TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Many small businesses are suffering due to COVID-19, but southern Arizona bikes shops are seeing a boom in business.
Ben’s Bikes in Tucson is extremely busy with customers bringing in bikes for repair. In the nine years Ben Chandler has owned the shop, he said its never been this busy. Social distancing has sparked an interest in cycling and many people are rediscovering their love for the sport.
"Have that escapism, to clear their head and maybe they can go back and it will make things a little bit more bearable," Chandler said.
He said people are taking bikes from their yards, sheds and attics that haven’t been ridden in years, and in some cases, decades. A 1980s mountain bike was recently brought into his shop for repairs. A majority of customers are families looking to ride together.
"They can then have recess or gym time since the parents are now the teachers," Chandler said.
The shop used to take about two days to repair a bike, with such a spike in business, the repair turn-around is now about seven days.
Chandler says he hopes people will find a new passion for cycling and continue to ride in the future.