Best Bikes For College Students

As a fellow college graduate, getting around as a college student is a total pain. It’s not surprising that most of you that are reading are broke college students looking for alternatives. Getting around in a car is not economical, so the next best thing is a bike! Bikes are fun, compact, will keep you fit from all that cafeteria food, and most importantly they are affordable! 

In this guide, we get into the best bikes for college students, featured in a quick and easy list with individual reviews for each bike. We have broken everything down, each bike’s features, specs, pros, and cons. We have picked the best bikes that are college budget-friendly. Do yourself a favor and follow through!

Quick List for the Best Bikes For College Students

  1. Best Road Bike: Tommaso Imola Bike
  2. Best Commuter Bike: Schwinn Kedzie
  3. Best Mountain Bike: Diamondback Hatch 1 MTB
  4. Best Hybrid: Schwinn Network Hybrid Bike
  5. Best Gravel Bike: Schwinn Sporterra 
  6. Best Foldable: Eurobike TSM G7 Folding MTG 
  7. Best E-Bike: ANCHEER Folding Electric Bike
  8. Best For Female: sixthreezero Around The Block Hybrid Bike

Top 8 Bikes For College Students

Best Road Bike: Tommaso Imola Bike

Key Features and Specs:

  • Frame Material: Aluminum
  • Wheel & Tire Size: 29 in, 700c x 25c
  • Weight: +24 lbs
  • Gears: 24 speeds
  • Brake: Rim brakes

The Tommaso Imola is a great everyday road bike. Its components are one-of-a-kind and thoughtfully assembled, allowing it to compete with high-end bicycles. As a college student, you’ll be able to travel around rather quickly on this bike because it’s made for speed.

The derailleurs provide for a smooth transition between gears. The front wheel has 20 spokes by design, while the back wheel has 24. So they’re both capable of supporting your weight.The Imola bike has a lovely visual design that looks to be high-end yet is affordable. The frame is fantastic, with a geometry that allows you to ride on steep inclines or uneven terrain with ease. It has a sleek appearance that ensures a comfortable ride.


  • Aesthetic appeal
  • Bang for your buck
  • Beginner-friendly 


  • Heavy forks and rims

Best Commuter Bike: Schwinn Kedzie

Key Features and Specs:

  • Frame Material: Steel
  • Wheel & Tire Size: 28 in
  • Weight: 31 lbs
  • Gears: Single
  • Brake: Rim Brakes

The Schwinn Kedzie bike has a fork and frame made of lightweight steel. During the most rigorous riding, you can trust the frame to remain robust and intact. It’s a fantastic single-speed bike at a reasonable price.

Long-distance riding on city streets or even dirt paths is possible because of the fixed gear speed. Because the brakes are constructed of plastic and aren’t very powerful, use caution when traveling downhill. The Schwinn Kedzie bike is easy to hang in your dorm or take up and down the stairs, so if you need to go anywhere with stairs, this bike will make it easier.

Overall, it will operate well in city/street areas with flat ground, however trails and off-roads are not included in the design.


  • High load capacity
  • Handles all flat-road terrains
  • Lightweight & compact
  • Completely smooth on flat roads


  • Definitively not for off-roads and trails
  • Brakes are quirky when going downhill
  • You might need a custom seat

Best Mountain Bike: Diamondback Hatch 1 MTB

Key Features and Specs:

  • Frame Material: Aluminum
  • Weight: 28 lbs
  • Suspension Travel: 100 mm
  • Wheel & Tire Size: 27.5 or 29 x 2.25 in
  • Gears: 21 speeds
  • Brake: Rim Brakes

For college students, the Diamondback Hatch 1 is the most economical mountain bike. It’s also worth noting that if you’re new to cross-country riding, this bike is an excellent entry-level mountain bike.

This flexible bike can handle a variety of tasks and performs admirably off-road on dirt, gravel, and asphalt. It features an aluminum frame that is lightweight. Wheel sizes range from 27.5 inches on the smaller versions to 29 inches on the bigger ones, with a thickness of 2.25 inches.

With a 100 mm fork suspension travel and 21-speed gears for controlled inclines, it’s a total bang for your buck.

