5 Picks of the Best Budget Folding Bike

Are you looking for the best budget folding bike? If you're not familiar with this type of bike, you may be asking yourself, why you would need to have a folding bike in the first place. These types of bikes help maximise the space that you have. At times, you avoid using your bike altogether because you may not have the storage space for it in your home, or you may not have a car that can carry the bike.

In this article, we take a look at the best bikes on the market that are not only foldable but also affordable. We will look at the mechanism that allows you to fold a bike and store it away in a convenient way. We also look at different models available on the market, and what else can be done to make them even better buys, after all, perfection is a pursuit attained by very few. Let's dive in, shall we?

In a hurry?

Are you looking to find out what goes into an affordable folding bike that you should be looking at? There are a couple of features that need to make your list. Ask the retailer about how the mechanism works and what the dimensions are when it is folded. This way, you will know how effective it is. You also want to make sure that it is easy enough to fold and open up again.

You want to make sure that the bike can easily be carried when it is folded. Also, check on the weight, and make sure that when it is folded, you can carry it; otherwise, it may just defeat the purpose of being portable. Looking for a budget bike shouldn’t mean that you should compromise quality. Be sure that the bike still has the necessary features, even though some bells and whistles may be removed to lower the price.

Our top pick

We have done our research and come across some of the best folding bikes on the market today. However, it is not all the bikes that would save a few pennies. From the top picks that we found, our favourite has to be the Schwinn Loop Adult Folding Bike, 20-inch Wheels, 7-Speed Drivetrain, Rear Carry Rack, Carrying Bag. We like that this bike folds easily, has several gears to make riding easy and that it is also affordable.

6 Picks of the Best Budget Folding Bike

OUR TOP PICK

Swagtron SWAGCYCLE EB5 Plus Folding Electric Bike with Removable Battery | City eBike with Pedals & Swappable 36V Battery | 14†Wheels, 250W Motor, Built-in Carry Handle, Black

The CX332 comes from one of the few manufacturers that has gone that extra mile to ensure that all their customer’s needs are fully satisfied. It is quite common that when companies make cycling shoes, they often cater to their most popular demographic. Lake has however gone out to ensure that people with wide feet can find shoes that will guarantee them comfort while cycling. 

This pair of wide feet cycling shoes is one of the best that they make. It comes with three different designs. My favourite being the white and black that stands out. The shoes are made from Kangaroo leather with the top section of the cycling shoe being made from mesh. It works to make them lighter than other shoes. 

The cycling shoe comes with a dual side-mounted lacing to ensure a snug fit that will be necessary to keep the shoe glued on your feet at high speeds. This feature may seem subtle but is very efficient. Take into consideration that people with wide feet do not easily find comfort in their shoes. 

You will notice that the manufacturer well designs the sole of the shoe. They are well ventilated and allow your feet some space to breathe. The sole comes ready and hardened to enable you to maximise the force you can apply directly to the pedal. 

The last thing that is worth mentioning is the fact that these shoes are specifically created to be used when cycling at high speeds, perhaps if you were racing. The company believes that once you are a customer, you should remain one for life. Hence if your shoe manages to get destroyed, then your next pair will only cost you 50% of the price! 

Pros

  • These shoes are light
  • They come with a replacement guarantee
  • Hardened sole
  • Kangaroo Leather
  • Three different designs

Cons

  • May not be as durable as they are efficient
  • The original tightening process is confusing

EDITORS CHOICE

This bike has a 20-inch frame, which is made of lightweight aluminium alloy. The handlebars are also made of the same lightweight material, this way you know that even when you fold it, 

you can easily carry it around. One of the great things about this bike is that people of different sizes can easily use it. Also, it is equipped to hold its own in other weather conditions.

It is a comfortable, affordable bike that can easily be shared across the family. The adjustable stem makes this easier. The other great thing about this bike is that it can be ridden over some of the most rugged terrains.  This bike also has double-wall rims and Kenda ultra-light multi-terrain tires which help you ride through some of the harshest terrains. It also has a magnet catcher to hold the folded bicycle together.

