Hi-My sister and I both want to get bikes for recreational biking around Omaha. Just for fun and exercise. We'd each be pulling a double baby trailer. We definitely don't want the kind of bike where you have to lean over to get to the handle bars. Obviously, we are total novices. I don't even know what that type of handle bar is called.
We don't need anything expensive. Just something that will be very comfortable and fun for a pair of 40ish women to enjoy. I might add that neither one of us is exactly petite. I've looked at beach cruisers, hybrids, and comfort bikes and I don't know which is better for a very casual rider.
I would appreciate some suggestions. Also-when you're biking with a baby in a trailer, does the baby wear a helmet?
Thank-you for your help.
Omaha is fairly flat, yes? An inexpensive beach cruiser would be fine if you do not intend to tackle any serious hills. A hybrid would also do the trick and have better gearing for tacking hills. Have you ever looked at recumbents? There are some that are relatively inexpensive. They are much more comfortable than regular bikes. They are also safer than regular bikes. (Not trying to start a flame war -- just stating the facts.) If you are looking to buy used, check out Craiglist or start browsing yard sales. If you are looking to buy new, get referrals on local bikes shops. A good bike mechanic is worth paying extra for a new bike, in my humble opinion. The CostCo, Walmart, etc. bikes are usually okay but where will you have it serviced? Your local bike shop with a good mechanic will be far more happy to see you when you come in for service if you bought the bike from them.
P.S. Yes, your child should wear a helmet. (Again, not trying to start a flame war -- just stating the facts.) The most common accident when cycling is falling down. A helmet protects your noggin when you fall.
The best bike is the one that fits, is comfortable, and makes you enjoy riding so you do it more often. Of the ones you listed, hybrids tend to be lighter (thus easier to pedal) with better gear options (helpful when pulling a double trailer). I agree that you should check out options at local bike shops and not big box stores for the same reasons as posted. I have no experience with recumbents. Some find that being low to ground makes the rider more uncomfortable with respect to visibility from cars. And, yes, everyone wears a helmet.