The 10 Best Folding Bikes Under $500 in 2018

Would you prefer to travel on a bike and go with it anywhere you want? For this, you will need the best folding bike. They are smaller, are lightweight compared to the traditional ones and fold into a compact piece for easy storage and improved portability. Using in public transportation like trains and buses is easy. Since these bikes are available in different weights, sizes, speeds, and durability, this guide I necessary to help you choose the right one.

If you have not tried a folding bike, then you are missing a lot of fun, stability, and ease of use. There is no noticeable difference between the folding bike and the traditional bike regarding strength. The only drawback is that they are slightly more expensive than the non-folding bikes.

1 Stowabike 20″ Folding City V2 Compact Foldable Bike

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You can use this folding bike for commuting in urban environments. Once you reach your destination, you can conveniently unfold and proceed to ride the bike. It has built-in mudguards to keep you clean and a rack to carry your goods. The bike features a reliable and easy folding mechanism and six-speed Shimano Gear system for varying terrains. The 20-inch steel frame is both sturdy and lightweight enough to carry around.

2 Mophorn Folding Bike Single Speed Foldable Bicycle

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Get the perfect solution to your commuting troubles with this 8-inch adult folding bike. It appeals to anyone who desires smaller storage and daily trip. It folds and unfolds very easily and easy to ride even for beginners. It is a single speed bike suited for city streets though it may be a challenge on hilly ground. The bike can carry a maximum weight of 175 lbs. The frame is made of lightweight and strong aluminum for increased portability. It has a soft and comfortable foam saddle to enhance your riding experience.

3 Columba 26″ Folding Bike

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Ride with style on this factory-assembled folding bike. It weighs just 33 lbs. and folds in 10 seconds. It is easy to transport and store in small spaces like in a compact rear car trunk. It is recommended for riders of 5’3” to 6’ in height and supports a maximum weight of 200 lbs. It is shipped with the front wheel uninstalled but will take you about five minutes to install it using the included manual. It is available in Silver, Yellow, Blue, and Black colors.

4 EuroMini Campo 28lb Lightweight Aluminum Frame Shimano 7-Speed Folding Bike

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The EuroMini Campo is a lightweight, foldable bike that weighs just 28 lbs. It is easy to carry around in trains and buses to make your life easy and convenient. The frame is a 20-inch aluminum alloy and iron V-brake compatible fork hence its lightweight. The handlebar is 60 backsweep black bars of 54cm with 25.4mm thickness. Its tires are 20 x 2-inch off road, and the bike features a Shimano Revo 7-speed grip shifter.

5 Stowabike 26″ MTB V2 Folding Dual Suspension Gears Mountain Bike

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This folding bike stacks up so well against the competition. It features dual suspension, great looks, and quality components. For those whom space is at a premium, this bike serves so well. It can fit into a car trunk, small spaces in public transport and storage. It allows you to get the experience of a mountain bike even in tight spaces. It has a sturdy 26-inch steel folding frame and 26-inch suspension steel fork. The left shifter is a 3-speed grip shifter while the right shifter is a 6-speed grip shifter.

6 EBS Folding Bicycle City Bike

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The EBS folding bike features an adjustable seat height and handlebar and folds in easy steps. The front 20-inch tires are quickly removable for compacting. It is fashionable and folds into a small package for storage or transportation. It is suitable for daily commute and comfortable riding in style around the city. The 20-inch steel welded frame is durable and can bear a large weight. It has 22.2-inch alloy t-type handlebars and steel foldable brake set. The Shimano 6-speed decal makes it easy to ride uphill and achieve high speeds on plain streets. The steel mudguard protects the rider from dirt while the built-in steel rear carrier is convenient for hauling things.

7 Vilano Urbana Single Speed Folding Bike

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Get this perfect foldable bike for urban travel and commuting. It is lightweight and folds into a compact piece for transport and storage. The bike requires minimal maintenance and features a single speed gear. Its saddle is comfortable, and the bike has a convenient rack/water bottle mount to make your ride more fun. If you are short on space, consider the Vilano Urbana, your ultimate stylish transport solution. It has an aluminum frame and 20-inch wheels. It requires minimal assembly and weighs just 2.5 pounds.

8 GTM 26″ 7 Speed Folding Mountain Bike Bicycle

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The bike is 85% factory assembled leaving you with minimal assembly to do. It folds in just ten seconds and is ready to go. It has responsive handling making it suitable for riding in a variety of terrains. The large tires give it stability and comfort in an athletic riding position. It has a steel frame for easy control and has a wide gear range for easy riding on any terrain. The bike frame measure 26 inches with a 26-inch fork suspension for a comfortable ride.

It features alloy rims of 26-inches and a 7-speed Shimano grip gearshift. The folding bike has a durable construction from the heavy-duty kickstand, adjustable seat height; adjustable handlebars to the general build. It can fit into a compact car trunk and weighs just 34.2 lbs. for carrying.

9 EuroMini Via 26lb Folding Bike

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Everything about this bike is durable and combines into a lightweight folding package that is easy to carry and store in tight spaces. All metal parts are made of a lightweight aluminum alloy to make it this light. The bike weighs only 26 lbs. and can carry a maximum of 240 lbs. It has a 7-speed Revo grip style shifter. The parts can adjust to ride from under five feet to over six feet four.

