Welcome! You’ve decided to start commuting to work by bike but undecided on what type of bike is best suited for your commute. We’ve put this post together to help inform on what types of bikes work best depending on the type of commute.
Why is Choosing the Right Bike for Commuting Important?
Choosing the right bike for commuting is especially important as you will end up spending a lot of time on the thing. Nothing is worse than a bike is either uncomfortable or not suited for your commute.
Some of the issues you may experience with choosing the wrong bike:
- Impractical to take on public transport due to bulk
- Not suited for hilly terrain
- Uncomfortable on bumpy dirt tracks
- Slow on city streets
For this reason, we recommend considering the following when making a decision on a bike:
- Will you be riding on country roads/tracks or city streets?
- Will you be taking the bike on public transport and need to fold it up?
- Do you want comfort or speed?
- Are you after lightness or toughness?
There’s the perfect bike out there for everyone but you need to first ask yourself what type of riding it is that you will be doing. There’s no point buying a bike that’s suited for road riding if you will be doing the majority of your riding along bumpy fire trail tracks.
Road bikes are generally what most people think of when they think of a bike. Known for their drop handlebars which help put you in a more horizontal riding position to help with speed and aerodynamics, the road bike will suit some commuters better than others.
Road bikes are made in a variety of different materials from carbon (super lightweight) to aluminium and all the way to steel (more durable but slightly heavier). We recommend steering away from carbon bikes as they are not durable enough to cope with the conditions of commuting where a small crash could affect the integrity of the carbon on the bike.
Instead, look for a road bike that’s either aluminium or steel as this will better withstand the conditions of commuting but also come with additional extras such as the ability to attach mudguards or panniers.
Luckily in recent times we have seen road bikes evolve to include options previously only seen in mountain bikes such as disc brakes, suspension and fatter tyres. We will look to cover these types of bikes in the next section.
What type of commuters does a road bike favour?
- Someone who is looking for speed over comfort
- Someone who is happy to feel every bump on the road due to no suspension and skinny tyres
- Someone that wants something that will be quick to ride up hilly terrain
- Someone who has a long commute
What type of commuter does a road bike not favour?
- Someone who needs to venture off road from time to time
- Someone not confident riding in the rain with skinny tyres
- Someone with a short commute
- Schwinn aluminum road frame with Carbon fiber road fork
- Shimano Claris 16 speed derailleur with Micro shift integrated shift/brake lever combo
- High profile alloy double wall rims with paired spokes are lightweight and strong with front Quick release
- Promax alloy dual pivot caliper road brakes for great breaking power
- Alloy crank for wide gear range
- 700C Road bike with 21 Speed Shifting system and Dual Disc brake.49 cm and 54 cm frame size matches different group.Size of 49 cm Fits for 5’5”to 5'7 .Size of 54 cm Fits up for 5’8” to 6'
- Suggested reference group: 49 cm Frame fits 5'5" ~5'7" ,54 cm Frame fits 5'8" ~6'
- This bicycle arrives with 85% assembled. You need to install the front wheel, pedals, handlebar, seat and air up the tires. We do not supply any bicycle assembly service for online pays or for free.
- Bicycle are the oversize products, if the packages was serious damaged when the carrier delivery it to you, you can refuse sign the package. Or, if there are any scratches or damages caused during the shipping, please click COTNACT SELLER near your order to contact us directly for assistance. We will do our best to solve the problem for you at soonest!
- Bicycle Serials number at the bottom tube of frame, please find it and noted it down ,this is sole signs that distinguishes the same serials products. This bicycle arrives with 85% assembled. You need to install the front wheel, pedals, handlebar, seat and air up the tires. We do not supply any bicycle assembly service for online pays or for free.
Gravel, Cyclocross and Adventure Bikes
In recent times, road bikes have evolved to be more than just fast bikes you ride on roads. We’ve seen a new breed of road bikes released that are capable of riding on just dirt tracks (cyclocross bikes) all the way to bikes that are capable of riding both on and off the road (gravel and adventure bikes).
What makes these bikes more capable of riding off road than road bikes you ask? Good question. Some of the things that make these bikes more comfortable off the road include:
- Disc brakes for improved stopping power especially in the wet
- Basic suspension to help absorb bumps
- Fatter tyres to provide a more comfortable ride
Gravel, cyclocross and adventure bikes are well suited for any commuter that:
- Do the majority of their riding on and off the road
- Ride in the rain a lot to benefit from the increased stopping power of disc brakes
- People with longer commutes
Where these types of bikes are not suited for commuters who:
- Ride a relatively short commute
- Spend most of their time on the road
- Are on a budget
- Chromoly Steel Frame
- Chromoly Steel Fork
- Shimano Claris STI Shifters
- 32 Hole Double Wall Alloy Rim, 700c x 30mm Tires
- Mechanical Disc Brakes; Cassette: Shimano 8 speed 11-32T
- FOLDING ELECTRIC MOUNTAIN BIKE --- This bike adopts ultra-lightweight yet strong aluminum. Double shock absorption. Mechanical front and rear disc-brake design and 21-speed professional transmission system. Perfect climbing ability.
