Friday, July 29, 2011

10 Countries With Most Bicycles Per Capita

There are more than a billion bicycles in the world, twice as many as automobiles. In recent years bike production had climbed to over 100 million per year (compared to 50 million cars). Bicycles were introduced in the 19th century and since when have been and are employed for many uses: recreation, work, military, show, sport etc. For example in the USA, people use bikes for slimming and better feeling because cycling burns 600 calories an hour, but in China or other countries people use bikes mostly for transportation needs. For these reasons in some countries bikes are especially popular. There are top 10 countries with most bicycles per capita:

10. China
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- People: 1,342,700,000
- Bicycles: >500,000,000
- Cyclists: >37.2%
Fact: 60 percent of local cyclists in Shanghai (most populous city in China) pedal to work every day. The city is home to 9,430,000 bicycles and 19,213,200 people.

9. Belgium
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- People: 10,827,519
- Bicycles: 5,200,000
- Cyclists: ~48%
In Belgium 8% of all trips are made by bike. The average distance cycled per person per day is 0.9 km. Cycling is a national sport for the Belgians. Belgians are very serious about their bike. A real Belgian keeps an expensive, quality bike well maintained with functioning breaks and inflated tires and usually wears a helmet and a bright yellow vest to make him or herself visible to car.

8. Switzerland
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- People: 7,782,900
- Bycicles: 3,800,000
- Cyclists: ~48.8
In Switzerland 5% of all trips and 10% of trips to work are made by bike. Switzerland is a cycling country. Here this is more than just an activity, it is a healthy way to enjoy the nature and the hospitality of local people. The Swiss even have “Bike to Work“ campaigns when employees ride their bike to work.

7. Japan
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- People: 127,370,000
- Bicycles: 72,540,000
- Cyclists: ~56.9%
In Japan 15 percent of trips to work are made by bicycle. In recent years more than 10 millions bikes are sold every year. In Japan bicycles are widely used as an alternative to motorcars. A lot of people use them to ride to the train stations. In nowadays more and more Japanese are taking up bicycling to work for health reasons and to avoid traffic jams and crowded trains. Many people don’t lock their bicycles even when they leave their bikes outside railroad stations all day or overnight.

6. Finland
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- People: 5,380,200
- Bicycles: 3,250,000
- Cyclists: ~60.4%
In Finland 9% of all trips are made by bike. The average distance cycled per inhabitant per day is 0.7 km. Fins ride bicycles without reference to the age or social status, both children and grown-ups: tourists and housewives, pensioners and students. Although the cycling season in this country  traditionally starts in spring or summer, some fans of bikes is not afraid of neither the rain, nor slush, nor event winter snowstorms. The love of Fins cyclists to the bicycles can be compared with their love to dogs, or to fishing, or to sauna.

5. Norway
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- People: 4,943,000
- Bicycles: 3,000,000
- Cyclists: ~60.7%
In Norway 4% of all trips are made by bike. In Norway, with a population of 4,943 million people and 3 million bicycles, 60.000 bicycles disappear each year, never to be seen by their owners again.Most bicycles are stolen from places owners assume are safe. Experienced thieves can take even locked bikes in about 10-20 seconds.On the streets, the value of a stolen bicycle is approximately 5-10% of the bicycle’s original retail value, with an inverse relationship between value and percentage worth on the street. About 10% of the stolen bicycles are exported to Russia and Eastern Europe. 

4. Sweden
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- People: 9,418,732
- Bicycles: 6,000,000
- Cyclists: ~63.7%
In Sweden 9% of all trips are made by bike. The average distance cycled per person per day is 0.7 km. The bicycle in Swedish family is a necessary thing such as a TV-set. For Swedish people bike is even more valuable than a TV. Often a family has a few different bicycles, depending on the number of members of a family and their age.

3. Germany
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- People: 81,802,000
- Bicycles: 62,000,000
- Cyclists: ~75.8%
In the Germany 9% of all trips are made by bike. The average distance cycled per inhabitant per day is 0.9 km. Cycling is ingrained in the German culture. It is rare to find an adult German who did not grow up riding a bike and whose children, parents, and even grandparents probably still ride bikes. This fact makes drivers and pedestrians understanding and accommodating to bicycle riders (unlike in the US).

2. Denmark
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- People: 5,560,628
- Bicycles: 4,500,000
- Cyclists: ~80.1%
In the Denmark 18% of all trips are made by bike.The average distance cycled per person is 1.6 km. Cycling is generally perceived as a healthier, cheaper, environmentally friendlier and often even quicker way to travel around towns than car or public transport and it is therefore municipal policy for the number of commuters by bike to go up to 40% by 2012 and 50% by 2015. In Copenhagen (the capital of Denmark) 37% of all citizens ride their bike on a daily basis. The local town hall even offers the visitors rental bikes for free.Interesting fact: the average travelling speed in Copenhagen is 16 kph for cyclists and 27 kph for cars.

1. Netherlands
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- People: 16,652,800
- Bicycles: 16,500,000
- Cyclists: ~99.1%
In the Netherlands 27% of all trips and 25% of trips to work are made by bike. The average distance cycled per person per day is 2.5 km. Holland and bicycles go together like bread and jam. Despite the recession the cycle-happy Dutch are still spending a lot of money on their bicycles - nearly 1 billion euros’ worth a year. About 1.3 million bicycles were sold in the Netherlands in 2009, at an average price of 713 euros ($1,008) each. Amsterdam (the capital and largest city of the Netherlands) is one of the most bicycle-friendly large cities in the world. It has 400 km of bike lanes and nearly 40% of all commutes in Amsterdam are done on bike. Strangely, most cyclists don’t wear helmets. And bike theft is a big problem, with about one of five (20%) bicycles being stolen each year.

USA (For Comparison)
- People: 310,936,000
- Bicycles: 100,000,000
- Bicylists: ~32,2%
In the USA only 0,9% of all trips are made by bike. The average distance cycled per person is 0.1 km.
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1 comment:

  1. Wow!
    I'd love to ride my bike in Amsterdam and don't have to be afraid of cars.


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