Q : Do your tours start and end at the same location ??
A . NO! For the most part our tours start and end at different locations. But always they will start and end within easy walk ( about a block or two ) from public transit , mainly Subway stations.
Q: How long in time and distance are your tours ??
A : The duration of our tours are outlined in the description of each specific tour. For the most part the half day tours, both the “Sunset “, “Sweets” & “Brownstone” tour last about 4 to 5 hours and cover about 16 to 20 miles . The full day tours are a bit longer and last about 8 to 9 hours and can be from 30 to 35 miles depending on destination.
Q : Do I have to be an avid cyclist to enjoy your tours ?? And just how fast does the group travel??
A : Absolutely NOT!…one does not need to be a jock to partake in our tours. Our guests range from teens to seniors to families. our pace is relaxed and we stop frequently for photo ops and food tastings. For all our tours our average pace while traveling on smooth flat terrain is about 8 to 10 Miles / Hour. Naturally, on some small hills the pace is adjusted accordingly. We will not drop anyone. However we do ask that you are honest with yourself and consider not doing the tour if you sincerely feel that you cannot keep the advertised pace. We cannot let the group get too far detached as it might effect the advertised duration of the tour and it is not fair to the rest of our guests.
Q: We have heard a lot about riding bikes in NYC . Is it safe and fun??
A : NYC, and many other large urban cities, have received a bad rap with regard to cycling. Yes it's true, there are some renegades out there that give the rest of us law abiding cyclists a bad name. However NYC has made a real effort to promote cycling and has added hundreds of miles of bike lanes and greenways, both on and off road. As tour operators we will set a positive image. We will abide by the rules of the road and ride responsibly. We ask that all our guests follow the lead of their tour guide and ride safely and cautiously for the safety of themselves and the rest of the tour group. all of our tours require that our guests sign a waiver and release of liability prior to participation of any tour.
Q : what do I wear for the tour. ??
A : What to wear is rather subjective. We ask that you wear comfortable clothes for the activity . comfortable walking shoes or sneakers are best. Avoid long flapping dresses, high heels or heavy back packs. A light windbreaker may be appropriate for early & late season riding. Sunglasses may also help during those bright sunny days. We want you to enjoy the tour and be comfortable.
Q: Will there be any walking during the tour ??
A: Yes, you will encounter some walking on all our tours . occasionally we will dismount to reach the river bank , or possibly climb some stairs to reach an out of the way park or destination. In general as much as about 5 to 10% of the tour may be on foot.
Q; what do I bring along on the tour ??
A : First thing to bring on our tours is your sense of adventure and camaraderie. We have a lot of fun as a small group and almost inevitably friendships will be born. We ask that you travel light. Avoid large cumbersome backpacks . Do bring a digital camera ( point and shoot is the best ) avoid if possible those large multi lens cameras that weigh you down and interfere with your movement . Do bring personal identification some small amount of cash and a metro card for public transit.
Q: How large are the groups ?? And what is the minimum number riders required to make the tour possible??
A: The size of our groups is relatively small. For the most part we will keep the group size to about 6 to 8 guests. We pride on personal service over profit . We want our guests to enjoy their visit to our wonderful boro. We do not want our guest to feel that they are part of a large conglomeration.
As for the required minimum number of riders, this has been a sticking point for us . We hate to cancel tours. Most of our guest travel from other parts of the country or the world and are in NYC a short time. We do not like to disappoint our guest who have booked a tour and find out that it was cancelled due to insufficient guests. However for our tours to be cost effective about 4 riders need to book before we can go on. Having said all that, we have, under special circumstances conducted tours with as little as 2 guests . Please contact us . We can usually "modify " a tour slightly to accommodate a small amount of guests and still make it cost effective for us.
Q: what happens if it rains on tour day ??
A: unfortunately we cannot control the weather. Part of the fun of discovering the city is to be outdoors. However this puts us at a disadvantage when it comes to bad weather. As a general rule we will NOT ride in the rain. We take the safety of our guests serious. As experienced cyclist who have logged many thousands of miles on city streets we do not enjoy riding in the rain unless absolutely necessary. The brakes do not work well, visibility is impaired , shoes and pedals get slippery and other forms of transportation that share the city streets also have to contend with the same hazards. It is for this reason we keep a keen eye on the weather report . if there is a viable chance of rain for anytime during the duration of the tour we will cancel the tour and offer a full refund .Occasionally it has happened that at start time the weather is fine but an unsuspecting rain showers hits . during such times we will either wait it out if its just a temporary passing shower or end the tour if the rain continues . We will offer a partial pro-rated refund if the tours is less than 100% complete .
Please refer to our policies page for further information on cancellations.
Q: what happens if for some reason a guest cannot complete the tour ??
