Frequently Asked Questions
- Do you sell bikes?
- Is a bike tour the best way to see London?
- Which is the best tour for me?
- I'm not much of a cyclist. Will I keep up?
- Do you take breaks?
- What sort of bicycles do you have for the tours?
- Can I bring my own bike on the tour?
- What if I have a problem with my bike on the tour?
- How safe are the tours?
- Are the tours suitable for children?
- Can a child ride in a tag along or child seat attachment on the tour?
- What are the Tour Guides like?
- Do the guides talk about the sights? Is there time for photographs?
- Do tour prices include bicycle hire for the tour?
- Do I need to reserve?
- What's the best way to book?
- What age does my child have to be to get the child rate?
- What do you offer with the London Pass?
- How do I book if I want to use my Cycle Cities discount?
- What about rain/ bad weather?
- What's your cancellation policy?
- Where do tours start and finish?
- When should I arrive?
- What do I need to bring for the tour?
- Do I have to wear a helmet?
- Can I leave bags/jackets behind while I take the tour?
- How do I book a private tour?
- Can you start and finish Private tours in different places?
- Can I rent a bike and not take a tour?
- Where can I ride?
- Are you close to Hyde Park?
- Can I ride along the Thames from Central London to Kew Gardens/Richmond or Greenwich?
- Can I take the bike out of London or the UK?
- What about locking my bike?
- What about racks, lights, panniers.
- Do I need to book bike hire?
- How do I pay for hire/ what's the deposit?
- What if I don't have a credit or debit card?
- Do you offer insurance for theft?
- What if the bike breaks while I have it?
- What if I get a puncture while out on hire?
- Do you fix bikes?
- How long does a bike repair or service take?
- Do you do on site servicing or repairs for fleets of bikes?
- I'm planning to be there early to hire a bike. Will I have to queue?
- What time can I pick up and drop off my bike?
- Can I take my bike on trains or other public transport?
- Can I use a tandem on tour?
- I have a London Pass. Do I need to reserve ahead?
- Do you hire bicycles for special events?
- Do you hire child seats?
- What's the best way to get to London?
Sometimes we sell ex hire bikes. Check out our Facebook Page or Blog or call us. The best time to check is from mid September through to November.
Is a bike tour the best way to see London?
We think a bike tour wins by far, and we've been doing them since 1991. We're London's longest serving and most experienced bike tour company. Don't get stuck in traffic on buses. Get closer to the sights, explore the back streets and get some exercise while you get to know your guide and meet other travellers.
If you're new to London, check out the Classic or Love London Tour. If you want to see something less touristy, but rich in modern history, the Old Town Tour is the one for you. For something unique and special, check out the Night Tour or a Private Tour, which is best for families with children under 10 years of age.
We go at a leisurely pace, with plenty of time for photographs. if you can ride a bike, you won’t get left behind.
All tours have at least a drinks/toilet break. The Old Town Tour stops at a riverside pub.
Traditional (Dutch Style) bikes. They're comfortable. You sit uprght for easy balance and cruising. Seats are adjustable so they're suitable for shorter people too.
If you like, but make sure it's roadworthy, or you may get left behind! Our guide is only trained to fix OUR bikes. There is no discount for bringing your own bike.
Don't worry, our guides are trained to fix punctures and small mechanical problems. We'll have you back on the road in no time.
Since 1991 we have taken over 100,000 people cycling through London- with nothing more than a few bumps and scratched knees. We are proud of our safety record. Our guides are fully trained in safety. The tours do go on the road, however our routes are designed so that most of the time we are in quiet back streets and on cycle paths. At the start of the tour, you will be given a full safety briefing, and your guide will always be on hand to help and make you feel as comfortable as possible.
Sometimes yes, sometimes no. If they are at least 10 years old, competent cyclists, and comfortable with some riding alongside traffic, then yes. Children younger than 10 are not be suitable for the group tours. Management or the tour guide will make the final decision on if a child can ride with the group. Adults are responsible for children and their safety at all times. To be sure that your young child can do a London bike tour, you should book a private tour for your family (all ages accepted on private tours, and we have a range of bikes to suit).
We are the only bike tour in London to have a large team of tour guides who are specialists in many different Languages. All our guides are super friendly and are trained in London knowledge, history, safety, leadership and customer service.
Yes, that's the whole idea. They will stop at major sights and tell you what you’re looking at and interesting stories about it, plus giving you info about the city life today.
It's the best way to guarantee your spot on the tour you want- we don't want you to be disappointed! In saying that, we often have walk up customers and can put them on a tour they are very happy to take! (All our tours are just great).
If you have a London Pass, click here.
Definitely online- you can select your day and see our full range of products.
Our child rate is for anyone under 16 years. Please note our guided tours are not generally suitable for children under 10 years of age.
