Amidst the Covid 19 pandemic Irish bike shops have witnessed a 70% increase in bike sales but are struggling to keep up with the demand.
The combination of good weather in 2020 and the Covid 19 restrictions on public transport has encouraged people around Ireland to start cycling again and demand for bicycles in 2020 increased by 32% compared to 2019 according to an Allied Irish Bank report.
However, the majority of bicycles are manufactured in Asia, particularly Taiwan. Due to the Covid 19 pandemic these factories were shut and are now struggling to catch up on back orders, let alone new demand.The closure of factories hasn't been limited to just the bicycle industry and with other global industries resuming production, shipping lanes and supply chains have become congested.The combination of demand and interrupted supply chains has seen Irish bicycle shops struggling to replenish their stock.
Despite the struggle to meet demand It was mostly good news for Irish bike shops according to the spending report released by Allied Irish Bank in November 2020.
Allied Irish Bank compared the spending habits of nearly one million customers over the period from January 2019 to September 2020.
That analysis has enabled the bank to assess trends across the economy and a key trend that has emerged is a massive spike in spending in bike shops. The key points to note in relation to Irish bicycle sales:
- Bicycle sales were up in the first quarter of 2020 before the Covid 19 influenced boom.
- Bicycle sales saw a drop of 34% in April compared to 2019 when bike shops were closed due to the lockdown restrictions.
- When bicycle shops re-opened in May, as an essential service, the increase in sales was immediate. Bike sales increased by 49% in May and were up 70 % in June compared to the same time in 2019.
- In July, bike sales were 63% higher, August 53 per cent and September 63 per cent higher compared to 2019.
- West Meath saw the highest percentage increase of sales per capita at 59% with Kerry reporting the lowest at only 2%. In Dublin sales were up by 40%.
- People over 55 accounted for the biggest increase in sales, with those aged between 55 and 64 spending 41% more compared to 2019. People aged over 65 spent 48% more in bike shops compared to 2019. However, it must be noted that this data does not factor in the end user of the bicycle i.e. the purchase of bikes for children.
- Women spent 41% more on bikes in 2020 compared to 2019, with men spending 29% more.
With the Irish Government committing to spending 10% of the total capital transport budget on cycling infrastructure, circa €180m it is promising times for cycling in Ireland.
Fortunately Rossa Cycles are fully stocked and you can browse the range of bikes here.