Book Review:Hitting the road; motorcycle travels on a budget by Jacek Klimko



RATING:

A honeymoon experience triggers two adventurous spirits to sell everything they have to embark on a motorcycle odyssey.

I must admit by the title alone I expected a step-by-step guide on traveling on a budget on a motorcycle but instead, I got a memoir. The book is narrative driven but effective. The author breaks down the relevant key elements on how they prepared their motorcycle and themselves. It gives you cause to research further for people considering embarking on such an adventure. I haven’t traveled beyond a week or a weekend but I find the book has some helpful tips. The author implements realistic approaches based on his experiences, with flaws as a guide on budgeting. No specific prices were mentioned.

I was impressed by the level of detail offered without overloading us with irrelevant information.  He briefly touched on his encounters of the places he visited and the people he met. All applicable to situations one might face when one entrusts themselves with such an endeavor.

For example, when they passed through Siberia, they were chased by dogs and a group of people almost causing an accident. In Albania, the couple was stopped by traffic police, their passports confiscated till they settled the speeding ticket. And in Greece at the olive picking farm, the owners were seemingly unpleasant condescending people. Their bike broke down in Turkey due to a bad job before etc. It was wonderfully done.

The description of the Greek Islands and towns in Turkey were vivid enough to prompt an interest for people who had never thought to grace these places before.

 

Highlights:

  1. Do your research-The author went on online biker communities to look for different alternatives on the equipment needed for the journey
  2. Plan what to take (utensils, food, clothes, your tent, computer etc.-eliminating what is not necessary to avoid overloading.)
  3. Find ways to eliminate shelter and food costs.
  • Join a work exchange program. The author and his wife found an Olive picking farm owned by a British family to work in exchange for food and shelter.
  • Find CouchSurfing hosts. In Turkey, they found hosts and rented tree shacks for less than a pound a day.
  • Rented a hostel in Georgia-cheaper than a hotel. They also met an Australian man who lived in the hostel for free in exchange for his work.
  •  Rented a house on Airbnb and invited people to CouchSurfing in rented Georgia home.
  1. Sometimes you rely on the kindness of other people.-in Borjomi a couple allowed them to camp their tent on their land and the author and his wife trusted them enough to leave their belongings in their care.
  2. Make friends on forums it could be valuable. -The author needed repairs for his bike, a friend from the HUBB introduced him to a trustworthy mechanic who didn’t charge him for fixing a problem with his sprockets.

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Published: March 4 2017

Read an excerpt


 

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