To book with the London Pass, follow the instructions here. As a reminder, the London Pass is only available for the Classic Tour in multiple languages (departing at 10:30 am) or the Love London Tour in English only (departing 2:30 pm April - October, 12 pm November - March). The Classic Tour is bookable with the London Pass in French, German (10:15 am departure) and in Dutch (10 am). Tours booked in languages other than English are subject to availability, and we reserve the right to offer the English Tour instead where individual language tours are not available.
- While we are happy to accept walk-in customers who are holders of the London Pass, however, this is subject to availability and only tours reserved via the following procedure are guaranteed to take place.
- Reservations made with us advance via the below method will be prioritised over walk-in customers.
- All customers reserving via this method must present a valid London Pass when checking in at our location prior to the tour.
- Children must be at least ten years old to join scheduled tours
- The London Pass cannot be used for the Night Tour or be exchanged/traded for a discount towards the Night Tour
- The London Pass is not valid for Private Tours and cannot be exchanged/traded for a discount towards Private Tours
- Tandem bikes are not available for any scheduled tours
1) Go to londonbicycle.com and in the 'Check Availability' section select the date, language, and the number of people you wish to book for.
2) Ensure that Tour Type 'Open' is selected.
3) Select the tour you wish to take
4) On the page that follows, tick the checkbox labelled 'Voucher' and select 'LP Discount' from the dropdown list below.
5) Click 'Apply' and the balance payment will be reduced to zero.
6) Enter your email address for ticket delivery in the field provided, hit 'Next', and then follow the instructions to complete your contact information and agree to the terms and conditions.
Note: The voucher option will only work for the tours that are valid with the London Pass, as are specified above. You will be asked to provide your name and address upon booking.
You must go to www.cycle-cities.com and download your voucher from there. The voucher has instructions on how to book.
Tours run in all weather. If it's raining continuously for 15 mins at the time the tour is set to start, we allow you to re-book for another day (or if there is no other suitable time we can refund you). All refunds are subject to a small administration fee to cover e-commerce charges. See our policy here.
We start and finish all tours (except certain walking tours) at our bicycle centre....
74 Kennington Rd, London, SE11 6NL
For more information, go to our directions page.
Please arrive at least 15 mins before your tour is due to start. We try and get away on time so if you’re late, you could miss out.
Clothing suitable for the weather, enclosed footwear, money to pay for the tour (cash or card) and money for drink/food stops. If you have a handbag, you can put this on the back of your bike rack, or you could bring a small backpack for items that you can't fit in your pockets.
No. We provide helmets free of charge and strongly recommend you wear one, but it is not the law in the UK.
For most tours this is fine. This cannot be done for the Night or Christmas Lights Tours, as we close the shop before the tour returns. If you leave items with us, all care but no responsibility will be taken for them.
It's best to book Private tours online. For more information and booking, go to our Private tours page here.
Private Tours start from £150 for four people. Any of our regular tours can be made Private. We can tailor a tour to suit your needs. Private Tours can be booked online; simply select 'Private' in the 'Tour Type' field when making a reservation.
Yes. We also have a bike delivery service if you want to take a tour starting at your hotel for example. You will need to contact us for a quote.
You can check out the maps of our guided tour routes and follow them, or you could go your own way. It depends on how much time you have and what you are interested in seeing. If you have a few hours, try Hyde Park. If you have young children, cycle south west along the riverside to Vauxhall and back (traffic free). Half a day - head East to Greenwich, and come back via Canary Wharf and Wapping. Full day - Follow the Regent's Canal from Limehouse to Little Venice via Camden Town. Out of London - cycle to Hampton Court Palace along the River. For more ideas, subscribe to our blog, where we will be posting regular ideas about where to cycle to from our Tour/Hire Centre on Gabriel's Wharf. London's cycling infrastructure has been developing regularly and quickly in recent years, which has seen miles of new segregated cycle superhighway opening all over London and tracing it's nicest and most diverse areas, as well as its iconic monuments and neighbourhoods.
For cycling routes and maps provided by the government, please visit the Transport for London website, where you can download additional information.
Our 74 Kennington Road Location is a gentle 20min cycle to/from Hyde park. If you want to cycle in Hyde park, we can provide you with a map, showing you the safest route to get there. It's a nice ride, and you'll pass some of London's best sights on the way!
We wish. A lot of the thamesfront has been bought out by private developers. There are some long sections further west though that you can cycle along, such as Putney to Hammersmith, and Richmond to Hampton Court.
We don’t mind, just as long as it doesn’t come back damaged. Please note that if you take your bike far away from us we may not be able to offer support if something goes wrong.
We provide D-locks (the strongest type of lock) free of charge with bike hire.
If you want racks, you will need to hire a Touring bike. These are good for long distance/ charity rides and cycling holidays.
