Photo by C.FLEITH, courtesy of European Cyclists' Federation
STRASBOURG cyclo Petite France - © C.FLEITH 006
While bicycling brings business to the urban core, people on bikes are also giving rural and suburban areas a boost thanks to the rising participation in multi-day rides and bicycle tourism.
According to a September 2012 study by the European Cyclists’ Federation, bicycle tourism produces an astounding $57 billion in economic impact in Europe each year. Those types of numbers ring true in the US, too. For instance, a recent study showed that RAGBRAI – a long-standing, wildly popular seven-day ride across the state of Iowa – produced more than $24 million in economic benefit, mostly to rural towns or mid-sized cities in 2008. A more detailed survey by the Bicycle Tour Network found that the 11 largest multi-day rides in the country created more than $32 million in economic impact in 2011.