Are e-bikes the future of cycling tourism?

The demand for cycling tourism was already increasing before the COVID-19 pandemic. And when people had to stay home, cycling became more and more popular because it was a safe outside activity. Cycling tourism is ever-growing, and so is the demand for e-bike tours. E-bikes offer a great chance for ageing people to stay active and for people to cycle in more challenging areas.

A sustainable trend

Cycling is a popular, environmentally-friendly activity in the sustainable tourism sector. E-bikes are usually an option to make daily cycling easier. But now, leisure cyclists often choose e-bikes over pedal-powered bikes to help them enjoy rougher regions and heights they first avoided. The Adventure Travel Trade Association (ATTA) researched cycling tourism for their annual 2022 Industry Trends Snapshot and labelled e-bike adventure activities 'Hot Trending'. More and more tour operators worldwide find that customers are asking for e-bike activities.

Because of the rising demand for e-bikes in Europe, buyers can wait months for their e-bikes to arrive. To meet that demand, producing carbon-neutral e-bikes offers a great chance for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) in developing countries. But, it is a challenge to set up national regulations.

The European cycling tourism sector

The bicycle market in Europe is already large and growing. Countries such as Denmark, the Netherlands, Germany, France, Belgium and the United Kingdom are cycle-friendly. Their citizens also enjoy cycling on holiday. SMEs have great chances to enter the cycling tourism sector if they:

  • are on or close to a cycling route
  • work in a bike business
  • offer touring services; or
  • offer catering

A successful business in the cycling tourism sector welcomes cyclists and provides bicycle-friendly tours for both e-bikes and pedal-powered bikes. A cycling-friendly business makes sure that there are:

  • stops along the route for food and drinks;
  • parking spots for bikes at the food and drink stops;
  • bike-friendly accommodations; and
  • maintenance facilities.

Learn more

To learn more about cycling tourism, read the new CBI report: Entering the European market for cycling tourism.

Acorn Tourism Consulting Limited wrote this news article for CBI.

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