NL residents cycled less during pandemic
In the coroanvirus year of 2020, Netherlands residents covered 13 percent fewer cycling kilometers than in the previous year, BOVAG saw after analyzing Statistics Netherlands figures. Where Netherlands residents still cycled an average of 1,112 kilometers per year in 2019, that fell to 996 kilometers last year. Of the five detailed travel motives that people have, people only climbed on their bicycles more often for recreation in 2020.
The consequences of the coronavirus measures were most apparent in cycling when it came to the lower number of kilometers related to education and childcare (-39.3 percent) and commuting (-32.5 percent). The effect was considerably smaller for going out and hobbies, with a decrease of 18.8 percent compared to 2019. Netherlands residents continued to buy groceries by bicycle almost as often (-5.5 percent). Zeeland is the only region where in total there was more cycling than in 2019: the Zeeland resident covered an average of 1,255 kilometers in 2020, over 10 percent more than the year before.
The average Netherlands resident aged 12 and older covered 254 recreation kilometers on the two-wheeler in the coronavirus year, which is an increase of 30.3 percent compared to 2019. BOVAG finds an explanation for this in the closed gyms, the limited possibilities to exercise with sports associations, and closed day attractions. Recreational tours with the e-bike as an outing and exercise cycling and mountain biking became extremely popular, the trade association concluded.
Reporting by ANP