Share article:
Share article:

The Dutch cycle the most in the world

© Belga

In the Netherlands over a quarter of all journeys are carried out by bicycle, making the Dutch the most frequent users of bicycles worldwide.

In Denmark (2nd place), the bicycle is used less than 20% of the time. Germany is third with 10% of journeys made by bicycle, followed by Sweden and Finland. Belgium is sixth, with plus-minus 8% of journeys made by bicycle.

Last year the Dutch carried out nearly 5 billion journeys by bike, covering a distance of 17,6 billion km.

In the bicycle-crazy Netherlands, there are also more bicycles than people. It is estimated that in 2018 there were 22,9 million bicycles in the Netherlands on 17,2 million inhabitants. With 1,3 bicycles per inhabitant, the Netherlands is a leader in terms of bicycle ownership, New Mobility reports.

According to researchers at the Knowledge Institute for Mobility Policy, bicycle use in the Netherlands has increased slightly since the beginning of the corona crisis. The average distance has increased from 3,4 km in September 2019 to 4,1 km in July this year, and more people are using the bike for purely sportive use.

Approximately 37% who no longer take the bus, tram, or metro because of the coronavirus take the bicycle. Approximately half of them would like to continue to do so if the coronavirus measures are lifted.

Their report also suggests women and young people cycle most often in the country. Although quite even – 29% for women compared to 27% for men – women cycle more than men.

Car competitor for short distances

The most surprising finding from the report is that the car is a major competitor for the bicycle for short distances. Many trips that can also be made by bicycle based on the distance are made by car.

In 2019, one-third of car journeys in The Netherlands were shorter than 5 km; this translates to 2,5 billion journeys. Nearly half (47%) of the car journeys (3,5 billion) involve distances less than 7,5 km, and 64% (4,8 billion) less than 15 km.

For journeys of up to 7,5 km (65% of all journeys), 38% of Dutch people use their bicycles, and 34% use their cars. For distances from 3,7 km, the car is more popular than the bicycle. If all these short car rides will be made by bike, this would save 1,8 Mton of CO2, 1,8 tons NOX, and 0,05 tons of particulate matter of air pollution per year.

Cycling fatalities

Out of all road deaths in the Netherlands, about one-third are cyclists. Of the 228 cycling fatalities in 2018 and 203 in 2019, at least 65 (32%) of the fatalities were on e-bikes. Men are clearly more likely to die as a result of a cycling accident than women, and the study also shows most cycling fatalities are of riders 70 years and older.

The Brussels Times

Latest news

Covid-19 decisions made ‘too hastily’, socialist leader argues
The government is missing a "general lack of method" when it comes to how coronavirus fighting measures are decided on, according to the leader of ...
Aggression against railway staff more than doubled since 2020
In the first three quarters of 2021, the number of reports of aggression against national railway company SNCB's staff has more than doubled compared ...
Intervention hotline 1722 activated following bad weather warnings
Following bad weather warnings from Belgium's Royal Meteorological Institute of Belgium (RMI), the Federal Public Service (FPS) Home Affairs has ...
Thousands march in Brussels to raise awareness of violence against women
More than 3,000 people took to the streets of Brussels on Sunday afternoon for a national march to raise awareness of violence against women in ...
Efficacy of vaccines against new variant known in a few weeks, virologist says
The efficacy of the current coronavirus vaccines against the new Omicron variant will be clear in one to two weeks, Belgian virologist Marc Van Ranst ...
Scientists could have communicated better during pandemic, survey shows
The majority of Flemish people continue to trust scientists, however, only half of them feel scientists communicated understandably during the ...
Closing borders and new travel restrictions: Countries react to Omicron variant
As more cases of the new Omicron variant of the coronavirus are being reported across the world, more and more countries are imposing tougher travel ...
Several rush hour train services to be scrapped from Monday
Up to ten peak time trains to and from Brussels will be temporarily cancelled starting from Monday, Belgian railway company SNCB announced this ...
Europe’s largest vintage clothes store is in Ghent this weekend
Europe's largest pop-up store for second-hand clothes is once again setting up shop in Ghent on Sunday, offering more than five tonnes of vintage ...
Animal welfare in EU’s pig meat sector: What’s wrong?
EU has put into place legislation to ensure that animal welfare conditions are respected in its agricultural policy but the breaches of its ...
‘Not feasible’: Doctors refuse to follow new testing strategy
Doctors have warned they will not follow the government's adapted testing strategy which would see vaccinated people who were in close contact with a ...
Flanders introduces ‘invisible’ speed cameras
New digital speed cameras that are essentially invisible to the road user are being introduced on various roads and motorways in Flanders, Flemish ...