I haven't cycled for years, is it for me?
Absolutely it is for you! There are many joys and benefits of an e-bike for those rediscovering cycling and at the Open Road Experience we are passionate about re-awakening people to the sport. When you enquire, let us know that you haven't cycled for a while, and we will make doubly sure that you are confident before you set off.
How much effort do I have to put in?
One of the great things about an e-bike is that you can choose how much effort to put in as you have control of the power level used. If you want to get more exercise then you can turn the power assist off, or have it on its lowest level. If you want more assistance then you can increase it at the touch of a button.
The e-assist will take you to a cycling speed of around 15miles (25kms) / hou, which is the legal limit for e-assistance in the UK. Once you hit this speed, you will only get faster by pedalling harder!
Please note that you do need to pedal in order to enjoy the motor - our e-bikes use pedal assist technology meaning the motor provides an extra boost to your pedal stroke. If you stop pedalling, your bike will slow down and eventually stop also, even with the power on. This gives you ultimate control.
What do I need to wear?
Unlike more intense forms of cycling, you don't need to wear lycra or leggings for e-cycling. Firstly it is less physically intense due to the power assist, so you are less likely to break into a sweat. The bike is set up with mud guards and chain guards to protect clothing from getting caught in the chain or being dirtied with water/splash/mud off the road.
We recommend wearing something comfortable and suitable for the weather, that gives you free movement of your legs to pedal, and flat firm soled shoes which will sit comfortably on our flat pedals. The rear luggage rack enables you to take a small day bag, so you can take an extra layer with you if needed.
What happens if I have a puncture or a mechanical problem?
Minor problems do happen on occasion, even to top of the range bikes used in the Tour de France, so we are on hand just in case! Annoyances such as the chain slipping off or your saddle moving are very straightforward to deal with over the phone, and we provide you with everything you need to solve these kinds of little problems in a bike bag. We do not expect you to have any technical knowledge or use any tools to repair faults or breakdowns!
Larger mechanical failings are unlikely due to our high standards of bike maintenance, however, if you are unlucky enough to experience a major mechanical issue, road side assistance is included. We use puncture resistant tyres but in the very unlikely event of a puncture, we will come to you to fit a new inner tube.
Whilst our e-bikes are heavier than a standard mountain bike, they are fully functional without power, so can be ridden without using the motor. The batteries are large capacity and will have enough charge to complete your provided route with use of the power settings in a measured way
How far will you deliver or collect my bike?
The delivery/collection range is a 45min journey from Frome in Somerset. We are happy, however, to deliver further than this, but an additional charge is payable (by the hour). Please enquire for details.
I'm not sure I'll be able to get on / off the bike!
We have a range of models with different frame styles. The Open and Low Step models have either a low cross bar, or no cross bar at all, making it much easier to literally just step through to get on and off the bike. Head to our E-bikes & E-tandems page to look at the images of the Raleigh Motus Grand Tour to get a better idea, and let us know, when you enquire, about any concerns you have.
How far can I go?
A very understandable question but a difficult one to answer definitively as there are many factors involved. The manufacturers of the motors recommend around 120km using the e-assist conservatively.
What happens if my battery runs out?
This is not likely to happen on the bespoke routes we set for you as we take heed of the manufacturers recommendations in terms of distance when planning your route. All of our bikes will arrive with you sporting a fully charged battery.
Should you ride the whole of a hilly route in turbo, it would be possible to use your battery up much quicker than we would expect, so we ask you to apply common sense and use the battery in a measured way. There will be plenty of charge for all the hills you encounter, but, for example, on the flat and downhill, it makes sense to use a lower level of assist (if any is required).
All of our bikes have a clear display screen that shows you how much battery you have used and an estimation of the range you have left so it you can keep an eye on this during your ride.
If your battery fails due to a mechanical issue, we will come out to replace it for you at no additional cost. IIf there isn't a mechanical issue, and you have extended your route, or used turbo for the full journey, then we are still happy to supply you with a replacement battery, but a charge would be payable for the time involved.
How do I make a booking?
The first step is to get in touch by email or phone and we can chat through your needs, check availability and discuss your bespoke route. We ask for a 20% non refundable deposit on booking, with the balance payable 48hrs before your experience (we email you your invoice for an online payment).
Can I hire the tandem for my wedding?'You'll look sweet upon the seat of a bicycle made for two"
Our e-tandem is a fabulous, eco, memorable and fun way to travel on your wedding day... Contact us for prices.
Do I need a licence or insurance?
No licence is required to ride a pedal assisted e-bike in the UK. The only legal requirement around e-bikes relates to age: you need to be 14 or over. You may be covered for public liability insurance as part of a holiday insurance package so it is worth you asking them if you are concerned. We have fleet cover for damage to, or theft of the bike during your experience - see our T's & C's for detail.
Can I get a refund if it rains?
Unfortunately the weather is the one component of your experience that we have no control over! If the forecast is looking dreadful for your booked day, we may be able to alter your itinerary to include more weather appropriate options.
Although it may understandably not be your preference to cycle in inclement weather, we can reassure you that our fleet of bikes are safe to ride in the rain - the batteries have sealed splash proof covers, and the hydraulic disc brakes ensure effective braking even in wet conditions. It is worth noting however that the batteries can not be fully immersed in water, nor should they be submitted to pressurised water from a hose pipe or jet wash.
Cancellations can be made up to 48hrs prior to the start of the Experience, however, you will lose your non-refundable booking deposit. In the event you cancel within 48hrs of the start time of the Experience, full payment will be retained.
Can I buy an experience as a gift for someone?
Absolutely! We can create a gift voucher for the value of your chosen experience and the recipient can contact us at their convenience to check availability and book at a time to suit them. Contact us for more information.