Andersen Shopper Trolleys for your Bike - why we love them

Andersen Shopper Trolleys for your Bike - why we love them
When choosing what products to stock at Hitchabike, we have one question that we ask - does this product transform your ride?

Transform. Your. Ride. 

Three words there, each doing some heavy lifting for us.
The experience you have when out on your bike. Also, the bike itself. Time to pimp your ride!
No two bikes are the same, your bike is unique to you. Two people can buy the same bike, but, ten minutes later, one will have mudguards and the other won’t. One might have a bell, the other a luggage rack, lower tyre pressures, electronic gear shifting - the options are endless.
We want to stock products that make a change. Maybe it will change the kind of riding you can do. Maybe it will change the way your bike handles. Definitely a trailer will change what kind of things you can transport with you on your bike. Even a little bell will change what other people think of you as you speed along a canal towpath!
So, that’s the basic filter we apply when selecting which products to stock. Yeah, there’s all the other stuff you would expect - high quality, durability, value for money, etc etc. 
But at the end of the day, to be considered, you’ve got to pass the TYR test!
Which brings me to one of the new kids on our block, one which we are super excited about, one which we are genuinely proud to be stocking on our internet shelves.
These guys tick so many of our boxes, I don’t even know where to start.
So I guess I’ll start at the beginning…
Well, not their beginning. I’ll come to that in a minute…
No, I’ll start with our beginning with them, just a few months back whilst I was out shopping in South London.
You see, this part of the capital has a lot of what they call LTNs - Low Traffic Neighbourhoods.
Low Traffic Neighbourhood access restrictions on a suburban British street
LTN’s have been around for a while, but they really started springing up all over the place during Covid. It’s those things where the council puts big planter tubs or other barriers across the entrance to residential streets. This allows bikes and other, small vehicles through but stops cars and trucks, the idea being that through traffic is prevented from going down residential streets making them safer and improving air quality.
They have stirred up a bit of controversy, to say the least. Some people think they’re the best thing ever, whilst others are doing everything they can to get them removed. 
One thing they have done is make some people think again about the journeys they make, leaving some people thinking that they’ll use a bike for a trip and not their car.
And on that fateful day in South London, it may well have been one of these folks that I saw as I made my way to Asda… 
Something caught my eye that day…
It was colourful. It was beautiful. It was functional. It was practical. It was floral. It was perfect.
It was a shopping bag.
Not just any shopping bag though. For me, it was THE shopping bag. The shopping bag that would make me go to Ikea on a Sunday, because now matter how awful a shopping experience you can imagine, with this bag, it would be a pleasure.
A pleasure for me, but also for everyone else in the shop. For they would also get to see the bag, and their day would be brightened. They would become quantitatively happier. They would be better people.
By now I had been standing, mouth open in front of Asda for maybe three hours. A small puddle had formed from my Homer-in-front-of-a-donut-shop drooling.
People had begun to be concerned. Security had been called.
As I emerged from my stupor and my focus receded from the bag, I began to notice that it wasn’t just a bag. Oh no, there was more…
The bag sat upon a trolley!
I wouldn’t have to besmirch the bag against hard pavements, it would sit upon its very own pedestal. As it deserved!
And yes, this trolley was attached to a bike. Any bike. Maybe even my bike.
Overwhelmed, I began to fall to the floor.
But I was caught in the warm, strong embrace of the Goddess who owned this bag and the trolley upon which it rested. She nursed me back to consciousness and carried me to the beautiful world of Andersen Shopper Manufaktur. I was soon in the presence of the Creators of this divine shopping bag. Via email. In the earthly form of their regional sales representative.
I now began to play it cool. Obviously. After all, we want to make sure we get the best value we can for our customers, so I couldn’t possibly let on that I was sold on their products at whatever price they might ask for them.
So, he sat me on his knee and began to tell me the story of Andersen Shopper Manufaktur.
Once upon a time, in Germany in 1958, Günter and Christa Andersen heard about rolling shopping trolleys from their Danish friend, Morten. They thought the idea had some merit - after all, who wants to carry their shopping when they can roll it.
They had some space going spare in their stable, so they bought some trolleys and advertised them for sale.
Günter and Christa Andersen of Andersen Shopper Manufaktur with their products at a trade show in 1966
It was tough going. Local folk thought the idea fanciful and they became figures of fun, wheeling their stuff up and down the high street like lunatics.
But then word spread that they had sold 25 of these strange contraptions. People were seen fearlessly wheeling their shopping, some without covering their faces!
Then it hit Günter and Christa - “we can make these things ourselves!”
Günter makes a deal with a local steel supplier and started to saw and bend the tubes himself. The first Andersen Shopper, which already had many of the familiar characteristics of today's trolley, was launched upon the unsuspecting, carrying-their-bags-in-their-hands public of Germany.
A woman in the street with an Andersen Shopping trolley
I would love to tell you that Günter and Christa are still in the stable, bending steel themselves. But their trolleys became rather popular and they are now onto their second factory, each one bigger than the last. And bigger than the stable.
It was in 1995 that they realised they could develop a hitch to hook their trolleys up to bikes - a stroke of luck for Hitchabike, if we’re honest, since hitching things to bikes is kind of what we do - and now most of the trolleys that Andersen make can be towed by bike thanks to their specially designed couplings. Or hitches, if you prefer!
A young couple sitting by a lake with their bicycles and shopper trollies behind them on the shore
Three principles guide Andersen in their manufacture of their shopping trolleys for bikes:
  1. Sustainability is at the core of their business, and with more and more people switching from cars to bicycles for everyday tasks like shopping, helping people to achieve this just makes sense. 
  2. They recognise that their customers want to use their bikes in as flexible a way as possible, which is why their coupling system is as simple as possible, so it’s quick and easy to use. The design also means that you can continue to use your pannier rack (if you have one) even when the trolley is attached.
  3. Andersen know that we don’t all have huge amounts of space to store stuff these days, so their trolleys are designed with storage in mind - the bag and wheels can be quickly removed and folded away with the trolley.
It’s kind of difficult to explain how simple their system is in words, so we uploaded a nice video for you to see it in action here:
You can also check out our YouTube channel for more Andersen videos here.
Over the coming weeks we will go into more depth about individual Andersen trolleys, helping you choose the right one for your needs. We might even do an unboxing video when we get our next one - we got a bit excited when the last one arrived and forgot to make a video, we just hitched it on and went to the shops!
For now, you can check out our Andersen Shopping Bike Trolley Range here and transform your ride to the shops!
 A woman standing with her bicycle which is attached to an Andersen Shopping Trolley
We would love to hear about your experiences shopping with a trailer, an Andersen trailer, or any trailer for that matter - tell us in the comments below or head to our social channels and join the conversation! You can find us on Facebook, Insta, Youtube and Pinterest.

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published

What are you looking for?