Ontario By Bike Network: 
Industry Update - March 2020
Ready for 2020 Cycling Season 
& COVID-19 Updates 

Thank you for your attention and choosing to read our latest industry enewsletter. We recognize and empathize with all impacted by the very serious current situation around COVID-19, state of emergency and constant changing environment. 

Just yesterday morning (March 19) we joined over 1,000 industry stakeholders on a 'Town Hall' conference call with Minister Lisa MacLeod and senior level government officials from the Provincial Ministry of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture.  Her message was one of positive support for the valued tourism industry, and recognized the magnitude and impact to tourism industries, anticipated to be impacted the greatest after Health Services. 

She was able to state that funding models in place to support the following tourism entities, and more, will remain stable: Regional Tourism Organizations, festivals and events, sport organizations, cultural facilities and attractions, parks commissions, Ontario Trillium Foundation, Destination Ontario. The Ministry under her leadership is establishing special advisory committees, reaching out to and working with key industry leaders and associations, also welcoming and taking into consideration all input and recommendations from industry stakeholders during these unprecedented times.

A key take-away, and one that we wish to convey to all, is that we all need to be ready and in a good position to resume business and welcome back visitors as soon as we receive notice and can reasonably do so. 

Hence, while you may have a few extra moments in what is normally a busy schedule, we encourage you read our industry enewsletter below and be active on the following:
  • If you are a certified bicycle friendly business, check your Ontario By Bike listing and make sure all info is up to date
  • Reach out and ask for a new Ontario By Bike window decal (we just took delivery of a new batch and can mail out a new one to replace any lost or weathered)
  • Submit an application to win the Best Bicycle Friendly Business award for your region

To all our contacts:

  • Track workshop reschedule dates for your region
  • Request copies for distribution of our new Cycling in Ontario guide
  • Get in touch if you have any questions or would simply like to reconnect, we are available and working remotely from our regular office
WHY? Because the summer cycling season is just around the corner, and cyclists will soon be ready to hit the road and trails in your destination. 
- 2020 Cycling in Ontario Guide -

We are incredibly pleased to share with you the 2020 Cycling in Ontario / Le vélo en Ontario guide. In mid February we took delivery of 40,000 print copies. Check it out, the guide is now also available online at: ontariobybike.ca/2020

Packed with over 50 day trip and overnight itineraries for all types of bikes and some fantastic cycling stories, our 8th annual Cycling in Ontario guide is a must have for all avid cyclists to find inspiration for their next biking adventure.

Cyclists eagerly await our annual publication and we are pleased to report that in little under a month we have distributed close to 40%. 
  • We have sent out an announcement through our communication channels to cyclists/consumers through our enewsletter (over 15,000 subscribers) and social media channels and will continue to include. Please consider sharing through your channels.
  • We are already receiving and are processing a large number of individual fulfillment requests.

  • We distributed large quantities at the Montreal and Toronto Bike Shows, and the Toronto Outdoor Adventure Show, from our Ontario Cycle Tourism Information Centre and display.
  • 8,000 copies of Le vélo en Ontario, French edition, will be distributed with April issue of Vélo Mag.
While we have an excellent distribution plan for the remainder, we would welcome any requests from businesses, industry partners and visitor information centres to assist with distribution of this free publication. Please note that due to current challenges, shipments may be delayed or can be delayed at your request - we will note all instructions provided. 

To request copies of this free publication, and to assist with distribution, email quantity of English and/or French version and shipping address to:  [email protected]
Boxes are sized 120, but can be packed in any quantity requested. 
We thank you in advance for your assistance. 
Win An Award!
Best Bicycle Friendly Businesses in Ontario

With a successful first year of our bicycle friendly business awards in 2019 under our belt, (see 2019 winners here) we are pleased to announce the second year of our Ontario By Bike Bicycle Friendly Business Awards. With over 1,500 certified bicycle friendly businesses across Ontario a part of the Ontario By Bike Network, we want to award, showcase and help promote those locations that take the extra steps to welcome and accommodate the needs of cyclists, helping to shape Ontario into a world class cycling destination. 

