Being a well-prepared commuter goes beyond having the right gear and a bike that’s well set-up. If you commute between home and the office on a daily basis, you can up your commuting game even further by having a stash of essentials at your desk. While weather forecasts and mental lists help you stay organized and ahead of anything unexpected, there are times when you just might not be as prepared as you hoped or simply forget something you need. Here are five things that you should absolutely keep at your desk as a bike commuter:
Spare set of keys for your bike lock
Everyone loses track of their keys at some point. Hopefully, they are just hidden at the bottom of a bag or forgotten on a desk but you never want to be caught out. To ensure you can always lock and then unlock your bicycle at the end of the day, keep a spare set of keys at your desk. If your lock isn’t attached to your frame, it’s not a bad idea to have a spare lock as well in case you accidentally forget it.
Change of clothes
Even if you adopt a leisurely pace and it’s not too hot out, you can still accidentally soil your clothes riding your bike. If the weather forecast is off, you could also encounter a shower on your ride in. To avoid the unfortunate situation where you are stuck wearing sweaty, wet or dirty clothes for the rest of the day, it’s a good idea to stash a change of work clothes.
Getting soaking wet on your way home isn’t the best way to end your workday. If you are committed to commuting through all sorts of weather, having rain gear on hand is very useful. If you commute in the morning and it’s dry it doesn’t mean the weather won’t switch to rain just in time for your commute home. Make sure to outfit your bike with fenders to minimize road spray as well to stay as dry and comfortable as possible.
Whether you have a shower at work or not, having a towel handy is a good idea. After commuting into the office, you may want to freshen up or just rise off a bit. This is especially true on hot days and in wet weather when you arrive after your commute in a less presentable state than you’d like.
Lube and a multitool
While you should make an effort to keep up with your commuter bike maintenance at home, there may be times when you need to make a slight adjustment or lube your chain at work. Having some tools on hand will allow you to do this before you leave. Your commuters chain will also need frequent cleaning and lubing to keep it in good shape. Keep a rag handy as well so can wipe off access lube or to clean your bike a bit.