RAGBRAI LI July 20 -27, 2024

Tandem Bike Rental and Charter

Hello! My wife and I are looking to do Ragbrai for the first time this year, and was looking to do it tandem. We will be flying in, and I was wondering if anyone knew of good options for tandem bike rentals, as well as potentially charters that either offer tandem bikes or would be easy to use for transport from where the bike rental would be.

Hoping to be able to rent one there, although could be open to alternatives with renting one where I live and shipping it and would love insights on anyone who haas done tandem or know people who have. Thanks!

7 Replies

Uncle Kraig, March 23, 2022 at 12:33 pm

What are you going to train on? Could you just ship the tandem you are going to be training on?

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chipchip333, March 23, 2022 at 12:38 pm

We have normal bikes to train on, and was planning to just rent a tandem bike to practice being on tandem, but one option can be to rent it longer term here and ship or purchase a used one to ship.

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SteveShelledy, March 23, 2022 at 1:36 pm

Youtubers Kara and Nate (THE ULTIMATE MARRIAGE TEST (450 miles on a tandem bicycle)) rented theirs at World of Bikes in Iowa City, you might give them a call. Just sold my Santana a few months ago, otherwise we could have worked something out!

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hnschipper, March 23, 2022 at 4:12 pm

My personal opinion as a tandem owner: if you don’t have experience riding a tandem together prior to RAGBRAI, I definitely wouldn’t make my first experience a week long bike ride.

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chipchip333, March 23, 2022 at 4:15 pm

Thank you for the insights! Checked with World of Bikes and they look to be rented out.

Yeah we would certainly be looking to get experience on a tandem prior so would need to get our hands on one anyways. It seems like the best bet might be to buy one used here, and so we can get practice and also ship it over for RAGBRAI.

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HelenP, March 23, 2022 at 5:49 pm

IIRC, Pork Belly Ventures charter might have a tandem to rent.

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Guodan, March 24, 2022 at 12:25 am

As another tandem owner I second hnschipper. If you have lots of riding experience on singles the tandem will come to you pretty quickly but there is a learning curve that an uncrowded road will make easier. In a perfect world the fit from your singles would be duplicated on the tandem for you both. Depending on the particular tandem, getting that fit for the rear position (stoker) can require a bit of finessing. I’m going to assume your wife will be in back. Know that all things equal, the ride in back will be more punishing due to increased frame and wheel stiffness. Because of this I would consider using the same saddle she is using on her single for your tandem adventure. A bumpy ride on an uncomfortable saddle gets old fast. Once you get the basics tandem are huge fun, the easy chat with your partner while ride is the best.

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