Friday, 26 February 2016

Valerie Topete - History of The Bike Courier

Valerie Topete has spent the last seven years of her professional career working as a bike courier in New York City. The experience has certainly left a strong impression on her, as it is a unique lifestyle. There is an entire sub-culture that revolves around bike couriers, one that dates back to the late eighteen-hundreds.
In fact, after the bicycle was developed, delivery systems and messengers followed shortly afterwards. There was once even a group of bike couriers that were employed exclusively by the Paris Stock Exchange in 1870. Only twenty years later, the US experienced what was called a “bicycle boom”, in which companies like Western Union employed a number of bicycle couriers in order to deliver mail and packages across urban areas.

Valerie Topete
Valerie Topete

Entire companies were being developed around the concept of a bicycle messenger as early as 1945. By the time the 1970s rolled around, there were many well-established bicycle courier service companies across every large city in the United States.

In Europe, bike courier services lost momentum, but experienced a resurgence in 1983 as a new, more environmentally conscientious Europe used the service as a way to cut down on fossil fuel usage and atmosphere pollution.

Valerie Topete is proud to be a part of a long tradition of bike couriers. She has become inaugurated into a special sub-culture full of individuals that pride themselves on speed, accuracy, and even style. The need for bike couriers will likely stay steady in the future, as it still remains one of the most cost-effective and environmentally-friendly methods for delivery available.