Pros

  • It's affordable
  • It's comfortable
  • It is a great cruising bike.
  • It's durable
  • You can adjust the stem
  • It has a magnet catcher that holds the bike together when it is folded.

Cons

  • You will need to know how to assemble it yourself.

BEST VALUE

Qualisports Electric Ebike Volador 20' Folding Bicycle Approved UL2849, 36V/7Ah Battery, 350W Hub Motor, 20MPH Max Speed, 25+Miles Range, 7 Speed Shifter Adults Bike(Black)

One of the most noticeable things about the Stowabike is that it is considerably more significant than other folding bikes. One of the reasons for this is because it is a folding mountain bike. It has 26inch wheels. Since it is a mountain bike, it has to have several speeds to go over the mountainous terrain. 

It has 18 speeds in total, and shifting between gears is a breeze. The frame is made of steel which is durable and easy to repair if you need to. Like most mountain bikes, it also has dual suspension. It is also fitted with v-brakes, that help you stop safely when you need to. We also like that it is amongst the most affordable of bikes. It has a mountain bike saddle and a steel kickstand.

Pros

  • It has 18 speeds
  • It has a durable steel frame. 
  • It is affordable
  • It is comfortable
  • It's of good quality.

Cons

  • It's larger than most folding bikes and will need more space than the smaller folding bikes.
  • You may need to make several adjustments.

RUNNER UP

Jetson Bolt Folding Electric Bike, Black - with LCD Display, Lightweight & Portable with Carrying Handle, Travel Up to 15 Miles, Max Speed Up to 15.5 MPH

This bicycle has 6 Speeds and uses Shimano Gears. It has a steel frame mudguard on the back to help keep all the dirt and grime off as you ride through different terrain. It also comes with a carrier and has reflectors as well for your safety. Also, it has very durable tires great for city riding. It made our list because it easily folds. This makes storing it more manageable, which is one of the main reasons for getting a folding bike.

One of the things that we like most about this bike is that it’s a high performing bike that comes at an affordable price. It has a stainless steel frame which is durable but not too heavy, another admirable trait in a folding bike. To add to the convenience, the stem on the bike can easily be removed. Also, it has a simple twist grip shifter as well as an adjustable seat and handlebars.

Pros

  • It's affordable
  • It's easy to fold
  • Its is made of durable material
  • It has six speeds
  • It has a simple twist grip shifter.

Cons

  • you will need to assemble it yourself to a certain extent.
  • It's better suited for city riding.

RUNNER UP

FIIDO L2 Folding EBike, 350W Aluminum Electric Bicycle with Pedal for Adults and Teens, 14' Electric Bike 15Mph with 48V/20AH Lithium-Ion Battery, Gray

This bike is a great option, especially for commuting. It does well on flat roads, and this is why it has become a popular pick for everyday use. When you fold it, it measures 21cm by 81cm by 63 cm. folding it is quite simple, and the compact size that it folds into, allows you to easily carry it with you in a car, or store it away when it's not in use. Also, it is made of aluminium which makes it lightweight. This is a feature you want in a foldable bike. 

This bike is a single-speed bike, which works well for urban riding. The downside with this, however, is that it means that the cycle doesn’t have too much power and won't take kindly to rugged terrain. However, it is still a comfortable bike to ride. 

Pros

  • You can easily fold it
  • It is lightweight
  • It is compact when folded, making it easy to store.
  • It is comfortable
  • It also comes with a carrier and a water bottle holder.

Cons

  • It doesn’t have a front brake
  • It has one speed which means that it is not as powerful as bikes with more speeds.

RUNNER UP

FIIDO L2 Folding EBike, 350W Aluminum Electric Bicycle with Pedal for Adults and Teens, 14' Electric Bike 15Mph with 48V/20AH Lithium-Ion Battery, Gray

Schwinn has a good reputation for making suitable bicycles that are durable and reliable. This folding bike is no different. It is fitted with 20-inch wheels, and it is made for people that are at most 74 inches tall. To transition between the various gears, this bike has a 7-speed twist shifter. Also, to ensure your safety, this bike has brakes on both the back and the front wheels.

