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Exploring on Cargo Bikes and Trailers

Cargo bikes and trailers are a fab way to escort your family around. Exercise, a fun mode of transport, a significantly lower impact on the planet than driving and many options to suit different needs. What’s not to love? 

Electric assisted options are especially helpful for the hills around Frome and there are three options to choose from: an electric bike with a trailer, an electric cargo bike, and a longtail electric bike (the type with an extended seat at the back). 

You may want to consider the following before making your decision:

  • Age and number of children - as well as the obvious number of seats and spacing, you need to consider how long it will last you, especially if you have an older child who is getting confident at riding solo. Equally if you have very young kids then a longtail may not be safe unless there is space to add child seats to it. 

  • Journey type - will it be mainly for shorter active travel journeys or longer leisure rides too? You’ll feel every bump on the road and your children will too. So consider suspension on trailers and comfier, padded seat options in cargos.

  • Cost - cargo bikes are a much more expensive option than an electric bike plus trailer option. 

  • Convenience - trailers and cargo bikes provide extra space so that you can throw your bags and picnics in, meaning you don’t need a rucksack on your back. Longtail bikes equal everyone getting wet when the clouds open. 

Cargo bikes are a big investment so it's essential to try before you buy. Ask friends to try out their wheels, strike up conversation with people on the school run or go into specialist shops to give them a go. Although we’re somewhere off being able to hire roadside cargo bikes from every corner (hi Amsterdam), there are plenty of cargo bike rental options dotted around the UK. 

There is also a big secondhand market in bike trailers and a small but increasing one in cargo bikes. Finally, you may be eligible for the Cycle to Work scheme, a salary sacrifice scheme which means the cost of a new bike or equipment is deducted from your salary as a non-cash benefit pre-tax. 

Enjoy the adventures! And don’t be afraid to cycle in the middle of the lane where the roads are uneven to avoid roadside drains and potholes - your bum will thank you for it :) 

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