- ULTRA STRONG WHEELS --- 26 inch magnesium alloy integrated wheels with anti-slip resistant thick tire-- suit for trails, gravel, city streets, back roads, increases hill-climbing power, further range variation, and greater terrain adaptability.
- 3 WORKING MODES --- Ebike & Assisted bicycle & Normal bike. With the LED 3-speed smart meter button, you can choose the electric assist power according to your needs. You can add a burst of speed with the throttle, which is ideal for pulling away from traffic lights. Combining three modes would be a better choice.
- ELECTRIC SYSTEM --- Equipped with the 36V 8AH lithium-Ion front battery and 250W stable motor, you can reach a range of up to 15-30 miles at toppest speed 15-17mph per charge. Plenty for a day’s adventure or most trips to travel and back.
- SERVICE AVAILABLE --- This bicycle arrives 85% assembled. It's not hard to finish aseembly by yourself---Watch video on ANCHEER SPORT. The assembly service on this page is provided and charged by third-party company partnered with Amazon. If you can't finish by yourself, you can click and choose the service.
Hybrid, Urban and Commuter Bicycles
What type of commuting is a hybrid bike suited to?
- Someone who wants something that can ride on a range of surfaces (on and off road)
- Someone who just wants to be able to quickly get on the bike and ride without much hassle
- Someone with a mid to long commute
- Someone who has a good balance of hills and flats on their commute
What type of commuting would a hybrid bike not be suited for?
- Someone that wants to go as fast as possible
- Someone who wants a bit of suspension in their ride for bumps
- Aluminum dual sport frame with Schwinn suspension fork is great for versatile riding conditions
- Schwinn 21 speed shifters with rear derailleur provide quick gear changes. Schwinn alloy triple crank offers optimal gearing
- Mechanical disc brakes give you extra stopping power
- Alloy, high profile, double wall rims are lightweight and strong. Schwinn multi-terrain tires are great on or off road
- 700c size wheel fits adult riders 5’4” to 6’2”. Includes limited lifetime warranty for as long as you own the bike
- Hybrid bicycle features durable Schwinn steel frame.
- 21 speeds with twist shifters and Shimano rear derailleur offer quick, precise gear changes.
- Front disc and rear V-brake deliver superior stopping power.
- Alloy rims with dual sport tires are perfect for pavement and bike paths.
- Designed with a 700c wheel, this bike fits riders 5 feet 4 inches to 6 feet 2 inches.
As the name suggests, touring bikes are made for touring with long days in the saddle with panniers and bags attached. Touring bikes are designed with a similar look to road bikes with drop down handlebars but generally favour more durable materials like steel which can better withstand the different conditions of touring.
We think touring bikes make a great option for anyone who has a mid to long range commute and is looking for something that is both reliable and comfortable.
Touring bikes favour people who:
- Have a mid to long distance commute
- Prefer to ride with panniers and mudguards. Generally touring bikes are designed for these to fit natively on the bike without much effort
- Want a durable bike able to withstand the different conditions of commuting
Touring bikes won’t favour people who:
- Have a short commute
- Want a lightweight bike
- Versatile adventure touring bike features capable adventure bike geometry, a sleek alloy frame and steel fork for the ultimate ride
- 2x7 drivetrain with Shimano Tourney derailleurs, an integrated Micro shift shifters/brake lever combo and mechanical disc brakes keep the ride smooth
- Integrated frame bag features a stylish embroidered patch and all the room you need for your riding essentials
- Large front rack (with an integrated bottle opener!) can easily carry two panniers, while the rear rack mount offers even more carrying capability
- Internal cable routing leaves room for 3 Distinct water bottle cage mounts (and 2 more on the fork) so you'll always stay hydrated when you ride
- Schwinn steel retro city frame and fork offers a stylish, comfortable ride.
- Schwinn 7 speed twist shifter with Schwinn rear derailleur provide quick gear changes.
- Alloy front and rear linear pull brakes ensure precise stops.
- Fenders protect you from splashes, while the classic rear carrier provides convenient storage.
- 700c size wheel fits adult riders 5’4” to 6’2”. Includes limited lifetime warranty for as long as you own the bike.
Fixies and Single Speed Bicycles
For those of you that want a bike with little maintenance, a single speed bike is for you. Designed with a similar look to that of a road bike, single speed bikes do not have any gears and relies on one gear. This results in less maintenance compared to other bikes which have a full gear set.
One downside to single speed bikes is they aren’t great on hilly areas where having a range of gears is handy when the going gets tough. The same also applies on flat areas where sometimes it’s handy to have heavier gears to help build up more speed. For this reason, we recommend fixie or single speed bikes for people that live in urban environments with a relatively short commute.
But what’s the difference between single speed and fixies? A fixie (or fixed gear) is similar to a single speed bike but without the freewheel. This means that when the wheel is turning also are the pedals. This can be quite scary when riding fast as the pedals start turning rather quickly. One of the positives of not having a freewheel is that pedaling backwards acts as a brake similar to what you may have had on a BMX bike when you were a kid.
