Frequently Asked Questions


Are there really two Overland Events?

Yes there are now two Events! The main Overland Event still happens at the end of August at the Hill End Centre outside Oxford, but due to constant requests we’ve arranged a smaller Winter Warmer in the village of Chipping Warden, Northamptonshire, over the weekend of 7th-9th February. There’ll even be a hot bowl of stew waiting for you on arrival!

What's different about the Overland Event? Is it just another bike rally?

The Overland Event is founded in the written word – all of our presenters are either published authors of books about their travels, have written for Overland Magazine, or are film makers. Because the Overland Event doesn’t have Day Tickets, it is an immersive experience and has a uniquely relaxed atmosphere. Over the course of the Event you become part of a community of Overlanders. Here’s a flavour of last year’s event…

Will I be sent tickets when I buy my Event Passport?

You will be sent an automatic registration confirmation email, as well as a payment confirmation email from PayPal. Please check your spam/junk folder in case either go astray. WE DO NOT ISSUE PAPER TICKETS.

What is the full timetable?

The 2019 schedule is available to download via this page, but please note that it is subject to change. We can’t always account for illness or any other misfortune so sometimes changes occur. The most up-to-date schedule will be on display around the site.

Will print-outs of the schedule be available on site?

Not as handouts, no, because we’re keen to minimise waste and avoid littering the venue site. However, the schedule will be displayed on posters around the site, so you’ll always have easy reference to what’s going on.

How do I try out the Skills Course?

Learn how to ride up and down steps, manage a bike in a tight situation and lots more. Just sign up at the Sinnis MotoSkills Course area. You’ll see signs to it and it’ll be shown on maps around the site. There’s a demonstration session on Friday evening and then morning and afternoon sessions on Saturday when you can give it a go. You can ride your own bike on the MotoSkills Course (during supervised sessions only) or try out the Sinnis Terrain 125.

How do I take part in the TRF ride outs?

Head to the TRF stand to sign up. You’ll need your own bike to go on the ride out. The meeting point for ride outs will be by the exit from the camping field. More information here…

How do I sign up for manufacturer Test Rides?

Visit the manufacturers’ individual stands to sign up. Test rides leave from outside the Cafe. Remember that you will need your driving licence AND get a code from DVLA before your test ride, the same as you would for hiring a bike. See this page for information about the SWM, ZERO, AJP, Fantic, Mash, Zontes and Sinnis models available to test.

How do I sign up for a Biker Down session?

On Thursday night, sign up on the sheet in the Adventure Bike Shop Bar for the Friday morning sessions. From Friday morning onwards, sign up on the sheet in the Overland Shop.

What about security?

Obviously we won’t put our security arrangements online, but rest assured we are committed to preventing bike thefts! However, an essential part of that is vigilance and common sense preparation by everyone. If you see ANYONE on site without a wristband, either challenge them yourself or contact an organiser (by grabbing anyone with a radio), likewise with reporting any suspicious activity. Also, do lock up your bike just as you would normally. You can even make new friends by chaining bikes together…

Is smiling mandatory?

No, but you’ll be having such a good time, you won’t be able to stop yourself.

How can I help out?

Contact us and offer to volunteer! We need help with everything from registering new arrivals to checking the bins and providing first aid cover – the event couldn’t run without our fabulous volunteers.

Are there any Day Tickets?

No, we DO NOT sell Day Tickets, either in advance or on the day. The Overland Event is a uniquely immersive experience with a very relaxed atmosphere which comes from having a stable community developing onsite throughout the event rather than a new population arriving and departing each day.

I can’t come for the whole weekend, can I still arrive on the Saturday?

Yes – but you’ll still need an Event Passport which covers the whole weekend (see above). If you can’t make the whole weekend then you can’t get to see all of the speakers or get fully immersed in the event, so we encourage you to arrive on Friday (or Thursday night when there will be entertainment in the bar!) but you’ll receive a warm welcome whenever you arrive.

If I turn up and buy my Event Passport on the gate will I still get any promotional items?

No, sadly any promotional items are usually for advance ticket holders only – so if you want to avoid the disappointment of the person in front of you getting a cool freebie and then finding out you don’t get one, book your Event Passport in advance!

Do you offer refunds?

No. As per our terms and conditions, the entry ticket (“Event Passport”) amount you pay is non-refundable.

What is the cut-off date for advance ticket sales?

Advance sales of Event Passports for the Overland Event end at Midnight on Friday, August 23rd 2019.

Can I bring my own alcohol?

Yes – although you can’t bring any glass on site, and we do have a very reasonably priced and well stocked bar. Please note, any glass containers found will be confiscated and returned on departure.

What are the bar prices like?

Amazing!! And as it happens, similar to Oxfordshire pub prices; Overland beers are £3.00 a pint, guest ales just 50p more.

What does the bar stock?

An excellent selection of real ales including our very own Overland Pale and Overland Dark, plus lager, ciders, wines and spirits. Beers are all cask or keg and beautifully kept.

Can I bring my own food?

Yes – although you can’t bring any glass on site, and we do have a selection of food vendors selling cuisine from around the world at reasonable prices.

What food is available?

We always provide a ‘taste of the world’, ensuring that authentic food vendors are on site to enable you to enjoy a global culinary experience throughout the weekend.

