How Much Stuff Can You Fit on a Scooter? The Answer in Photos…

Posted by - August 23, 2011 | Category: Peculiarities

Scooters are everywhere in Cambodia, but Phnom Penh is scooter central.  Since gasoline is relatively expensive considering the meagre wages most earn here, the work or family vehicle is usually a motorbike.  Which begs the question, how much stuff can you fit on a scooter?

I took the following photos in the span of 20 minutes from the back of a tuk-tuk. Let’s just hope these folks have motorcycle insurance.

Love the kid in the middle on this one…

Family with bags and child being crushed on scooter

And on the front of this one…

Kid smiling with family on motorcycle

And this one…

4 people on a scooter

Look closely – that is a converted ice cream container…

Family with kids in sidecar

And just how many mattresses does one family need?

father and son and mattresses on scooter

The rest of the photos speak for themselves…

Men with a ladder on a scooter

man smoking on scooter

Man carrying metal and machinery on scooter

Scooter carrying vegetables

Men with tubes on scooter

Scooter carrying metal

Man with bags on motor bike

Four kids on scooter

Overloaded scooters

Scooter carrying man and wide load


Scooter carrying trailer and woman

woman with soda pop cans and boxes on scooter

While the next two aren’t scooters, I think that they deserve honourable mentions…

Woman with overloaded bike

Man with overloaded bike

So how much stuff can you fit on a scooter?

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58 comments - add one
  1. I love it!
    I well remember seeing such amazing sights in SE Asia : )
    Live pigs, dead pigs, cages upon cages of chickens, truck tyres etc

  2. I never get my camera out in time to take photos here in Saigon, but my favorites have been: 5 people on one (2 adults and 3 kids), a refrigerator on another and three live pigs in a cage.

  3. These are good, but I lived in Italy for 3 years and saw even more stuff crammed on scooters there, especially in Naples. Daily sightings ranged from entire families (mom, dad, a child or 2, AND the dog) to a man with a mattress. Husband (Neapolitan) and I still talk about the man with the mattress.

    These are great! Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  4. Amazing! People can really be creative and resourceful. I wonder how often they change tyres in a month or a year.
    And the children look like they’re used to riding in a bike.
    It’s really amazing what people can come up with.

  5. I used to think that India has the worst motorbike travelers and your pictures proves me wrong. My wife used to take pictures of them and later we gave up, Sometimes it is scarey.

    1. What got me was how easy they were able to navigate through the mass of traffic. I have problems if there are more than 3 other people on the road… 🙂

  6. The most I’ve ever fitted on a scooter that I’m driving is me, my son and two backpacks (one large). We have, however, also squeezed onto a motorbike taxi with all that amount of gear.

    I’ve also done the weekly shop in Bali on a moped, which is actually not reminiscent to piling everything you can onto a pushchair. And, yes, you can store things in the helmet space.

  7. wow–thanks for sharing. It’s mind-boggling how these little machines can pull those huge loads behind them–especially the pics with the wooden box and pipings!!who knew!?

  8. I especially like that last one. So clever that he managed to get all that on top a bicycle. You have to give these ingenious people some credit. They make due with what they’ve got; however ridiculous looking or illogical it may seem to others. But indeed, they are quite funny look at.

  9. Oh my gosh! Costa Rica was famous for fitting every family of five on one scooter, but they definitely don’t pile on everything and the kitchen sink, too!

    1. In Sihanoukville a guy asked me if I wanted a motobike from the bus station into town. I said I was pretty sure my backpack wouldn’t fit. Boy was I ever wrong… 🙂

  10. i cannot believe this took just 20 minutes! the steel beams or whatever they are with the makeshift trailer!!!!! that is some serious enginuity (or however its spelt)!

  11. I’ve seen some pretty amazing things on the back of a scooter. Including a kitchen sink! And a toilet.
    The funniest one I ever saw was two guys carrying big sheets of glass down a small alley in Ho Chi Minh City. They misjudged the alley completely — and smashed the glass. It caused a traffic jam and much abuse was hurled at the poor guys.

  12. Scooter is like a motorcycle already. It can carry 3 persons in it. That’s amazing and at the same time very dangerous specially to those people who don’t wear a helmet. Nice post!. XD


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