Q: When will you be open?

A: During the summer, on Friday and Saturday we are open from around 8AM until around 8PM. During the summer, on weekdays (Sunday-Thurs) we are open fromarund 8am to around 6pm. During the Spring and Fall (Easter-Thanskgiving,) we rent bikes throughout the week and on the weekends.  Though the storefront may be sometimes closed during the week, if there are bicycles outside, you can sign them out at the Refuge Inn front desk next door. [Please note that the Refuge staff can only rent bikes that have been inspected by Bike Depot staff. We are unable to pull specialty bikes from the shed, and some days the bicycles are not available due to inclement weather.]    This schedule varies with weather & staffing.

Q: Do I need reservations?

A: We do not currently take reservations.  Bikes are on a first-come, first-served basis.  If you are set on renting bicycles during your visit to Chincoteague, we recommend renting them daily.  You can lock the bikes in the racks behind our shop if you like, or bike to your house or hotel. The only time you may want to call ahead is if you’re looking to rent specialty bikes in the off-season, as their availability may vary and we can check with the bike shop staff and get back to you.

Q: Are the mosquitoes really THAT bad?

A: Sometimes.  During the summer and early fall, if it has rained a lot in the past 4-5 days, you can expect a healthy mosquito population on both Chincoteague and Assateague.  During the early Spring and late fall, you shouldn’t have too much of a problem.  We recommend taking a can of Ben’s Outdoor Spray with you, just in-case (for sale inside.)  Burt’s Bees makes an all-natural bug spray, if you prefer.  An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!  We also sell Afterbite, for those who get unexpectedly swarmed.

Q: Why don’t you offer training wheels?

A: Our insurance company advised against it.  Sorry 🙁 We recommend a tag-a-long for children who haven’t learned to ride a bike, and we have adult tricycles for adults who don’t feel comfortable on a two-wheeler.

Q: Why don’t you offer those four-seater bicycles with canopies?

A: These quadcycles are VERY difficult to pedal.  Since the gear is so low and the frame is so heavy, you work twice as hard than you would on a regular cycle or tandem.  It’s nearly impossible to get them up and over the bridge to Assateague. We tried these once, and most of our customers came back dissatisfied, so we decided not to rent them anymore.

Q: Do I need to pay to go to Assateague?

A: Not on a bicycle!  The hiking and biking path bypasses the toll booth–yippee!  If you go in a car, you can purchase a daily, weekly, or yearly pass.

Q: Can I bike to the beach?

A: Absolutely.  The beach is about a three-mile ride on paved paths from our location. We kindly ask that you do NOT ride bicycles on the sand itself– the sand here is very soft, so you’ll probably fall over.  Additionally, sand and salt are very bad for the crank & chain, and can cause the crank to jam or chain to snap unexpectedly.

Q: What happens if my bike breaks down?

A: Though uncommon, this does happen from time to time, especially if you’re pedaling suddenly or braking hard. Call us and we’ll bring you a new one!  We do ask that you walk in the general direction of the road, so we can get the bike to you ASAP.

Q: Can you repair my personal bike?

A: Unfortunately, our insurance company has advised against helping visitors with personal bicycles. We’re very sorry and wish we could help! We do have some basic parts for sale inside, including inner tubes.

Q: Is it safe to bike on the roads on Chincoteague?

A: Like many things, it is just about as safe as you make it.  If you wear a helmet, observe traffic rules, and are aware of your surroundings, biking here is safer than most places.

Q: Who owns the ponies next to the Bike Depot?

A: The Chincoteague Pony Farm.  Don Leonard, who founded the Refuge Motor Inn in 1973, has owned ponies since he was a little boy in the 1930s.  It was only natural for him to include ponies as part of his hotel!  His sons and grandsons keep up the herd these days.  If you have questions about the ponies, visit their websiteFacebook, or Twitter.

23 Responses to FAQ

  1. Alice Abrash says:

    We are coming to Chincoteague again this year after not having been there for a few years. Can you let me know how much you are charging for a weekend’s worth of bike rental? Also, one of us has a bike that needs some help in order to be in tip top condition. Do you all do repairs and upkeep work for others or only for the 200+ very nice bikes you rent out? 🙂
    Thanks! We are SO looking forward to being there again!!!
    Alice Abrash
    Reston, Virginia

  2. Cynthia says:

    Hi Alice!

    A cruiser rental is $3/hour or $14/day (24-hours.) If you keep them for three days (72 hrs) the rate goes down to $11. Different styles of bicycles are different prices, but you can find a list under the “Bicycles” page on our website. Unfortunately, we are unable to repair personal bicycles. Our insurance company prohibits it. Wish we could help–sorry! We are so glad you are returning to Chincoteague. See you soon.

