Complete guide – motorcycle extended trip checklist.

All trips are unique and people pack different and their needs and type of travel is different, hopefully you will find this checklist useful in preparing for your next epic motorcycle expedition.

This is a general guideline and will be different for men, woman, length, difficulty of the trip, whether doing cross border and general weather conditions in the region. We tried to make the list as comprehensive as possible and might be an overkill for the trip you plan, as this list is also for short trips just exclude what is not needed or for weekend trips. 

However, we do not pack all the stuff listed even on our extended trips as we are minimalist and strive to pack as light and compact as possible.

There is an abbreviated version of this list on page 2.

Download the comprehensive version:
Download the abbreviated version:
Personal Items:
  • Hydration Pack – Best way to stay hydrated and place to carry passports, spare cash, backup credit cards, etc.
  • Water Purification Plan – If you cannot find bottled water tablets are the cheapest option, or beer.
  • First Aid Kit – Size and contents will vary per individual need. Painkillers & Remedies – Altitude sickness, stomach viruses, Malaria and many other possibilities can stop your trip. Prescription Medications – If you need them at home, stock up before leaving.
  • Doctor’s Approval – Don’t assume you’re fit for such for adventure, especially over 40’s.
  • Vaccinations – See your medical travel clinic, doctor.
    Yellow fever is a common vaccine to many African countries.
  • Cell Phone – Very nice apps these days to help with travelling.
  • Satellite Phone or Satellite tracker – As the ultimate pimp tool. We do not carry
  • Spare Ignition Key – Zip-ties it to the bike somewhere.
  • Spare Luggage Keys – See above
  • Medical insurance plan – Don’t assume your medical plan covers you.
  • Medevac or Air Ambulance Insurance – Various types available for local and International use.
  • Emergency Contact Info – Have in your wallet, tank bag, or somewhere accessible to people or paramedics to contact your family or friends.
  • Backup Snacks – Small bag of nuts or dried fruit can last a long time, and keep hunger from being such an issue.
  • Passport – For international travel, keep in mind that some countries require 6 months validity for admittance and at least 3-4 blank pages. Make sure you whether you need a visa.
  • Passport Copies – Serving as a backup or necessary item to have anyway for some border crossings.
  • Visas – Research ahead and confirm, can you just get yours at each border.
  • International Driver’s License – Make sure yours has the motorcycle endorsement. Make sure about noting bike license.
  • Motorcycle Documents & Insurance –Spare copies.
  • Carnet de Passage – Motorcycle passport.
  • Backup Credit Cards – Be sure to also record all the “lost card” phone numbers somewhere.
  • Earplugs –It’s simple, protect your hearing.
  • Regular Camera – Plus all associated chargers and memory sticks.
  • Helmet Camera – With the fittings, chargers and additional batteries.
  • Memory Stick, Cards, SD Card reader – Including USB for public computer use.
  • Sunscreen – Wind and riding obscure the fact that you might be getting sunburn.
  • Baby Wipes – They work great for cleaning your hands after a fixing a bike.
  • Hand Sanitizer – A small bottle for when no water is available to clean hands.
  • Headlamp / torch – Ever had a mechanical issue at night? A hands-free headlamp could be your greatest tool.
  • Maps – Obtain paper maps before leaving home, they can be extremely difficult to find in less-developed countries and it is still a great way to navigate.
  • GPS Locator & Service Plan – For sending updates and notifying authorities of an emergency. SPOT.
  • Small laptop or IPad. It is safer when able to access Wifi to login to email and such.
  • Toiletries bag – Pack all liquids into screw top plastic bottles. They will not accidentally spill everything into your bags
  • Slops & Shoes – Or use one pair of KEEN shoe/sandals as example. With socks you might look like a German tourist, but what de hell it saves weight and space.
  • 1short / 1long pair pants – Use brands with technical fabrics. They dry easier and are hard-wearing.
  • 3 shirts – Preferably not cotton. Wool or technical fabrics.
  • Long sleeve jacket – Thin fleece or technical jackets.
  • Underwear or go commando.
  • jewellery – Rather leave it at home. No need to tempt people into thinking you are loaded like a drug dealer and want to cash in on your bling.

Motorcycle & Equipment Setup:
  • GPS
  • Engine Guards/Protection
  • Engine Case Covers
  • Headlight Guards
  • Radiator and Oil Cooler Protection
  • Kickstand Foot Print
  • Pannier frames
  • Soft luggage or hard luggage.
Riding Gear:
  • Helmet – Peak versions are best.
  • Backup Helmet Parts & Hardware – Screws fittings
  • Goggle & Shield Cleaner – Don’t make the mistake of using paper-based OR cotton products to clean the shield, as they will scratch it for sure. Use stuff like ATGvision for rainy or foggy riding.
  • Sunglasses – UV protecting and comfortably fitting within your helmet.
  • Buff – Keep warm; keep flying bugs out of your neck or face. Can be worn as a hat.
  • Neck warmer –Refer Buff
  • Neck Brace – This is a very subjective and personal decision.
  • Knee Braces. The Leatt type
  • Riding Jacket – Waterproofing, Venting, hard-wearing, etc.
  • Riding Pants – Must be comfortable and have good knee protection.
  • Motorcycle Gloves – Summer pair and a winter pair.
  • Base Layers – Synthetic or natural wool base layers for severe cold weather riding
  • Riding Socks – Long enough to prevent chaffing and hopefully moisture wicking via synthetic materials or wool
  • Motorcycle Boots – Ankle protection, waterproof and must be comfortable to live with day in and day out. If you insist on wearing MX boots use waterproof socks.
  • Mesh Stuff Sacks – Separate personal items, clothes, and items into categories using lightweight stuff sacks that require hardly any extra space when empty.
  • Proper rain suite.
Luggage & Security:
  • 1 x 50L Wide mouth Duffel Bag – They are waterproof and dust proof and the easiest to unpack and use. If your trip will also involve any travel off the motorcycle, pack your motorcycle gear in this bag for the flight, train, etc.
  • Packing bag organisers – No stuffing, pack clothes and stuff neatly and easy to take out and pack again.
  • Luggage Tie Down Straps – Use only straps which have parts bungee rubber straps. They keep compressing and will never have you lose stuff.
  • Small cargo bungee net.
  • Tankbag with electrical attachments.
  • Motorcycle cover – Some recommend using a cover when parking the bike in the street in some dodgy areas. It adds more weight and stuff though to carry.