Does your business excel in catering to and welcoming cyclists that visit your location? 

Do you go above and beyond offering specific services and amenities for cyclists? 

Are you the most bicycle friendly business in your region? 

We want to showcase and celebrate what you do!

If you are part of the Ontario By Bike bicycle friendly business network , we invite you to submit an application to be considered the best bicycle friendly business in your geographic region. 

There will be one selected per region as defined by the Government of Ontario  RTO/Regional Tourism Organization boundaries.

If selected your business will:
  • Be featured and promoted via our digital channels including our monthly e-newsletters avidly read by 15,000 subscribers
  • Receive an award and recognition from Ontario By Bike
  • Win the chance to receive a free month of banner advertising on the Ontario By Bike website with large exposure to cyclists across Ontario and beyond
Submit your application by filling out the form accessed from link below, and before April 20 to participate in the 2020 contest. We will be announcing two winners monthly in our consumer/cyclists enewsletter and including them on the following page:  ontariobybike.ca/2020awardwinners

We look forward to your participation. If you have any further questions please direct them to  [email protected]

Upcoming Ontario By Bike Cycle Tourism Destination Development Workshops

As part of our mission, Ontario By Bike is always working on increasing the exposure and awareness of our bicycle friendly business certification program throughout the province. To increase participation, include new regions and provide updates on programming and development in cycle tourism, we host regional workshops to assist with outreach. This spring we had several workshops set for March and May, but due to recent COVID-19 challenges, these will be rescheduled. 

Workshops to be Rescheduled:


Workshop Date to be Reconfirmed:

HURON COUNTY - Location TBD -  Wednesday, May 6

Webinar Series: 

To be hosted for each destination renewal region, this spring, see below for more info

Ontario By Bike workshops are open to everyone, but are of particular interest to tourism professionals, including accommodations, food services, attractions,  tour operators, breweries, wineries, business areas and cycling related businesses and organizations interested in the development of cycle tourism in their region.

Participants will learn more about:
  • Who cycling tourist are and what are their needs
  • How welcoming cyclists can be good for businesses
  • Economic impact and development of cycling tourism, internationally, in Canada and across Ontario
  • Local and regional cycling routes and services
  • How to become a certified bicycle friendly business
  • Marketing and network opportunities
Whether you are already part of the Ontario By Bike Program or if you would like to learn more about becoming certified and the impact of cycle tourism, make plans to join us for a workshop in the near future.   
 2020 Destination Renewals

To ensure information is up to date on our website and help cyclists find places to eat visit and sleep, we are  constantly working on updates to our regional 'Great Places to Cycle' webpages and managing existing business listings.

To provide correct information and keep our network valid, we rely on certified businesses to confirm their listing and make sure all the information is accurate. 

As part of our 2020 destination renewals we will verify all certified businesses in those regions that are due for and have confirmed their three year renewal. Additionally, we will provide a number of services including webinars that will be open to existing and new businesses. While we will send out this information individually to all renewal partners soon, you can already help us by verifying if your listing needs to be updated. 

If your business is located in one of the listed regions, please follow the quick steps below if you became certified in 2019 or earlier. We know your time is valuable, so we've kept things simple. 
  1. Please visit the our full bicycle friendly business listings page and map on our website ontarioByBike.ca/all-bicycle-friendly-businesses, find your listing and check if your information is still accurate. If your listing needs an update you can either do this by logging in and updating the information yourself or by sending an email to info@ontariobybike and we can edit your listing directly. Click here if you need information on how to edit your listing.
  2. Confirm that you have reviewed your listing by clicking your region above and completing the quick verification questions.
  3. If your location is in one of the regions above, and we don't hear from you, we will be reaching out directly.  
We appreciate your help in providing up to date and quality content to all the riders out there who are looking for great places to cycle  and thank you for taking the time to ensure that Ontario By Bike continues to be the primary source for cycling information in Ontario.
News About Your Business 
& Cycling in Your Region

With warmer weather coming up fast and spring just days away, most cyclists are getting ready to get out there and start cycling.

