Going to work by bike is simple, healthy, clean, and economical. Congested roads and rising gas prices are two in a long list of reasons why commuting to work by bike Just makes sense.
To ease the transition to bike commuting so that you can join thousands of other DC area employees check out the Commuter Connections guide on Biking to Work in the Washington Area. Note: this page is always being updated
Finding the best way to your destination will not always be easy and there is a lot of trial and error that goes into figuring out what the best route for you is. There are many factors you have to take into consideration when creating a bikable route. Road conditions, bicycle facilities, and traffic flow are all things that you need to keep in mind when planning your route.
Maps: check out our Maps and Guides section. We have downloadable PDF's of all the bicycle maps in the DC area.
Trails: So you found a trail, but can't view it using google maps and the Maps and Guides section doesn't quite give you all the information you need? Try our Trails section. Just simply click on the trail you want to learn about and find the best trail for your commute.
Commuter Routes: WABA has a list of tried and true commuter routes that you can consult when planning your trip. These are the same routes used by our commuter convoys on Bike to Work Day. If you have a route that is well tested and would like to share it with others that may be seaching for a good commuter route let us know by emailing email@example.com.
Talk to the Experts: At the Washington Area Bike Forum, you can ask area bicyclists all of your route questions and even find a ride buddy.
Bike Smart: It is important to bike safely and responsibly. Check out our Smart Cycling Guide and remember to wear your helmet! You should also take the time to educate yourself about bicycle law by using the information in our Bike Laws section.
When you go by bike you will find that you are more connected to your surroundings. You are now out of the climate controled environment you've been used to being in, which means you need to give greater consideration to weather and how you plan on transporting your brief case, work materials, lunch, etc.
Weather: It can't always be the perfect day and chances are you might get caught in the rain or snow. If you plan ahead then a little water shouldn't stop you from making your trip. Keep your eye on the weather.
Clothes: You do not have to encase yourself in a gortex bubble to bike commute. Wear what you think is comfortable! If your commute is long and you are worried about showing up to work covered in road grime and sweat, then keep an extra set of clothes at your workplace or bring them along with you. Check out the guide on Biking to Work in the Washington Area.
Here are a few more helpful tips:
Backpack's, Pannier's, and Other Gear: When trying to find a way to transport your things use whatever makes you feel most comfortable. You can find all the items you need at any of DC's local area bike shops. You may also want to consider carrying a small bicycle tool and a patchkit for your tires.
Bike Parking and Locking: Eventhough a car free lifestyle will provide you with the luxury of never having to worry about parking tickets, or getting towed, you still have to worry about theft. Nothing is theft-proof and there is no perfect lock, but you can take certain steps to deter thieves. Check out Kryptonite's web page for tips on locking up your bike.
Never leave your bike unlocked or unattended.
Bikes on Transit: If you get a flat you can't repair or the weather is just too much you can always use public transportation to get you and your bike safely home. Most DC area buses are equiped with bike racks located on the front that can hold up to two bicycles. You are also able to take your bike on metro during non-peak hours. Check out our bikes on transit page to learn more about taking advantage of your local public transportation system.
What if I need to get home in an emergency?:
The Commuter Connections Guaranteed Ride Home Program provides emergency rides home to people who bicycle or take other alternative transportation to work. To sign up, call 1-800-745-RIDE or register on-line on the Commuter Connections web site: www.commuterconnections.org
To learn more about Bike Commuting or living car free, contact WABA at firstname.lastname@example.org
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