As the weather’s getting better and better every day, the best way to get around town is definitely by bicycle. I didn’t always have one until very recently, for the reason I’d share later in the post. If you are new in town, or wandering where you can buy a new/used, affordable bicycle, then hopefully this post will answer some of your questions.
As you Google “Bike stores” in Turku, there would be a long list of local stores that selling or repairing bicycles around town. It really depends on your needs and usages to decide which bike to purchase. For instance, if you plan to stay in Finland for a long time, and want to ride bicycle even in winter, or if you want to have a professional bike for trails or sports, etc then investing in a new and expensive bike would be a good idea. Purchasing new ones would save you from worrying about the bike getting broken, or if something doesn’t work well. It usually comes with a guarantee which also offers peace of mind.
In individual bike shops, they carry a wide range of different types, and they definitely would have experts who know about bikes to help you choose the most suitable one. There are other places you can find new bicycles with probably cheaper prices are XXL, K-citymarket, Stadium, etc – many times there are sales going on, too.
As someone who has no ideas about bikes in general, and only use bike for daily and casual commute, I was looking for a bike that affordable and simple. Most of the new ones cost more than I can afford, so after searching for awhile, I opted for a second-hand bike.
After doing some research, I went to Turun Ekotori to see what bikes they had in storage at the moment. I was still quite unsure about purchasing a secondhand bike, I guess it would not hurt to check. When I got there, they had around 25 different second-hand bikes with prices from 50 Euros to more than 200 Euros. All the bikes are checked with tags stating the condition and quality of the bikes. One thing is they have bicycle-mechanics, who check and make sure the bike is in good working condition before putting in on sale. When you buy the bicycle, they also help to adjust the bike handle and saddle according to your needs.
Another great thing is you are offered 20% off with a student card, and two-week of guarantee for the bike (except the tires). This is so great, since you’d have two-week to try out the bike and see if there are any problems with it. I actually came back to Ekotori twice because I needed some adjustments with the handles. The staffs were so helpful and nice, and I always came back home with satisfaction. If they had a rating system at the store, I would always rate it 5 stars.
Some tips of Do & Don’t
There are other places you can buy used bicycles besides Turun Ekotori. For instance, in local bicycle shops, sometime they have second-hand bikes for sale. Many students also sell their bikes on some Flea-Market groups on Facebook or around campuses, Student Village, etc. The biggest problem with second-hand bikes is if you are not a mechanic, it is hard to know if the bikes are in good conditions.
When I first arrived in Finland, I purchased an old bicycle from another international student for a cheap price. But I didn’t get to use it for longer than several months because it started to have multiple problems. After a while, fixing it cost more than the initial price that I paid for. The only “advantage” that came with that old bike was it looked quite rusty, so I never had to worry about it being stolen.
So if you decide to buy a used bike from someone else, make sure to check the conditions and originality of the bike. Ask someone who knows about bicycles to come with you. It would be frustrating and unsafe to ride an unreliable bike. Get yourself a secure lock to protect your bike,too. Sadly, bike thefts lurking around the city are very common, so remember to always lock your bike. If you have to leave your bike outside overnight, try to secure both wheels with proper locks. This may sound silly, but DON’T lock your bike to another bike. It happened to me once; it was surprising to me too. Lock it to the bike sacks!
I hope that this post would be helpful for anyone who’s looking for more inspiration and information on purchasing bikes in Turku. Happy cycling and bike safe everyone!
Hello blog readers! Thank you for stopping by. I am a Vietnamese student at UTU majoring in Education, loving and living life here in Turku , Finland. I’m gonna write about the exciting life of an international student who’s trying to complete her degrees while learning to appreciate the Finnish weathers <3.