A long motorcycle tour is a different type of beast in every sense, and that includes what to pack. That is why we have created this guide at Big Bike Tours, to let you know even the smallest details, so you can plan your trip perfectly.
We have experience in motorcycle tours that take over one month to complete, and thanks to several years doing it, we can offer you a clear idea on the essentials to pack, to make your trip a success from beginning to end.
The Golden Rule: Keep it Minimal
The more you carry, the more you will suffer. Therefore, for long motorcycle tours, you should better take a minimalist approach because unlike a car, you do not have much storage.
However, there is an even more important reason: it will make your trip more enjoyable. A long tour is already exhausting and stressing, especially if you have never done it before or if the geography is challenging. Therefore, if you make your packaging unnecessarily heavy, then you will make your trip even more stressing.
In consequence, resort to the essentials to make your trip a homerun right off the bat:
- Limit your number of shoes (2 pairs will be enough)
- Keep your number of clothes strictly essential
- Pack enough underwear for hygiene purposes
- Pack basic toiletries (deodorant, shampoo, soap, toothpaste, etc.)
To summarize, here is the list that you must include no matter what:
- Clean and comfortable clothes
- Underwear and socks
- Long and short sleeves shirts
- Basic toiletries and hygiene
Now that you know the basics, sit down for a moment and make a list with the items you want to pack, and after that, evaluate it properly and ask yourself, do I really need that? If the answer is no, then discard it.
Remember to do this several days before traveling, so you can think about things properly without being in a rush.
Snacks: Combat Hunger and Protect Yourself
Also, remember that, for long trips, it is better to carry a few snacks to bring yourself a good energy shot when you feel lethargic. They will help you to reduce the stress of being on the road for so long, especially when you get hungry. Here you have the best choices:
- Beef jerky
- Protein bars
- Jelly babies (when you need a real emergency shot of energy)
- Dried fruit
- Cereal bars
- Gels (they taste bad, but they are your best go-to source of energy when you need it the most)
Make sure to pack them tightly and near to you.
Think Safety: The Next Step
As you can see, it is not hard to decide what to pack for your long motorcycle tour, but we have just started, because now it is time to talk about safety.
When you are hitting the road for so many days, the chances of your motorcycle to suffer some kind of problem increase. Therefore, it is better to be ready for the moment the mud hits the fan.
That is why you need to create a safety kit, which should include the following:
- Tools Kit (screwdriver, vice grips, pliers, etc.)
- Tire Repair Kit (mini compressor, rasp, spare tube for wheels, etc.)
- Power Bank for your phone
- Jumper Cables
- Rescue Tape
Nonetheless, prevention is always the best policy. Before embarking yourself on a long motorcycle tour, ensure to check your bike properly. Take it to the motor shop, so they can inspect it properly to detect any issue fast and solve it before you hit the road. We have an article that will teach you all you need to know.
Prepare for Boredom: Beat it before it Hits You
Even if you are a die-hard motorcycle rider, boredom will eventually strike you, and it is a common situation in long motorcycle tours, especially if you have never joined one before.
Your best allies will be your phone and a good Bluetooth headset, so you can prepare a playlist beforehand and listen to it while you ride. We all have different tastes, but this playlist on Spotify is quite good: Songs for riding a Motorcycle (straight to the point).
Nonetheless, it is also a good idea to pack a good book to read when you stop for a break. It is great for releasing stress and boosting concentration, which are key elements when going for a long motorcycle tour.
Finally, you should also bring a small and light notebook to write about your journey. Similar to reading, it will help you to combat stress, release tension, increase your concentration and make your trip feel much better. It’s the perfect addition.
Organization: Make It or Break It
Deciding what to pack is only a part of the mission, because what comes next will make your days on the road easier, or a real life hell. That is why you need to take organization seriously. No jokes.
The best way to pack most of your items – at least the majority – is to put them inside plastic bags, or if you want something fancier, then you can opt for travel kits. They are the best protection against weather conditions, to which you are far more susceptible when riding a motorcycle for long distances.
Furthermore, by putting your items in travel kits or plastic bags, it will be much easier to organize them, because you can write down what kind of items each bag contains.
Finally, remember to bring at least 2-3 big plastic bags, so you can put all of you dirty laundry in them, to have them ready for wash whenever the opportunity arises.
Now that you have learned all about the art of packing for long motorcycle tours, start planning early, because it will save you from many unexpected problems.
We wish you the best of luck, and if you have more questions, just let us know and we will get back to you as soon as possible!