Most of our study abroad locations offer bike friendly cities which can present many fun and exciting opportunities and give freedom to those of you who fear you’ll miss your wheels living away from home. While studying in France I rented a bike for a full month for the equivalent of $16 USD. Although prices may have gone up over the years, renting a bike can still be very affordable and will allow you to explore your host city from a completely different perspective. It will also give you the means to get out and away from the city center and, in some cases, into the country side or up into the mountains.
Another positive that I personally saw in my $16 investment was the workout. Since gyms are not always as available as they tend to be in the US, riding a bike to and from campus can be a great way to get exercise or, in my case, to work off some of the extra pounds that eating a different diet can pack on. If you’re living with a host family, be sure to discuss where you will keep the bike before you come home with it. If you’re living in an apartment or dormitory, be sure there is a secure place to lock it up at night.
You can also rent a bike one day or one week at a time and bigger cities offer loads of options. The next time I’m on London, I think I’ll try one of these on for size: http://www.bbc.com/travel/blog/20110622-rent-an-electric-bike-in-london. Ride safe!