Electric bikes

Uses and benefits

  • Commuting - the ease of riding means you can avoid the hassle of showering and changing when you reach your destination
  • Hill climbing - makes climbing hills light work, great if you live in a hilly area!
  • Shopping - load up your electric bike with heavy groceries
  • Go further - some electric bikes have battery ranges in excess of 40 miles
  • Travel faster - easier to set off quickly from junctions, allowing you to keep up with other road users
  • Green - instead of using a car or public transport, help keep urban pollution to a minimum
  • Affordable - no licence, insurance, or MOT needed. No need to pay for petrol or diesel
  • Health and fitness - you're still exercising, you still need to pedal. You can also turn the motor off and use it as a regular bike for an extra challenge!

Buyers guide

When buying an electric bike:

  • Look at where the bike has been manufactured, and ask your retailer how long the manufacturer has been around
  • Look for one that can demonstrate reliability or offers good servicing and a long warranty
  • Read the reviews of electric bikes online
  • You can buy electric bikes from most bike shops, although some specialist shops do exist


  • From £500 to over £2000
  • Electric bikes tend to cost more than regular bikes due to the addition of the battery and motor
  • Running costs are pretty low, with a full charge costing 5p on average

Charging your electric bike

  • Depending on the type of battery, an electric bike can last between 15 to 40 miles or more
  • Choose a battery with a range that is approximately twice your normal daily mileage
  • In general, batteries don't like fast charging. For regular commuting an overnight charger is safest and kindest to the battery
  • If you cycle a high daily mileage, you may need a faster charging battery so that you can recharge it between trips in the day

Safety and the law


  • Electric bikes accelerate faster than regular bikes, so take care when moving off. Make sure you are holding the handlebars straight, and that you are aware of other road users
  • Take care to leave enough space between yourself and other road users, particularly other cyclists, who may not be able to accelerate as quickly
  • As electric bikes are classified as standard bikes, you're not required to wear a helmet, however you should consider it
  • Make sure that you allow for extra stopping distance as you're likely to be travelling at a faster speed than on a regular bike

Read more tips on cycling safety.

The law

  • You must be at least 14 years old to ride an electric bike
  • Current UK law (June 2014) states that electric bikes should have a maximum assistance speed of 15mph and maximum power output of 200 watts if it is a bicycle and 250 watts if it is a tandem or tricycle
  • The bike must have pedals that can be used to propel it forward
  • The bike must have plates showing the manufacturer, the normal voltage of the battery, and the motor's power output
  • Electric bikes meeting these requirements is classed as a bicycle and, as such, they can use the same dedicated cycle facilities as other cyclists
  • The Highway Code and standard bike regulations apply

Cycle Skills       

Whether you're a first-time rider or a regular cyclist looking to improve your skills, we fund free, tailored courses to suit your individual abilities and goals. Free to anyone who lives, works or studies in London.

Plan a journey
Journey preferences
More options


  • Outside London

  • Optimise for walking

Close Favourites

My Lines

My Buses

My Roads

My River Buses

My Emirates Air Line

My Journeys

My Places

    Close edit Favourites

    Favourite lines

    Favourite buses

    Favourite roads

    Favourite river buses

    Favourite Emirates Air Line

    Favourite journeys

    Favourite places