Over the past six months I’ve been surveying the readers here at Bicycle Touring Pro and asking them to answer a series of questions about bicycle touring, world travel, their age, interests and more.
One of the questions I ask in the survey is, “What is your biggest fear when planning a bicycle tour?”… and today, we’re going to be taking a look at some of responses I’ve received to that one particular question.
To make things easy to understand, I’ve created a pie chart which demonstrates the biggest fears that people reported when preparing for a bicycle tour of their own.
What the chart above shows is that the number one fear that many people have when preparing for a trip by bike is that they will somehow not be able to finish the trip. Nearly a quarter of the people who completed my bicycle touring survey said they feared overexerting themselves, losing their motivation to keep going, or simply being unable to keep up the pace of day to day travel.
Not surprisingly, traffic, bad drivers, and accidents were reported as the second largest fear amongst those surveyed.
Theft, robbery and personal safety took third place with more than 11% of those surveyed saying they feared being accosted while out on the road or losing their gear to thieves when stepping away from their bikes.
A surprising number of people feared simply having a mechanical problem out on the road that they would be unable to fix.
Finding places to sleep, shower, and go to the bathroom every day is also be a big concern, with just over 7% listing this as their biggest fear when planning a bicycle tour of their own.
And wouldn’t you know it, but a significant number of people reported being afraid of wild animals, creatures that go bump in the night, and yes… even monsters!
Other fears reported by BicycleTouringPro.com readers included not being able to get away from home/work, a sudden lack of money or surprise on-the-road expenses, running out of food/water while in an isolated locale, getting lost, encountering bad weather, and being alone for extended periods of time.
What do you make of this list? Are you surprised that the biggest fear people have is that they will be unable to finish their tour? What advice do you have for these people? And what about the people afraid of mechanical failures? What’s that all about? I’d be interested in hearing your thoughts on the matter.