Check the rules of the road in destinations you are visiting, although hopefully you will be off road for a lot of your cycling vacation.
MP3 Players are a general no no when cycling. There are different schools of thought on this, but all in all, it is better to be aware of your surroundings, especially when you are on unfamiliar territory.
In many countries, wearing helmets is not compulsory, but we all know it makes sense. It is advisable to consider bringing your own with you, so that you can guarantee it hasn’t been damaged.
Lights and hi visibility gear from dusk are a must.
If you are cycling behind someone, keep a safe distance and if you are riding two abreast, the rule of thumb is to only do this during daylight hours.
Drinking alcohol and cycling is not advisable, and in many countries the same rules apply to cyclists as vehicle drivers. So, cycle and drink responsibly.
Be prepared with maps, compass, rain gear, pocketknife, matches and a whistle if you are going on a remote, self-guided cycling vacation. You can buy mini emergency kits on eBay for a tenner. Although if you are traveling with a tour operator, you will always have an emergency contact number. Remember to have it with you at all times.
Write down the local emergency numbers before you set out, including mountain rescue, if relevant. And always tell someone where you are going. Make sure your mobile phone is charged too.
Always check the weather forecast, especially if you are cycling in extreme climates where flash floods, hurricanes or lightning storms are a possibility. The World Meteorological Organisation
One of the most common causes for mountain rescue is hypothermia usually brought about by exhaustion and injury. So make sure you have enough food and water and the right layers if you are cycling in remote areas.
Be wary of lightning storms and, if they do occur, get off your bike immediately and do not touch it. Get below the treeline and stay away from summits or isolated trees. Stay as low as you can. Although if there is a risk of flash flooding, you need to get to higher ground, which is confusing. But don’t be afraid to ask for shelter. Also, if you are cycling with a friend, don’t be tempted to huddle your way through the storm to keep warm, if you are stuck out in the open. Stay apart and stay low.
Cycling in extreme heat can be dangerous and deaths do, tragically occur. In warm climates, cycle early in the morning and late in the afternoon, cover up and drink lots. Consider adding rehydration powders to your water. Many cycling companies don’t offer trips in the height of summer anyway, for health and safety reasons.