>>1135895>>Have been thinking about getting a bike and going>>Any tips on starting out and buying a bike to ride weekly? for rides across the city
What's your height, and where do you live? It sounds like you just need a comfy touring bike, and those aren't too expensive.>>I'm a newbie but willing to learn and have money so the choices are not limited to me
That's good. But you don't have to worry; bikes only get stupidly expensive when you try either do extreme shit with them or try to compete with them. You don't have to worry about spending $10k on a g-g-g-garbon framed bike that weighs 4 kilos or hundreds of dollars on garbon components to shave a few grams off your bike's weight.
Those kind of ride like shit anyways, and there's no reason to be that harsh if you're just in it for causal touring.>>Do I need those special clothes if I just want to ride a bike for a few hours?
Not at all. You don't need any kind of lycra if you're just riding for a few hours or at a reasonable speed. In fact, wearing a full jersey kit makes you look like a tryhard weenie if you're not actually on the team you're wearing, although they do sell non-team lycra jerseys that are good for longer distance riding.
Padded lycra shorts are also not required for casual rides; typically you won't be on your bike long enough for them to really be needed. However, they are comfortable, especially if you're getting into riding after a long time not. I personally use them, even if I don't use any other special clothes.
Also, consider picking up a Camelbak or something similar. They let you carry your water on your back for easy immediate drinking, and double as a backpack to carry all the stuff you might need.