Need help. Eng to Aus

Discussion in 'Touring and Adventure Cycling' started by Jigglestumps, 15 May 2008.

  1. Jigglestumps

    Jigglestumps New Member

    I'm setting off in the spring of next year on a tour to Aus. I have a couple of route ideas (To Pakistan) but not sure if they're nice ones.

    Also needs as much help as I can get as I've never done a big tour before. I'll find most of what I need on other threads but if anyone has some handy tips for me that'd be great.

    Lastly. I have a small budget for the whole trip (£3500) but I'd like to get it even smaller. Any money saving tips on equipment?

    The bike I'm looking at is the Ridgeback Voyage
    Any ideas on a cheaper alternative. I know this one's a difficult one but I'd like to not have to run into a bank with a shotgun just to fund this. I'm a low earner.

    Kindest regards,
  2. Dayvo

    Dayvo Just passin' through

    I think the choice of bike you have made should be capable of the journey. There's little to gain if you bought anything cheaper, unless it was a good and reliable 2nd-hand bike. Remember (not that you need reminding :biggrin:) that you are cycling half way around the world, not just a 100-mile audax, or even a LEJOG! So you need something reliable.

    Not being too sure what info you need, if you look back over the (many) previous pages on 'Touring and Expedition', you will find questions and advice covering most topics.

    As regards your route, it might be prudent to contact the British embassies in the potential 'hot spot' countries. A slow-moving, heavy-laden European is an easy target for (want of a better term) trouble makers!

    Best way to save money is to be as self-sufficient as possible; camp and make (or buy cheap, healthy food - you have to make sure your body is being properly fuelled) your own food.

    Good luck, Jamie
  3. Bigtallfatbloke

    Bigtallfatbloke New Member

    looking at your route map it seems you will ride a lot on the busier A roads? Is that a good plan? I wouldn't ride on the A12 if I was paid to do so! Just my initial thought.

    Thats a bloody long way to long do you think you will need?
  4. yello

    yello Legendary Member

    It's around 17000km as the crow flies, say at an average of 100km per day (including rest days), that's 170 days. You're looking at a daily budget of around £17.50 - that's before you pay for sea crossings etc. Not sure you want t be looking at decreasing your budget!

    I'm not meaning to be a wet blanket because I do want to encourage you, but I'd like to be sure you've costed it properly.
  5. From Iran I would recommend the Central Asian route through through Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, North-West China and down into Pakistan via the Khunjerab Pass. This is great cycling in a very spectacular part of world and it would be a pity to miss it.

    If you have a bit of time before you set off, I would look for a better bike, but 2nd hand. For example, over on Bike Radar there's some one selling a Thorn Nomad (excellent expedition bike) for £450 see

    You could also look at buying a 2nd hand, steel mountain bike and turning it into a tourer.

    No. 1 Tip - Make sure you get some really good hand-built wheels.
  6. There was a great Program on a few weeks back, the man who cycled the world; part of his was GBR to Aus you may get some tips of his site.
  7. OP

    Jigglestumps New Member

    Thanks guys, that's all really great help and support. I agree, I have budgetted it low. I actually came to £4950 in the original budget but I watered it down considerably. I always do this and it doesn't usually have great results.
    I'm not going to be doing 100mi per day. I was looking at about the 60mi per day as an overall average.

    I'm glad the bike I've chosen is okay, I checked about alot and this one stuck in my mind above the rest. I think I'll decide to get it and check it out over the next few months.

    I don't really want to be going on all the big roads, but out of England I'm not sure about the roads.
    The A12 was more of a marker than an actual route, I guess that's the same with the rest.

    Thanks for the advice on touring the 'stans. I think i'll take a look into that. Sounds really great.
  8. goo_stewart

    goo_stewart New Member

    I think your budget is way too low. When touring I get by on an average of 20 pounds a day. You will need to camp where ever possible - but once you hit Southeast Asia the camping isn't great. Increase your budget or plan to work on your route.
  9. OP

    Jigglestumps New Member

    I'm sad to hear that my budget is too low. I was allowing for everything needed for the trip and about £11 per day. I never use hotels or even back-packing resorts. Purely the side of the road for me.
    I am very inexperienced though so I'll heed your advice. I'll re-evaluate my budget and look into other forms of money saving.
  10. The lonely planet website has some great advice for massive trips like this. Also look for people's photo accounts on I know of one person who has done this and they have a blog for the trip too. I'll try and find the address for you.
  11. OP

    Jigglestumps New Member

    Thanks kirstie. Both of those are a real help.
  12. mikeitup

    mikeitup Senior Member


    Nice bike BTW. I want one!!

    Have a look at this. might find it useful :
  13. jely

    jely New Member


    hey jamie - i was going to buy exactly the same bike but unfortunately it was just a few cms too big for me, so the guy suggested this one for me... - look around on the internet cause i know you can get it cheaper than what they have here at cyclesurgery... and it's cheaper than the ridgeback.

    good luck for your cycle back to Oz... am so jealous... was planning on doing that this year but will just mosey on around europe, pick up some work along the way and then make my way slowly back home next year so would love to hear how you go...

    happy cycling!!
  14. bof

    bof Senior member. Oi! Less of the senior please

    The world
    A few things.

    I'd second an earlier poster who said buy second-hand. Since you're not setting off until next year, you've got plenty of time. I think you could get a much better bike than the Ridgeback.

    Do a week's tour this year with the gear you plan on taking - and then work out what needs replacement or is missing or should be left behind.

    I would think very hard about going through Southern Pakistan.

    Camping will not be an option in some places - you will need to find cheap hotels (and they can be very cheap away from where westerners go) in South and South East Asia. If I were you and on a seriously low budget, I'd think about getting a cheap flight to say Greece or Istanbul and starting from there - You'd skip the most expensive part of the trip.
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