Make Cycle Touring Look Good On Your CV

The neighbours of our family“Now you’ve gone and done it!”

That’s what I imagined my mother saying when I quit my well-paying, secure job to go around the world on a bicycle. My mother passed away several years ago so she wasn’t actually there to say this to me but if she had been alive, I’m sure I would have been in for an earful.

Fast forward 3 years and the last week has been spent trying to make riding a bike look good on a resume so I can re-launch myself back into the workforce. Is it possible to take months or years in the saddle and pull some valuable work skills out of the experience? I think so and here’s what I’ve learned over the past few days.

1. I’m not a cyclist, I’m a project manager.

I haven’t just been riding my bike from A to B. I’ve been living on pennies a day, finding my way through a constantly changing landscape, across a string of foreign borders, often adjusting my route to account for unexpected developments. In other words, this is much more than simply a sport or leisure activity. It’s a major undertaking that involves the same things as managing any other big event: budgeting, planning and troubleshooting – to name just three.

2. A big bike trip makes for a killer cover letter.

What would you rather read if a job application landed on your desk? Something along the lines of “I am applying for the advertised position in Saturday’s paper…” or “Few people can say they have ridden a bicycle around the world. Not only have I completed such a journey – 48,000km of pedalling through 30 different countries – but now I am ready to put my energy and skills to work for your clients…”? It’s clear which one is more memorable.

3. The skills learned from cycling are endless.

Cyclists routinely get pulled into people’s homes for an evening, often without a shared language. That’s hospitality that requires expert communication skills. Think back to all the times you took a wrong turn on your bike and had to find the correct road. That’s called problem solving through self-reliance and independence. How about haggling in the market over the price of bananas? Negotiation. Rode through a raging rainstorm to reach your destination? Goal-setting and determination. I think you see what I’m getting at.

4. A good story means a memorable interview.

Every cyclist has a tale to tell so think up a few to use when your prospective employer asks you to explain how you would communicate with the team or deal with a particular challenge. If you can tell a funny story and make the interviewer laugh, even better. Don’t get carried away. Keep your answers short and relevant but take advantage of the fact that a big bike trip is quite a unique event that can make you stand out from the crowd.

5. Travel is cool.

The attitude to travel seems to have changed in the past few years, especially in North America where a gap year was once seen a definite career no-no. It’s even better if you’ve done something less conventional than the standard backpacker tour. A big trip is a sign of someone who is open-minded, willing to explore and probably returning with their batteries fully charged, ready to take on fresh challenges.

Of course not everything about a bike trip is good for your job hunt. You might want to spruce up your wardrobe and don’t forget to shave off the beard you spent months growing to perfection on the road. But most of all, when you walk in the door for that interview be proud of what you’ve achieved and learned, then convince others how good you’d be doing the same thing for them.

*5 weeks after writing this article, I arrived for my first day of work in a new job. Proof that a bike tour doesn’t have to be a career-killer.


  1. Jeff Mika
    14th July 2010 at 6:10 pm #

    what is a CV?

    • friedel
      13th August 2010 at 11:42 am #

      A CV is the same as a resume. I think it’s the more common term in Europe.

  2. Alan Tan
    23rd May 2012 at 5:36 pm #

    CV = curriculum vitae = resume …:)

  3. Patrick Carr
    24th October 2012 at 5:44 pm #

    Thank-you so much for this. I’m heading out two days after I’m made redundant, to ride out for a month into midwinter. I’m more nervous about the job searching which awaits on my return than the actual trip! Now I can concentrate on how to keep my toes warm. Cheers!

    • Casper
      1st February 2016 at 12:45 am #


  4. Sylvia T
    4th March 2016 at 5:17 pm #

    I’m about to be made redundant (again) some time over the next few months… Getting a bit jaded with life in the UK, so it’s going to be me, bike, trailer, DOG, and a lot of hard pedalling. Thank you for inspiring me 🙂

    I suffer from depression periodically, it’s only when I go out on the cycle that I find myself smiling again!!!

  5. yeezy
    3rd February 2022 at 9:35 am #

    My spouse and i ended up being really satisfied Jordan managed to carry out his reports from the precious recommendations he had while using the blog. It is now and again perplexing just to be handing out things the rest could have been trying to sell. And we already know we have got the blog owner to appreciate for that. Those illustrations you have made, the easy site menu, the relationships you help create – it is most astonishing, and it’s letting our son and us feel that the issue is enjoyable, which is highly serious. Many thanks for the whole thing!

  6. off white nike
    3rd February 2022 at 9:35 am #

    I precisely had to appreciate you yet again. I am not sure what I could possibly have undertaken without the entire creative ideas documented by you concerning this topic. It had been a real horrifying concern in my position, nevertheless understanding your expert avenue you dealt with it made me to weep over contentment. I will be happier for your work as well as have high hopes you recognize what a powerful job your are putting in training some other people using a site. I am sure you’ve never come across all of us.

