eBikes for RVers: Should You Get One?

ebikes-for-rvers:-should-you-get-one?

The popularity of eBikes for RVers is on the rise. Here’s why and whether or not you should get one…

Jennifer and I got our first eBikes back in 2018. And boy, do we love them! 

We started with some great Rad Power Bikes and have recently upgraded to a new foldable eBike from Lectric that fits into our RV Lifestyle a little better and is soon to be on a rack on our motorhome and our 5th wheel!

I’m going to tell you about those bikes and more! Including discussing whether or not an ebike is right for you.

Rad Power Bikes was a long-time sponsor of our podcast, and we are now happy affiliates for Lectric Bikes. We always share our honest opinions and experiences to help you determine if an ebike is right for you. I’m going to tell you about some other ebike options, too.

Our First eBikes

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After a lot of consideration, Jennifer and I finally got ebikes back in 2018. Other campers had been raving about them, but we were hesitant at first. We were worried the “electric” aspect would intrude on our active lifestyle and our constant desire to connect with nature.

When we finally got our ebikes, we became ravers ourselves. It turns out ebikes help us be even more active, and we get to see even more of nature than we’re able to on a standard bike.

I got the Rad Power commuter bike and liked it so much that I bought a step-through version of the same model for Jennifer. You can read more about them and our experience in another blog post. 

We used and loved the Rad Power bikes for years (still do!) but have recently added new foldable Lectric ebikes that have fat tires and are more suited to our trail riding preference over non-paved surfaces.

Our New Foldable eBikes

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Since we had a small Class B+ RV, the full-size Rad Power ebikes came with some practical difficulties. The main one was that it required a hitch rack that, combined with the weight of the bikes, wouldn’t work for our RV at the time.

That wouldn’t be a problem for most RVers, since our RV was on the small end. But, we started wishing for a better solution, especially one that would fit in the relatively big RV garage space we then had in the Wonder RV we were in.

We mentioned our dilemma on one of our Ask Us Anything live streams, and within a day, we were offered an excellent solution. A representative from Lectric Bikes contacted us about a foldable ebike that they’d be happy to let us test out.

We took them up on their offer, and boy are we glad we did! They sent us two Lectric XP 2.0 foldable ebikes that came fully assembled. All we had to do was unpackage them, unfold them, and jump on. 

We went for a great ride, met a horse, and talked with fellow RVers about their ebikes. When I asked them what they love about ebikes, they quickly responded, “Everything!” 

They went on to explain the same reasons Jennifer and I love ebikes. Namely, we get to see more while still getting exercise without ending up exhausted. 

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Mike’s favorite hoodie and beanie in navy – perfect for those crisp RV Lifestyle days!

Where to Buy Foldable eBikes for RVers

Jennifer and I now have FOUR ebikes. Yep, we’ve kept our original Rad Power bikes as well as these new Lectric foldable bikes. 

Our Lectric foldable bikes fit into our Wonder RV, so that’s where they lived until we recently sold this RV.

We replaced it with a Class C Unity FX from leisure Travel Vans and, alas, it doesn’t have a big garage.

Now we could fold the bikes up and carry them inside the Unity. But Jennifer wasn’t too keen on that idea because, well, after riding them, they tend to get pretty dirty and she didn’t want me dragging dirty bikes into the RV. Besides, she worried about them moving around during travel and possibly damaging walls and furniture.

To carry the ebikes, we use the RV Rider by Hollywood Racks. That rack fits on the back of the motorhome just fine. And also on the rear hitch on our new Arcadia Fifth Wheel.

The rack will let us carry either the two Lectric bikes or our Rad Power bikes.

Here’s a video on the rack we use:

I should point out that Lectric eBikes has several ebikes to choose from. They might be having a sale, depending on when you are reading this, but pricing starts as low as $779 plus free shipping.

Another great place to buy ebikes for RVers is Bicycle Warehouse. They have a wide variety of ebikes, accessories, parts, and more.

Where Can You Ride an eBike?

eBikes for RVers: Should You Get One?

One of the biggest concerns that hold people back from buying an ebike is not knowing where they can ride them. We get this question all the time and answered it in detail in an article aptly titled, Where Can You Ride an eBike? But I’ll share the gist of it now.

State by State eBike Laws

People for Bikes has created an excellent resource that shows electric bike laws state-by-state. There are at least six different states that require a specific license to operate some ebikes:

  • Alabama
  • Alaska
  • Massachusetts
  • Missouri
  • New Mexico
  • North Dakota

Laws change all the time now, especially regarding ebikes since laws are now catching up to their growing popularity. So, be sure to check the state-by-state link above.

Can You Ride eBikes in National Parks?

Yes, you absolutely can! As I explain in detail in eBikes in National Parks (Important New Policy), ebikes are considered the same as standard bicycles at national parks.

This “new” policy went into effect on December 2, 2020.

The NPS embraces eBikes in national parks for a few different reasons that they cite:

  • Ebikes advance the NPS’s ‘Healthy Parks Healthy People’ goals to promote national parks as a health resource.
  • Increase bicycle access to and within parks. Ebikes make bicycle travel easier and more efficient because they allow bicyclists to travel farther with less effort.
  • Ebikes can expand the option of bicycling to more people by providing a new option for those who want to ride a bicycle but might not otherwise do so because of physical fitness, age, or convenience, especially at high altitudes or in hilly or strenuous terrain.
  • When used as an alternative to gasoline- or diesel-powered modes of transportation, ebikes can reduce greenhouse gas emissions and fossil fuel consumption, improve air quality, and support active modes of transportation for park staff and visitors. Similar to traditional bicycles, ebikes can decrease traffic congestion, reduce the demand for vehicle parking spaces, and increase the number and visibility of cyclists on the road.

Should You Get an Ebike?

In most cases, Jennifer and I would give an emphatic, “Yes, you should get an ebike!” But, of course, there are always some exceptions.

The biggest reason an ebike wouldn’t be right for you is its weight. Since they come with a battery, they can be considerably heavier than standard bikes. They’re typically around 40-60 pounds.

You’ll need to consider if you can safely lift one on your own to mount it on an ebike rack or put in your RV garage. Or if you have a travel companion that can assist you.

The last option is to rely on fellow campers to help you. Campgrounds are normally filled with plenty of people willing to help, but that depends on someone being available when you need them.

Some ebikes (like ours) have removable batteries, which you can take off for security purposes or to lighten the load when needed.

The other main exception is your ability to balance. But, if you can ride a bike, you can ride an ebike. In fact, an ebike is easier to ride than a standard bike because you don’t have to rely on your own strength to get it moving and keep it moving.

So, unless there are physical reasons preventing you from getting an ebike, we think you should go for it!

eBikes for RVers: Should You Get One?

Where will you ride it?

Check out this Southwest Adventure Guide Bundle (Arizona, Utah, & Colorado)

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When Jennifer and I travel to the southwest, we are continually amazed at the majesty and beauty this country has to offer. And it’s really hard to stay in just one state! So we created this Bundle for you in case you like to travel as we do. 

We put together our Southern Utah Guide, Colorado Guide, and our NEW Arizona Guide into this 3-State Bundle at a very reduced price!

Each of these RV travel guides is a seven-day guided exploration of some amazing places to explore in these states. And each stop is a curated view of the best things that we’ve enjoyed on these trips and want you to experience.

All together these guides are over 300 pages of content! 





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Mike and Jennifer Wendland

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