How Fuel Prices Could Affect Your Motorcycle Tour

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As a driver, I’ve long considered fuel economy noteworthy when choosing a new car. But it’s never really concerned me as a motorcycle rider. As long as the real-world MPG wasn’t too drastic, I never really paid much notice.

The same goes for fuel prices and MPG. I watch them with the eye of a hawk regarding my car. But never have I paid any real attention to the cost of fuel regarding my bike. Until now.

I think I speak for most riders when I say that fuel economy and petrol prices play second fiddle to the enjoyment and freedom that comes from riding a bike. For most of us, we’re prepared to overlook fuel costs in return for having a great time exploring the world on two wheels.

Of course, we would rather pay less than more. But very few of us would prepare for a trip and then head back home in protest when we saw the fuel prices at the petrol station.

We moan about it, pay for it, and then carry on enjoying ourselves.

fuel prices motorcycle tour - group of riders at service station
Image: Brandon Hoogenboom

Russia Invades Ukraine: Soaring Fuel Prices

In the UK, petrol prices have been increasing steadily for a while. And they have long since been (along with the weather) a staple in the repertoire of Anglo-moanings and grumblings. Myself included.

It started when fuel tipped the scales at £1 a litre. (Remember those days?!)

Then we saw the price hike last year due to the fuel shortage. And before we had a chance to recover from it, Putin decided to invade Ukraine for no apparent reason other than to satisfy his delusional, psychotic ego.

I’m not saying that fuel prices matter in the grand scheme of things in Ukraine. What’s happened there is catastrophic on so many levels. The repercussions will be devastating – morally, politically, economically, and ethically – for many years to come.

As the devastations trickle down to the rest of the world, one of the many consequences of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is the globally rising cost of oil.

hipster rider at rusty gas pumps
Image: Mehmet Talha Onuk

Fuel Prices In Europe Could Effect Your Motorcycle Tour

If you’re a biker in Europe (or are planning to tour in Europe), we’re at a time now where fuel prices are a genuine consideration.

In my experience, the most costly side of motorcycle touring is accommodation. Next comes fuel and food costs.

And seeing as though many of us tour on a shoestring with every pound/dollar/Euro accounted for in advance, it’s worth paying attention to the rising costs of fuel prices.

I’m not necessarily saying they would influence your trip. But having prior warning might help you prepare better ahead of time.

fuel prices on your motorcycle tour - lone bike at deserted gas station
Image: Michael Odelberth

My Month-Long Trip To Norway

The last time I toured, I was in France in 2021. And whilst I can’t remember exactly how much petrol was, I think it was around €1.30 a litre – give or take depending on the region.

When I checked the fuel prices for Norway in the first week of March, they were a whopping €2.83 per litre!

With the 19-litre tank on my Africa Twin, that means a heart-stopping €53.77 to fill up every single day. That’s around twice as much as I was expecting.

To make it worse, we’re in Norway for an entire month. And when you look at the total combined, it would cost around €600-€800 more than I was expecting over the month.

And whichever way you look at it, that’s a hefty dent to the wallet.

As of today (19th March 2022), the fuel prices have dropped to around €2.13 per litre (around £1.79) in Norway – still high, but way less than the €2.83 number from the start of the month.

lone bike at gas station in desert
Image: Suzanne Emily O’Connor

Checking Fuel Prices Before Your Motorcycle Trip

As you can see, if you’re going on an extended motorcycle trip, it pays to have a rough idea of the fuel prices before you leave.

Incorporate these checks into your pre-tour preparation to ensure you have some extra cash put aside for these inflated prices.

Two of the best sources include Global Petrol Prices and Statistics Times. If you’re touring in the coming months, put them in your favourites tab and refer back to them as part of your preparation.

fuel prices on your motorcycle - biker at BP gas station
Image: Josue Reyes

European Petrol Prices (Correct At 19th March 2022)

Fuel Prices On Your Motorcycle Tour: Conclusion

You don’t have to look far on the internet for advice on preparing for a motorcycle trip. From emergency money and medical information to the reduction of accommodation and food costs, there’s information galore.

With accommodation and food options, however, you have a choice. You can splash out if you have the money or learn to budget if you don’t. 

But fuel is a constant. You can’t get a cheaper option if you’re short of cash. It is what it is and that means you have no choice but to buy it if you want to tour.

Just make sure you’re prepared for it before you set off!

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Sources: Global Petrol Prices & Statistics Times

Top image: Andrew Pham


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