A new independent campaign has been launched, called ‘Bikes on NSW TrainLink’.
Currently, NSW regional train service rules are blocking struggling NSW communities from taking advantage of one of the biggest opportunities in tourism in a generation: Cycling tourism.
Growing e-bike sales have been extraordinary with an effective doubling each year since 2017, yet e-bikes are effectively locked out of regional NSW trains. Passengers with ordinary bicycles are also severely inconvenienced.
By not providing roll-on bicycle carrying, NSW TrainLink is a big bottle-neck denying communities the benefits of potentially millions of dollars of tourism activity. NSW must leverage all channels to recover from Covid lockdowns and position for a lower carbon future.
Infrastructure Australia has identified opportunities for post-covid ‘regional renaissance’ and reduced car dependency. Train travel with a bicycle boosts tourism and helps ‘last mile’ journeys from the station to the final destination. It will play a significant part in regional revitalisation and reducing car dependency.
Meanwhile, E-bikes are game changers for regional Australia. Ever increasing range, affordability, reliability and swiftness of re-charging means people can travel far greater distances with confidence and ease irrespective of hills. Using an e-bike to journey from village to town in a day is easily achieved by people of just about any age or fitness level.
Organisers say, “Support our campaign to change the current policy and ensure the new regional train fleet will take roll-on roll-off bikes in sufficient numbers to make a big difference to rural communities. It will also enable travellers with bikes to journey and holiday around all NSW without being forced into a car”.