A: We understand that things happen to the best of us . If for any personal reason a guest must leave the tour prematurely we will ensure that he / she is able to return home ( hotel) safely. if possible by public transit or taxi. We will NOT leave anyone stranded alone . We will secure the bike and escort the guest to the subway or call a taxi and insure the guest can arrive at their destination safely. This may delay the tour a few extra minutes but I'm sure the rest of our guests will understand. As always the safety and comfort of our guest is our priority.
Q; What kind of bike do you use for your tours ??
A: our bikes are late model city touring bikes. very comfortable seats and easily adjustable handlebars, seat post & multi speed grip shifting. All of our bikes have a rear rack with elastic hold down cord to carry small packs and light clothing . Also our bikes feature a front handlebar bag for convenience items like a wallet , small camera , tissues , glasses and other small items. In addition all of our bikes have a water bottle holder .
Q: Can I bring my own bike on the tour ??
A: YES , we welcome personal bikes. and offer a small discount to those bringing personal bikes . Although our bikes are comfortable, there is something to be said about having you personal bike along and being familiar and comfortable riding it. We ask that you let us know in advance if you plan on using your own bike. Please understand that we cannot be responsible for the mechanical integrity of you personal bike. Our tour guides are experienced mechanics, however they cannot perform lengthy major mechanical repairs on personal bikes as it may jeopardize the time frame of the tour. While we encourage guests to bring personal bikes ,in fairness to other guests , we ask that they be in sound mechanical repair.
Q: I have some allergies to some foods ( or some food contents are a concern to me ) but I still want to participate in the tour. Can you accommodate me ??
A: Absolutely YES . Our tours are primarily bike sightseeing tours . A secondary benefit is the food stops. If food contents are a concern for you, please let us know prior to registering. if a guest is unable to partake in some or all of the food tasting for any reason we will offer a discount accordingly.
Q: What is the process on tour day :
A: After the online registration has been confirmed , our guests receive an e/ mail outlining the details of the tour. enclosed will be the starting location of the tour , name and phone numbers of tour guide , easy to follow subway directions and a link to NYC transit information web site for additional information. Our tour guide will greet you at the designated location and fit each guest to a bike , adjusting important bike functions for a safe and comfortable fit. a street safety and tour safety guidelines talk will follow. Guests will be given the opportunity to get familiar with their bikes before the actual start . Any concerns will be addressed by the tour guide prior to start . it is VERY important that our guest arrive at least 20 to 30 minutes early to allow for the above procedures. Our tours will leave on time . Generally we cannot wait for guest who arrive late and jeopardize the tour schedule.
Q; What happens in the event of a mechanical problem to the tour bikes ??
A: all our bikes are professionally maintained, Major mechanical problems are very rare . Flat tires are the most common problem our tour guides face. They are expert cyclists and mechanics, and are fully equipped to handle emergency road repairs and will generally repair a flat within 10 minutes. On those very rare occasions that serious mechanical problem on our bikes prevents our guest from continuing, we will follow the guidelines outlined in the question " if one cannot complete the tour ". We will also offer that guest a full refund and our sincerest apologies .
Q: What is your tour "season" ??
A : Our standard tour season is from mid- March to mid- November. However, we have conducted tours outside of those dates if weather permits . Please contact us for availability of tours outside our standard tour season.
Q: Do you offer tandems ??
A: YES , we do have a limited number of tandems available for your use. Please contact us in advance of your registration as there is an additional charge for this service. Please see our "Policy" section for guidelines in bringing children on the tour.
Q: What if the web site indicates the tour is full can you still accommodate me ??
A: Maybe !. occasionally there will be a last minute cancellation. Or our tour operator will sometimes accommodate an extra person under certain conditions. Please contact us if the tour is full . We can take you contact information and place you on waiting list .
Q: Do you offer other tours outside of Brooklyn ??
A : Brooklyn is our home and passion. We specialize in Brooklyn centric tours . However, many times we have conducted tours outside of Brooklyn. Please contact us as we do offer specialty & custom made tours to small groups practically anyware in the city.
Q: Can you recommend things to do or places to stay in Brooklyn ??
A: YES ! We love Brooklyn. And even if you are unable to attend one of our tours, we want you enjoy you stay in our wonderful boro. We have included a link of Brooklyn resources on our site . Still if you need more specific information contact us we will be glad to help you.
Q. Do you offer tours in other languages ??
A: Yes, other than English, we can offer tours in Italian & Spanish.
Q. Can I tranfer my paid registration to a friend or relative if I cannot attend the tour ??
A: Yes, your entry registration is transferable. However, the new participant must contact us to allow us to adjust our records . Please contact us before transferring a registration if it's within one week of the start date.