Do-it-Yourself Bicycle Touring in Europe Just Got Easier

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Schleping a bike to Europe for a two week vacation can be a daunting task for the most experienced traveler, but finding a quality bicycle to rent in Europe presents an even bigger challenge.

Rick Price, owner and founder of ExperiencePlus! Bicycle and Walking Tours, has discovered a growing number of people looking to rent quality bicycles in Italy and France. Some are doing self-guided bicycle trips, others are organizing trips for a group of friends, and still others want to be able to bicycle from their rented villa. So when Price looked at his bicycle touring company’s fleet of more than three hundred quality hybrid and racing bikes sitting idle at his warehouse in Italy, something clicked.

In 2005, Price received a number of unsolicited requests from people looking for quality bikes to rent in Europe and was surprised to find at year end that a significant figure had been added to his bottom line. The Bike Rentals Plus website was launched in early 2006 and the response has been a bit overwhelming. “Since the Bike Rentals Plus website became live in March we have received a steady stream of requests from people looking for bikes, and a good number are also looking for villa rentals, bicycle racks and route advice,” Price notes.

"I am bilingual and I’ve been bicycling and scouting routes for our tours in Europe for nearly forty years," says Price, "and even I get tired of all the logistics of bringing my own bike. The challenges begin with packing the bike, figuring out where to store the bike case or box while I’m riding, hauling the bike around airports and train stations, not to mention the added expense of flying it overseas."

There is a whole new breed of traveler in the States looking for villa vacations, apartment rentals and do-it-yourself bicycle tours in Europe. After all, who wouldn’t want to go ride their bikes and spend a week in a cozy farmhouse apartment in Italy? “Up to now no one has been servicing the bicycle rentals portion of this market" adds Price.

Bike Rentals Plus! adds value to all its rentals by offering a professional bike fitting and consulting services including assistance in designing your bike tour, rentals of panniers (saddle bags), roof racks for six to nine-passenger vans, and luggage shuttle services for self-guided bicycle tours. What else? Need a mountain bike in Costa Rica? Bike Rentals Plus! can help there too.

BikeRentalsPlus! is a division of ExperiencePlus! Specialty Tours, a family owned bicycle and walking tour business based in Fort Collins, Colorado. The owners, Rick and Paola Price are themselves avid cyclists. Paola is Italian and her family farm serves as our bicycle warehouse and European headquarters.

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