How to pack for your family bike adventure:
With international travel on hold, local road trips and holidays are on the up. With our beautiful scenery, cultural history and unique flora, biking holidays and exploring on two wheels is fast becoming a popular choice amongst families as a way to enjoy the great outdoors together.
Once you’ve done the research and found the perfect destination for your next family bike vacation, the hardest part is out the way, next is to line up all your family’s gear and get packing!
It starts with the helmets, rain jackets, shoes and then the next thing you know, you’ve packed way too many outfits and loads of stuff that your kids will never need. Let’s be honest, packing for a week away or just one night with your family often means the same number of bags.
Fortunately, the team from Thule is here to help trim down your packing list and more importantly, make a checklist that’s right for your family.
Start with a duffel for essentials
A bike trip can go downhill fast – and not in a good way – by forgetting to pack helmets and riding gear. Stick to the basics and set aside one go-to duffel for all the gear you can’t live without. Then you can use other bags, like rolling suitcases or backpacks, for clothes, shoes, and activities for the kids. But you can’t have a great bike trip without the essentials, so find a spacious, durable duffel bag to store all your must-have items.
Your kids deserve the best ride
When you’re away with your family, making sure you can explore everything on your list means pedaling for plenty of miles. For the little ones, just coming along for the ride can be fun for them and you’ll be happy knowing they are safe, cosy and not missing a moment while riding around in a new place. A multisport bike trailer is the perfect addition to any young family’s vacation with bikes and is the best way to ensure you see all the sights with the kids on board. They will be happy and comfortable in their spacious cockpit with plenty of windows, pockets for the snacks, and a five-point harness to keep them safe.
The good news is that when you finally reach a spot for lunch or decide to lock up the bikes and walk around, some trailers conveniently convert from a bike trailer to a stroller and you can keep the family smiling as you never miss a beat.
An alternative is to invest in a good child bike seat that will allow you and your most treasured cargo an opportunity to enjoy the everyday bike rides, safely, easily and in style. With front and rear seats available it’s a great choice for letting your child see the world from your bike.
A good pack is not only a great way to stay hydrated, but it’s also an easy way to carry many of the essential items on this list. A hip belt is also a convenient way to access phones safe and is added storage for for essential tools or nutrition.
Packing up the cargo box
The car ride can be challenging enough; so why cram every single bag between the seats while your kids sit squeezed in the back questioning your packing skills? Adding a spacious cargo box onto the roof rack is the easiest way to make your ride there and back comfortable and hassle-free. A range of sizes and models of cargo boxes are available to match your vehicle, your packing needs, and price range, so why not add a little more elbow room in your car and move the more oversized items up into an aerodynamic and stylish cargo box?
Don’t forget the bikes!
The final step on the packing list is the most important and the one thing you really can’t do without on the trip. The bikes, of course! But before you just strap any bike rack to your trunk, you need to choose the correct bike rack for your car and for your requirements. From rear door mounted bike carriers that do not require a tow bar to tow bar mounted platform racks that allow for simple loading and unloading, there is bound to be a perfect option for you and your family.
The new Thule OutWay 2 and 3 Bike carriers are premium rear door mounted bike racks (no tow bar required) for an easy getaway. These carriers can be mounted to a variety of vehicles and not only do they lock to your vehicle, but they also include locks that lock your bike to the rack. For those whose vehicle has a tow bar you have the option of a hanging type bicycle rack that can accommodate up to four bikes or a platform carrier such as the popular Thule Euroway G2 which is not only compact, but also fully lockable and tilts for easy access to the boot.
There has also been a huge growth in sales of e-bikes for those who want to enjoy the trails with a bit less effort up the hills. The Thule EasyFold XT bike rack (now also available in a black version) is a fully foldable, compact, and easy-to-use towbar-mounted bike rack for all types of bikes, including e-bikes.
No matter how far away you plan to take that next bike vacation, making sure your bikes make it to and from your destination safely is the only way you can drive with confidence, knowing you and your family are on the perfect trip!