Document Type



Institute for Tourism and Recreation Research

Publication Date



Motorcycle tourism is a relatively understudied market in the U.S. but has the potential to assist rural communities in their efforts to develop a tourism economy. This report highlights the characteristics of motorcyclists and their travel needs as well as the potential for marketing to this niche of travelers.


• Motorcyclists tend to ride on scenic roads, eat and drink local cuisine, and stay away from the busy highways leading to the idea that ‘off the beaten’ path communities could benefit from motorcycle tourism.

• Nonresident motorcyclists’ average age was 60, while resident motorcyclists’ average age was much younger at 48.7 years old.

• All motorcyclists prefer scenic roads, lots of curves, safe parking places for their cycles at night, and a motel for their overnight stay.

• Nonresident motorcyclists in Montana spend, on average, $110/day with the largest expenditure on restaurant and bar, followed by motel/hotel.

• Alberta motorcyclists were the highest visitor to the state at 16% of all nonresident cyclists.

• The most utilized entry points for motorcyclists are the interstates, but travel on roads of all types throughout the state is evident.


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