If you want to take your kids to school or the park in a trailer, you need to pick the right bike for the job, but which ones are best for pulling kid trailers?
As cycling continues to increase in popularity, a lot of parents are deciding to bring their kids along for their ride by attaching a kid trailer to the back of their bikes. However, you need to keep in mind that not all bikes are going to be suitable for pulling kid trailers, which is why you need to pick one that is going to be compatible with this kind of cargo.
The best bikes for pulling kid trailers are the following:
- Specialized Allez
- Triban RC 520 Disc
- Giant Contend SL
- Specialized Sirrus 2.0
- Batch The Fitness
- Marin Bikes Fairfax 3
- Trek 520
- Marin Four Corners
- Genesis Tour de Fer 30
More and more parents are deciding to ditch the minivan by taking their kids from point A to point B on a bike. If your kids are still too young to ride a bike themselves, there is no better way to take them out cycling than to attach a kid trailer to the back. This is a great way to introduce cycling to your young one, and it enables you to get some quality exercise - while at the same time lowering your carbon footprint. With that said, there are a lot of bike options on the market, and some are going to be considerably better than others for pulling trailers. You need to consider your physical strength and endurance as a rider, the size and weight of your kid trailer, as well as your budget when decision-making. To help you understand this further, we are going to take a closer look at the best bikes for pulling kid trailers.
After extensively researching cycling forums, I have been able to gather enough information to determine which bikes are best for pulling kid trailers. My research has indicated that various bike models are suitable for pulling kid trailers, and you ultimately need to consider which type is best for you based on your riding style and physical abilities.
Best Road Bikes for Pulling Kid Trailers
Road bikes are an excellent choice for pulling kid trailers, as they are lightweight and aerodynamic. If you are hauling around a 40lb to 80lb bike trailer plus the weight of your kids and traveling gear, a heavy bike is just going to slow you down even more.
In addition, the geometry of the bike allows the rider to utilize more power from their legs so that you can keep your cycling efficient and optimal. With that said, road bikes are not going to be the best bike for pulling kid trailers for all riders.
You need to keep in mind that due to road bikes being lightweight, you will have a bit less stability when riding - especially if you are hauling a heavy trailer. Riders who are physically fit will benefit from riding a road bike, as the lightweight qualities of the frame are going to increase your speed and make cycling a lot more efficient.
A golden rule to keep in mind is that the weight of the trailer and cargo should not be more than 40% of the weight of the rider and bicycle combined. Let’s dive into the best road bikes for pulling kid trailers.
Specialized is one of the most reputable bike brands in the industry and they are particularly regarded for their world-class road bikes. Although high-end racing bikes are what Specialize truly excels in, this may be more speed than what you need to tow your kid to the park.
That is why one of the best road bikes pulling kid trailers is the Specialized Allez. This is a well-rounded road bike with excellent specs and performance capabilities, but it is not quite as lightweight as some of the other models you can find.
The Allez weighs just under 20lbs and it enables you to have solid stability, while at the same time, allowing you to get up to speed efficiently. The bike frame is made out of Specialized’s signature E5 Premium Aluminum, which is incredibly lightweight and also durable. In general, aluminum road bikes are going to be a better choice for pulling kid trailers, as the increased durability is going to be more reliable for long-term cycling.
With that said, to keep the weight of the bike low, Specialized designed the Allez with a full carbon fork. Throughout the bike, you will find top-notch Specialized custom components, as well as high-end parts from Shimano, which are used for the derailleurs, crankset, shift levers, and cassette.
A lot of parents who want to have a fantastic bike that they can use outside of towing their kids around often opt for the Specialized Allez given that it is such a versatile bicycle that can be used for fitness riding and commuting.
When you pick out your Allez, you will find that this road bike is available in a number of different model options, so that you can choose the specs and performance capabilities that fit your riding style and trailer towing needs. The price of the Allez ranges from $1,000 to $6,800 depending on the model that you choose.
Triban RC 520 Disc
If you are new to riding road bikes and want a solid introduction to this kind of cycling, the Triban RC 520 Disc is an amazing all-arounder. This road bike is particularly good for pulling kid trailers due to its comfortable geometry and seating position, as well as its increased weight.
A lot of riders have actually criticized the Triban RC 520 Disc due to it weighing 23lbs, which is quite a bit more than a standard road bike. While this may not be an advantage for winning any races, this is actually a great characteristic for towing a kid trailer. The increased weight is going to give you more stability and a better center of gravity when riding.
