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Cycling is one of the greenest ways to get around, not to mention the benefits exercise has for your physical and mental health. It’s also decidedly cheaper to own a bike than it is to run a car or even take public transport, but that doesn’t mean making the initial investment can’t seem daunting. That’s why we’re here to walk you through all the options Dublin has to offer you, from finding a forever bike to reliable rental services.
Buying a New Bicycle
If you’re in the market for a fresh pair of wheels then buying a brand new bike from a specialist shop could be the first option that springs to your mind. Dublin certainly has a wealth of bicycle shops, both big and little. Three of the largest Irish retailers for bikes include Cycle Superstore, Giant, and Eurocycles, all of which have extensive online catalogues of all the top brands in addition to in-store shopping options. Just be aware that if you’re ordering a new bike online some assembly may be required after you unbox it! If you prefer for your bike to be road-ready straight away you can head into shops such as Penny Farthing Cycles, BikesorBicycles, and T Delaney & Sons, to name a few in the city centre. Prices for never-been-used adult bikes range from roughly €350 up to €1000, so buying first-hand is definitely an investment, but it’ll be a very worthwhile one if you plan on cycling regularly and you’ll have the greatest amount of options in terms of style and colour. A good way to offset the overall cost is to check if the shop you’re purchasing from runs a buy-back scheme, such as with Cycle Scene, where bicycles previously purchased from the store can be bought back for up to fifty percent of the original selling price.
An increasingly popular option, especially for young adults and teens who may not have the same spending power as their older counterparts, is to purchase a second-hand bike. Happily, many bicycle retailers have caught on to this demand and have started selling previously used bikes alongside their main inventories, two examples being the Belfield Bike Shop and 360 Cycles. In addition to this there are now several bicycle shops that exclusively deal in second hand models, such as usedbikes.ie, Re-Cycle Bikes, and DublinBikeMan (the last of which also offers a buy-back scheme). The pricing for second-hand bikes vary by model, condition, and seller, but you can frequently find them going for fifty percent cheaper than the standard retail rate. In comparison to buying a brand new bike this is definitely a lot easier on your wallet, although you may have to reconcile yourself to a more limited selection when it comes to the model variety! You should also be aware that, depending on how old the bicycle in question is, it might not last you quite as long as a new one.
Looking For a Deal Online
With the advent of sites like DoneDeal.ie, Adverts.ie, and social media marketplaces, it’s never been more tempting to cut out the middleman and buy directly from someone who doesn’t need their ride anymore. The pros of online buy-and-sell sites like these is that the filter and search systems make it very easy to be sure your search is narrowed down to options that are within your budget. These websites also host by far the cheapest options, with second-hand bikes going for as little as €50. Another plus is that you can search by location, meaning you’ll know if someone is putting their bicycle up for sale nearby. However, there are a couple of things you should be wary of before you strike a deal. Unlike a registered bike shop, sellers on online marketplaces have no obligation to refund you if you’re not satisfied with the bike, and the cheaper the bicycle the higher the probability is that you may have to do some maintenance on it. If you’re happy to administer some TLC, though, you’ll find that you can buy a very serviceable cycle that will be a much lower target for bike thieves.
Even if you favour public transport or driving in your day-to-day life, sometimes a bike is just the most convenient means of getting from point A to point B. For this purpose, the cycling subscription services available in Dublin will cater perfectly to your needs. The largest of these is undoubtedly Dublinbikes, which has been operating in the capital since its 2009 launch and now boasts a fleet of around 1,500 bicycles available to rent from over 100 locations. Dublinbikes users can either sign up for a yearly subscription of €35 or opt for a three day ticket. Bicycles can be obtained from their rental stations anytime between 5am and 12:30 am and can be returned 24 hours a day. The first half hour of every ride is free, after which a rental fee applies for every subsequent hour. A two hour ride will cost €1.50. Bleeper is another subscription scheme in operation, this one being app-based so that users can view availability and location via their phones. Charging a euro per hour, Bleeper is slightly more expensive than Dublinbikes but makes up for this by not requiring users to return bikes to specific stations. Instead cyclists can leave the Bleeper bikes anywhere within the bounds of a 100km squared “Purple Zone”, activating the locks via the app. Another new addition to the subscription scene in Dublin is Moby, like Bleeper it’s an app-based share scheme this time specifically for electric bicycles. It’s the most expensive of the three options, with an hour’s ride costing €6.50, but electric bikes are more powerful and will get you where you need to be faster and with less effort on your part.
Specialist Bike Rentals
So far in this article we’ve covered the best options for obtaining conventional bikes in Dublin city, but for those who ride on the wilder side there are also rental services that hire out quality BMX bicycles and mountain bikes. Websites such as roadbikehire.ie and River Cycles have the bikes and equipment to set you up for cross-country or rough terrain biking, with daily, weekly, and monthly rates.
So, once you’ve found the cycling option to suit your lifestyle, it will be no time at all before you’re hitting the road!