We recommend booking if you want something specific, or if there is a special bike event that is happening. We can’t guarantee a bike’s availability without a booking, but most of the time we have something at the wharf for hire on the spot. Advanced bookings can only be made for full day (or more) hires. If you just want to rent for a few hours ride around the city, you can just turn up, we almost always have something available. Summer Weekends though you may want to call us first. You can book bike hire here.
For online bookings, you pay at the time of booking with credit or debit card. You also authroise us to take up to £200 per bike from your card if the bike is not returned. This is not charged to your card.. it's an authorisation only.
For hourly bookings or transactions done in our shop, you need a credit or debit card to hire a bike. There is no deposit, except we keep your card details in case of theft or damage, and we charge your card for any costs incurred. We accept Visa, Mastercard or American Express (no Maestro).
The only other way to hire a bike is to leave a security deposit of cash, which we hold onto until the bike is returned. It's £180 per traditional bicycle. More for specialist bikes and accessories. Please note we don't accept passports or ID cards as security.
We don't. We used to but too many bikes were being "stolen". If you lose a bike, you have to pay for it (£180 for a traditional, more for other types of bike).
Please check you're happy with your bike before you leave the hire centre. Occasionally problems do happen with bicycles while they are out on hire. Please bring it back to us. We will check the problem. If we find that it has been damaged by reckless use/ theft or the like, you may be charged for the repair, as per our hire contract conditions. This is a rare occurrance.
We are very sorry when this happens. It does occassionally happen and it's something out of our control. It may be caused by cycling through some glass for example. You have to walk the bike back to us or bring it on a train or in a taxi (black cabs can take bikes). We repair the puncture free of charge/or exchange you for another bike. You must not ride on a flat tire- this damages the wheel. If you ride on a flat tire, you may have to pay for a wheel repair or a new wheel.
Yes. We have a repair shop, with great mechanics and a range of products and services. See our repairs section for more information.
We can complete 98% of jobs same day. You can drop your bike in in the morning, and we will have it ready by 5pm.
During winter, we aren't generally too busy with checking customers in for and dispatching tours, because it's a quieter season. During summer, however, and especially on weekends and sunny days, we are busy serving pre-booked guests on our guided tours, which depart between 10am and 11am. Therefore, if you are looking to hire a bike between opening time (9:30am) and 10:30am you may be asked to wait until 10:30am, because we will prioritise tour guests over bike hire, especially for customers that have not made a pre-booking with us via londonbicycle.com, which we strongly recommend. Thank you for your patience; we will do our best to accommodate everyone as soon as is possible.
During summer, our opening hours are 9:30am - 7pm. You can pick up your bike during our opening hours, with the earliest time in summer being 9:30am and the latest 6:30pm. Please be aware that in summer we are especially busy with dispatching tours throughout the day, so depending on the time you may be asked to wait or come back a bit later so we can give you our full attention. Our busiest times of the day, when we have to prioritise tours, are between 9:30am and 11am, and between 1:30pm and 2:30pm. Please be aware of this if you are booking a bicycle to be collected during this time. You can drop off a bicycle at any time we are open.
During winter, our opening hours are 9:30am - 5pm. A bicycle can be returned at any time during our opening hours, and collected at any time up to 4:30pm.
In the event that you cannot return the bike during our opening hours, you can lock the frame to an existing bike in our rack and return the key through the letterbox. If this is your plan it must be discussed with and agreed to by the office staff in advance either in person or via phone.
Most folded bicycles can be taken on all public transport in London, however for non-folded bicycles we recommend heading to the Transport for London website for more detailed information. While regular bicycles are not allowed on buses, they are allowed on some London Overground services outside of peak times. For our guide to taking bicycles on public transport and trains up and down the country, head to our Bikes on Trains section of the website.
Unfortunately, we are not able to offer tandems on either scheduled or private tours, due to safety reasons and a limited amount of bikes. Tandems are available to rent though, so why not grab a friend and take one out for a few hours after your tour!
I have a London Pass. Do I need to reserve ahead?
Generally, yes. Only tours booked and confirmed in advance via our website or through our London Pass Booking Form are guaranteed to take place. We are happy to accept walk-ins, except in the occasional circumstances that a tour is full or not taking place due to the minimum number of participants being met. If you book with us in advance you guarantee a spot, and we also have your contact details in case of changes to the tour or cancellations.
We sometimes hire bicycles at special prices for an an event.To find a special event, go to the hire section on the site and select any bicycle. In the book now block, select the date of the event, and the time you wish to pick the bicycle up, and press submit.
Scroll to the bottom of the page and look for the group events, click on this and then you will see the event page.
Yes. We offer child seats and crossbar seats. Child seats are seats that perch behind the adult, suitable for children up to 3 years old. They are free with the rental of a traditional bike. Crossbar seats attach to the cross bar so the child sits in front of the adult. They can only be attached to male traditional bikes, as they have a higher crossbar. Free with the rental of a male traditional bike. To reserve Child seats or crossbar seats, please contact us.