Planning a trip by bike?
Watch the video above to learn about some of the basics steps you need to take when planning your travel adventures.
The following is a brief summary of some of the things I discuss in the video above:
Deciding Where You Want To Go On Your Travels
Don’t pick a destination only because the route is flat and there are cycling routes available.
Don’t pick a destination just because it’s popular with other people.
You should travel because YOU are interested in the place you plan to visit.
Other reasons you might travel to a particular place:
- To learn a language
- To study the history
- To meet with people you know
- To get an education
- To learn a skill unique to that area (martial arts, tango dancing, etc)
Don’t be afraid to change routes or go in another destination.
The Length Of Your Trip
- Decide what the main goal for your trip is. Is it to bike, sight-see, or something else?
- Getting time off of work vs. working while on your travels.
- The 4-Hour Workweek and how to negotiate days off of work.
Things To Look Into Before You Go
- Get a passport.
- Check to see if you need a visa for the countries you plan to visit.
- Vaccinations (they aren’t really mandatory – you can usually opt out of them).
- Make sure you can pay your bills online. Set up online bill pay.
- Have someone watch your house and pick up your mail. Or rent out your home and forward your mail to friends or family.
- Backup everything on your computer. Use Carbonite.com to automatically backup your files.
Finding Places To Stay
When mapping out your trip in advance, you can use these resources to find a place to stay:
- Warmshowers.org, Couchsurfers.com, Globalfreeloaders.com
- Big Corporate websites (like hotels.com, expedia.com, etc)
- Private Rental companies that rent out hundreds of properties.
- Private home-owner websites.
When not planning your trip out in advance, you can still find places to stay by:
- Being invited into other people’s homes.
- Staying in hostels.
- Staying in hotels.
- Finding private apartments to rent.
My recommendation is that you mix your travels so that you have parts of it planned out and other parts not planned at all.
Mapping Out Your Route
- Use Vayama.com to find cheap international and one-way airline tickets.
- Road Maps ( can be purchased at AAA, Barnes & Noble, Amazon.com)
- Traditional bicycle tourists ride 40-60 miles in a single day. You should do less than this if your main goal is to do more than just ride your bike.
- When planning distances, don’t forget to account for the hill, wind, and mud.
- When mapping out your route, you need to know if your main goal is to travel as far as you can in the least amount of time possible, or if you want to see as much possible in a much smaller area. You can’t do both.
Learning Foreign Languages
- Don’t let not knowing a language prevent you from going somewhere new.
- Knowing the language in a foreign country, however, makes everything easier.
- Learn the basic words and phrases – forget everything else.
- Speak to children. They know English the best.
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help from people in the immediate area.