Traveling by bike is a great way to explore new places. Also, bicycle touring is an inexpensive and healthy way to travel. And, it will bring you so many positive emotions that you will never forget.
However, for bicycle touring you will need good equipment, including a reliable rear and sometimes a front rack. After all, all your equipment will be on the rack all the time and it is important that it is very durable. Steel racks are the most durable since aluminum racks can break if your tour is very long and if there will be too much weight on the rear rack.
However, steel racks have a higher price and weight than aluminum ones. But for long RTW tour, it is better to buy a reliable rack when you are at home and can order everything online. Instead of repairing your aluminum rack with duct tape or trying to find a new one in the middle of nowhere.
We have compiled a list of the best racks for bicycle touring, to help you make the right choice. We tried to collect for you the list of budget and reliable bicycle racks for touring, as we understand that not everyone can afford front and rear rack for 300+ dollars.
Best Bicycle Rear Rack for Touring: Topeak Explorer
Topeak Explorer Rating: 8.9/10
Disc Brakes Compatible: Yes | Fits: 26″, 27.5″ (650B) & 700C | Weight capacity: 55 pounds
Why it’s great: I tested this rack during my 5,000-mile journey. And the Topeak Explorer completely survived all the harsh conditions during the trip. It is made of aluminum, so the hooks of the panniers slightly worn the rack legs in a couple of spots, but the damage is minor (less than 1mm), so it’s still going strong and I will use it again on my next trip.
This rack is very versatile and can be mounted on frames with 26, 27.5 and 700c wheels, I installed it on a frame for 26 and 700c wheels without any problems. Also, this bike rack is available for frames with rim and disc brakes, which is very good.
In addition, it is compatible with the Topeak MTX Trunk DXP bag, which can be convenient for cycling around the city, so this rack is very good for its versatility and reliability.
Topeak Explorer current price, reviews, and full specs:View at Amazon
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Topeak Super Tourist DX Rear Rack
Topeak Super Tourist Rating: 8.9/10
Disc Brakes Compatible: Yes | Fits: 26″ | Weight capacity: 55 pounds
Why it’s great: The Topeak Super Tourist is very similar to the rack mentioned above, but this bicycle rack is only compatible with 26″ wheels. But it has an additional tube for attaching the bags a little lower and thereby lowering the center of gravity, which can positively affect the control of the bicycle.
And it is compatible with disc brakes, which can be a decisive factor for many cyclists when buying. This bicycle rack is made of aluminum and firmly welded in critical points. Also, there is a version for fat bikes – Topeak Uni Super Tourist Fat bike rack but it is more expensive.
Topeak Super Tourist current price, reviews, and full specs:View at Amazon
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Best Budget Bicycle Rack: Ibera
Disc Brakes Compatible: Yes | Fits: 26″-29″ | Weight capacity: 55 pounds
Why it’s great: If you need a budget bicycle rack, then you should pay attention to the Ibera Bike Rack. It has many positive reviews and is available for bicycles with disc and rim brakes.
It is made of aluminum, has a very nice appearance and has 2 tubes for fastening panniers so that you can hang your bags lower for a lower center of gravity. According to the manufacturer, Ibera PakRak is suitable for bicycles with 26-29 wheels, which is very good.
Ibera Bike Rack current price, reviews, and full specs:Disc Brakes Version Rim Brakes Version
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Axiom JOURNEY UNI-FIT MK3 Bicycle Rack
Axiom MK3 Rating: 8.9/10
Disc Brakes Compatible: Yes | Fits: 26”, 27”, 28”, 650b, 29”, 700c | Weight capacity: 50 kg / 110 lb
Why it’s great: The Axiom MK3, unlike other racks on our list, this rack is able to withstand more weight. The manufacturer states that the rack can withstand 50 kg/110 lb. It is compatible with disc brakes and can be mounted on frames with 26-29″ wheels.
The Axiom MK3 has two horizontal tubes for fastening panniers, which is very convenient. The design of the rack looks reliable and therefore the Axiom MK3 is a very popular choice.
Axiom MK3 current price, reviews, and full specs:View at Amazon
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Best Bicycle Front Rack for Touring: Minoura MT-4000SF
Fits: up to 29″ | Rack Weight: 1.5 kgs
Why it’s great: Finding a nice budget front racks for bicycle touring is very difficult task. Because front racks either expensive or have a lot of bad reviews. However, I managed to find an excellent front rack for bicycle touring – Minoura MT-4000SF (Made in Japan).
It is quite heavy, as it is made of steel, but well made and durable. So, if you don’t care about the weight of the front rack, then you can look at the Minoura MT-4000SF. According to the manufacturer, it is compatible even with suspension forks.
If you prefer an aluminum and lighter racks and are not going to hang very heavy panniers in front, then take a closer look at the Zefal Touring Raider front rack. Also, there is another aluminum front rack – the Nashbar Low Rider, but some people love it, some people hate it, better read reviews on Amazon to avoid “surprises”.