Cycle to work Scheme with a very tight budget!

tomr2992 Posts: 12
edited July 2013 in Road buying advice
Hi all,

Looking to pick a few brains out there if I may? At work they've just started to do the cycle to work scheme. In their wisdom they've gone for Halfords :twisted: ( Clearly know nothing about the meaning of a bike store!) which is a ball ache to start with. To further add injury to insult they've placed a upper limit of £700 for the bike.

Due to this my inspirations for a £1k bike have been shattered and I've landed back on earth with something of a bump. I currently ride an old Felt F65 in a large (55) although I am only 5"8. I have been informed that I would be better suited to a 54, anyway to the point in hand. I've come up with a selection of three bikes. These have been chosen as I use the bike mainly to commute and weekend ride. I'm not in any biking club and ride for enjoyment and social purposes only.

My question is this. If lumbered with a useless bike (Cringe!!) shop and a small budget what would you go for? It has to be a RRP and I can't further add funds to the £700.

These are my ideas:: ... 14&pg=9036

This is my preferred choice. As I'm from Nottingham I've got a bit of a soft spot for Raleigh and must admit I quite like the spec of the bike. The bike has SORA running kit that is to be expected a this price as well as weighing in at 10kg which I dont think is too bad. Carbon forks are a bare minimum. Comes in at dead on £700. ... s/Z95.aspx

I really like this bike. I love my Felt and i think this will be an ideal replacement. The running kit is the same as the Raleigh however it comes in at £50 cheaper at £650. ... series/1_2

Only introduced to this idea today. Wow what a good looking bike. As per the other two it is more or less the same spec. Could be an outsider for me.

Well those are the three that I have thought of. Please if you have any advice it would be very welcome.



  • smidsy
    smidsy Posts: 5,273
    Surely this has to be the single biggest thread posted (well apart maybe from wheel upgrades).

    Mods - can we have a sticky for C2W bikes upto £1000, pleeeeeeaaaaaaaaasssssssseeeeeee.

    And one for Wheels while you are at it :-)
    Yellow is the new Black.
  • tomr2992
    tomr2992 Posts: 12
    I understand the constant treads being taken up by C2W however the forum is for "Buying advice".

    Thanks guys in advance for the input.

    Sorry if its like groundhog day. A C2W thread would be good though.
  • antfly
    antfly Posts: 3,276
    If you are limited to Halfords doesn't that mean you have to get a bike that Halfords sell, i.e none of those ?
    Smarter than the average bear.
  • Blandiblub
    Blandiblub Posts: 134
    I got a specialized through halfords cycle to work scheme. They have a helpline number which can source bikes from other suppliers so as long as it's not too obscure it should be available.
    Specialized Allez Elite 2011 *NEW*
    Specialized Sirrus Elite 2011
  • smidsy
    smidsy Posts: 5,273
    tomr2992 wrote:
    I understand the constant treads being taken up by C2W however the forum is for "Buying advice".

    And the SEARCH function is for finding buying advice. :wink:
    Yellow is the new Black.
  • markp80
    markp80 Posts: 444
    Are you sure you're limited to £700 RRP? Normally with this scheme they issue a voucher for you to take to the shop and spend as you wish, whether that be on the bike or accessories etc. Similarly, you can then take advantage of whatever special offers may be on place, or British Cycling discount etc.
    If a bike is on special offer, are you being charged the full RRP?

    Boardman Road Comp - OK, I went to Halfords
    Tibia plateau fracture - the rehab continues!
  • grim168
    grim168 Posts: 482
    ring halfords and ask which bike shops accept their vouchers. I spent mine at leisure lakes. Buy a bike and dolans are some in the north west. They will email you a list in your area.
  • tomr2992
    tomr2992 Posts: 12
    Cheers guys for the imput on the bike stores ect. I have a budget of £700, I can order anything from Halfords however as advised I can ask for main stockists. To this end living in the Derby area I have been advised that Samways (Good dealer!) are able to except the vouchers. I said I'd pop in tomorrow.

    So please....advise away! :D
  • smidsy
    smidsy Posts: 5,273
    Go to the LBS and talk to them about your requirements. Try as many as you can for fit, size, geometry etc. and listen to the staff in there who know what they are doing.

    No point folks on here saying get this or get that as everyones needs are slightly different.

    Plus if we say get a Cannondale and the LBS don't sell them we are wasting your time.
    Yellow is the new Black.
  • smoggysteve
    smoggysteve Posts: 2,909
    This is my take on the C2W scheme. They are there to provide a bike to get you to work and help the environment, your fitness but not buy you a speed machine, so for your money limit you are not going to get a brilliant machine. A good one maybe but not brilliant. If you have the money to spend on a bike now or by saving, seriously look at a used bike instead. Plenty of people sell to buy like they would a car.

    TBH I feel the amount they give should be lowered as I know of too many people who abuse it to buy a bike for the wrong reasons and still and up using their car. If you want to cycle to work to help in the way it was meant to, get a cheap hybrid or a city bike. This is not a meal ticket to a free, cheap race machine.

    Not suggesting you fall into this bracket but it does go on.