More people are getting into cycling and are willing to shell out significant amounts of money for their hobby than ever before. According to a new Mintel survey, 34 percent of bike purchasers in the UK are willing to spend anywhere from £500 to over £1,000 on a new bike, and that doesn’t include additional accessories or required safety gear. Moreover, some of the most passionate cycling enthusiasts are constantly upgrading their bikes and gear on a yearly basis, and more than half of bike owners wouldn’t hesitate to trade in their old bikes for a new one. While the numbers may seem as though cycling is an expensive hobby, the truth is that it’s more affordable than you think it is. By making good choices from the start and being smart about the way you use your gear, you can save money while enjoying your new hobby.
Know when to buy your bike
There are many reasons why you should ride a bike; not only is it a great way to workout, but it keeps you fit and strong. It also keeps ensures mental wellness as it alleviates anxiety and is a great stress reliever. Cycling is also one of the most ideal ways to commute, especially if you live in an area where the traffic is bad. Most importantly, it allows you to save money on fuel costs and parking fees.
That being said, don’t blow your savings by purchasing a high-end bike when a mid-priced one will do. However, if you insist on getting a top-of-the-line bike, try buying at the start of the winter season as that’s when you’ll get your bike and gear at the cheapest price. If you shop around for a great deal during the later part of the year, you’ll be sure to get a bike that you’ll love for years at a decent price. Don’t forget to buy accessories such as a helmet, a standard dry bag, or a bar bag during this time, as well, to make the most of your budget.
Learn to do simple repairs by yourself
Owning a bike means that you should learn how to do simple repairs by yourself. Knowing how to replace a broken bike chain, reattach a slipped chain, or replace or fix a tire can save you money on bike maintenance fees. Moreover, should you have a bike emergency, you’ll be confident in knowing that you can deal with it, no matter where you are.
Keep it safe
Sure, you can probably scrimp on the cycling shorts or wear a plain t-shirt whenever you’re cycling, but the one thing that you should invest in is a decent lock. Consider the fact that every 6 minutes, one bike is stolen in the UK. Especially if you live in London, you have every reason to get a quality lock as it’s where most bike thefts occur. Losing a bike means having to buy a new one and the unexpected expense can take a major chunk out of your savings, so don't hesitate to spend a little more on your bike lock. It’s also a good idea to get a lock holster so you can carry your lock discreetly and securely. A lock holster will greatly reduce the risk of losing the lock while you're cycling. If you’re stopping by at any place, never leave your bike outside unattended. Rather, see if you can bring it in or if there’s an area nearby where you can lock it.
Cycling is an activity that can be done on any budget, so if you're getting into cycling for the New Year, try these simple tips to make the most of your cycling funds and to enjoy the health benefits of this hobby.
Written by Alicia Rennoll