.

You’d better hope you’ve stopped somewhere that’s not too remote.
She’ll need phone coverage to call an Uber to get home.


motorcycle passengers - the scaredy cat

3.  The Control Freak

The Control Freak motorcycle passenger should really be riding her own motorbike.

Because she knows everything about riding.
And she’s not shy about handing out advice.

You took that corner too tightly.
You’re going too fast.
You’re about to run out of gas.
You’ve taken the wrong turn.

Oh, man.

I hope you have music playing in your motorcycle helmet.
If not, you’re in for an earful of expert tips for the whole ride.


motorcycle passengers - the control freak

4.  The Tourist

The Tourist motorcycle passenger loves to point out interesting things as you whiz by them.
And usually only AFTER you’ve passed them.

Hey! There’s a cute falling down old shed that could be 100 years old!
There’s a house with a purple roof!
Ooh, did you see that cool vintage car?
Oh never mind, we just passed it.

And here in New Zealand, you can spot any one of a dozen weird and wonderful animals when you’re out on a motorcycle – from a paddock full of llamas, to an escaped piglet galloping down the road on the adventure of his life.

At least this kind of motorcycle passenger is enjoying herself.
But in the meantime, you’re trying to watch the road.

And none of these amazing sights ever come into view when you’re stopped at some traffic lights.
No way.
They always appear when you’re right in the middle of a particularly tricky corner.


motorcycle passengers - the tourist

5.  The Navigator

This motorcycle passenger prides herself on her knowledge of local roads.
ALL local roads.

She knows the best route to go – whether she’s personally taken that road herself, or not.
That doesn’t matter.

She’ll smack you on the shoulder urgently and tell you to take a right when you’ve just gone past it.
She’ll shout at you when you’re stopped at the traffic lights because you’re going the long way.

If you’re feeling brave, you might try pointing out that you know where you’re going.
You’ve deliberately chosen the route with the best motorcycle roads.
You’re actually not lost.
And you’re not looking for the most direct route.

You’re on a motorcycle, after all.
As we know, it’s all about the journey, man.


motorcycle passengers - the navigator

6.  The Complainer

The Complainer motorcycle passenger climbs aboard with a fiercely negative attitude.
She’ll find fault with EVERYTHING.

You’re riding like a maniac.
It’s too hot, too cold, or too windy.
The ride is too long, or too short.
The road is too busy, or too quiet.

And when you pull up at your destination, get ready for more negativity.
She’ll haul herself slowly off the motorcycle like she’s 104 years old.

Her back hurts, her legs hurt, her arms hurt.
The seat’s too hard, and the back rest is digging into her.
The pipes are so loud that now she has a headache.

Just smile at her.
While you silently vow never ride with her again.


motorcycle passengers - the complainer

7.  The Bobble Head

Some motorcycle passengers seem to have no bones at all in their necks.
Their vertebrae are like overcooked, limp spaghetti.

Their heads wobble back and forth constantly, and every single time you stop…
CLUNK! – you smash helmets.

This is not necessarily a deal breaker.
Bobble Head Syndrome can be cured.
So try to be patient, and remind her to keep her neck a little more rigid.

That tends to work better than shouting: What are you? A life-size bobble head doll?


motorcycle passengers - the bobble head

8.  The Yawner

Impossible as it is to believe, some motorcycle passengers find riding on the back of a motorbike boring.

Yep. Incredibly enough, it’s true.
(If you live with one of these, suggest she reads this: Motorcycle Pillion Boredom: 12 Ways to Cure it Forever!)

This kind of motorcycle passenger is openly wishing she was somewhere else.

She’ll sigh so heavily from the motorcycle passenger seat that you’ll be able to feel it through the back of your jacket.
Every single time you stop at a traffic light, she’ll ask wearily: How much further is it?

And at the end of the ride when you say: That was fun, wasn’t it!
She’ll reply drily: Oh yeah. That was the best day of my life.

Some motorcycle passengers are just not into the experience.
You can’t force them to enjoy it.

Cut your losses, and ride on your own.


motorcycle passengers - the yawner

Not Every Motorcycle Passenger is a Joy to Ride With

Some motorcycle passengers absolutely love being on the back of a motorcycle.
These are the ones who understand the joy of a motorcycle adventure.
And they can make a great motorcycle ride even better.

But others are only motorcycle passengers at all because they’re sick of you asking them to come riding.
And they’ve figured out that there’s no other way to make you drop this tedious topic.

So if your motorcycle passenger is just never going to see the light, it might be time to leave her behind.
Go riding with some friends if you like the company.

Or just enjoy the freedom of roaring down the open road in the sunshine and wind.
I bet you’re grinning like a lunatic – even if the motorcycle passenger seat is empty.

If you enjoyed this post, you might also like this:

Motorcycle Passenger Safety & Comfort – 10 Secrets!

Leave a Reply

Are you addicted to motorcycles? Will you survive helmet hair?

Find the answers to burning questions like these on our Motorcycle Quiz page!

This will close in 0 seconds

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue to use this site we will assume that you are okay with that. Click to close.