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Electronic equipment bicycle touring

Our first prototype of Automatic Road Sampler

GPS devices, action cameras, solar chargers, battery packs, and all the electronics you might want to bring with you when cycle touring

We don’t need to get as far back as in the days of the pioneers of bicycle touring, just 20 years ago is enough to find ourselves stripped of all the electronic stuff that we are now so much used to. Some people, still nowadays, enjoy the old-style, a way to be more in touch with nature and take a break from the stress of the modern world.

All these electronics though, give bicycle travelers a new set of possibilities which can simplify and also improve the bike touring experience. Shoot great videos and pictures, stay in touch with your relatives and friends, know always where you are, and even work remotely while traveling.

We put together this list of gear to help you think about what you may need for your next bicycle expedition.

Disclaimer:

Some of the links down below are affiliate links, that means if you purchase something from those linked websites we might get a small commission that will help us maintain this blog. Clicking on the images will bring you to the online store.

This article is part of our series about Essential Gear for Bicycle Touring and Bikepacking
This section is about electronics. For the other sections check below.

The Basic Bicycle Accessories for a Long Haul Bicycle Trip (start here)

Essential Camping Gear for Bicycle Touring and Bikepacking

Tools and Spare Parts to bring on a Bicycle Expedition

Bicycle Touring Clothing Essentials

The Best GPS devices for bicycle touring

17 best lightweight tents under 200$ – 23 best bike panniers compared

Have a look at

The Best Online Stores for Bicycle Touring and Bikepacking

If you’re looking for a bicycle have a look at

18 Great Touring Bikes Under 2,000$21 Best Touring Bicycles Under 1,000$, 10 Great Woman Specific Touring Bikes

Electronic Gear to bring on a Bicycle Expedition

Camera

Some may not agree to that, but we consider a decent Camera as an essential piece of equipment for adventure cycling. A bicycle tour is often among the best times of our life, taking some memories with you is something you’ll hardly regret, will you be happy without pictures of your wedding?

I’ve met many people who first thought they will be fine with their phones and maybe an action cam, like a GoPro or such, most of them regretted this choice and bought a decent camera as soon as they could. We personally use a Nikon D52000, after our Panasonic Superzoom failed. Some like mirrorless cameras, compact ones like this top-notch Fujifilm X100F or the much cheaper Canon PowerShot G9 X Mark II remember that using an LCD display every time you need to shoot a picture will quickly drain your battery.

Especially if you’re traveling solo, a lightweight travel tripod is almost a must… otherwise you’ll never be in your pictures (besides selfie-style stuff).


Rechargeable Batteries

Way better having those than producing so much waste each time your flashlight goes blind. Panasonic Eneloop is the best rechargeable batteries on the market, you can buy them here on Amazon.

best GPS bicycle touring

Garmin eTrek 30 GPS unit from Garmin.com

Non-Essentials

GPS device 

Why should you use a GPS device in the era of smartphones? Well, for a bunch of reasons:

  • longer battery life: way longer, our Garmin lasts around 18 hours with a pair of reasonably new Panasonic Eneloop.
  • Sturdier and water-resistant: Two times I rolled over my Garmin with my fully loaded bike, not a fuss.
  • Better Signal, faster and more accurate location: when riding in a busy city like Seoul, you want your device to tell you exactly where you are.

We feel to recommend a Garmin eTrek30, you can download free Open Street Maps from this link. We wrote an article about the best GPS for traveling, you can read it here.


Telephone/Smartphone

We traveled for one entire year without a smartphone and we survived. Anyway having a modern phone can help you keep in touch with your people, find hospitality on Couchsurfing or Warmshower, post on social networks and so on.

We have two XiaoMi RedMi4, which we like a lot. They come for around 100$ (we bought them in China), have a surprisingly good camera and a sealed case (one I dropped mine in a bucket full of water and it survived, perfectly operational). 

best action cam bicycle touring

Sony FDR-X3000 from BH PhotoVideo

Action Cam

Absolutely non-essential, but if you like to make some videos or pictures while you’re cycling here are some cheaper alternatives to a GoPro (whose quality is a no-match though). We had a good experience with Sony Action Cams. Check our videos on our YouTube Channel and see our personal StreetView on Mapillary. If you’re up for something more original, take a look at this 360 Action Cam from Xiaomi.


Laptop or Tablet

If you keep a blog or work remotely it’s nice to have a laptop, a good tool to earn some cash while traveling, and it also helps to keep the pictures in order. We use an Ultralight Asus Zenbook.


Battery Pack

Very useful, juice for your phone and action cams. There are a ton available on Amazon.

best laptop for bicycle touring

Asus Zenbook from Amazon.com

Dynamo Charger

If you have a dynamo hub, why don’t use it also to charge your electronics? There are a few chargers on the market that will do this job, like the Supernova The Plug III or the cheaper BioLogic ReeCharge Power Pack.


Solar Charger

Another way to charge your electronic equipment while cycle touring is using solar chargers. There are brands coming out with new products every month, and solar panel efficiency is constantly improving. Among the most famous are the Goal Zero products. Here our article about the best portable solar panel for bicycle touring and backpacking.


eBook Reader

Reading a book in your tent after an exhausting cycling day is a great way to relax. Books are heavy though, so why not to get yourself an eBook Reader. You can store a huge amount of literature in one of those, even guidebooks to plan the upcoming route. Remember to buy one with a backlight screen.

best bicycle dynamo charger

Supernova The Plug III on Amazon – photo by www.charliethebikemonger.com

Check Also

The Basic Bicycle Accessories for a Long Haul Bicycle Trip (start here)

Essential Camping Gear for Bicycle Touring and Bikepacking

Tools and Spare Parts to bring on a Bicycle Expedition

Bicycle Touring Clothing Essentials

Have a look at

The Best Online Stores for Bicycle Touring and Bikepacking

If you’re looking for a bicycle have a look at

18 Great Touring Bikes Under 2,000$21 Best Touring Bicycles Under 1,000$, 10 Great Woman Specific Touring Bikes

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