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Bike Travel: 6 Things To Know Before Taking a Cycling Trip

Bike travel is one of the most freeing and exhilarating ways to explore the world. You can go at your own pace, cover more ground than you could on foot, and get a feel for a place by pedaling through it.

Going on an extended bike tour can be one of the most rewarding experiences of your life. However, it is essential to plan adequately beforehand to ensure a comfortable and safe trip.

Whether you're planning on cycling a few miles or taking a cross-country biking journey, there are some essential things that you need to know before setting out. 

Mountain biking British Columbia (photo: Greg Rosenke)
Mountain biking British Columbia (photo: Greg Rosenke)

1. Choose the Right Bike

Depending on the terrain, consider a road bike or mountain bike.

Before you set out on any bike travel, it's important to choose the right bike for you. What works best depends on the terrain and how rugged it is.

For example, a mountain bike is the way to go if you're tackling very steep hills and winding paths in mountainous terrain.

If the roads you'll be cycling on are primarily flat and paved, then a road bike could be more suitable.

Make sure to utilize online resources. For example, has a great selection of bikes to choose from, no matter what type of adventure you're looking for.

All of their bikes have been tested over multiple terrains worldwide, so you can rest assured that whatever option you choose will fit your riding style and experience level.

2. Invest in a High-Quality Bike and Accessories

When planning a bike trip, it's vital to consider equipping yourself with the right accessories.

Investing in a good quality helmet is absolutely necessary to protect yourself from accidents or unexpected falls.

You should also invest in good quality locks to secure your bike when you're away from it and lights or reflectors as they improve your visibility and others on the road during nighttime rides.

If you're looking to invest in high-quality yet affordable biking accessories, offers a wide range of options with exclusive discounts that help make cycling an enjoyable experience.

Bike travel in Switzerland (photo: Kay Liedl)
Bike travel in Switzerland (photo: Kay Liedl)

3. Pack Light and Smart

Choose items that are multi-purpose and easy to carry.

To ensure an enjoyable and practical journey, packing light is essential: your bike will be your primary mode of transportation, so choose items that don't take up much room and aren't too heavy. 

Go for clothes and gear that are multi-purpose and easy to carry – think of creative ways to make the most out of the space available.

For instance, perhaps you can use hats or hoodies as a pillow if you are camping along the way, or select a jacket that doubles up as a raincoat and keeps you warm.

Smart packing will not only give you more freedom of movement when biking but also save much-needed energy for all the adventures that lie ahead.

4. Map Out Your Route

Plan for rest stops and potential hazards.

If you're planning a bike travel adventure, it's essential to correctly map out your route and plan for potential rest stops and hazards before setting off.

Not only will this allow you to make the most of your journey, but it can also help you stay safe on the roads or trails.

In addition to knowing which routes offer the most scenic views and are deemed safe for cyclists, it's equally important to be aware of potholes and other obstacles that can cause damage to your bike.

By perfecting detailed route planning, estimated mileage tracking, difficulty level assessments, and researching accommodations or camping spots, you can look forward to a much more enjoyable and well-rounded biking experience.

Bikepacking through Denmark (photo: Niklas Ohlrogge)
Bikepacking through Denmark (photo: Niklas Ohlrogge)

5. Bring Repair Tools for Emergency Fixes

To guarantee a safe and trouble-free adventure, you must bring a kit of repair tools.

This should include spare bike tubes, tire patches, a pump, an adjustable wrench set, and other tools that could come in handy if something goes wrong or breaks down.

In addition to ensuring these items are all included in your luggage, it's also recommended that all travelers familiarize themselves with how bike repairs work in an emergency.

Knowing how to get your bike back up and running quickly can give any traveler peace of mind.

6. Research Local Bicycle Laws

Each region can have different regulations for cyclists – such as helmet use, traffic signals, and lane-sharing – so do your research before you leave to ensure you are aware of all relevant rules.

Not only will this help keep you safe on your journey, but it will also protect you from any legal trouble that could arise along the way.

Knowing and following bicycle laws in the areas you visit will help make your cycling vacation memorable for all the right reasons!


This story is published in partnership with Velo Deals.

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