bike buying tips

5 Tips for Buying a Bike in 2021

“Keep two meters apart” became the mantra of 2020. What happens to be two meters in length? You guessed it – a bicycle. Bikes are a great way to exercise, get some fresh air, and stay social at an appropriate distance. So, it is no surprise that bicycles became one of the hottest commodities of 2020.

So, what does this mean to those of us looking to buy a bike right now? Enter supply & demand problems. We’d like to offer some tips on what to do during this Bike Boom, and hopefully, offer a little insight and stress relief.

Navigating the Bike Boom

The demand for bicycles has risen dramatically on a global scale. This high demand has led to a shortage in supply. Before bikes are assembled, numerous parts, often made at different factories, are shipped to the manufacturing location. This typically takes four months. But by May 2020, factories were straining to meet the demand for bicycles – some factories going towards a 6-month lead time, then to 8, and later, to a whopping 12 months. As stated on marketwatch,

“Bike sales rose 78% on the year between January and March, after rising 38% during the same period last year, according to Dirk Sorenson, sports industry analyst at NPD Group, a market-research firm.”

Some industry projections put 2023 as the year that inventory quantities will return to normal. The early bird gets the worm, as usual, when it comes to getting a high-demand product. But that doesn’t mean you can’t snag your dream bike during this Great Bike Boom.

5 Tips for Buying a Bike in 2021

  1. Research: Before you visit your bike shop, write down some models and brands that interest you and why. Make a list of the ways in which you will use your bike. Are you commuting? Is this for exercise on a bike path? Mountain biking? This step is key, as it will help you get ahead start on buying a bike. Starting as early as possible in 2021 is ideal, but you can still snag a great bike if you come to the bike shop with a clear view of what bike will suit your needs. It will help you be flexible, which brings us to the next point.
  2. Don’t make your mind up too early: Remember to be flexible with your purchase. If the bike you were looking for is not in stock, the bike store staff will most likely be able to find you a bike that will suit your needs-and maybe even make you happier than the bike you landed on online. Think of it as bike speed-dating. Listen to what this bike can offer you, decide if it’s what you are looking for, and make the decision.
  3. Move swiftly: If you are sold on a bike, but are the type that likes to really think things over-try to act quickly. Bikes are selling out fast, and you don’t want to lose the opportunity to buy a great bike. Again, researching your purchase beforehand will give you the confidence and knowledge to make a good decision more quickly.
  4. Try giving an older bike some love: This is a good option for those who are in the market for a new one, but haven’t landed on anything they love yet. Again, due to a supply shortage, spare parts could be an issue even when fixing an old bike. However, this can typically be done more quickly than waiting for a new bike.
  5. Secure your bike: This step is often overlooked. You’ve got the bike, you’ve got your helmet and your stylish accessories, but the last thing you want is your shiny, new bike stolen during a Bike-Boom. If you are reading this, you know just how hard it is to land a new bike. So, make sure your bike is secured.

If stolen, you may not be able to get another bike right now in 2021. Make sure to invest in a good bike lock. But even the best locks can be picked or broken by professional bike thieves.

Bike Insurance is a great option, which is available through the BikeFinder subscription. However, it is not enough to just have bike insurance during a Bike-Boom.

You want to increase your chances of retrieving your bike, should it get stolen. BikeFinder finds 75% of all reported stolen bikes with a BikeFinder tracker. How many bikes are found without a BikeFinder tracker? Less than 2%. In the unfortunate event your new bike is stolen, BikeFinder customer support will work with you to make sure your bike is in your hands again.

So, after you’ve followed these tips, bought that perfect bike, and secured it–we hope you can have the freedom to ride wherever you want, without the fear of it being taken from you. The 2021 Bike Boom doesn’t have to be a stressful situation, both in terms of buying a bike, or worrying about your new bike being stolen during a bike shortage.

Stress-free’s the way to be. Ride on!

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