I want to be able to use SPD-SL cleats and still be able to access pubs/cafe's normally. I'm really thinking of something that could be taken on a 75km club run and with that kind of distance I think a bag would be a bit onerous to carry. Cleats on the local slate floors cause upset to the proprietor and are probably a slipping risk. I am not willing to use a different form of clipless pedal.

Possible solutions

  1. Cleat covers

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  1. Foldable shoes

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I have never tried either of these before. Do other's have any experience of them? Are there any other suggestions to consider?

  • a bag is out of the question? That's how people I know deal with silly shoes. Another option would be the "cleat plates" that clip into your pedals to make them flat-top so you can ride in street shoes.
    – Móż
    Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 12:43
  • @Mσᶎ A bag would definitely work but I'm really thinking of something that could be taken on a 75km club run and with that kind of distance I think a bag would be a bit onerous to carry. Cleat plates would work if you had a shoe with a proper sole but I am using full road shoes so this might even make them slippier.
    – user12879
    Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 12:49
  • 1
    Put some flipflops in your pockets? Should be a few hundred grams. On the other hand, under Rule #91, 75km shouldn't require a cake stop. See also Rule #68 (Quality not quantity) and, of course, Rule #5.
    – Emyr
    Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 12:59
  • I know you like your SPD but if you want to hit pub/cafe why not flat pedals? Street shoes with downhill pedals work nicely. I will take that over carry an extra pair of shoes and you get some shoes that have some meat. For sure I will take it over wearing cleats with covers in a pub / cafe.
    – paparazzo
    Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 14:32
  • 2
    I use the covers, have done for years. Wonderful. Also handy if the bike goes bang in the middle of a ride and you need to walk. And to protect the cleats when they're not in use. Foldable shoes will be bulkier in your pocket too. Given that they cost five bucks or so I'd suggest you try them and see what you think.
    – PeteH
    Commented Aug 14, 2014 at 14:59

3 Answers 3


I use some of these if I'm touring and want to travel light, I put them in my bag but I reckon they could slip in to a jersey pocket, I'll try after work today.

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I've used cleat covers before and, though they protect the cleat, didn't feel they were a proper solution - you still end up walking weirdly because the only contact point is the cleat.


If you're using SPD-SL, cleat covers or insertable seem to be the only "nice" ways to go. [I use Look, so I'm in a similar boat.]

However, if you switch to SPD (which requires different pedals), there are plenty of shoes (and sandals) which have recessed cleats so you can walk around without damaging anything and wear all day without problems. And a lot of people use plain ole' SPD on the road.


Cleat covers are fine but there's no reason why a pair of road cleats with the rubber anti-slip bumpers still in place would scratch slate. If you're using MTB SPD cleats then definitely they'll damage floors.

To be totally honest, if I'm concerned (for example one cafe has steep stairs to the bathroom) I tend to just take the shoes off. If the cafe is a regular stop, why not ask the owner if you can all leave some sandals or shower shoes in a bag at the cafe?

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