Parts and equipment:
  • Bicycle Combination Cable Lock – Can serve as extra security for attaching bags to the motorcycle, or the motorcycle to a fence, pole, etc.
  • Disc Brake Lock & Spare Key
  • Fuel Transfer Hose – A small diameter, 2-meter section of rubber hose can be a huge help in pulling fuel from other sources.
  • Electrical Chargers – Make your own list for all you’re bringing!
  • Travel Electrical Adaptor.
  • Engine Oil – 500ml
  • Chain Lube – For chain-driven bikes OR used as a lubricant to get tyres on and off rims when fixing
  • Master Link – And associated tools to remove and fit
  • Spare Spark Plugs – Some 2-cylinder motorcycles use 4 spark plugs, so plan ahead. ( Not a critical item)
  • Spare Oil Filter – Unless you’re sure you’ll be able to get them where you’re going.
  • Spare Air Filter – One river crossing or days of dust riding will quickly destroy an air filter.
  • Spare Brake pads – Front and rear.
  • Spare globes – 1 front 1 rear.
  • Plastic Zip Ties – Call them what you will.
  • Electrical Insulation Tape.
  • Duct Tape.
  • Special Tape to seal burst waterhoses
  • Motorcycle specific tool Kit – Many popular motorcycles will have forums online where other owners suggest the tools you’ll need for your specific motorcycle.
  • Tyre Repair Kit – Tube or Tubeless and know how to fix a flat.
  • Piece of fishing line or piano wire to sew up a cut in a tyre side wall
  • Tyre Pump – A small bicycle pump might not be the easiest option to use, but you can use it far more times than a CO2 bomb.
  • Small electrical pumps with a SAE connector directly to battery.
  • Tyre Gauge – Don’t depend on the gauges at fuel stations. Get a pencil style gauge the electronic ones might go flat when the button is pressed accidentally in your tank bag.
  • Valve Removal Tool – A faulty valve stem might need to be replaced
  • Spare Tyre Stems & Caps – Dust and dirt can wreak havoc on these parts and cause leaks
  • Wheel Removal Tools.
  • Tyre Bead Breaker – Side stands are not designed for that job.
  • Tyre Irons – 3 short levers works generally well.
  • Spare Wire – For replacing torn/broken circuitry.
  • Spare Fuses – No need for CAN-BUS systems.
  • Spare Parts – Research what parts have been problematic on your specific motorcycle, and plan ahead.
  • Spare clutch and throttle cable.
  • Quick Steel or Aluminium – Compounds Quick Steel Epoxy can fix casings and radiators
  • Repair Epoxy – Either for metal or plastic.
  • Q-bond – The best quick dry build it up glue in the business.
  • Loctite – Blue.
  • General Multi-tool –Leatherman type of multi- tool
  • Basic Maintenance & Owner’s Manual – Bring that which might help you fix your bike alone. We have an .pdf version on the laptop.
  • Tow rope.
  • Make up a small set of jumper cables.
  • WD40 or similar, small tub of grease.
  • Paper coffee filters to filter petrol when in doubt of the quality.

Tent camping:
  • Tent.
  • Small LED camp light with 5m cable to run off battery with SAE plug.
  • Spare Tent Parts – Bring a way to fix tent poles, patch torn materials, and replace stakes or lines.
  • Tent Footprint & Groundsheet Tarps – Separate the tent and rain fly from the ground to stay warm and dry or for a rain roof or shade.
  • Sleeping Bag.
  • Ultra-Light Towel – Don’t bring cotton or terry cloth, it’ll never dry out by morning and will stink of mildew within 2 days. Permanently.
  • Sleeping Mat,Pad, lightweight camp sleepers – Patch kit
  • Pillow – Best solution is a half cut fibre pillow, they can be stuffed really small.
  • Camp Stove – Opt for a multi-fuel stove that works on motorcycle fuel, and maintenance repair kit.
  • Pots & Pans – Aluminium heats most efficiently and is lightweight. Stainless steel is ultra-durable.
  • Coffee / Tea / – whatever means you use to brew your fix.
  • Spatulas, Utensils, etc. – Long stem Titanium spoon.
  • Cleaning Scrubber and Soap – pack in small squeeze bottle.
  • Camp Sink – Use a waterproof pannier inner bag for the job
  • Clothing washing bag – Same as sink
  • Cutting Board – They take up zero space especially the thin Poly sheets
  • Wind and Waterproof Lighter
  • Insect Repellent.