Sometimes you live far away from work. Perhaps you wanted a good school district for your kids, a yard for your dog, or your company really likes office parks and chose one on the other side of town. That doesn’t mean you can’t take advantage of a bike to save you money, keep you healthy, and boost your spirits. Here are our four favorite solutions:
The Multimodal Trip: One beautiful thing about a bike is that you can fit it on to or inside of other modes of transportation (good luck doing that with your car!). You can put it on a bus, take it on the train, or load it in or on your car. Too far from your office? Try swapping part of your commute for a bike ride, and see how it goes. Consider places you could park-and-ride to save money on gas and parking, or use the bus/train plus your bike to make it faster and easier when traffic gets bad (like Friday afternoons or special events).
The I-Ride-Everywhere-Else: Riding to work is awesome, but so is
riding to the store, or the coffee shop, or the gym. Non-commute trips
account for more than 50% of all trips, and those trips average under 3
miles in length (aka perfect for a bike). Try riding somewhere
convenient first, and build in more destinations as you get comfortable.
The E-Bike: It’s a bit more costly upfront, but if you prefer the
futuristic option or want to feel like a superhero, then you’ll want to
consider an electric bike (or ‘e-bike’). E-bikes have an electric motor
on board that you can use to provide either an assist while you pedal or
the full amount of power needed (with a top speed usually built into
the motor as required by local law). When you arrive at your destination
you just charge the bike up again, and repeat! If you’ve got to conquer
higher speeds, hillier roads, or longer distances, an e-bike is a great
way to go.
The Alternator: This one is a bit more ambitious, but some folks have
found it works for them. Starting Monday (for example), drive to work
and bring your bike with you. Then bike home after work, and bike to
work the next morning (then drive yourself back home after work). Keep
doing this bike/bike/drive/drive pattern and it will cut your bike trip
in half, and cut your driving in half! Again, it may not be right for
you, but we know some folks who love this as a way to get in a longer
bike ride every day!