While this is a great road bike for all riders, women, in particular, will feel more comfortable pulling a kid trailer on the Triban RC 520 Disc. The 6061 T6 aluminum frame is very durable and lightweight, which will allow you to pull a trailer confidently.
I really like that the manufacturer has added a lifetime warranty to the stem, frame, and handlebars of this bike. This is a great reassurance that the bike was built well and that you are totally covered in case you run into any technical issues with the primary components.
The Triban RC 520 Disc is also equipped with superb quality disc breaks, which is a great characteristic for any parent that is pulling a trailer, as you will have top-of-the-line stopping power when slamming on the brakes of this road bike. In addition, the manufacturer designed the Triban RC 520 Disc. with Shimano parts throughout the groupset.
All in all the specs of this bike are on point and it is a great option for pulling trailers - especially given the increased weight and the comfortability of the seating position. With these specs and performance capabilities in mind, the Triban RC 520 Disc is listed for a very reasonable $1,400.
Giant Contend SL
Giant is one of the top bike manufacturers in the world and they are praised for designing high-quality bicycles at a more affordable price than a lot of the competition. The Giant Contend SL is a top pick road bike for any parent that needs to tow a kid trailer.
This is a road bike with balanced specs and performance capabilities, which is why it is so compatible with hauling cargo. Giant designed this road bike specifically for endurance riding. So, if you find yourself taking your kids on long bike rides, the Giant Contend SL is going to be a solid choice.
Much like with the previous model that we covered, the Triban RC 520 Disc, the Giant Contend SL weighs a bit more than a standard road bike at just under 21lbs. Although some cyclists will avoid this road bike due to its weight, this is actually a selling point for riders that need to pull a kid trailer, as you will have increased stability.
The ride quality of this road bike is incredibly smooth and it handles like a dream thanks to its impressive geometric design. Giant used a very lightweight ALUXX SL aluminum and a full carbon fork when building the Contend SL.
All in all, this is a top-notch road bike with excellent specs for pulling a kid trailer. You will also enjoy having the Contend SL on the side for your casual commutes and fitness riding, as a lot of parents do. You can pick up this Giant Road bike for just $1,150.
Best Hybrid Bikes for Pulling Kid Trailers
If a road bike is too lightweight for your body composition and towing needs, you may find that a hybrid is better suited for your riding style. Hybrid bikes are designed to strike a balance between the speedy characteristics of a road bike and the rugged capabilities of a mountain bike.
These bikes have a slim frame and design, but they are equipped with more durable materials overall. This makes hybrid bikes quite a bit heavier than standard road bikes and it also implies that you can take them on gravel and dirt trails.
If your kid's trailer weighs more than 60lbs to 80lbs, you may find that a hybrid bike is going to be considerably more comfortable and reliable than a road bike, as it will handle the increased weight better. Let’s dive into the best hybrid bikes for pulling kid trailers.
Specialized Sirrus 2.0
The Sirrus 2.0 from Specialized is one of the hottest road bikes out right now. Much like with all of Specialized’s bikes, you can expect nothing short of top-of-the-line parts and components throughout the design.
This is a hybrid with a road bike-style design that features an alloy frame and steel fork. These are very durable and advanced materials that make the Sirrus 2.0 an exceptionally reliable hybrid.
With these frame and fork materials in mind, the weight of the bike will be just over 27lbs. While you will not be able to reach speeds like you would on a road bike, this hybrid will feel much more comfortable and stable when towing your kids.
The Sirrus 2.0 is also a very safe bike due to its reliable ProMax F1 hydraulic disc brakes. The stopping power of this hybrid bike is fantastic, which is something that every bike should have when pulling a kid trailer.
You can find quality Shimano parts throughout various components of the Sirrus 2.0 such as in the derailleur, shifters, and cassette. If comfort is a priority of yours, this Specialized hybrid bike has an excellent geometry and seating position so that you can go on long rides without feeling stiff. The 700x32c tires will roll over cracks and bumps easily and you can even take your kids riding on nature trails.
This is a very popular hybrid bike at the moment and the Sirrus 2.0 is often sold out at a lot of retailers. Despite the impressive specs, the Specialized Sirrus 2.0 is a very affordable bike for what you get out of it, as it is currently priced at $775.
Batch The Fitness
If you are shopping for a hybrid bike on a budget, there is really no better option on the market than Batch The Fitness. This is a very well-built hybrid bike with top-notch specs for its price, which is why it is in such high demand.