Help us fill our content calendar and let us share any exciting news about your bicycle friendly business or region with our community. We are always looking for great new stories and updates to share through our social media channels and consumer enewsletter with over 15,000 subscribers. 

No matter if it's new trails, maps, events or any other cycling related products and services, a large number of innovative projects are planned and executed each year to ensure Ontario keeps growing as a top cycling destination across Canada 

While we often exchange information with our destination partners about upcoming projects through our Ontario By Bike Industry Advisory Committee we would also like to reach out to all of you and hear more great news directly from our industry partners.

Let us help you get the word out and benefit from a large exposure to the cycling community across Ontario and beyond. Send us and email with any updates or photos/videos from your region, organization or business.

2020 Spring Shows: Recap

We are already looking back on a successful start to 2020 with recent attendance at some of the most important shows throughout the year.

We started the season with the Toronto Outdoor Adventure Show and the Montreal Bike Show/Salon du vélo both on the same weekend, February 20 to 23. 

This year the Montreal Bike Show moved to a new location with better access for the public and increased parking option. This move successfully resulted in a surge in attendance. We talked to hundreds of attendees and noted a strong interest from out-of-province cyclists looking for cycling information for Ontario as either first-time visitors or returning guests. With a large number of Francophone attendees, it has become vital for us to have materials in both English and French available as well as bilingual staff on site. 

The Outdoor Adventure Show in Toronto was one of the busiest we remember. Many avid cyclists came to find us and our partners from the Great Lakes Waterfront Trail, to pick up a new copy of the 2020 Cycling in Ontario guide, and get some ride suggestions for the coming season. 

On March 6 to 8, it was time for the annual Toronto International Bike show now re-branded under its new name,the  Toronto Bicycle Show and E-Bike Expo. With a new location at the International Centre in Mississauga, moving for many of the same reasons that the Montreal show did, and a favourable booth location, we were pleased to again connect with a great number of show attendees that picked up cycling related maps, materials and our guide for the upcoming season. 

As in previous years, those shows have been a great platform for Ontario By Bik e to distribute cycling maps and also our brand new Cycling In Ontario Guide which was released shortly before the show dates. Thanks to a variety of show partners we are also able to use those industry events to promote our partner destinations efficiently to a targeted audience. 

While we have a small break from the larger consumer shows, we will still attend a number of cycling related events throughout the year including:  Bike To Work Day , Toronto, May 27;  Ride for Heart , Toronto, June 7;  Bicycle Fall Blowout Sale , Toronto, September 26; and more to be confirmed. 
Stay Connected with Ontario By Bike!
Share your destination or business posts using the hashtag #OntarioByBike & #BikeON!
2020 Ontario By Bike Rides

In February we announced our Ontario By Bike Rides and destinations for 2020. 

These small group and weekend tours are not only popular with cyclists, often selling out well in advance, but also have a significant economic impact on the communities we ride in. 

We coordinate the logistics including overnight accommodations, meals and attractions, first reaching out to and choosing to give our business to Ontario By Bike certified bicycle friendly businesses, a part of our network. 

If you are located in any of the ride regions and destinations for 2020, get in touch, and we will see if our group can stop by. Find out more at: ontariobybike.ca/rides
Until we connect again, stay healthy and positive. 

From Louisa Mursell & Simon Lutz
Ontario By Bike Network 
Project of Transportation Options 
850 Coxwell Ave ~ Toronto, ON ~ M4C 5R1 
Office: 416-827-2774 or 
Toll-Free: 1-866-701-2774