How to commute by cycle | Commuting in 2024

Written by: Sam



Time to read 4 min

The guide to a cycling commute in 2024 | Beginner Friendly

Commuting is meant to be simple. Get from point A to B in a timely fashion. But things can get complicated. New bikes come equipped with countless gears, technologies and in recent years, we have e-bikes. Power this, power that. Gears this, Gears that. It’s a headache. It doesn’t help that the world sometimes isn’t catered for those who just don’t know yet. But we are here to tell you: It can be simple! It really can. Don't get lost in apparently omnipresent fog. Follow our guide, and commute like a beast this year. 

1. Understanding you and your commute

No this isn’t a first date. And no I don’t want to steal your data. This is for you. When commuting via bike it’s important that city scapes and urban areas change dependent on where you are in the world. When going through the following list ask yourself how the following impact you:

  • Budget
  • Distance
  • Terrain
  • Attitudes

man on a bicycle on road

2. What to potentially avoid

Let's Break this down 

1) Type of Bike

Choosing your bike is the biggest step. If you already have a bike, we suggest saving money and sticking with that. However, if you are looking to purchase a bike check out this helpful beginner friendly guide.

If however you don't have time, here's a simple breakdown for you.

  • Mountainous terrain, try a mountain bike
  • Gravel Asphalt, try a city or Dutch (cruiser) style.
  • Straight with no hills, try a fixed gear.
  • Long commute, road bike or e-bike.

2) Shoes and Wearables

You might have asked yourself? Do I need that gear? Generally we say no for commuters. Getting in and out of those ultra tight Lycra shorts can be a pain for time. Unless your committing for a long ride, wear what you are to your destination on your bike. *NOTE* If you're riding around puddles and mud make sure you have a fender, trust me. You WILL GET DIRTY.

3) In built properties

This is quite broad. But here's a few things you might want to consider when you buy your bike off the shelf.

1) Suspension:

For most commuters you likely won't need suspension. If you are riding predominantly smooth asphalt then you can skip on this. If however, your journey is not as smooth, or even offroad, consider a system with front suspension as this should be plenty. 

2) Tyres

Your tyres should be appropriate with your bike. For example, mountain bike tyres will be found on a mountain bike and road tyres on a road bike. In turn, you shouldn't have to worry to much about choosing a tyre (assuming your seller knows what they are doing). 

3) E-Bikes

Although we already covered choosing your bikes. Commuting by e-bike has become a recent phenomena and deserves some explaining. Make sure the bike you choose has a strong enough motor on it.

FUN FACT, I used to ride one myself and got stuck halfway on my way to work because the battery died. This would of been fine, if i didn't have an extra 50kg of weight on the bike. In case you wondered, i ended up getting picked up.

Otherwise, for long commutes, e-bikes are a great way to travel. Definitely worth considering.

4) Gears

How many gears is too many? Let's keep it simple still. If your ride is simple, keep your gears simple. A simple 3 speed will be plenty, or even a fixed gear if you prefer a slower ride. If it's more complex consider 7 speed and above options.

this is usually enough).

3. What to potnetially consider

1) Carry / Transport Racks

Although this is technically an accessory it deserves its standalone section. In your commute, all the extra weight is easier to move when dispersed. So what can you potentially invest in?

So which one of these is best?

I'd recommend a pannier. A lot of panniers also double as backpacks giving you more portability. 

That being said, frame bags and top tube bags are very good for storage of quick access items on commute e.g. phone, snacks, headphones. 

Types of bike bags
See Our Collection Of Bike Bags
2) Accessories, Accessories, Accessories

There is an almost infinite line of accessories you can add to your bike to improve your commuting experience. If you in need of guidance you can check out our picks for the best accessories of 2024.

So what accessories should you consider for your cycling commute?

In our personal rankings for must have accessories for commuters.

1) Lock:

No one wants your bike stolen, however this is not a distant reality. In Victoria (Aus) around 20 bikes are stolen per day. We reccomend the following video for an ultimate guide to not having your bike stolen. To physically repel thefts, we strongly suggest a good lock. Don't cheap out on this! You can find these here with the best bike locks of 2024.

2) Phone Holders

If you're new to a commute. You probably don't know you're route too well. Meaning your phone is needed. Or maybe you want quick access to your phone for music, messages etc.

3) Lights

Depending if you're riding at night or not, your lights are either a must-have or just a good add-on. There are so many different types of lights. What ones should you get? A front headlight will be your most useful. However, if you are concerned for safety a brake taillight will definitely help in keeping you seen.

4) Bell

If your bike doesn't come with a bell. We really suggest buying one. As well, If you like me live in Victoria (Aus) it is the law to have one on your bike. 

5) Reflectors

If safety is your main concern. Then reflectors will again be very good to have attached to your bike. Most bikes will come with pre-existing reflectors. However, if you are riding a darker bike then you might fare well with additional reflectors on your bike.

4. Concluding remarks

We hope this list has helped you find your way to a successful commute. Remember, commuting is meant to be easy. In case you still feel lost. Don't be afraid to just search for your concerns. There are an infinite amount of good resources that will help you in choosing how to effectively commute via a cycle.