MoneySaving for cyclists discussion

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  • Crag30
    Crag30 Posts: 278 Forumite
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    If buying a new bike it can be worth joining British Cycling for £25.00  (https://www.britishcycling.org.uk/) to get 10% off at Halfords and a couple of other outlets
    Not that I'd recommend Halfords after this weeks experience
  • hugheskevi
    hugheskevi Posts: 3,899 Forumite
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    edited 16 July 2020 at 10:41AM
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    One thing to watch out for with the cycle to work scheme - if you are on a final salary pension (sorry, I know not many are) and close to retirement, don't sign up for this as it is a salary sacrifice scheme so effectively reduces your salary - and hence your pension. Since, hopefully, you will be drawing your pension for a long time, this will easily outweigh c2w savings
    There are different ways of processing the deduction. My employer ignores the deduction when determining pensionable pay so there is no impact on pension, but I still get the full income tax and NI benefits (although I pay pension contributions on the my full pensionable pay).

  • Tulyar
    Tulyar Posts: 11 Forumite
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    This bit - on Bike hire schemes - a much better idea than the £50 voucher for bike repair, every large town or city should have a bike hire scheme, with a local comminity bike hub, contracted to manage it, creating employment, and training opportunities
    You've completely missed off Brompton Hire, offering a commute trip for under £4* per day - mainly in London, Birmingham, and Manchester but with hire locations in a few other places. The availability of bikes has taken a substantial hit as Brompton Hire was fast to offer their hire fleet to NHS staff as a 'free membership' deal, and it is essential to book in advance for both hire and return from the hire units - which often have just 8 lockers (but because of the way the system works, up to 4 bikes might be hired out for every locker). * a £25 annual 'frequent user' fee (under 50p/week) gives 24 hours hire for  £3.50 - with many hirers taking bikes out for a week or longer. Hire the night before, do the day's journey and return the bike before the 24 hours expire. Recent new locations are outside premium office developments, but also close to main rail stations, at Kings Cross, Liverpool Street and Paddington.

    You've also missed Beryl Bikes in Watford, Poole, Norwich and other towns - these are all EAPC

    As with most schemes your account is connected via a phone app, and as with Beryl, Nextbike, and Serco the NHS staff were able to sign up with their staff e-mail address. Similar deals are set up for example by Glasgow University, SEPA, &c where their staff can use the bikes for special rates. Cardiff Bus and Yellow Buses also connect their bus app with the bike hires apps (Nextbike & Beryl), and car clubs (Enterprise and Co-Wheels) also have offered combined deals with Brompton and Nextbike

    Nextbike has a number of operating models direct, with Glasgow, Stirling, Cardiff, Milton Keynes (Santander), or licensed in Belfast (Just Eat), Exeter (Co-Cars), plus some smaller University campus sites and once signed up you can hire across most schemes in the 25 other countries - especially handy in Germany.

    Serco operates the schemes in Edinburgh (Just Eat) and London (Santander)

    Hourbike used to operate Lincoln, Nottingham, Liverpool and Oxford, but these have now been sold off locally

    There are other operators, in Slough, Falkirk, Kingston University &c.  Collaborative Mobility (CoMoUK) is the umbrella organisation for car share and bike share operators, and has details plus annual user surveys, showing how 1 bike share bike, can deliver a ready to ride machine, for 4-8 hires per day, for 4-8 people and with the EAPC's this gives the convenience of a high quality, fully serviced, e-bike without the cost of buying one, or the problem of storing it in a city flat.

    The real deal for a trip to London is that for just £2 per bike, up to 4 bikes can be hired on one credit card, and an unlimited number of 30 minute hires made over a 24 hour period - you just have to remember to dock the bike every 29 minutes, but that's an ideal way to travel between Central London galleries, and museums on a day trip





