Bike Buddies FAQ
Do I need to do any training to be a Bike Buddy?

We highly recommend that when signing up to be a Bike Buddy you also take advantage of a FREE Cycle Skills session with a qualified cycle instructor provided through your local London borough where you live or work. This is a great way to refresh your road-awareness and help you feel more confident as a Bike Buddy.

I can't ride a bike yet, can a Bike Buddy help me?

Not quite yet - first you need to learn how to ride a bicycle, be happy riding round the park on your own and feel confident to go on the roads. At that point we can help you find a local Bike Buddy who can help you find nice routes to the places you want to cycle to.

To learn to cycle in London, you can take FREE Cycle Training sessions with a qualified cycle instructor through your local council where you live or work.

How old do I need to be to get involved?

To be part of the Bike Buddies community you'll need to be at lest 18 years old.

In the future we hope to be able to expand the community to include younger people too.

How do we get introduced to each other?

When we've found a Bike Buddy match for you in your area, we'll ask the verified Bike Buddy to get in touch with the Fledgling Buddy first.

 

We've found meeting for a coffee before getting on your bikes is a great way to test the water, check you're a good match and make the plan for your first ride.

How many rides should we do together?

It depends on the Fledgling Buddy and how often you are buddying up - some people will get confident quicker than others. As an example, if you are buddying up for a daily commute in and out of work, we've found that a week can be enough time for a Feldgling Buddy to find their bicycle wings and be happy to carry on by themselves.

How long should each ride be?

It depends on the aspirations of the Fledgling Buddy and how much time the Bike Buddy can offer - for this reason we ask questions when you sign up to try and find good matches. As a guide, most Fledgling cyclists will be looking to get confident on a regular route they want to do, normally around 30-40 minutes eg. a commute to work.

Meeting up for a coffee before your first ride has proved an easy way to make sure you are both on the same page before you start.

What if the weather is really bad?

This is something you can chat about when you first meet up for a coffee. Some people are fair-weather cyclists, others are happy to ride in the rain, so we leave it to you to decide as you go which days are Bike Buddy days.

What if I don't get on with my Bike Buddy?

We try to be sensitive when matching people, but if you feel uncomfortable at any point with your Bike Buddy of Fledgling Buddy, please contact us (hello@bike-buddies.org) and we can try to help resolve any issues or match you with another Bike Buddy.

How do I know if my bike is safe to ride?

Great question! And a very important one. This video can guide you through a basic DIY safety check on your bike, but if this is confusing and you don't have the tools or are you're in any doubt, pop into your local bike shop for a maintenance checkup. Better safe than sorry!

I don't have a bike, can I still get involved?

Yes! There are now options to hire a bicycle in many areas of London, so you don't need to own your own bicycle to to be part of the Bike Buddies community. 

 

London's Santander Cycles, are available across central London, and dockless bicycle hire schemes are now operating in several other boroughs across London:

If think you'd like to get a bike but aren't sure where to start, finding a local Bike Buddy could be a great way to get started by asking advice.

In time we'll be adding more resources on the website to help you find the right bike for you - we know it can be a bit overwhelming to know where to start looking, but finding a bike you love can last a lifetime!

Do I need a helmet or any other equipment?

Helmet - It's a personal choice as to whether you choose to wear a helmet when cycling. In an ideal world we'd love to feel the wind in our hair, but we can't account for other people's risk taking, so many people do opt for a helmet just in case.

Lights - It is a legal requirement to have a front (white) and back (red) light, so before you head out, make sure you have fully charged lights that you can fix securely to your bike, bag or helmet so that you can been seen in the dark or bad weather.

Lock - always remember to take a decent lock with you if you don't want your bike stolen - its your basic insurance policy! Make sure its securely stowed in your bag or fixed to your bike to avoid any accidents.

Clothing - the dress code is up to you! Just make sure you are comfortable, warm enough and have full movement of all your limbs. You can always ask your Bike Buddy for advice.
TOP TIP - a good pair of gloves in cold weather will make sure you can operate your brakes!

Be aware that Bike Buddies cannot take responsibility for any of your rides or any accidents that might happen when you are cycling alone or with other members of the Bike Buddies community. You ride at your own risk everytime.

What if we have an accident during a ride?

During the sign up process we'll offer guidance on what to do it you have an accident when you're cycling.

 

Please be aware that Bike Buddies cannot take responsibility for rides you do alone or which you have organised through the Bike Buddies website. You cycle at your own risk every time.

I've got another question, what's your email address?

If you want to sign up to be a Bike Buddy or find a Bike Buddy please use the forms on the website, for anything else drop us a message at hello@bike-buddies.org.