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Bike tripping in a Tent or Hotel?
When ever one decides whether or not to go on a bike trip, one thing always comes to mind. Where will I sleep? Will I get a hotel room or will I decide to just camp out under the stars? If you're going to get a hotel, where can you go? Is the hotel far from your intended course or do you bike right through a city that has a decent charged hotel? All of these questions must be running through your mind as you agree to go on a long distance bike trip. So, what should you do? Should you go to your nearest sports store and purchase an expensive tent or should you go online and look for hotels that will be in the area of where you are riding? Many things must be understood if you are going to get the most for your money. Now, let's assume some prices so that we can come to a conclusion as to what is better and what is worse. Assume that a good, durable, weather resistant tent costs you $600.00. Included in that price is the $30.00 a night that you must pay to camp somewhere. For hotel costs, you have to pay $80.00 a night. Now that we have discussed these prices, let's discuss some what ifs.
The first very important thing that must be decided is for how long are you going on this long distance bike ride? Is it for five days? Is it for a week? Or is it for a month? Maybe longer…It all does depend upon the length of your journey. Assuming that the cost of the hotel is $80.00 and you only go for a five day bike ride, then it would obviously be more cost effective to just do the hotel way. You will not have to worry about carrying anything and you would only be spending $400.00, still cheaper than the actual tent costs, let alone the $30.00 a night that the campgrounds will cost. However, as can be assumed, if you start adding on more days, then you have the worry that taking the hotel route will result in a lot of money that could have been spent on other things, such as necessary food, necessary water, extra tires and other need items for a long distance bike ride.
Now let's take into account that you are probably going to ride your bike for many days, potentially two weeks if not more because it is a long distance bike ride. Assume, for our learning's sake, that you are going to go for only twelve days. For twelve days, you are going to ride the bike, go through rain and wind and any other weather conditions and then sleep each night. For a hotel, for twelve days, you will have to fork up $960.00. You are talking nearly a thousand dollars for twelve days of hotel usage. Now, let's decide how much a tent and twelve days of campground usage will cost. If you have your handy dandy calculator around, or if you're a math wiz, you will see that it costs $960.00. This is where you need to come to a decision. Would you prefer spending the money on the hotel room or would you prefer spending the money on a tent and then be forced to carry that tent where ever you are going?
Now it is a given that if you go for thirteen days or longer, you will come to the realization that it will cost a lot more each night than it will because the hotel costs $50.00 more a night than the campgrounds. So, as can be seen from the basic math shown, it is much cheaper after twelve days to purchase a tent and just camp at campgrounds. However, there are still other things that you need to decide upon before choosing a hotel or campgrounds. The first one that needs to be decided is whether or not you actually want to carry the tent. Tents are pretty lightweight, but remember that you will be carrying food, a backpack with some clothes and the tent. All this weight could begin to weigh you down and when riding uphill, it could become a bother for your legs that will probably already be tired from the long ride.
Another thing that you want to take into account is if this will be your only trip or if you might take other trips in the end of the season or in the following year. Are you going to go camping? Are you going to go on future bike trips? Are you going to do any long trip walk events? If you answered yes to any or all of these questions, then purchasing a tent is more ideal than getting a hotel room every night. A tent can be used for many events, not just one; therefore it will be more cost effective to use that tent rather than getting hotel rooms. As can be seen from the math, at eighty dollars a night, a hotel room can begin to get very expensive. By having a tent already bought and paid for, it will save you fifty dollars a night when you camp rather than stay in a hotel.
So, what do you decide to do? Do you stay in a hotel and pay $80.00 a night or do you fork up the $600.00 right from the beginning and then pay only $30.00 a night? That depends heavily on how many days you are going to be biking. If you're going to be gone for five or six days, it is obviously more cost effective to just stay in a hotel and pay the $400 or $500 in hotel fees. However if you are going to be going for three weeks, then it is obviously better to pay the $1230.00 in campground/tent fees rather than the $1680.00 in hotel fees. But in the end, you the bike rider needs to decide what you want. Maybe comfort plays a big part in the decision. Maybe money isn't a question. Maybe you just want to sleep well. If that's the case, go for the hotel. But if you want to save money on a very long bike ride, it's suggested to go for the tent.
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