What type of commuters should buy a fixie or single speed?
- Someone with a relatively short urban commute with no hills
- Someone on a budget
- Someone looking for a bike with little maintenance
What type of commuters shouldn’t buy a fixie or single speed?
- Anyone with a hilly commute
- Anyone who needs more than one gear
- Anyone who has a long commute
- Lightweight Full Aluminum Frame and Fork
- 30mm Deep V Double-Walled Alloy Wheels
- Ride Fixed Gear or Freewheel with a Flip-Flop Hub, Including front and rear brakes, Suitable for commuters
- How to choose size? Please select size according to height: X-Small (49cm) / 5'2 "- 5'4" Small (52cm) / 5'5 "- 5'7" Medium(55cm) / 5'8 "- 5'11" Large (58cm) / 6'0 "- 6'2"
- How to assemble your 6KU bike? We have the assembly video available on this page or find it on YouTube. Tools included in the package.
- Steel frame Steel fork
- Alloy brakes front and rear
- 700C alloy rims Steel rise stem
- Full-protection chain guard
- Black/red Fixie bike
We generally recommend mountain bikes for anyone that has a bumpy commute and a need for suspension. From our experience, suspension bikes can be slow as it absorbs a lot of the effort you make when riding which can result in a very spongy and sluggish commute when riding on smooth surfaces. While you can lock and disable the suspension, you might as well just buy a hybrid bike if you see yourself locking it often.
Mountain bikes favour people who:
- Have lots of bumps and holes on their commute to ride over
- Spend most of their commute off road
- Want quick stopping power that comes with disc brakes
Mountain bikes aren’t for people who:
- Have a relatively smooth commute
- Spend more of their time riding on road
- Are on a budget
- 【27 Speed Derailleur】Finger-type shifter 3 rears front derailleur and 9 rears derailleur, easier to pedal for speed and acceleration. More effortless handling of uphill and downhill slopes, providing faster speeds on smooth roads.
- 【Durable & Lightweight Bike】Aluminum alloy body (much lighter than steel) with rust-proof high carbon steel parts provides more rolling momentum. 37.47lb is light enough for an adult to carry with one hand on his shoulder.
- 【Excellent Performance】26” tire can handle hilly terrains and the gear change is awesome and smooth. Perfect for mountain, wasteland ,also effective on the road, trail, city, beach or the snow etc. Front and rear double disc brakes perfectly increase safety and controllability for bikers.
- 【Easy for Assemble】 95% of the bike have been assembled, "Install Video" is in the related Video at the bottom of the page, you needn’t to pay extra to go to a bike shop to assemble it.
- 【Best Customer Service】SIRDAR has professional customer service. We provide after-sales service for 1 year, during this period, we will give corresponding solutions to your problems and help you solve them.
- 6061 Aluminum Frame
- Shimano 7 Speed Drivetrain
- CST Tetrimino X-Country 24 x 1.95 Tires
- 36 Hole Alloy Double Wall Rims with Stainless Steel Spokes
- Alloy Quick Release Seatpost Clamp
We've written about some of our favourite Dahon branded folding bikes in the past and we're big fans! Folding bikes are a great option for anyone who is space conscious and has a relatively small commute. We wouldn't recommend them for people with long or hilly commutes due to the limited gear range which will make any hill a grind!
Who we think folding bikes are great for:
- Small commutes
- People who need to take their bike on public transport
- People who have limited space to store their bike
People who might not suit folding bikes
- People with longer commutes
- People with hilly commutes
- People who like the feeling of riding on a true to size bike
- People who like the feeling of multiple gears
- Lightweight step-through frame folds for easy storage; Folding frame with 20-inch wheels fit riders 56 to 74 inches tall
- 7-speed twist shifter provides smooth gear changes
- Front and rear linear pull brakes deliver secure stops
- Rear carrier includes detachable heavy gauge nylon bag for easy storage
- 20-inch alloy wheel with smooth rolling street tires are perfect for commuting
- Lightweight aluminum frame; folds in seconds and is easy to carry so you never need to leave it outside.
- Genuine Shimano components with 7 speeds and grip style shifter.
- Easy single fold stem, folding pedals, magnet catcher to hold fold bike's frame securely together. Rider Height - 4.8-6.3 inches. Gear inches - Low 34.9. High 70
- 2“ multi-terrain tires and v-style brakes.
- Folded size: H-27. 25" L-33. 2" W-13. 5. Weight: 28. 5 lb. (Lightweight).
Like anything in life, you get what you pay for and for this reason we'd recommend not cheaping out too much when buying a bike to commute on. Cheaper bikes generally won't last the harsh conditions that commuting throws at it.
One way to look at spending more money on a commuter bike is to think about all the money you will save elsewhere whether it be not needing to go to the gym anymore or saving money from public transport. I save $1,500 from not needing to catch public transport anymore so it's a huge saving!
Good luck in your hunt for a new bike!