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Xootr Blog

Kick Scooter Commutes Can Save You Big Money!

We all know that commuting by walking, cycling, or kick scootering can be more fun and pleasant than sitting in traffic. But did you know that it can also really help your wallet? Let’s take a look at a typical shorter commute in New York City and a longer commute in the San Francisco Bay Area and analyze.

In some cases, you can make back the cost of a Xootr MG in as short a time as 9 days!

A Test Commute in Manhattan – Shorter Commute

Let’s check out a sample commute in Manhattan. Let’s say you live in Hell’s Kitchen and need to get to the United Nations Headquarters for work. All rideshare quotes are using Uber and Lyft’s own fare estimators and timing is per Google Maps. Costs are quoted one way. For timing, we assume we are departing at 9am on a Monday.

Starting Point: 53rd and 10th

End Point: 48th and 1st

Now an analysis of a week’s worth of commuting via different methods:

Taxi or Rideshare

Cost: UberX min fare = $11-16, Lyft = $14-22

Time: 16-40 minutes

One week of roundtrip commuting @$15 per way = $150

One week of roundtrip commuting @30 minutes per trip = 300 minutes

It takes 16-40 minutes to drive

Uber costs $11-16

Lyft costs $14-22

 Subway

Cost: $2.75

Time: 29 min on the E train

One week of roundtrip commuting @$2.75 per way = $20.75

A 7 day Metrocard costs $32, so if you are riding the subway often, you may be able to get your effective per trip cost lower.

One week of roundtrip commuting @30 minutes per trip = 300 minutes

The subway takes roughly 30 minutes, while walking would have taken 40 minutes

 Kick Scooter

Cost: $0

Time: ~25 minutes

One week of roundtrip commuting costs $0 and you get some exercise while avoiding sitting in traffic, waiting underground, and being squished in a metal tube.

But wait, you may say, you still have to buy a kick scooter so it’s not exactly free. That is true! However, it’s easy to make back the money you would have otherwise spent on other forms of commuting. Our most popular scooter, the Xootr MG, costs $249. If you spend $150/week taking cars, you only have to scoot 9 days to come out ahead. If you spend $20.75/week, it will take 12 weeks of scooting to come out ahead. Considering many of our loyal Xootr customers are still using their scooters after 10-20 years, kick scooting over time can be a real win for the wallet!

Timewise, you are on par with the other options and likely even able to save 5-15 minutes each way.

A Test Commute in the SF Bay Area – Longer Commute

Ok so that’s all fine and good for a short commute like the one in Manhattan, but what if you have to travel a longer distance? Scooting can make even more sense in these cases, especially when you factor in the annoyance of sitting in traffic.

In the SF Bay Area, it is very common for people living in the city to need to commute to Silicon Valley or vice versa. For our example, let’s take a look at a commute from San Francisco to Mountain View. While certain tech companies like Google and Apple provide shuttles for their employees, many other companies and smaller startups do not.

Driving

If you have a car, there is the option to drive. The current average gas price in San Francisco is about $3.12/gallon (http://www.sanfrangasprices.com/). Using Google to map from San Francisco to Mountain View, allowing Google to pick default exact locations for both, the mileage is 38.9 miles. Car ownership cost has many components so to estimate the cost, we will apply the IRS standard deduction for mileage in 2017, which is 53.5 cents per mile.

Cost: $20.81

Time: 50 minutes – 1 hour 20 minutes

One week of roundtrip commuting @$20 per way = $200

One week of roundtrip commuting @1 hour per trip = 10 hours

Driving takes 50 minutes to 1 hour and 20 minutes

Taxi or Rideshare

Cost: UberX and Lyft cost a whopping $51-68 each way

Time: 50 minutes – 1 hour and 20 minutes

One week of roundtrip commuting @$60 per way = $600

This is so expensive, it becomes not an option for most people.

UberX costs $51-68

Lyft costs $54-66

CalTrain (Public Transport) and Kick Scooter

Cost: $7.75

Time: 53 min from 4th/King in SF to Mountain View Station on the Baby Bullet

One week of roundtrip commuting @$7.75 per way = $77.50

CalTrain passes are priced by zone so SF to Mountain View is 3 zones. A monthly pass for 3 zones is $190.80, so an effective weekly cost could be $47.80.

Note that Google assumed that you start at the CalTrain station and end at the CalTrain station. You do have to scoot from your home to the station and from the station to work, so assuming that adds on 15-30 minutes, an average all-in one way commute would be about 1.5 hours.

Cost-wise, scooting and public transportation is a huge winner. Driving costs about $200/week versus about $50/week for CalTrain and amortizing the cost of a scooter. Netting $150/week for the difference between $200 and $50, you would only have to scoot and CalTrain for less than 2 weeks to come out ahead. Time-wise it’s about the same, but then you can exercise and relax on the train instead of being stuck in ever-worsening Bay Area traffic…and potentially paying for parking in SF, which is the amount of rent in some other parts of the country!

By far the most efficient and worry free way to commute!