Karoo Biking - Official Partner of BMW Motorrad
BMW motorcycle tours and rentals in South Africa englishdeutschespaņol
Customer Testimonials

Karoo Biking Q&A

This section includes answers to frequently asked questions regarding motorcycle riding in South Africa. Give us a call should you require any further information or have a question that is not included here.

  • Q1. Are guided tours always conducted in groups?

  • A1. You have the choice to join the group or travel alone. We generally conduct a briefing session with the group after breakfast when we discuss the day's programme, the route, sites that we'll be seeing, where we'll be breaking for lunch etc. We also provide you with a detailed map. Tour groups often develop into different types of groups and you'll often also have the choice to ride with the group that are more interested in the sites or those that are more interested in riding.

  • Q2. How difficult are the tours and how advanced a rider does one need to be to join a group?

  • A2. Our tour groups include a broad spectrum of riders from beginners to professionals. It's often not about the level of skill but more often about enjoyment. On almost all our tours you'll have the chance to ride dirt roads. We'll naturally provide you with tips to ride these more safely should you need to become a master of the GS.
    The Cape Town to Johannesburg tour and the Cape Town to Victoria Falls tour on the other hand are almost exclusively on tarred roads - although we will need to ride short stretches on dirt roads to reach our accommodation in some instances.

  • Q3. I've booked a guided tour. How will my luggage be transported?

  • A3. With a group of six or more people we book a support vehicle automatically to transport luggage on your behalf. In those instances when we have fewer than six participants we'll ask you all whether you'd like for the guide to accompany you on bike or in a car. You might therefore need to carry your own luggage on your motorcycle. In this instance we recommend using a soft bag such as Ortlieb. Original BMW saddlebags or panniers are naturally also available on request.

  • Q4. What is the weather like in South Africa, and how hot does it get?

  • A4. The southern regions which are flanked by the cooler Atlantic Ocean are incredibly dry and warm to hot in our Summers (November to March). Temperatures vary from mild along the coastline to very hot inland but can generally be described as warm. The East Coast which is flanked by the warmer Indian Ocean result in almost tropical climactic conditions in Summer making it humid and resulting in the occasional afternoon shower. We therefore recommend packing your rain suit on the off chance that we'll get some rain. Click here for today's weather and for a Climate Table.

  • Q5. Can I bring my own motorcycle to tour on?

  • A5. Anything is possible. We'll recalculate our cost should you decide on this option. Just ask.

  • Q6. I've booked a guided tour, how much additional cash will I need?

  • A6. Dinners are included in our tour prices - and they are a culinary pleasure. Budget about R100 for lunches. Petrol is something that you'll need to budget for as well as your drinks although wine, beer and the hard-tack is much more reasonably priced than in Europe.

  • Q7. Where can I get the best deals on flights?

  • A7. We always recommend the Internet which often carry the best deals, alternatively you may want to use your trusted travel agent to help you with flight bookings.
    Please click here for additional information.

  • Q8. What are the roads in South Africa like?

  • A8. Most of our clients are quite surprised on the first visit to South Africa. The quality of more than just the streets leaves them coming back time and again.

  • Q9. Is an international driver's licence needed in South Africa?

  • A9. In short, no. The driver's licence or permit from your country of residence will suffice in South Africa. It must however be valid for motorcycles and not have expired.
    Please click here for additional information.

  • Q10. How many miles do we travel on average per day?

  • A10. Most of our tours see us driving between 100 and 250 miles per day.
    Except on the Cape Town-Johannesburg tour and the Cape Town -Victoria Falls tour, here we cover up to 320 miles per day.

  • Q11. How many participants do you have per tour?

  • A11. We have on average between 8-10 participants per tour.

  • Q12. What clothing should I bring with me.

  • A12. We always recommend bringing the proper protective gear with you. Evenings are a time for relaxation where casual wear will be needed. Although there are no official dress codes, the locals would not appreciate us arriving for dinner in biking regalia. Therefore, we recommend that you bring some smart-casual clothing (ties are not needed). Jeans, chinos with a sweater or shirt will suffice. Remember to pack your swimming trunks too as most of the hotels that we'll be staying at have swimming pools. It can cool down in the evenings so we recommend also bringing a sweater or summer jacket.

  • Q13. Is it compulsory to wear helmets in South Africa?

  • A13. Yes, it is compulsory to wear helmets and we recommend that you do wear helmets for your own safety.

  • Q14. Which countries do the participants come from?

  • A14. Our clients are from all over the world. Check-out our Testimonials page for a better idea.

  • Q15. Is there a briefing session before the day's activities begin?

  • A15. We conduct a short briefing session daily to ensure that you're aware of all the relevant details and to ensure that you get the most from your tour.

  • Q16. What is the best payment method in South Africa - cash or credit card?

  • A16. Visa and Mastercard credit cards are widely accepted in South Africa, including at most petrol stations. However, American Express and Diner's Club card holders may well experience difficulties. You can use credit or maestro cards at almost every ATM so you won't need to bring or carry a small bank with you.
    Please click here for additional information.

  • Q17. How do I pay for petrol in South Africa?

  • A17. Petrol can only be bought or paid for with cash and here in South Africa. More recentlty some petrol stations do accept credit cards as well.

  • Q.18. I am interested in a self-guided tour but how safe is South Africa really?

  • A.18. South Africa has a bad reputation unfortunately but rest assured that it is only a reputation. It is as safe as any other foreign country that you wish to travel through. Big cities here are like any other big cities and you will need to have some street smarts about you. We also do not recommend that you travel through township areas but we can make recommendations to you gladly when booking.

  • Q.19. How can I carry my luggage on a self-guided tour?

  • If you ride without a pillion, and you are interested in doing some gravel roads, we always recommend a combination of tank-bag and Ortlieb bag. In our Ortieb bag your luggage is best protected from dust and water. This bag can be strapped onto the pillion seat, and will not effect the road holding or handling of your bike. The capacity of the Ortlieb bag is 50 litres, the sizes are (height 34cm, width 61cm, depth 32cm). Here is a picture to give you an idea what it looks like:

    If you ride with a pillion, you can book a combination of a tank-bag and the BMW panniers. However, we do not recommend to travel on gravel roads with this luggage.
    You can select your luggage choice at the same time you fill in the rental booking form, here is the link:
    rental booking

  • Q.20. Do I require taking Malaria prophylaxis on any of the Karoo Biking guided tours?

  • Only our Cape Town to Victoria Falls Tour passes an area which is Malaria infected. You can buy Malaria prophylaxis prior to leaving for your tour, or after arrival in either South Africa or Zimababwe. As of 05/2010

  • Q.21. Where are the borders of the Malaria infested areas?

  • If you are planning to come to South Africa on self-guided tour, it might be good to know the borders of the Malaria infested areas. As rule of thumb, the North Eastern parts of the country are high risk areas. To find some addditional information on this subject, kindly browse our health page. South Africa Health

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