The frame material of the Batch The Fitness hybrid bike is made out of lightweight and durable 6061 aluminum. The manufacturer designed this model with a steel fork to increase the overall durability of the bike and also make it more versatile for adverse terrain and trail conditions. These materials amount to the bike weighing 29.25 lbs, which will give you a lot of stability when pulling a kid trailer.
Batch The Fitness features a 21-speed Shimano shifting system, derailleur, and cassette. This hybrid is also equipped with 700c tires that are designed for fast rolling so that you can confidently ride over any adverse terrain while pulling your kids around. The tires, as well as the seating position of the bike, also make Batch The Fitness very comfortable to ride.
The manufacturer initially designed this hybrid to be a fitness bike but it has quickly become a popular model with people of various riding styles - including road cycling and gravel riding. In addition, parents who need to pull their kid’s trailers also really enjoy the Batch The Fitness hybrid bike due to its well-rounded specs and performance capabilities.
Batch The Fitness is loaded with top-notch parts and components, which is why its $500 price tag is so astonishing to a lot of cyclists. If you want a hybrid bike for pulling your kid trailer without breaking the bank, Batch The Fitness is the best bang for your buck deal out there.
Marin Bikes Fairfax 3
Marin Bikes is a manufacturer that specializes in designing world-class mountain bikes. Their Fairfax 3 is a hybrid bike that offers riders the best qualities of a mountain bike and road bike in one package.
This is a great hybrid for pulling a kid trailer - especially if you want something that is dynamic, speedy, and capable of hopping on the occasional dirt trail. The frame material is made out of excellent quality 6061 Aluminum and the fork is carbon fiber with a tapered steerer tube - ensuring the bike stays light and durable.
The weight of the Marin Fairfax 3 is lighter than most hybrid bikes but heavier than a standard road bike, which is why it offers such balanced performance between these two bicycle styles. Although the Fairfax 3 is a comfortable bike to ride, Marin focused on performance when designing the geometry. This hybrid features a MicroSHIFT R9 2x9 drivetrain from Shimano Sora and reliable hydraulic disc breaks with superb stopping power.
Marin’s Fairfax 3 is also equipped with Vee Tire G-Sport tires, which will cushion your ride and enable you to roll over adverse terrain confidently. This is a particularly good hybrid bike for any parent that wants to have a dynamic bike for cycling outside of solely pulling their kid's trailer. You can use the Fairfax 3 for commuting, fitness, and even trail riding, as this is one of the most versatile hybrids on the market.
Much like most of Marin’s bikes, the Fairfax 3 is priced a bit higher than a lot of the competition. This is a manufacturer that prioritizes high-end parts and materials, which is often reflected in the final price tag. You can pick up a Marin Bikes Fairfax 3 for $1,069.
Best Touring Bikes for Pulling Kid Trailers
If durability and stability are the primary characteristics that you value in a bicycle, touring bikes are going to be a perfect option. These bikes are designed for multi-day trips and specifically for hauling gear, which is why a lot of long-distance cyclists prefer these types of bikes.
Unlike road and hybrid bikes, touring bikes are not designed for speedy performance or rugged riding. Instead, these bikes have balanced specs that make them suitable for a wide variety of different riding activities - especially for carrying gear such as panniers and trunk bags. Given that these bikes are built for hauling gear, they are excellent for pulling kid trailers. Let’s dive into the best touring bikes for pulling kid trailers.
Trek is one of the most respected brands in the world of cycling and its reputation within the industry precedes itself. This is a manufacturer that specializes in top-of-the-line bikes in various classifications and their touring models are superb.
The Trek 520 is the ultimate touring bike for pulling a kid trailer. This is not a lightweight or sporty bike, as it weighs 31lbs. So, don’t expect to win any races in this touring bike. However, the heavy-duty nature of the bike will make pulling a trailer much easier for a variety of different types of riders.
You will have increased stability and durability with the Trek 520, which is due to the steel frame and aluminum fork. This touring bike is also incredibly safe thanks to the excellent hydraulic disc brakes and puncture-resistant tires.
The Trek 520 comes equipped with rack and fender mounts so that you can easily haul additional cargo, as well as your kids. Comfortability was a key focus when Trek designed the 520, which is why it has a balanced geometry and center of gravity.
All in all, the Trek 520 is a great option for any parent that wants to use their bike specifically for pulling a kid trailer. This touring bike will not be as versatile for other types of cycling but it will certainly make towing a trailer a lot easier. With that said, a touring bike of this caliber is not necessarily cheap, as you can pick one up for $1,829.
Marin Four Corners
Marin has recently dropped their latest touring model, the Four Corners. This is a top-notch touring bike that is versatile and dynamic for a variety of different riders - with touring naturally being the focus behind the design.