The Hatch 1 has rim brakes rather than hydraulic disc brakes, which is a significant design choice that, while practical, we believe was made to save money. Given the circumstances, this is reasonable.


  • Total bang for your buck
  • Ideal for beginners
  • Ideal for off-roading
  • Lightweight


  • You may find the seat uncomfortable

Best Hybrid:  Schwinn Network Hybrid Bike

Key Features and Specs:

  • Frame Material: Aluminum, Steel
  • Weight: 31 lbs
  • Wheel & Tire Size: 28.3 in, 700c x 48c
  • Gears: 21 speeds
  • Brake: Rim brakes

The Schwinn Network is a fantastic hybrid bike that comes in three different models. 

It can withstand rocky terrains and ride smoothly thanks to an aluminum frame and steel alloy suspension at the front. Mounting and dismounting are simple and quick thanks to the low-top tube design. A robust 21-speed shifting system is included in the drivetrain set, allowing for easy inclines. The rims are 32-spoke alloy rims with 28.3 inch diameter wheels.

The Network hybrid bike has a linear-pulled rim brake system, which uses dual pivot arms to force brake pads on alloy rims to stop the wheels spinning, and slow you down. The suspension Seatpost system is a plush saddle that you can fine-tune to your liking. On a steep descent, the adjustable suspension Seatpost is a coil spring comfortable suspension to relieve the tension on your groin.


  • Highly durable
  • Overall great suspension elements
  • Easy to assemble


  • Reported issues with the inner tube
  • Difficulty with riders below  5.6 ft 

Best Gravel Bike: Schwinn Sporterra 


Key Features and Specs:

  • Frame Material: Aluminum
  • Wheel & Tire Size: 28 in, 700c x 38c
  • Weight: 30 lbs
  • Gears: 14 speeds
  • Brake: Mechanical Disc Brakes

The Schwinn Sporterra is a fantastic bike with a very reasonable price tag; in fact, when you consider the quality and the cost, it’s a complete bargain. This bike operates well on most solid terrain types and in all weather, thanks to its somewhat larger tire profile, robust fork, and mechanical disc braking system.

The Shimano 14-speed transmission makes climbing hills and cruising down flats a breeze, but the brakes are one of the bike’s most important features. The brakes are mechanical disc brakes with exceptional stopping strength that come in useful in the rain.

The Sporterra includes a set of go-anywhere wheels which have a lot more grip than a standard road bike tire and don’t have the lugs or the thicker shape of a mountain bike tire. The combination increases tire traction somewhat without considerably raising roll resistance or decreasing acceleration. Make sure you don’t miss class!


  • Optimal for cross-country and off-roading
  • Thicker grippier tires for all-terrain maneuvering
  • Great price tag
  • Rigid fork for stability


  • Heavy bike

Best Foldable: Eurobike TSM G7 Folding MTG 


Key Features and Specs:

  • Frame Material: Steel
  • Weight: 36 lbs
  • Wheel Size: 27.5 in
  • Gears: 21 speeds
  • Brake: Mechanical Disc Brakes

The Eurobike TSM G7 folding mountain bike is a unique situation since it features 27.5-inch wheels, which is a fantastic feature but also a little counter-intuitive. Foldable measurements are 41 inches in height, 12 inches in length, and 36 inches in width, allowing you to store it comfortably within the dorm, under the bed, or in a corner.

You may ride at a higher angle, helping you to glide over uneven terrain with greater ease. It retains its velocity and improves traction in wet and slippery conditions while sacrificing compactness. The G7 is all about having the best off-road performance possible, with speed, agility, and stopping power.


  • Great off-roading performance
  • Large wheels guarantee smooth rides
  • Bang for your buck
  • Can easily store it


  • Wheels can be too large for some

Best E-Bike: ANCHEER Folding Electric Bike


Key Features and Specs:

  • Motor: 250W Brushless Motor
  • Range: 15-30 miles
  • Top Speed: 15 mph
  • Frame Material: Steel
  • Weight: 35 lbs
  • Wheel & Tire Size: 16 x 1.95 in
  • Gears: 3 speeds
  • Brake: Mechanical Disc Brakes

The ANCHEER folding e-bike is a special case considering the wheel and tire dimensions. The wheels and tire are made from IPX5 waterproof tech which marks riding in the rain feasible, considering the 16 x 1.95-inch dimension you will have nice friction with the ground.