10 Camp 20″ Alloy 16 Speed Folding Bike Disc Brake Thunderbolt

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The folding Camp bike has a 20-inch frame and a 16-speed Shimano Altus gear. It has a dual disc brake for excellent performance and rides smoothly and comfortably than other bikes. It folds easily with a magnet and can be taken into a bus or train to be used in the city streets. It features small rubber protector to prevent scratching when folded. You can adjust the kickstand and features an inbuilt rear cargo rack and fender. It weighs 29 lbs. and can carry a maximum of 230 lbs. Fold and unfold in under ten seconds and store or carry it without any struggle.

Considerations when buying a folding bike

These bikes come in different size and design varieties. They are made for small to medium built riders since their lightweight frames cannot support larger riders. Some manufacturers, however, make frames for larger riders.

Your size and weight

It is crucial that you find a bike that suits your height size and weight. You can do this by sampling a variety of bikes and adjusting their seat height and handlebars. The folding bike has a more inclusive seat-post and handlebar range than a traditional bike. Once you have the right idea of the size that suits you, then can you focus on other more specialized features.

Wheel size

Folding bikes have a variety of wheel sizes ranging from 16 to 26 inches. Most models, however, have wheels within the range of 16 to 20 inches; these are smaller wheel sizes than the traditional bikes. These smaller wheel sizes require a different riding technique and may make transitioning from the traditional ones a bit challenging at first.

It is crucial that you choose a wheel size you are comfortable with when purchasing a folding bike. Smaller wheels are an ideal space-saver since they are more compact. They, however, require more rotations to cover a given distance. Therefore, wheel replacements are needed more often. The larger wheel sizes of 24 to 26 inches are closely related to the traditional bike wheels, are easier to ride and offer a smoother riding experience. They are, however, challenging to fold and are heavier.

Where you will use it

The terrain on which you will sue the bike is worth considering. This will determine the features to look out for. For example, flat city streets will not require many gears as an uneven terrain would. Town travels may require smaller wheels while longer trips require larger wheels. Your individual needs and level of comfort are crucial when selecting a folding bike.
Once you have determined the terrain, you will be riding on, the right wheel size, and the best model for your build then proceed to other features like latching system, suspension and carrying bag among others.

Suspension

With a generous budget, you can consider suspension features of a folding bike. They are not often necessary, especially when sticking to the city streets. If you do not require these features, just focus on crucial elements and work within your budget.

Ease of folding up

Various bike models have different folding methods. Some fold into half horizontally or vertically to take the least space. Some have magnet folding systems whereas other bikes have triangle hinges or manual disassembly to fit the companying suitcase. Look for folding options that are quicker and features swing hinges. Folding into a compact piece does not necessarily mean the bike is lightweight so consider the folding method and weight.

Some bikes fold in half due to the hinge or clamp in the middle of the frame. These take up more space than those that fold using other systems but offer the closest feel of riding compared to a non-folding bike. Breakaway bikes combine partial disassembly with folding hinges to give a more compact fold. They are, however, more complicated and takes up more time to fold and unfold and often require special tools.

Performance

You will be trading off some quality convenience when going for a folding bike over the traditional bike. They are not as stylish or easy to repair like the regular road bikes. They are not designed for speed and comfort over long riding distances. The smaller wheels result in a less comfortable ride while the more expensive models do not necessarily reflect this in quality and performance.
Consider its portability to withstand a reasonable commute and be carried while traveling. It should be easy to store in small spaces and fit your needs. They are, however, not suited for high speeds, long distances, or rough terrains. When selecting a folding bike, you should consider the wheel size, gear speeds, frame style, and weight limitations to get the best performance out of it.

Weight

A folding bike is mainly for portability meaning you will be folding and unfolding it to interchange between riding and carrying around in buses, trains or stairs. For this, the weight is crucial, and the frame material plays a significant part in the overall weight. Steel is the sturdiest frame material but heavier than aluminum and chrome materials. Smaller wheels are lighter but mean you have to pedal harder and faster to maintain speeds of the larger wheels.

How many speeds?

The most straightforward options are the single gear bikes. They are good for flat surfaces though take more effort to pedal uphill. A multi-speed bike offers some options when pedaling and if geared correctly will give you a more relaxed ride uphill. This depends on personal preferences and the terrain you will frequent. If you will be hauling a lot of stuff, then a multi-speed bike is necessary.

Height adjustment

Whatever folding bike model you settle on, make sure it easily adjusts to the proper seat height for a comfortable and efficient ride. These bikes do not come in the same size ranges as conventional bikes. Therefore, it is important that you check if you can adjust the height and spacing of the handlebars and seat to your size. Taller persons require more space. A bike that allows you to move the seat backward and forward, up and down offers the best options for a perfect seating and handlebar position.

Price

Everybody considers the price anyway. Depending on your budget, you can spend as much as $2,000 or as little as $150 on a folding bike. The frame material and components majorly determine the price. A mid-range priced folding bicycle is recommended since they have most of the features you may require and are durable.

Conclusion

It may be difficult choosing the perfect folding bike for your needs. If you are searching for the best lightweight folding bike, then this guide will give you all that you need to get it. With a reliable folding bike, you will never again be worried about storage space or how to carry it into a train or bus.

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