Bikepacking bikes like the Marin Four Corners enable you to travel the road on two wheels and take all of your cargo with you. The Four Corners from Marin is designed with a high-quality steel frame that is very durable.
Marin used the same material for the fork so that durability is a consistent theme throughout the entire build of this bike. With that said, unlike traditional steel, this touring bike is equipped with a Chromoly frame, which is a low alloy steel that is lighter in weight. This makes the Four Corners a much more versatile steel touring bike than a lot of the other models that you will find on the market.
Despite this touring bike’s material being steel, it is remarkably light, as it weighs just 28.6lbs, which is around the same as a lot of hybrids. The Marin Four Corners is designed with quality Shimano parts throughout and the large 700c and 650c tires will ensure that you can roll over different kinds of terrain.
This is a dynamic touring bike that will be excellent for hitching a kid trailer to. Although Marin’s bikes are usually quite pricey, the Four Corners is currently available at a very reasonable $1,200 - making it the best budget-friendly touring bike on our list.
Genesis Tour de Fer 30
If you want a bike that is suitable for cycling the entire world - let alone pulling a kid trailer, there is no better option than the Genesis Tour de Fer 30. This is hands down one of the best touring bikes on the market and its specs and performance are unmatched by the majority of the competition.
The Genesis Tour de Fer 30 features a quality Reynolds 725 steel frame, which is exceptionally durable and built to handle just about anything. The steel frame does increase the weight of the bike to just over 34lbs. However, this was intentional to ensure that the bike’s durability is the focus of the ride performance.
This touring bike features front and rear rack mounts so that you can haul additional cargo and easily attach your kid trailer. You will also find Shimano parts throughout the build of the bike, as well as TRP’s cable-operated Spyres brakes. While these are not quite as powerful as hydraulic disc brakes, they still have exceptional stopping power.
Few touring bikes can compete with the Genesis Tour de Fer 30 and if you want a reliable bike for towing your kid's trailer, look no further. With the specs and performance capabilities of this touring bike in mind, the current price of this machine is $2,525.
Factors to Keep in Mind When Buying a Bike for Pulling a Kid Trailer
When it comes to buying a bike for pulling a kid’s trailer, there is no one-stop-shop answer. Various bike types are suitable for pulling kid trailers and you need to find an option that is suitable for your riding style and kid trailer.
To help you with your decision-making, keep the following factors in mind when weighing out your options.
Weight is a critical component for determining the quality of your ride when pulling a kid trailer. There are lightweight bikes that are great for speed and there are heavier bikes that are more stable.
The bike that you pick should be suitable for your cargo load (your kid + the trailer). In general, the total weight of the trailer and your child should not be more than 40% of the combined weight of you and your bike.
That is why hybrid bikes and touring bikes are particularly popular options among parents who mainly want a bicycle for towing their kids, as they are more reliable and consistent. If you have the physical strength and endurance to support the weight of your kid trailer on a road bike, go for it! However, if you want more stability and an easier ride, hybrid bikes and touring bikes are going to be the way to go.
Towing your kids in a trailer is quite a bit different than riding by yourself. While comfort is something that a lot of riders prioritize without having a trailer hitched to their bikes, this is a particularly important factor to keep in mind for parents that are transporting their kids.
The extra weight that you are hauling around is going to take a toll after a while - especially if you are cycling with your kids frequently and going on long-distance rides. If you value comfort on your bike rides, you should pick a bike model that has a good center of gravity, balanced geometry, and a good seating position.
Whenever you hop on a bicycle, safety should always be priority number one. However, this is even more important when you are transporting your kids, as your cargo is so much more precious.
Although obeying traffic laws, wearing safety equipment, and being aware of your surroundings while you are cycling are going to be critical aspects of staying safe, you also need to pick a reliable bicycle.
There are a lot of bikes on the market and their parts and components can vary across the board. Given that you are pulling a kid trailer, you should look for something that has the following characteristics:
- Hydraulic disc brakes
- Durable frame material
- Recognized brands (parts & components)
Lastly, once you find a bike that catches your eye, always make sure to test-ride it first before you commit to it. After you have made your purchase test-ride the bike with the trailer hitched without your kids first to ensure that you are comfortable with the setup.
About THE AUTHOR
Mountain biking is more than just a hobby for me - it's a way of life. I love the challenge and excitement that comes with it, and I'm always pushing myself to go faster and ride harder. Some people might think that mountain biking is dangerous, but I see it as the only way to live.Read More About Danny Lawson