It is a very lightweight bike that you can carry with only one hand and even pull like a roller bag. You can carry it with you indoors to your work, class or wherever you go. The bike has a range of 15 miles full throttle or 30 miles with pedal assist, and you can reach a top speed of 15 mph.

The highlight of the bike is the Bluetooth connectivity capability. You can sync up your smartphone to the bike and have a direct feed on the speed, battery life, and distance covered, and you can change the operating mode. It also has a small control panel if you don’t want the hassle of connecting devices.


  • Highly compact 
  • Beginner-friendly
  • Bluetooth connectivity for Smartphones
  • Adjustable with a comfortable saddle 


  • Issues with steep inclines
  • Tad bit slow

Best For Female: Sixthreezero Around The Block Hybrid Bike

Key Features and Specs:

  • Frame Material: Steel, Aluminum
  • Weight: 34 lbs
  • Wheel & Tire Size: 24, 26 x 2.12 in
  • Gears: 1, 3, 7, 21 speeds
  • Brake: Rear Coaster brake, Front Rim brake

The sixthreezero Around The Block Beach cruiser was designed specifically for women. With these classic contours, you can’t go wrong, therefore it gets all the aesthetic points. The riding position is upright due to the design, and the seat is large and fully cushioned, providing total comfort.

It has two types of brakes, which let you slow down by pedaling backward and pressing the grips. It comes with a rear rack, but you can simply add a front basket, making it great for hauling your bag or books on a sunny day.


  • Female friendly features
  • Rear rack included
  • Kickstand included
  • Beautiful design
  • Uncompromising comfort


  • Hills can be tricky with this bike

Best Bike for College Student – Buying Guide

It’s only natural to get a bit more familiar with the differences between the bikes for college students. This way you can have a better understanding. Ultimately it will help you choose the best bike and the most useful for your particular needs.

Bike Type

  • Road bikes. Are meant for riding on smooth flat surfaces. They have a crouched-down riding position with drop handlebars.
  • Commuter bikes. Also known as cruisers, are an offshoot of road bikes. They have flat handlebars and an upright seating position, meant for casual riding.
  • Mountain bikes. Are meant for riding off-road and on challenging terrains. They have flat handlebars and a more upright riding position. They either come with a front suspension or full suspension.
  • Hybrid bikes. Are a blend between mountain bikes and road bikes. They have a more upright riding position and flat handlebars similar to a mountain bike. They are lightweight with wheels meant for flat surfaces.
  • Gravel bikes. Are another blend between a mountain bike and a road bike. They have droopy handlebars with a crouched seating position. As the name suggests, these types of bikes are great for gravel, rocky, mud, or wet terrains.
  • Folding bikes. Are bikes that can fold in half to be more compact, if you didn’t already guess from the name.
  • Electric bikes. Are just like normal bikes except they are equipped with a motor and battery to assist your pedaling. They come with different operating modes and are easier on the body, meaning you can cover greater distances, for longer periods of time with less fatigue.


When choosing a bike, you also have to think about the types of terrain you want to ride in. If you’re going to ride on bumpy, off-road paths, you’ll need a suspension system. Bikes come either with a simple fork or in the case of mountain bikes, they come with a suspension system. Longer suspension travel can absorb large impacts, bumps, rocks, and logs so your ride will be relatively smooth.

To give you an idea, a travel suspension between 90-150 mm is optimal for any bumpy terrain.

The front suspension or also known as the fork is present in most mountain bikes for obvious reasons. The main difference is the materials used for shock absorption. There are 2 types of suspension, Coil and air suspension. 

Frame Material

As a college student, it’s safe to say that your number one priority is to save money and make the best choice for your wallet. We have all been there! Most affordable bikes have frames made of steel, which is durable, it’s been around for years, and you can repair it somewhat. But it totally has a heavier weight. 

Aluminum on the other hand, is lighter, a bit pricier, and it won’t rust. Most of the bikes we have picked have a blend of these materials. Leaning on one side too much and you’re totally missing the other benefits. A bike that has an aluminum frame with steel elements will be reasonably priced, with a fairly manageable weight, and durable to take the punishment you plan on subjugating the bike to.

