I enjoy taking my bike places. It’s a way for me to travel around the city without spending money on transportation costs. I often come home at night with my lights on and a smile on my face knowing that I saved money on transportation and had a workout at the same time.
One day I left my bike at SM Bicutan. When I came back my lights were missing. They were stolen. The same week my friend tells me that both her lights were stolen.
I hate how SM is the worst place to park your bike in Metro Manila. The bike parking is often far away from where security can see it. One time the parking lady told me she’ll have to charge me a regular rate for parking my bike when I always got my bike parked for free.
Bring things with you. Everything that can be removed will be removed. I recommend that you make sure that you take your lights, bike repair bag, bike pump, drinking bottle off your bike if you ever need to leave it. If any of it gets stolen whatever money you saved from the trip will go to replacing the lost items.
Be sure to chain up your bike properly. One benefit of quick release wheel locks is you can fix your wheels faster. This may also lead to stolen wheels. When you lock your bike make sure both wheels are attached. If you can, don’t have quick release locks on your seat post. Bring a multi-tool instead if you need to adjust your seats.
Always Park near a security guard. I don’t count on the guard to look after my bike but having one around is better than having none around. Just make sure you tell them to look after your bike, they won’t, but when you do they associate you with the bike and will possibly be suspicious of anyone not you who comes after your bike. Be nice and give them twenty or fifty pesos if you need to leave your bike for long. It’s cheaper than losing bike parts or losing your bike.
Don’t leave your bike. If you can please don’t. Buying a bike is an investment and losing a bike is heartbreaking. I have never lost a bike but I can’t bear the thought of losing mine. Only take your bike with you if you’ll be riding it the whole time and it’ll always be within your sight whenever you can. Whenever you do not follow this tip then know that you risk losing your bike.
Cycling is fun but cycling carries risks. You can manage the risk by being careful.
Do you have stories about cycling in the Philippines? Please let me know.Written on May 11th, 2016 by Kevin Olega