Before departing on a bicycling vacation, it’s natural to want to embark on a shopping spree at a local bike shop. To help you save time (and money) we’ve put together a helpful list of gear you won’t need to bring with you.
9 Things You Don’t Need to Buy for Your VBT Bike Tour
Posted on Tuesday, January 10th, 2023
Story by: Ken Lovering | Travel Writer
Before departing on a bicycling vacation, it’s natural to want to embark on a shopping spree at a local bike shop. Don’t get us wrong – we love supporting local businesses, especially bike shops. And really, if you’re a cyclist, those bike shop owners and technicians can be your best friends! That said, many VBT guests arrive at their destination laden with extra gear—only to discover our local VBT Trip Leaders have it all covered. To help you save time (and money) we’ve put together a helpful list of gear you won’t need to bring with you:
- Tools and tubes. Our local trip leaders do much more than help you connect with the sights, sounds, and secrets of the regions where they lead. They’re also highly skilled bike mechanics, able to do repairs on the go with their grab bag of tools and tubes. If you have a special lucky bike tool you just can’t part with, by all means bring it. If not—we’ve got you covered.
- Saddle bag. All our bikes are equipped with bags selected specifically for our fleet of bicycles. They’re small enough so they’re not a bother and roomy enough for the essentials that’ll keep you pedaling. Plus, their no-fuss design makes them easy to detach and re-attach.
- Snacks for the road. Each morning, we make sure your saddle bag is stocked with high-octane snacks. Whether you’re nibbling on locally grown fruits, treats prepared by your innkeeper, or protein bars from a nearby grocer, we’ll keep you energized.
- Guide books and maps. Your trip leaders are like walking guide books, and can reveal a side of your destination that no book ever could. So if you want to pack a little lighter, you can leave the heavy books at home. Even a Self-Guided Bicycling Vacation provides plenty of pointers and destination insights. And our included Ride with GPS App gives you turn-by-turn directions—so you’ll never have to wrestle with a map.
- Water bottle. We keep you hydrated all day long. You’ll start each day with a full VBT water bottle, and you can grab refills from the VBT van as it makes its rounds. You can even take your water bottle home with you!
- Multiple jerseys and shorts. If you already have two jerseys and two pairs of shorts on rotation for your cycling at home, that’s enough. Even one of each might do the trick. Because the polyester and nylon fabrics of bike jerseys and shorts air-dry quickly, you can wash them by hand and hang-dry them in your hotel room after your rides.
- Clipless shoes. All VBT bikes are equipped with flat pedals, so there’s no need to buy clipless shoes. (Oddly, “clipless” shoes are the ones with a clip that snap into special pedals.) Bring your everyday sneakers or other comfy shoes that you slip on for active wear, and you’ll be good to go.
- Helmet. You can feel free to shop for your own helmet, of course. But we find them awkward to pack. We have a variety of sanitized helmets on hand that are sure to fit you, and sure to keep you safe.
- Pedals and a saddle.As two critical contact points on a bicycle, these are, of course, integral. For some, they can be a very personal part of the cycling experience. If your pedals and saddle fit you “just right,” bring them along and your trip leader will install them. Otherwise, we invite you to have a seat on our own specially selected saddles and pedals – and we’ll adjust them to suit you.