Bike Travel & Tourism are Booming
The San Diego gathering of bike tourism proponents was the biggest ever, and it made clear that bike tourism is a quickly growing segment of the tourist market and an important thing for us bike advocates to pay attention to. Jim Sayer, Executive Director of the Adventure Cycling Association, lists ten indicators that bike travel and tourism are booming.
Just as your own California Bicycle Coalition plans to generate revenue from a fundraising bike tour that is sure to grow in popularity as people realize how easy and fun it is, others around the state are realizing the economic benefits. CalBike wants to help disadvantaged rural towns in California realize that benefit and make a difference in their communities, starting with the Pacific Coast Bike Route.
Though it’s already among the most popular bike routes in the country — whose maps outsell every other route designated by the Adventure Cycling Association — the route has segments that are dangerous and detract potential riders. Riders on the Surf & Turf tour saw firsthand where improvements will attract more riders to the route, and learned in conversations during the the advocacy component of the tour about some of the challenges to making those improvements.
Also, businesses and parks along the route could do more to attract riders, at little or no cost. Bike-friendly campgrounds and lodging, plentiful repair stations, marketing oriented to bike riders, showers and other amenities could help make the Pacific Coast Bike Route a gold mine for some of the communities along the coast.