  3. Joe Whitaker says:

    If I would like to rent a trail a bike or trailer May I attach it to my personal bike

  4. Cynthia says:

    Hi Joe,

    While our tag-a-longs cannot be rented by themselves, you could potentially attach a kiddie kart to your personal bike. For safety reasons this is always at the discretion of the shop attendant. Hope to see you in May!

  5. Jen says:

    When renting a bike or bikes, how do you determine the days charged? Ex.- picking up a bike fri evening and returning them sunday afternoon. Thanks!

  6. Cynthia says:

    We calculate “days” as 24-hour periods. So if you pick up a bike at noon on Friday, you have until noon on Sunday to return it to be charged for 2 days. If you return the bike at 2PM on Sunday, you’ll owe 2 days + 2 hours. We just charge you for the extra hours over your 24-hour period (or another day, whichever is cheapest–for example, if you return the bikes at 6PM on Saturday, we’ll just charge you for 3 days since it’s cheaper than 2 days + 6 hours.)

  7. Dawn Nilufer says:

    Do you rent bikes for children? My son is 7 and can ride a normal two wheel bike without training wheels.

  8. Cynthia says:

    We have two sizes of bikes for kids. I’m sure one of them will suit him just fine– see you soon!

  9. Jeff Morley says:

    What does it cost to rent a bike for a whole week?

  10. Cynthia says:

    Well, for a regular beach cruiser, 7 whole days (24 hour periods) would be $10/day. $70 plus tax!

  11. Sue says:

    We are wanting to visit the week of April 14th. Will we be able to rent bikes from anywhere?

  12. Cynthia says:

    Yes! If the bike shop is closed, just come to the front desk of the Refuge Inn next door and they will sign the bikes out for you.

  13. Sue says:

    Great! Thanks for replying!

  14. Peter Gal says:

    Do you have any bikes that are for 2 people (preferably side-by-side 3 or 4 wheels)?

  15. Lori says:

    We will be coming in a month and would like to rent a bike with an attachment for a 3 yr old to ride in. We use a burlee bee on our personal bikes. Do you have something like it?

  16. Cynthia says:

    Yes! We call them Kiddie Karts and they’re essentially the same thing. They are $3/hr or $15/day.

  17. Cynthia says:

    We have tandems that are traditional bicycles built for two, with one in front controlling the steering, and another in the back contributing to pedaling.

  18. Lee says:

    I will be staying in the area over the weekend before July 4th and am curious if there is a local cycling club or if there are bike shops that organize weekend rides? Thanks.

  19. Cynthia says:

    Not that we know of. There will be plenty of people on bikes, though!

  20. Heather says:

    Are your Kiddie Karts for 1 or 2 children? Do they have padding? What are the weight limits on them, wondering if it would fit my 18lb 8 month old, I’m not sure how comfortable I am using the child’s seat that attaches to the bike, thought the Kiddie Kart might be a better option.

  21. Cynthia says:

    Kiddie Karts are for one or two children (there are 5-point harnesses.) There is minimal padding and a 50 lb weight limit. Child seats have more padding and a 25 pound weight limit. Feel free to stop by and take a look at the different options!

  22. Amy Swisher says:

    We are a group of Girl Scouts, number not confirmed but probably 7-12 of us (middle and high school). We will be staying at Kiptopeke State Park in early June and will be making a day trip to Chincoteague/Assateague. Do you have any recommendations for biking on the islands? We will be there for about 7-8 hours. Any sights we should be sure to take in. I am thinking ponies, lighthouse and beach. Also, any recommendations for an inexpensive but good supper? We will be packing our lunch. Thank you so much for all of your help. P.S. How difficult are the tandem bikes to ride?

  23. Cynthia says:

    I would say that you should bike over to the Wildlife Refuge, check out the lighthouse, woodland trail to see ponies, and then hit the beach or maybe bike a mile up the “service road” to D-dike, a really quiet spot of beach only accessible by bicycle, depending how old and energetic your scouts are. I’d recommend Famous Pizza for pizza, pasta, subs, and burgers, or if you’re looking for seafood, maybe Don’s Seafood in town. Tandem bikes are a bit tricky but it’s mostly in the confidence! You just have to go for it!

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The official bird of Chincoteague, the Mosquito, is a major consideration for outside activities on the islands.  Be prepared!

Chincoteague and Assateague have several excellent hiking & biking trails.

Can I rent a bicycle for a whole week?  What about 20 minutes?  Should I take bug spray?

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We have over 200 smooth-riding cycles for you to choose from, with something for everyone.