Wheels & Tires

The bikes that we have picked have a wide range of wheel and tire specifications. Generally, if you have a large frame, then going for wheel sizes over 27.5 inches, 28, and 29 inches, is the best choice. Granted you need to account for top tube length but usually, the wheel makes most of the difference. Also worth mentioning is that the higher the diameter of the wheel, the faster you will be, but as they get thinner, you might feel the bumps of the road more than usual. Mountain bikes will naturally have smaller diameter wheels but they are thicker, so you can experience a smooth ride day by day. Anything lower than 26 inches in diameter, will be off-road friendly.


The bikes that we have picked for college students have either one of these brake systems, or a combination of both. This way you get the most optimal blend of specs to price.

Rim brakes are a common brake system on many budget-friendly bikes, they are lightweight and generally do the job just fine, in specific they either come in U or V shaped clamp. They have differences like either getting out of your way which reduces the chance of damaging, or having an advantage in slowing down particularly fast speeds. 
Mechanical disc brakes are a more pricier brake system but you get better brake action then compared to rim brakes. They do require regular maintenance, so that’s why compromised and picked bikes that have both of these systems. They are highly functional but remain affordable. The last thing you need to worry about is sending your bike to the shop, while needing to commute around campus.

Cargo Holder

It’s safe to say that as a college student you’ll need to carry books and other things from one place to the other, backpacks don’t always cut it. Many bikes come with bottle holders, bottle openers (assuming you’re 21 years old, this is ideal for pregame), a front basket or a rear wire rack. If they aren’t already included in the package you can rest assured that you can install them yourself. Although do be mindful that some bikes have a certain weight limit, and exceeding it may cause your bike to deteriorate faster.

Handlebar Type

Handlebars come in different types: riser, drop, flat, and ache. They determine your biking position, performance, and comfort. An adjustable handlebar is optimal since they allow you to customize the height to perfection in relation to the seat. You will feel comfortable if the handles are higher than the stem, but you’ll decrease pedaling efficiency.

Flat bars are widely popular because they allow you to enjoy an upright position and access the brake levers easily.


The saddle either makes or breaks a bike. A standard operating procedure, you should always feel comfortable on the bike seat no matter what the circumstances. You can’t know for sure, until you sit your tuchus on the bike, and feel for yourself. A general rule of thumb is to check for features like a suspension on the saddle and coils as these make bumps and drops easier on the groin. For women, a wide saddle is a preferred choice.

If you love the bike but the seat is the only deal-breaker, then you can easily swap out the stock saddle for something more custom and voila, you’re all set. 

Chainring & Groupset 

The bikes we have picked for college students come from a variety of bike types. One of the most important elements of a bike is how many speeds it has. A higher speed count means the chain ring and groupset is more diverse with small, subtle increments changes. 

Practically, this means that riding on an incline you shift gears as you elevate in order to not go above the threshold of fatigue. It’s easier and more efficient, mountain bikes all have these high-speed counts, meanwhile, bikes that are used for flat roads can have fewer speed shifts. Fixie bikes for example only employ 1 speed, BMX or cruiser bikes can be found with one-speed shift. If you’re going to a college that’s in a hilly place, going for a bike with diverse speeds is your best choice, unless you want the extra strain (not recommended).


Fenders cover the back wheel or bike chain. You get a lot of aesthetic appeal points on some bikes, especially on retro vintage cruisers. But, they also serve an important purpose. If you’re riding to and from classes on rainy days the fender will protect your clothes from the water, and water. One less thing to wash and dry!

The Finish line

We picked 8 different types of affordable bikes to make it easier for you to find which one suits your needs better. After all, a college student doesn’t have the budget for a car, taxi, and such because they will make the expenses unnecessarily difficult, on top of the daily expenses and ridiculous tuition costs.

We have concluded a buying guide for the best bikes for college students, this is so you can be better informed. You might have different needs than someone else. We have reviewed each model individually for its features, specs, pros, and cons of each one of them. This way you can quickly compare between them and choose on the spot. 

After all, we want you to spend less time researching and more time having fun biking and living to the fullest. 

Do be part of the pack and check out some more articles if you liked this one and found it helpful!