One of the great things about the Schwinn Loop Adult Folding Bike is that it is functional and yet at the same time has some of the aesthetic features. It comes with a rear carry rack as well as a carrying bag, which you can detach. The tires are made for city riding mostly, and this is why it’s a typical pick for commuters. The seven gears help you ride more efficiently. 

Pros

  • It  has brakes on both back and front wheels, helping you to stop when you need to
  • It has seven gears to help you ride smoother, especially on rough terrain.
  • It has a carrier bag on the back that you can detach.
  • It uses a single hinge system to fold, making it easy.
  • The seat is comfortable.
  • It is affordable

Cons

  • It may feel heavy

Buying guide

One of the reasons why you would look for a folding bike is because you want something that can be made portable, perhaps for you to travel with easier, or for you to store it away easier, probably in a cupboard. There are certain features that you will need to make sure your folding bike has. Maybe you are wondering if this is the right choice for you and why. It helps to know what it entails.

What will you use the bike for?

It is important to initially consider what you will want to use the bike for. This is because some bikes are ridden on city roads whilst others are better ridden on dirt roads or off-road. Nailing the primary purpose of getting the bike, will also point in the direction as to what type of features you will need in the bike.

Bikes meant for off-road use will do better with more gears and more power. This may mean that they will be bulkier and may not be as compact as single speed bikes when they are folded. Bikes for city riding are just fine with one gear and as such may not be as bulky as others.

Travelling with it. 

If you’ve just taken up cycling, you may be wondering how cyclists carry their bikes to the point that they want to be cycling from. Whilst some may look for ways to hoist the bike on the car using clamps, racks or pads, this may not be a viable option for you. You may just want to plop it in the boot and not have to worry about how it will fit. It can be challenging with a full-sized bike.

A folding bike means that you can fold it in half, and end up with half its length rather than struggling with the full size of the bike. This way, it can easily fit in your boot.

Storing it

That is the other reason why people consider buying a foldable bike. When you don’t have a lot of space to spare, you have to think about how you would store your bicycle. That is also determined by the number of bicycles that you want to keep. Foldable bikes will take up considerably less space and can fit in a closet that you couldn’t even think to fit a full-sized bicycle.

Do the features on my folding bike matter?

An excellent folding bike should, amongst other features, have adjustable components such as an adjustable seat and handlebars. That allows different sized people to use the bike. However, you can only adjust to a certain extent. That is why it is also essential to know the exact size that you need.

Whilst you might like a particular bike, perhaps because of the way that it looks or otherwise, you must know the size of the bike that you need. Some bicycles have a weight and height restriction.

Which folding mechanisms are available?

You also will want to check on the folding mechanism of the bike, making sure that it is easy to use, and also that it is durable. It may boil down to construction. You want to have the assurance that your bike will stand the test of being opened and closed repeatedly without placing a strain on the frame. The frame material will need to be durable and also flexible.

The mid horizontal fold is quite common. It also places strain on the bike's frame, and as such isn’t always ideal. The vertical fold is a bit of a better option and takes stress on the frame well. It also usually comes with inbuilt suspension. The swivel fold is less common, and it usually consists of two or three folds. It is generally excellent if you are looking for more compactness when you fold your bike.

You can also get bikes that have a break-away mechanism. With this mechanism, you will need to have some sort of mechanical know-how as it involves taking the bike apart. Whilst these are not the only folding mechanisms that are available, these are some of the most commonly available.

 You must know what you are looking for in the bike. That will help you know the size that you want the cycle to be when it is folded.

Final thoughts

With so many options available on the market today, it is imperative that you do extensive research to find out what it means to get a good folding bike. Online research is a great tool to know what you may like. If you can walk into a bike shop with folding bikes, just to get a feel of what the options are like. You can test ride it and get a better appreciation.

Making your decision without trying the bike out, comes with its risks, so make sure to read the terms and conditions as well as the return policy. That being said, we recommend buying the Schwinn Loop Adult Folding Bike, 20-inch Wheels, 7-Speed Drivetrain, Rear Carry Rack, Carrying Bag. One of the main reasons being that they are a reputable company and also because it’s a good quality folding bike and also that it is affordable. We also like that it has an excellent braking system.

We hope this helps you find the best budget folding bike on the market, that suits your needs. 

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