At the start of 2020, Andrew Capeau of Victoria Pedicab Company was expecting a busy tourist season. His company operates a fleet of 32 pedicabs that normally take cruise customers on guided tours through the city.
In anticipation of the summer, he had even invested $60,000 into converting the bikes into electric assist.
“Then COVID came, and we were completely shut down,” Capeau says.
In trying to salvage some of the season, Capeau has converted three of his bikes to ice- cream carts.
“We basically disconnected the carriage from the frame and built a box that contains a chest freezer and some coolers, and we added an umbrella,” he says. “People have been very supportive. They understand that I’m trying to keep my business active somehow.”
Going forward, Capeau would like to partner with some local frozen treat makers. He’s also exploring how the model could be expanded beyond the summer, by possibly converting the bikes into coffee carts.
Hotels opening up downtown could also offer potential customers to the Victoria Pedicab Company.
“They might want to use us as a point-A-to-B service for the guests because we’re open air and it’s a little more COVID friendly,” he says. “And we have so much information to share with people about the city. We’re an outdoor tour service and we’re really bloody good at it.”
Continue reading: Making the Shift from Personal to Virtual Events.