Essential Equipment for Bike Touring

Essential Equipment for Bike Touring

Are you excited to go on a bike tour but unsure of what you might need to bring?

You aren’t alone.

It may seem like there’s so much to do before going on a bike tour but you just need to remember a few key things so that you don’t end up sunburnt, broken down, and bleeding from the leg.

Remember that it’s always better to be safe than sorry, and you never know what kinds of animals may lurk at night in the woods you passed during the daytime.

Bringing full water bottles is an unwritten law – there’s no need to risk getting overheated or dehydrated.

When going on a bike tour, you can’t count on there being a store for you to pick up a drink.  On some bike tours, you can go for miles without seeing a single business, so beware! 

Put ice in your bottle, so that even if you run out, the ice will melt and give you a bit more water.

Kits such as tire patch kits and first-aid kits are also necessary. 

Regarding first-aid kits, they should cost no more than twenty dollars.

You won’t need a 700-piece first-aid kit for a bike tour, but you can’t just go with a few band-aids and expect to be completely prepared for everything life throws.

Biking Essentials

Here’s a Checklist

  • Bicycle
  • Helmet
  • Bike lock
  • Panniers or bike bags for storage
  • Repair kit (spare inner tubes, tire levers, patch kit, multi-tool)
  • Pump or CO2 inflator
  • Water bottles or hydration pack
  • Snacks or energy bars
  • First aid kit
  • Bike lights (front and rear)
  • Reflective gear or clothing
  • Cycling gloves
  • Cycling shoes
  • Sunscreen
  • Map or GPS device
  • Rain gear (jacket and pants)
  • Camping gear (tent, sleeping bag, sleeping pad)
  • Cooking equipment and utensils (stove, pot, utensils)
  • Food and water purification method (if camping in remote areas)
  • Personal hygiene items (toothbrush, soap, toilet paper)
  • Extra clothing layers
  • Cash and identification
  • Cell phone and charger

Even though many of the items mentioned here do not need to be carried at all times, they can be very useful, especially if you’re cycling through remote areas.

For instance, you’ll need some tools to fix the bike, and some spares may not be readily available at local bike shops.

Likewise, some spares may be difficult to find or even imported.

Keeping these items in your bike’s trunk can prevent you from getting stuck somewhere.

Absolute Biking Essentials

Duct Tape, tire levers and patch kit, spare tube, and tire. Allen wrenches, a chain tool, small vice-grips, zip ties, chain lube, and air pump.

Consider bringing a shower cap over the saddle every night to keep off dew and rain.

You don’t want to start your cycling day by hopping on a wet saddle!

Essential Equipment for Bike Touring


multi-tool for bike touring is lightweight and has a lot of functions. For less than 40 dollars, the ToPeak Mini PT30 multi-tool is a compact tool with 30 useful functions.

Included are a standard-size hex and a common Torx bit, plus screwdrivers, a small knife, and a tubeless tire repair tool.


Bike touring requires carrying plenty of water, so cages are necessary. They can hold a variety of bottles in various sizes.

Water bottle cages can also hold other items like tumblers, coffee cups, and sports bottles.

These specialized bicycle accessories are designed to fit various bottles and are completely adaptable to the user’s needs.

They can also provide additional storage space for things like helmets or gloves.


A good pair of panniers is essential cycling equipment, whether you plan to ride for pleasure or for business.

Choose one that is sturdy and has at least three compartments.

Choose panniers with multiple compartments that are waterproof, especially the main compartment, for clothing and items for the evening.

panniers are designed for unhooking automatically when you lift them off your bike with a handle.

Air Pump

Every cyclist should carry a bike pump while touring. Regardless of bike type, even touring tires need a bit of air occasionally.

Bike touring tires require an extra burst of air every two or three days.

Here are some considerations

  • Consider the type of valve your bike tires have (Presta or Schrader) and ensure that the pump you choose is compatible with that valve type.
  • Look for a pump with a durable and sturdy construction, as it will be subjected to rough handling during touring.
  • Opt for a pump that has a pressure gauge, so you can accurately monitor the tire pressure.
  • Check the pump’s pumping capacity, as you may need to inflate your tires to higher pressures for touring.
  • Consider the size and weight of the pump, as you’ll want it to be portable and easy to carry during your tour.
  • Look for additional features such as a flexible hose or a dual-action pumping system, which can make pumping easier and more efficient.
  • Read reviews and consider recommendations from experienced touring cyclists to get insights into the reliability and performance of different bike pumps.

Herbs and spices For Cooking

Purchasing a small pot, herbs, and spices before you leave home can help you prepare nutritious meals that taste great while traveling.

A small pot with a lid and a sleeve can help you avoid slicing your mug, and they’re easy to find everywhere.

Learning how to forage and cook with these items can make you less reliant on food stores.

1001 Cycling Tips: The essential cyclists’ guide – navigation, fitness, gear and maintenance advice for road cyclists, mountain bikers, gravel cyclists and more (1001 Tips)
  • Reynolds, Hannah (Author)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • 160 Pages – 11/11/2021 (Publication Date) – Vertebrate Publishing (Publisher)


There are several factors to consider before buying a mudguard for your bicycle. The clearance between a mudguard and tire must be at least one inch.

Otherwise, mud will clog it and slow you down. Try fitting spacers or a mudguard with extra space to get a good fit.

Never bend the mudguard or fork crown. Bending the stays will weaken the unit and put additional stress on it. This can lead to premature breakage.

Spare Bike parts

While most bicycle parts can be replaced with a simple toolkit, finding the right spare parts for your bike while touring is not always easy.

Some parts may not even be available in the region you’re visiting.

You’ll need locktite or similar to keep them in place, and spare pannier clips tend to break after a certain amount of miles.

If you don’t have spares, you may have to rig up a way to attach your panniers until you find a replacement clip.

If you’re riding in a developing country, spare parts may be hard to find because bike shops aren’t equipped with modern bicycle repair tools.

Flashlights and headlamps are great assets for overnight bike tours and should cost no more than fifteen dollars for both of them.  An extra pump and other tools are greatly recommended.

Maps and sun protection items such as sunscreen and sunglasses will keep you on track and allow you to get tan instead of being burnt and lost.

Be sure to bring all of your medications with you in a plastic container or little baggie that can be sealed shut. 

Any toiletries that you may need – including toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner, lotion, Aloe Vera, etc., should be wrapped in a plastic bag to prevent any spillage.

Bug spray will be very useful depending on where your bike tour takes you.

To be completely prepared for all sorts of weather conditions, you should wear layered clothes. 

Make sure you bring clothes you can wear after your bike ride. 

Extra bike shorts – one padded, one not – will help you stay clean and dry throughout the tour.

Be sure to bring a small amount of laundry detergent or soap so that you can wash your clothes. 

Lightweight windbreakers or rain jackets are great for the unpredictable ways of good old Mother Nature.

If you’re going overnight, camping equipment is required. 

Things such as a tent, a sleeping bag, a pillow, a plate set fit for camping, and other cooking tools will be useful.

When going on bike tours, always bring food that won’t go bad if it isn’t refrigerated.

Cold cuts and hot dogs are okay as long as they’re kept in a cooler, but having granola bars and peanut butter is the way to go.

Most of all – have fun!

Last update on 2024-04-13 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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