Travel activities and motivations survey — Canadian travel market

Cycling While on Trips of One or More Nights

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A Profile Report — October 23, 2007
Executive summary

Over the last two years, 10.1% (2,494,384) of adult Canadians went cycling while on an out-of-town, overnight trip of one or more nights. Cycling was the tenth most common outdoor activity pursued by Canadian Pleasure Travelers during that time. Recreational cycling as a sameday excursion (8.3%) was the most popular cycling activity followed by mountain biking (3.0%) and overnight touring (1.0%). Of those who went cycling, 28.4% (708,979) reported that this activity was the main reason for taking at least one trip.

Relative to the average Canadian Pleasure Traveler, Cyclists are more likely to be male (54.9%) and 18 to 44 years of age. Cyclists are over-represented among young couples, young singles and mature families with teenage children. This is a moderately affluent segment with an above-average level of education (38.9% have a university degree — ranked 7th of the 21 outdoor activity types) and above-average household incomes ($78,827 — ranked 9th of the 21 outdoor activity types). They are over-represented among residents of Quebec, Alberta and British Columbia.

Cyclists were the 3rd most likely to have taken a trip within their own province or region (95.1%) of the 21 outdoor activity types and the 6th most likely to have visited an adjacent province or region (59.5%) in the last two years. In relative terms, they are less frequent out-of-country travelers and were only the 13th most likely of the 21 outdoor activity types to have taken a trip to the Caribbean (17.8%), the 17th most likely to have visited Mexico (13.2%) and the 9th most likely to have visited the United States (58.0%).

Cyclists are quite active in outdoor activities both while traveling and at home. They are especially active in physically strenuous activities such as exercising and jogging, cross-country skiing, downhill skiing and snowboarding, and hiking, climbing and paddling. Cyclists are also more likely to take part in participatory learning activities (e.g., aboriginal cultural experiences, participatory historical activities) and to attend live art performances (e.g., high arts, comedy festivals and clubs, music concerts) while on trips. They tend to stay in public campgrounds, wilderness campsites and ski or mountain resorts. Cyclists tend to seek vacations that offer novelty, intellectual stimulation and physical challenge.

Cyclists are above-average users of the Internet to plan (75.3%) and book travel (48.7%). In fact, they are the 5th most likely segment to purchase trip components online. They are also more likely than others to consult official travel information sources. They can be most effectively targeted through travel-related media as well as magazines and television programs devoted to nature and science, outdoor activities, sports and technology (e.g., photography and video, computers and electronics).