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-   -   Poll about support vehicles (http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=847008)

still southern 12-07-2012 09:22 PM

Poll about support vehicles
 
If you were going to join a group tour with 4-6 riders (probably on the tour company's bikes) for a 7 day tour of a mountainous region, how important would a support vehicle (4x4) be to you?

thomas.tc.young 12-08-2012 04:14 AM

To me it depends on the wrenching ability of the fellow riders. But having a support vehicle is never a bad thing. You can store your stuff in it reducing the weight of your bikes as well as giving you additional carrying capacity for gear, tools and fuel. But it might only make sense for a support vehicle to go only with a larger group to make it more affordable

still southern 12-08-2012 08:50 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by thomas.tc.young (Post 20203503)
To me it depends on the wrenching ability of the fellow riders. But having a support vehicle is never a bad thing. You can store your stuff in it reducing the weight of your bikes as well as giving you additional carrying capacity for gear, tools and fuel. But it might only make sense for a support vehicle to go only with a larger group to make it more affordable

As I've commented elsewhere, I'm kicking around the idea of starting a tour company in Central Asia. I see the advantages with carrying gear and mechanicing items, but for me personally, I feel like the support vehicle takes away from the adventure MOTORCYCLE side of it, but business is business and if it's what people would prefer, then it's probably the way to go. I suppose the other business route would be to offer it to each group for an added price...hmmm have to think on that.

woofer2609 12-09-2012 07:10 PM

It really depends on the client base you want. Seeing as they would be not travelling with their own bikes, they might want the cush. Who is your ideal client?

Witold 12-09-2012 10:10 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by still southern (Post 20204699)
but for me personally, I feel like the support vehicle takes away from the adventure MOTORCYCLE side of it, but business is business and if it's what people would prefer, then it's probably the way to go.

People who want a real adventure do not go on organized group tours with a dozen other tourists and local guides. I think the sort of person who goes on such tour mostly wants to enjoy themselves, ride some good roads, have someone else take care of all the logistics, and get a little local flavor - but not too much.

To me personally, the biggest appeal of an organized tour would be a support vehicle. (with backup motorcycles/parts/tires). It means that on your 10 day moto tour you don't loose out on everything and ruin your vacation when the bike breaks. When you get a flat, burn out the clutch, crack a case cover, whatever - you can just switch out for another bike and keep going. You can stick stuff luggage in the vehicle, etc, and it could be great.

still southern 12-09-2012 11:35 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Witold (Post 20215435)
People who want a real adventure do not go on organized group tours with a dozen other tourists and local guides. I think the sort of person who goes on such tour mostly wants to enjoy themselves, ride some good roads, have someone else take care of all the logistics, and get a little local flavor - but not too much.

To me personally, the biggest appeal of an organized tour would be a support vehicle. (with backup motorcycles/parts/tires). It means that on your 10 day moto tour you don't loose out on everything and ruin your vacation when the bike breaks. When you get a flat, burn out the clutch, crack a case cover, whatever - you can just switch out for another bike and keep going. You can stick stuff luggage in the vehicle, etc, and it could be great.

To answer the ideal customer, I'm still working on a good profile, but I'm thinking toward the independent, savvy traveler, as well as renting cheap bikes on a daily basis around Lake Issyk Kul to a mixture of locals and tourists.

That said, I'm not looking to try and run groups of more than 4 or 5 tourists plus a guide and or myself. If you come here you probably aren't looking for a cushy vacation. In addition the reason you would rent a bike is that shipping a bike to this region is expensive and time consuming. Getting it in and out of the country can add a couple days on either end of your already limited vacation time. The police and customs are notoriously corrupt which just adds to the complications. Also there are no good methods of crating a bike here. Anything like air transport would probably cost more than my offering a tour and second if you ship any other way it takes a couple months and still costs around $1500...and if you don't get all your paperwork right it might not be allowed to leave the country again. Add that to most people, even in the service sectors have no knowledge of English so a local guide or knowledge of Russian, and or Kyrgyz is very helpful.

So I think part of the marketing segment I'm looking for is those people who would normally bring their own bike, but could be tempted by the ease of renting instead of loosing their bike for half a year for a two week vacation.


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