The Urban Cycling Guide

Test your Bike-Q.

Earn free gear.*

Boston loves cyclists, so we want to make sure you’re prepared for everything. Be aware of common urban hazards and how to avoid them. Know the rules of the road and proper cycling etiquette, too. Ride smart. Ride safe. And most of all, enjoy yourself.

Review these safety points.

doorzoneBlindSpotsHelmetsAndLights

Beware of doors. You are allowed full use of the road, so ride at least 3 feet from parked cars, even in traffic.

Follow the rules of the road. Yield to pedestrians. Ride in the direction of traffic. Stay off sidewalks in business districts. Stop for all red lights and stop signs.

Avoid large vehicle blind spots. Trucks, buses, and over-sized vehicles have large blind spots, particularly on the right. Avoid overtaking large vehicles. Stay visible to the drivers — if you can’t see the driver in the mirror, the driver can’t see you.

Use helmets and lights. Wear your helmet. Use lights, reflectors, and bright clothing to see and be seen. Lights are required by law! Helmets are required by your mom.

Watch these safety videos.

From the League of American Bicyclists.

ScanningSignalingLane ChangingIntersection PositioningBike LanesTraffic LawsWhere should I ride?Riding on the sidewalkBike Helmets

And this one, made by Boston University.

Get a low cost helmet.

You can order a helmet online for $24.99, which includes shipping. You can also purchase a helmet for less than $10 at the following retailers. Don’t worry about the price: It protects your head to the exact same standards as more expensive helmets.

Free helmets are available to qualified low-income Boston residents. Call or e-mail Najah Shakir, 617.918.4343, najah.shakir@cityofboston.gov. Limited to the first 250 helmets.


View Low Cost Helmets in a larger map

Take the quiz.

Have you studied up on urban cycling? Do you know when and where you need to stop and how many lights you should have on your bike at night? Are you prepared to navigate blind spots? Prove your knowledge. Test your Bike-Q. Earn free gear.*

Connect with us.

Find more resources.


Boston Bikes would like to thank the following supporters for their help with making this campaign a success:

Allston-Brighton BikesBerklee College of MusicBeth Israel Deaconess Medical CenterBike Safe BostonBikes Not BombsBoston Bike Party - Boston Bikes Advisory Group - Boston CollegeBoston Cyclists UnionBoston Public Health CommissionBoston UniversityBrigham and Women’s HospitalDana Farber Cancer InstituteDot BikeEmmanuel CollegeEmerson CollegeHarvard University - HubwayJP BikesLivableStreets AllianceMASCOMassachusttes College of Art and DesignMassachusetts Institute of Technology - MassBikeMission Hill BikesNeighborhood of Affordable Housing, Inc.Northeastern UniveristyRozzie BikesSouthie BikesSuffolk UniversityWentworth Institute of Technology


*You must be a resident of Massachusetts to earn free gear. Limited to the first 250 respondents. Gift packs may include some of the following items: Hubway day pass, front and rear bike lights, bike map, Larabar, low cost helmet info, water bottle and more.

The Urban Cycling Guide

Did you know?

Hub Bicycle in Cambridge (a woman-owned repair shop) offers a free basic maintenance/flat fixing clinic on the first Wednesday of every month, from 7–9 PM.

“No prior knowledge is necessary. Really. Don’t be intimidated.” Advance sign up is required. Tell her that Boston Bikes sent ya.

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