Ben HaywardSeptember 9th
2020

You may be feeling a little more nervous than usual about heading off to uni - especially if crowded buses, trams or trains are your normal way of getting about.

But, if you are concerned about your travel arrangements, it could be worth considering getting on your bike! 

Cycling is a great way to support your wellbeing and also encourage social distancing when you’re travelling to and from halls and lectures.

But of course, if your bike is going to be your main mode of transport it’s well worth making sure it’s covered if anything goes amiss. 

Specialists in student insurance, Endsleigh offer great specific bike insurance. You can get covered from as little as £3 per month* to be protected for theft, loss or physical damage anywhere in the UK, and even for up to 90 days worldwide!

So, you think cycling could be the way forward for you? Well helpfully, new research has just been published which has revealed the most cycle-friendly universities in the UK - and despite its rather hilly location, the University of Edinburgh has officially been named as the best in the UK for student cyclists! 

The research - which was carried out Mystudenthalls.com - ranked the UK’s universities using measures including campus bike storage, pro-cycling, and bike campaigns, university cycling societies, accessibility of local bike shops and quality of resources for would-be cyclists, with points deducted for bike theft and air pollution levels.

So, what makes Edinburgh Uni so cycle-friendly? Well, a major contributor are its ‘Doctor Bike’ events. Run across loads of universities, the events see friendly, experienced mechanics on hand to check your wheels, gears, brakes and more, so it’s definitely worth looking out for them at your own university!

Coming in a close second was the University of Bristol. Again, despite being home to one of the UK’s steepest roads, the University has a vibrant cycling culture, featuring free bike clinics and university cycling communities.

Heading back north of the border, at number three we have Glasgow. Offering free bicycle security (you can check out our tips on how to keep your bike safe here) marking as well as bike rental memberships - with 30 minutes free each rental - Glasgow performed well across the board. 

The University of Manchester ranks at number four thanks to recent investment in Dutch-style cycle lanes near campus as well as several cycling initiatives to promote cycling among students, such as cycle training and second hand bike sales.

Completing the top five is Nottingham which has invested heavily in cycle parking spaces and cycle stores meaning those insurance premiums should be considerably cheaper!

It’s worth noting that famously cycle-friendly Cambridge was sixth on the list - and with over 30 bike shops, a lot of which offer student discount, it was its high levels of bicycle theft that pushed it down the rankings. 

You can check out the full top 25 below. 

If all this has got you itching to get on two wheels, it’s worth investing in a good D-lock and of course lights, reflectors and the all-important helmet.  

As mentioned before, it’s 100% worth insuring your bike against theft, loss and damage with Endsleigh, because once you discover cycling as your way of commuting, you won’t want to go back!

It’s also a good idea to register your bike with BikeRegister, as if you are unlucky enough to have it stolen this national cycle database could reunite you with your two-wheeled friend. 

With both physical and mental health as well as the environment being pushed further and further up agendas, let’s hope universities continue the trend and keep investing in more ways to support students in getting on their bikes!

Top 25 UK universities for cycling:

  1. University of Edinburgh

  2. University of Bristol

  3. University of Glasgow

  4. University of Manchester

  5. University of Nottingham

  6. University of Cambridge

  7. University of Warwick

  8. University of Southampton

  9. University of Birmingham

  10. University of Oxford

  11. University of Exeter

  12. University of Sheffield

  13. University of Sussex

  14. Lancaster University

  15. King’s College London

  16. Imperial College London

  17. University of York

  18. UCL

  19. Durham University

  20. London School of Economics and Political Science

  21. Queen Mary University of London

  22. University of Leicester

  23. University of Aberdeen

  24. University of Leeds

  25. University of Liverpool

*For a £200 bike on campus, based on a student living in Bath

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