The 2012 Spring Toronto International Bicycle Show is fast approaching! Free up some cash and some time. The show is held at the Better Living Centre at Exhibition Place on:

Friday, March 2, 2012 – Noon to 9 P.M.
Saturday, March 3, 2012 – 10 A.M. to 7 P.M.
Sunday, March 4, 2012 – 10 A.M. to 6 P.M.

The show is a great opportunity to check out the latest and greatest in the world of cycling, and perhaps pick up some new gear to start the season off right!

We’re quite fortunate in Toronto to have a lot of really great bike shops. In Etobicoke proper we’ve got Oxygen Bikes at Lakeshore & Browns Line,  Chain Reaction on Dundas Street just east of Royal York; and Bicycle Depot on Albion. Just outside the borders of Etobicoke are many more including:

In Vita Sport on Matheson, east of Dixie (Mississauga)
 at Lakeshore & Mississauga Road (Port Credit)
La Bicicletta on Castlefield near Dufferin & Eglinton
Bike Zone on Dundas & Cawthra (Mississauga)
 on Bloor at Jane
Wheels of Bloor at Bloor and Runnymeade
Skiis & Biikes on Dundas – west of the 427
Racer Sportif at Bloor and Runnymeade

All of the shops listed are quite capable of meeting the needs of both the average and accomplished cyclist however you’re best served by checking them all out for yourself and getting a feel for their strengths.

What’s your favourite LBS?

Buying from your local bike shop (LBS) is your best bet for fair pricing, great service, and the products that best meet your needs. Overseas online retailers can often lure us with crazy low prices but there are many reasons their prices are lower than your LBS: lack of service, expertise, installation, assembly, just to name a few.

I recently read an article about a US-based LBS who is adding a 20% surcharge to his installation costs for any grey market items brought to his store, much like a corking fee charged by restaurants if you bring in your own wine.

From our base in Etobicoke we have access to a number of terrific shops including:
Oxygen Bike Co.
In Vita
Chain Reaction
Wheels Of Bloor
Racer Sportif
La Bicicletta

Here are some of the more well known online retailers of bicycles, parts, and accessories:

Canada Bicycle Parts (Canada)
La Cordée (Canada)
Monovan’s (Canada)
La Bicicletta (Canada)
Mountain Equipment Co-op (Canada)

Competitive Cyclist (USA)
Price Point (USA)

Chain Reaction Cycles (UK)
Pro Bike Kit (UK)
Wiggle (UK)