Cyclists planning to hit the road
Over 1,500 Ontario businesses certified as bicycle-friendly by Ontario By Bike are ready to roll out a welcome to cyclists.
Just announced and showcased this year are the 13 award winning businesses who have all gone above and beyond, offering extra services and amenities to cyclists stopping at their locations, plus six best bike businesses.
The awards are presented by Ontario By Bike, whose certification program has criteria that helps ensure cyclists are welcomed at businesses they choose to stop at whether it be as a cycle tourist, on a longer trip, or while biking closer to home.
The network is free for businesses to participate in and the information on each location plus cycling trails and road routes in each region is easily accessible online.
“As Ontario residents hope soon to be able to make travel plans for the summer, booking any thing closer to home is a far safer bet. With tourism being an extremely hard hit sector, we are pleased to celebrate all the tourism businesses a part of our bicycle friendly business network, and in the third year of our awards, acknowledge those that have taken it to the next level,” said Louisa Mursell, executive director of Ontario By Bike/Transportation Options.
The Covid inspired surge of interest in cycling and ensuing bike boom is not only a global phenomena but also being documented here in Ontario.
Since early 2021, Ontario By Bike has experienced a sharp increase in demand for its cycling related resources and rides.
Website traffic has hit new record levels with a 50 per cent increase in 2021, compared to same period in previous year.
The popular annual Cycling in Ontario / Le vélo en Ontario guide distribution levels surpassed previous records for an entire year; in just two months since release 70 per cent of 35,000 print copies are already in the hands of avid cyclists.
Early strong demand for Ontario By Bike rides, small group weekend long tours to destinations in Ontario, translated into three out of four rides selling out within weeks of February announcement, and an extra fifth ride now added. A 2020 fall surveyfound 79 per cent of cyclists anticipated making non-local regional travel plans that include cycling in 2021 when travel restrictions ease, and 86 per cent were considering participating in expanded cycling activities in 2021, beyond day trips only.
A list of the 2021 Ontario By Bike Bicycle Friendly Business Award Winners is online at www.ontariobybike.ca/2021awardwinners.