When you’re thinking about what to pack on a motorcycle, you may find it a bit daunting to have less space than you would in a car. This means that you need to be more selective and efficient in packing. However, there are modern packing solutions that make it easier than ever before to travel on a motorcycle. Read on to find out our leading tips on packing for a motorcycle trip.
Hard cases vs soft cases
The first step is deciding what kind of luggage you’re going to use. Some bikes have built-in bags, which are handy for traveling. Or you may choose saddlebag liners or tour pack liners for extra convenience. If you’re looking for add-on luggage, you can choose either hard cases or soft cases.
The benefits of hard cases include superior protection from the elements and better security, but they tend to be heavier, larger and more expensive. Expandable soft luggage will be lighter and cheaper but doesn’t offer the same level of security and can be damaged in inclement weather.
You may want to invest in a tank bag for smaller items you’d like to have at hand. This includes things like sunscreen, a phone, sunglasses, etc. If you’re driving your bike, it’s advised to use a backpack.
Considerations about packing
Typically, there are a few things you should think about as you pack: How long is the trip? How much space do you have? What is the terrain like? Are you riding with a passenger? This will give you an idea of how much stuff you need, how much you can take and whether you’ll need to plan for an additional person.
Where to pack
As much as possible, pack your heavier items as low and as far forward as possible. You also want to balance the weight of the load on the left and right. Keep things you’ll need frequently in the top box, and leave heavier items in the saddlebags.
Keep your priorities straight
When you start packing, go with the stuff you know you’re going to need. For example, if you’re headed into colder climates, make sure you have your best jacket, boots and thermals. The last thing you want to do is forget the thing you need most. As much as possible, keep things light, and remember to do a brake check early on to ensure that the load on your bike isn’t too much.
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