5 Cycling Tips for Night Riders

Singapore may be a heaven for night cyclists because of ridiculously low crime rate and almost non-existence of theft. However, accidents can happen anytime if you care less about your safety when riding around town. To ensure comfort and safety, here are some tips to keep in mind when going for a night ride.

1. Get yourself enough lights
If you intend to routinely commute by bike early in the morning or after sunset, make sure you have appropriate lighting. Check out a local bicycle shop for a LED head light and a big, bright red light for your rear end. A bicycle accessories shop has a selection of bike lights for different bike sizes and price range, so you should be able to choose one suitable for your bike and budget.

2. Wear reflective clothing
While lights are critical for night rides, do not discount the importance of reflective clothing. Bicycle accessories such as a reflective jackets and commuter bags with reflective strips on them may be costly, but they offer as much security as seatbelts and airbags in cars. The reflective materials used in these bicycle accessories make it easier for other motorists to see you on the road at night.

3. Carry enough tools
Fixing a mechanical glitch in the dark is not fun, so one of the first things to secure before a night ride is to ensure you have enough tools on hand. You can find mini multi-repair kits at almost any bicycle shop in Singapore. Since you will be cycling instead of riding a car, look for a kit that is easy to carry around or may even fit in your pocket.

4. Be prepared for whatever weather
Although checking the weather forecast is one of the key essentials when cycling at any time of the day, at most times it’s hard to predict when it might rain. Especially at night, when your vision is reduced, it is even more imperative to be prepared. Dress appropriately by always wearing your reflective waterproof cycling jacket. After-sunset hours are usually cool and windy anyway, so might as well have a jacket with you at all times.

5. Know your route
Whether you’re cycling to get home from work or for your daily dose of fitness, make sure to use a familiar route before setting off. During the day, it may be easy to detect which turn to take or stop and check your map for your progress. However, at night, visibility can make it difficult to see the end of the street. Even if you have Google Maps to help you, seasoned cyclists still suggest sticking to familiar routes for your safety.

For avid cyclists, a day or night ride may not have much of a difference. However, for casual commuters, a night cycle may impose some risks if you are not equipped with the right gear and knowledge. Picking up some essentials, such as lighting and reflective clothing, from a bicycle shop would already make a great difference in ensuring your safety on the road at night.