If you love cycling and are broke, you are in luck! There are an increasing number of ways to make a buck from pedalling these days. From wearing a cube on your back or becoming a mobile billboard, businesses as well as individuals are cashing in on the rising urban bike culture.
Aside from the usual methods like being a bicycle courier or rickshaw driver, there are more new and innovative businesses taking advantage of cycling communities. Enough to see this as a definite trend.
Deliveroo / Uber eats: Do you want to wear a cube on your back? Not really, but does it make up for flexible work and competitive pay? Cyclists who work for these companies are are self-employed and can work their selected hours. Riders are offered discounts as well as up to £16/hour depending on the location.
Petalon : bouquets by bicycle
Carbon-neutral gift giving is on the rise. Petalon deliver lovely rustic flowers by bicycle. The website features an ultra simple restricted number of options and features daily bouquets. Who wouldn’t be into delivery flowers by bicycle, a definite spirit-lifter.
Lacuna Digital: The world’s first carbon neutral digital advertising platform. The idea is that a screen is mounted to your bicycle which is pedal powered. Location specific ads are beamed to your bike as your ride around town and get paid for it. I am not sure whether the product has actually launched into a commercial setting but it sure has a lot of potential.
Buzz Bike: You get a FREE bike in exchange for becoming a mobile bill board, but don’t worry you don’t have to wear a wooden bread board or a giant finger. Your bike becomes is a smart advertising platform. But not just anyone is eligible, programme applicants must put down a £100 deposit — which is refundable upon the safe return of the bike at the end of a 1- or 2-year agreement. The agreement includes a commitment to ride the bike to work at least 12 days each month and park on the street.
Mobile Bike Mechanic
Aussie company, the Rolling Fix features a mobile bike fixing cargo bike. With that sunny weather down-under it definitely makes a lot of sense. Read more about bikes and the on-demand economy on our recent blog post <here>. Its basically exchanging a van for a cargo bike but we have to ask ourselves the question why there are not more of these businesses on the road. My guess is that there will be soon!
As we strive towards a more mindful existence, which includes taking life a bit slower, there is no doubt that cars, cabs and white vans will be exchanged for racing bikes, rickshaws and cargo bikes. This is especially true in big cities like New York and London and it has already happened in cities like Copenhagen and Amsterdam. More jobs and money-making opportunities will be available for those who ride and at the same time companies will be rewarded for developing and commercialising their green technology. In combination with the growing on-demand economy and the trend of an increasing number of small business, start-ups and freelancers, there will also be endless opportunities for cashing in on being a cyclst in the coming years.
About the author
Jacqui Ma is a trend forecaster and founder of Goodordering, East London bag company.