Economic Impact

The Bike Virginia Tour, a program of Bike Virginia the non-profit, has brought cycling tourism to Virginia for 27 years. In 2011 we collected data to complete our second Economic Impact Study. Read below for the Executive Summary. The full report is available here.

Bike Virginia Tour: Economic Impact and Direct Spending 

Executive Summary 2012

The annual Bike Virginia Tour draws up to 2,000 regional, national, and international visitors during a 6 day period each June. Participants enjoy 300-400 miles of bicycling in rural areas, enjoying the history, scenery, and geography. The event is a program of Bike Virginia, a 501(C)(3), non-profit that works to improve Virginia’s health, environment, and economy through bicycling.

The tour generates considerable tourism spending for the region as riders enjoy lodging, dining, entertainment, and retail opportunities.  Riders occupy up to 400 rooms for 5-6 nights in addition to up to 1,200 riders that camp at our headquarters.

The average age of our participants is 54, 60 percent are male, 40 percent are female. We have a large return ridership (60% or greater each year). The year 2012 will mark the 25th Anniversary of the tour.

Direct Spending and Economic Impact

  • Total participant spending for 2,000 riders over six days is estimated at $1,133,380 for lodging, food, drink, entertainment, transportation, and retail purchases.


  • Calculation of the ripple effect, secondary spending by merchants and businesses, suggests that the Tour has an additional impact of $725,363 in ripple on top of the $1,133,380 direct spending by tour participants.


  • Additional to rider purchases our organization spends $500,000 annually on services and materials to hold the event. Those dollars also generate an additional ripple of  $320,000 for the regional economy.


  • Based on formulas provided in the US Travel Association’s report for Virginia Tourism the Bike Virginia Tour generates up to $76,000 in federal tax, $45,000 in state tax, and $31,000 in local tax receipts.


  • In total, the event can generate up to $2.8 Million each year in just 6 days.


  • Riders also show a strong desire for return tourism. Last year 63 percent of surveyed riders reported a desire to revisit the host towns again.


Local participation in planning for the tour by Visitors Bureaus, Chambers of Commerce, Downtown Associations, and other businesses is integral in making the event a success for all. Together we can provide a memorable and enjoyable experience that will generate return visits.

This Executive Summary provides a snapshot of data from a 2011 Direct Spending Survey.  Additional information is provided in the  FULL REPORT