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The Best Rear Bike Carrier for Town/Commute Riding

By Annette 2 years agoNo Comments

Bike carriers allow you to carry stuff with you while you ride, keeping you safe and comfortable by getting weight off your body and onto the bike.  Rear bike carriers are the most popular as they allow you to carry heavier loads than would be comfortable on your back or safe on the front of your bike.  Rear carriers

  • are typically used with panniers, rear baskets or with rear kids bike seats
  • can be found on bikes with riders who are commuting, shopping or transporting kids/stuff around town
  • can be attached to most bike types but wheel circumference and brake type will effect their compatibility.  They are not compatible with carbon frames and don’t tend to be used on road bikes that are used for training
  • are made from a variety of different materials which effect their ability to carry weight
  • come in several different designs, including 2 or 3 leg struts & can have supports for panniers.  Again the design effects their ability to carry weight

Different types of carriers suit different purposes – so it is important you get the right bike carrier for the type of riding YOU do.

With the range of rear bike carriers that are available there will be one designed to meet the demands of your type of riding.

We suggest that you look for a carrier that matches the demands of your town/commute riding by

  • answering the question… what type of loads/weight will you typically ride with?  Carriers come in quite a variety of styles meant to carry small, lightweight loads through to heavy duty long touring loads. We believe round town/commute riders should have mid weight carriers so aim for up to 30kg.  This gives you the ability to use your bike for more things! To carry a rear kids bike seats you will require 25kg or more.
  • most rear carriers will need to take medium to heavy loads at some point so should be constructed from aluminium tubing, steel tubing or titanium tubing.  The greater the diameter of the tubing the stronger the carrier.  If your loads are small & lightweight consider a front basket or front carrier.
  • decide whether you need the strength of 2 or 3 carrier stays – these are the legs or struts of the carrier.  The more stays the stronger the carrier will be, town/commuting loads are well supported by 3 legs.
  • know your wheel size by checking on the sidewall of your tyre.  When you have this information you can make a good buy decision about the type of carrier or chose to get a fully adjustable carrier that will fit any wheel size
  • know your brake type (see this story for help).  Again if the carrier is fully adjustable this won’t be an issue but most rear carriers are made for either disc or non-disc brake compatibility
  • how will the carrier attach to your bike?  For more on this subject go to How do bike carriers attach to bikes?
  • additional design features like pannier supports & rear light mounting plates are worth considering
Commuting by bike. goRide
Topeak Explorer rear bike carrier. goRide

Adjustable mounting arms for ease of attachment

3 leg struts for strength, taking up to 30kg of weight

Comes in disc or non-disc brake versions or a 29″ wheel style

Rear light or reflector mounting plate


A robust rear bike carrier can be used for a variety of things and should be easy for you to attach to YOUR bike

Weight match – make sure the carrier can take the weight you need it to.  We suggest using a medium weight carrier for town/commute/riding with kids.  Up to 30kg is ideal as this gives you great versatility.

A carrier with adjustable fittings provides you with the ability to mount it easily to your bike.

The carrier must be compatible with your brake type so make sure you choose the right version or get a fully adjustable carrier that is compatible with all brakes.

Having a light or rear reflector mounting plate is also a great addition for town/commute riding

goRide’s Rear Bike Carrier Solution for Town/Commute Riding is…
Rear Bike Carrier – Topeak Explorer

A strong mid weight rear carrier that is suitable for rear kids bike seats.  Has adjustable mounting arms.  Comes in a range of versions for compatibility to wheel size and brakes.

get Safe and goRide –  The Best Rear Bike Carrier for Town Riding

Thanks for reading. Used together our stories, resources & products support you to achieve and develop as a rider.

Related Resources:

Bike Carrier Buying Guide

How do Bike Carriers Attach to Bikes?

The Best Front/Rear Carriers for Lightweight Loads

The Best Front/Rear Carriers for Bike Touring….coming soon

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