  7. bape
    3rd February 2022 at 9:35 am #

    I in addition to my pals were found to be checking out the nice suggestions from the blog while instantly I got a horrible suspicion I had not thanked the web blog owner for those secrets. Most of the young boys were definitely as a result glad to see all of them and have now clearly been loving those things. I appreciate you for indeed being so accommodating and for figuring out such tremendous useful guides most people are really desperate to be informed on. Our own sincere regret for not saying thanks to you earlier.

  8. yeezy 700
    3rd February 2022 at 9:36 am #

    I have to point out my admiration for your kind-heartedness in support of folks that actually need help on that theme. Your personal dedication to passing the solution all over ended up being really effective and has surely empowered people much like me to attain their endeavors. Your personal warm and friendly guideline signifies a great deal a person like me and much more to my colleagues. Warm regards; from everyone of us.

  9. kyrie 7
    16th February 2022 at 11:53 am #

    I must show my respect for your kindness supporting individuals who should have help on this particular study. Your real dedication to getting the message up and down came to be remarkably invaluable and has surely encouraged men and women much like me to achieve their ambitions. The informative suggestions denotes this much to me and much more to my peers. Warm regards; from everyone of us.

  10. curry shoes
    9th March 2022 at 11:49 am #

    I wish to express my appreciation to you just for rescuing me from such a circumstance. After browsing throughout the the web and getting ways which are not beneficial, I assumed my entire life was gone. Being alive minus the approaches to the problems you have fixed as a result of the article is a crucial case, as well as those that would have in a negative way affected my career if I had not discovered your website. Your main ability and kindness in controlling all the stuff was excellent. I’m not sure what I would’ve done if I had not come across such a stuff like this. I’m able to at this point look forward to my future. Thanks for your time so much for the high quality and result oriented help. I won’t be reluctant to endorse the sites to anyone who should get support about this subject matter.

  11. bape
    9th March 2022 at 11:49 am #

    I happen to be commenting to let you understand of the amazing experience our princess obtained browsing your blog. She discovered a wide variety of issues, most notably what it’s like to have a wonderful giving mindset to have certain people clearly master chosen advanced subject matter. You actually exceeded our expected results. I appreciate you for showing those interesting, healthy, educational not to mention cool tips on the topic to Julie.

  12. bape
    8th August 2022 at 4:59 am #

    I and my friends have already been studying the good recommendations located on your website while all of the sudden developed a terrible suspicion I never thanked you for those techniques. Most of the guys ended up totally excited to study them and have now actually been taking pleasure in those things. Thanks for genuinely very kind as well as for settling on varieties of ideal subject matter most people are really eager to know about. My personal honest apologies for not saying thanks to earlier.

  13. kd 12
    8th August 2022 at 5:00 am #

    I wish to convey my passion for your kind-heartedness in support of those individuals that really need assistance with this particular theme. Your very own commitment to getting the message around appeared to be extremely significant and have consistently encouraged men and women like me to get to their desired goals. This interesting publication means a lot a person like me and additionally to my colleagues. Thank you; from everyone of us.

  14. cheap curry 6
    10th August 2022 at 10:36 pm #

    I wish to express my appreciation for your kindness supporting those individuals that should have guidance on in this subject. Your real commitment to getting the solution along ended up being incredibly beneficial and have always allowed girls much like me to arrive at their endeavors. Your own interesting advice means a whole lot to me and even further to my office colleagues. Warm regards; from all of us.

  15. supreme clothing
    10th August 2022 at 10:37 pm #

    I must voice my appreciation for your kindness supporting men and women who must have assistance with this particular question. Your real dedication to getting the message across became extraordinarily interesting and has consistently permitted workers just like me to get to their goals. Your amazing interesting help can mean much to me and extremely more to my fellow workers. Many thanks; from all of us.

  16. golden goose
    14th August 2022 at 9:20 am #

    I and my friends were actually reading through the great hints found on your site and then all of a sudden I got a horrible feeling I had not expressed respect to you for those tips. My young men are actually consequently very interested to read through them and have definitely been tapping into them. I appreciate you for getting very helpful and then for considering certain beneficial issues millions of individuals are really wanting to know about. Our honest regret for not saying thanks to earlier.

  17. supreme clothing
    14th August 2022 at 9:26 am #

    I want to convey my admiration for your kindness in support of all those that really need help with this important niche. Your special dedication to getting the solution throughout had been especially helpful and has enabled employees much like me to arrive at their aims. This important recommendations entails a whole lot to me and somewhat more to my peers. Many thanks; from all of us.

  18. off white hoodie
    14th August 2022 at 9:26 am #

    Needed to draft you that little bit of observation in order to say thanks a lot as before just for the exceptional information you have documented here. It is quite unbelievably generous with people like you to present openly what exactly a lot of folks would’ve supplied as an ebook in making some profit for their own end, notably seeing that you might well have done it if you considered necessary. These tricks additionally acted as the great way to understand that some people have the same zeal just as mine to grasp a little more pertaining to this matter. I know there are thousands of more enjoyable times in the future for many who check out your site.

Leave a Reply to bape Click here to cancel reply.