  • Tulyar
    Tulyar Posts: 11 Forumite
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    Secondhand Bikes - from the Local Community Bike Centre
    Need a bike - for a first bike DON'T over-specify, get something basic and then tune it to suit your needs. Better wheels, saddle, brakes etc & then use this to specify the bike that you know will fit you, and then transfer all the good bits to the new bike.
    For a good bargain, that is safe as a secondhand purchase, look out a local community bike centre. They collect old bikes, some are stripped for spare parts (& rare parts) and the ones that are safe to repair are rebuilt and sold to raise funds. This can be far safer than buying off eBay, if you have no expertise in checking bikes for damage and other faults. Many of these bike centres run social rides groups, and sometimes specialist cycling (adapted bikes etc). They also provide training, including helping young offenders acquire skills for work when they are released. Many also run assisted workshop sessions, where the tools and advice are available to help you repair your own bike.
  • moneysavvyteacher
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    One thing to watch out for with the cycle to work scheme - if you are on a final salary pension (sorry, I know not many are) and close to retirement, don't sign up for this as it is a salary sacrifice scheme so effectively reduces your salary - and hence your pension. Since, hopefully, you will be drawing your pension for a long time, this will easily outweigh c2w savings
    I am a teacher and eligible for the Workplace Bikes scheme via my employer. The scheme rules state that my pension (I am a member of the Teachers Pension Scheme) will not be affected and the value of my salary sacrifice will continue to count towards my "pensionable salary". 
  • pinkcadillac1
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    At 67 I really want to start cycling for fun and exercise but haven't the foggiest idea as to where to start - which bike to buy, where to buy one, should I take a proficiency course? etc.  Then I can read up on bike maintenance etc But where to start this new life as a cyclist??  Any help anyone please?
  • paul2louise
    paul2louise Posts: 2,426 Forumite
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    voucher scheme has crashed. i cant get onto the offer
  • burner03
    burner03 Posts: 58 Forumite
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    indeed - is anyone surprised? a very limited offer to the population of England to save £50.
    I'm agog.
  • Zanderman
    Zanderman Posts: 4,697 Forumite
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    edited 29 July 2020 at 12:56AM
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    There's no evidence, yet, that it has been live yet.  The site was down earlier, presumably to set the customer registration up.  They may be just running late on making it live (I'm being optimistic!).  The whole site est.org.uk is down according to Is It Down Right Now who say:
    Est.org.uk is DOWN for everyone.

    It is not just you. The server is not responding...

    Edited to add (at 00.52) the main EST site is now fine, but the https://fixyourbikevoucherscheme.est.org.uk/ subdomian is now 404 error - i.e has ceased to be.  Earlier is 503 error which at least acknowledged it existed. Very poor show by Energy Saving Trust.  Very poor indeed.
  • Johnmcl7
    Johnmcl7 Posts: 2,817 Forumite
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    At 67 I really want to start cycling for fun and exercise but haven't the foggiest idea as to where to start - which bike to buy, where to buy one, should I take a proficiency course? etc.  Then I can read up on bike maintenance etc But where to start this new life as a cyclist??  Any help anyone please?
    It's a difficult one to answer with the current pandemic because many of the useful facilities for starting as a cyclist aren't available or in a reduced capacity.

    There's a huge number of different bikes out there and some of it comes down to personal preference as well.  Normally I'd recommend going to a good local bike shop who can let you try a few bikes and make sure you get the right size, I feel it can be worth paying a bit more from a bike shop to get their help as it can pay off when you get a suitable bike.  Alternatively if there's any local places hiring a bike that would be worth a go to give you a shot and see what you like or dislike. 

    Hybrid bikes which can range from being near mountain bikes to near road bikes are a popular choice as they give a comfortable seating position, often have fitted mudguards and pannier racks for practicality and can handle light off road terrain as well.  That said it's best to see what you like as you may find you like the comfort of a mountain bike even if you aren't planning much off road or you want faster hybrid.  When I started cycling back in 2011 a lot of people told me what bike I should buy but I ignored them and bought the one I liked the feel of in the shop and now having bought a lot of bikes since, I still stand by original choice.  

    In our local area there are social cycles which are aimed at helping beginners get out on the road providing advice and mechanical assistance to riders and tips on good routes to ride.  I don't know when this type of cycle will be able to run again but I think they're helpful for people wanting to get into (or back into) cycling.  

    There are lots of good video guides online for basic bike maintenance and it's good to get a few basic tools to keep with you so you can change an inner tube or repair a broken chain.
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