2.Tool kit containing small adjustable wrench, phillips and flat head screwdrivers, set of hex keys (check if your bike is metric or US), small flashlight, small roll electrical tape and 6 plastic wire-ties. Also, we always carry a tire repair kit that has tire plugs and CO2 cartridges in case of a flat. Here is one from Stop & Go. This is a lot better than getting stranded. Also, I always take my Leatherman Multi-Tool along, so I'll have a good collection of small tools available in one location.
3.Rain gear. We all know that the sun isn't going to shine forever. I use neoprene diving gloves for riding in the rain. Your hands get wet, but they stay warm, even without heated grips.
4.Small bag with toiletries - shaving stuff, toothbrush, etc. Use the travel sizes. Leave the blow dryer home. Hotels usually have them. They also have soap, shampoo & conditioner. Also, sunscreen and lip balm with SPF are a must to protect from sunburn and windburn.
5.Take no more than 4 days worth of clothes. No need to ride around with dirty laundry in your saddlebags. Plan on doing some laundry at night during down time every few days. This also leaves more room for you to buy T-shirts on the road! In addition to what you're wearing, pack 1 pair of jeans, either 3 Tee shirts or 3 long sleeve tees (depending on the season), 3 pairs of socks, 3 pairs of underwear, lightweight jacket or fleece, seasonal riding gloves and a baseball cap. Depending on where you're going and what season you're in, consider riding jackets and riding pants or sets of leathers. Heated gear is available for the utmost in comfort.
6.Camera. I prefer a small, lightweight digital with a zoom to bulky 35MM units. Make sure you have a memory card with lots of memory. And don't forget your charger or extra batteries.
7.Even though you will be given an interactive map and itinerary, I usually take my GPS. I pre-load all of our destinations so all I have to do is call-up the day's route and we're ready to go. There is nothing wrong with a paper map, either. It gives you a good perspective for the trip.
8.You want to keep what's yours. Bring a disk lock. They're small and very effective. Nothing ruins a trip like coming out of your hotel room in the morning and finding your bike gone!
9.Passport. You'll need this if your trip corsses any international borders.
10. When travelling to Canada, you need to carry proof of vehicle insurance, called a Canada Insurance Card. (Check with your insurance agent.) You definitely need this if you'll be riding your own bike on your trip. Check with your rental agent for insurance requirements for Fly and Rides.
11. Credit Cards. Be sure to inform your credit card company that you will be travelling. This will eliminate the possibility of having charges denied when activity starts appearing far away from your normal purchasing area. Remove stuff from your wallet that you don't need. And make a list of the stuff you do keep in it. That way, if it gets lost (or worst, stolen) , you'll have a record of it.
On a a motorcycle trip, our philosophy is: "If it doesn't fit on your bike, you don't really need it!"
However, there are some things that are essential to the comfort and safety of your trip.
1. A small first aid kit, with band-aids, antiseptic, antacids, aspirin, etc. Here's an inexpensive one available from RideSafer.