The desire for cycle tourism is growing in our country, as evidenced by the numbers of the second edition of the Cycle Tourism Fair, organized by Bikenomist, which has just ended in Bologna and which registered 19,000 visitors, therefore with a 30% growth compared to the Milanese edition of the previous year.
The turnout data further confirms the 3rd Isnart-Legambiente report presented on the opening day dedicated to operators, from which it emerges that cycle travelers in Italy in 2022 have doubled compared to 2019, reaching 9 million presences, generating an economic impact estimated at over 1 billion euros.
This year the Cycle Tourism Fair has quintupled the useful surface which was occupied by 90 exhibitors in 60 stands of tourism organisations, tour operators, hoteliers and bike hirers, registering a full house in just a few months, in particular the presence of many Italian regions absent last year and a notable increase in foreign destinations, which demonstrates the increased credibility of the event.
The director of the Cycle Tourism Fair, Pinar Pinzuti commented “Focusing on Bologna was the right choice: not only for its geographical centrality, but also for the attention that the city and the Region are showing towards active mobility. The attention of national operators and business networks was particularly flattering, projecting the event onto an international dimension”.
The temporary bike parking installed, created with the technical partner Shimano Italia, at the entrance to the Cycle Tourism Fair where over 1,800 bicycles found shelter over the course of the 2 days was also stormed. While in the kids area, around 300 boys and girls took part in motor education programs and introduction to safe bicycle use, thanks to the involvement of Eden Asd and Fiab Bologna, with the support of the Sicilian Region.
The packed program of interventions that took turns on the Bikeitalia Talks stage entertained the large audience by offering suggestions on destinations to ride, but also on how to choose the right saddle for travelling, ways to optimize the position on the saddle and mechanical tricks to never stand.
Among the speakers, in addition to the hosts, Mattia Santori, President of the Bologna-Modena Tourist Territory, and Davide Cassani, President, Apt Servizi Emilia Romagna, also cyclists of attraction for the people of two wheels such as the holder of four Guinness World record, Paola Gianotti, the ultracyclist Omar Di Felice, who arrived at the event by bicycle after a long non-stop ride from Rome, and the veteran of bicycle travel, Sergio Borroni, who received a standing ovation.
The icing on the cake was the Roy Paci concert, organized by the Sicilian Region, which entertained the public of the Cycle Tourism Fair, closing the first day of the event.
The tour operators who participated are very positive on the prospects for further growth of the cycle tourism market for 2023, confirming the data collected by the report “Travelling by bike 2023”: as many as 90% of specialized tour operators expect an increase in their tour of business. These are the same operators who, on average, have seen their turnover grow to almost triple it in the last three years, also by taking advantage of the investments made in past years by the government and the regions for the development of the National Network of Tourist Cycleways.