Can I bring my own food to barbeque?

Yes – there are communal barbeque facilities on the campsite for you to use. If you don’t want to bring charcoal with you we have a stock available to buy in the Overland shop. Disposable barbeques are not allowed.

Is there an under cover eating area?

Yes, up at the area with the catering traders we have covered eating areas.

Is water freely available?

Yes, drinking water is available free of charge.

What about tea and coffee?

Tea and instant coffee at the Overland Event are FREE all weekend. If you prefer a filter coffee, then Hill End sell cafetieres of coffee.

Can we go on and off site after we arrive?

Yes, you (and your bike!) are free to come and go as you please if you want to head off for a bit. However, please do not go the wrong way on the one-way route between the gate and the campsite.

When does the gate open?

You can arrive any time from 5pm on Thursday 29th August. Austin Vince will be on stage at 8pm and there’ll be live music in the bar from 9pm.

What if the Registration Tent is closed when I arrive?

A list of telephone numbers is displayed on the main gate at all times when registration is closed. If you arrive late at night, just give us a ring and we’ll come and get you.

Do I need to show my wristband every time I come back on to the site?

Yes, even if you’re riding back onto site. You may be asked to show it at any time whilst on site.

Does the one way system from the entrance to the campsite apply at all times?

Yes, and for EVERYONE’S safety, please observe it.

What is access like for people with disabilities?

There is step-free access to all key areas of the site, but if you would like us to reserve a camping area for you near to the main areas then please contact us in advance.

Is there a cashpoint on site?

No, so bring plenty of cash with you!

Can I pay by card?

Card payments are accepted at the Overland Shop and the Overland Bar but not by our authors and some of the other traders, so bringing plenty of cash is best!

What happens when I arrive?

On arrival you’ll be greeted by the volunteers at the Registration Tent who’ll take you through the checking-in process. If you’ve purchased your Event Passport in advance, you’ll just be asked for your name and the email address so they can find you on the list and issue you with your wristband, which must remain on for the duration of the event. Then you’ll be directed to the campsite or your dormitory.

What do I need to bring?

Yourself, some money and a sleeping bag are the essentials! Obviously if you’re camping you may also want to bring a tent…

Can I stay on the night of Sunday 1st and leave on Monday morning?

No, the Hill End Centre is an educational facility and children will be arriving on Monday so for safeguarding reasons all attendees have to be off site by 6pm on Sunday.

How much camping space is there? I don’t want to be cheek by jowl with everyone else.

The site has ample camping space and if you want to be well away from everyone just let the volunteers know and they will direct you to the area which is not usually busy. Camping is divided into areas, with Europe, Africa and the Americas being the busiest. Asia and Australasia are the quietest.

Is the campsite noisy?

Generally not, but we do have a quieter field further away from the bar and music if you like an early night. Aim for the Asia and Australia camping areas

What are the toilets like?

There are over 35 fully plumbed porcelain loos onsite and 4 portable toilets at the bottom of the campsite.

Are there showers available?

Yes, 25 hot private showers are free!

What are the dorms like?

The dorms are basic, but functional! Bring your own sleeping bag (and an extra pillow if you want one) if you’ve pre-booked a dorm.

Can we have a fire on the campsite?

No campfires, but there is a large communal campsite fire. There’ll be plenty of wood so please don’t go scavenging. Ask a volunteer.

Is there a limit on tent size?

No, although if you turn up with a big top we might expect you to entertain us…

What time do the bands finish? Will I be kept awake by music if I camp?

Music finishes at 11:00pm and you can ask on arrival to be directed to the quieter area of the campsite (Australia/Asia).

Is there a fire next to the barn?

Yes, the communal firepit next to the Overland Presentation Barns will be lit each night with a supply of wood on hand. Make yourself at home.

Is there first aid cover?

Yes, a team of qualified first aiders provide 24-hour cover. If you require a first aider just ask a volunteer with a radio, or at night call one of the numbers displayed on the control hut (aka ‘the hobbit house’). If you are a first aider please do let us know in advance. The more the merrier!

Is there mobile phone reception?

We haven’t tested comprehensively, so can’t vouch for every network in every part of the site, but yes, generally there is good mobile phone reception.

Is there WiFi?

No. Some mobile networks have good data coverage however.

Is there somewhere to charge a mobile phone?

Yes, there is an extension lead in the Overland Bar where you can charge your phone free of charge, subject to availability (although a charity donation is welcome). Bring your own phone charger. Leaving your equipment unattended is at your own risk.

What if the weather is bad?

The beauty of the Overland Event site is that it takes place primarily in buildings rather than tents and the site is pretty well drained.

Can I bring a dog?

No, sorry, the site has a strict No Dogs rule (other than registered assistance animals by prior arrangement) for child safety reasons as it is an education centre.

Can I bring glass?

No, sorry, the site has a strict No Glass rule for child safety reasons as it is an education centre. We respec their policy and glass containers found on site will be confiscated and returned on departure.

Can I bring my camper van?

No, sorry, the site has a No Caravans or Camper Vans rule placed on it by the planning authority.

What are the rules about smoking on site?

You can smoke anywhere you like on site outside structures, but all butts MUST be collected and disposed of as the site is an education centre and none of us like littering. Please respect the environment.