Tips for Sharing a Busy Bike Lane

Bicycling is booming in San Francisco. In the last five years, the number of people biking in our city has increased a whopping 71%! That’s a good thing: it makes our city cleaner, more healthy and opens up more space on crowded Muni for those who need it. But it means that in some parts of San Francisco, bike lanes are really full. (Don’t worry, we’re working really hard to get you more and better bike space in the city). So to keep everyone pedaling smoothly, safely and stress-free, here are a few tips for how best to share the bike lanes:


Keep right and pass on your left: This keeps the bike traffic flowing and makes it more comfortable for everyone. Passing on the right (or inside) can startle another ride and cause a crash. Let the other riders know you are passing them by kindly saying, “on your left” or dinging your bell. Thanks for keeping us all safe in the bike lanes!

Signal your turns and stops: Give your fellow riders a heads up of any turns or stopping. Simply pointing where you’re heading and letting them know that you’re stopping at the crosswalk to give pedestrians the right of way goes a long way in keeping you and others safe.

Queue up behind other riders at a stoplight: If you bike to work downtown, you might find yourself in a full pack of riders. That’s terrific, because you have commuting buddies! You’ll make everyone’s commute mellower if you just wait behind those in front of you and don’t race around other riders.

Set the example: If you’re the first person at a stoplight or sign, stop behind the crosswalk. Those behind you will likely follow your lead, creating safer streets for everyone – especially people crossing the street. When the light turns green, make sure it’s clear before proceeding, giving enough time for people in wheelchairs or with disabilities to safely cross.

Thanks for being a great ambassador for bicycling!

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