Do you commute? Are you into electricity and saving the planet? What about saving time and money?

After checking out the Electric Vehicle expo in Melbourne and hanging out in Singapore seeing all their electric scooters, I thought I’d take a look at why these little machines are so popular.

Personal electric vehicles are taking the world by storm. Currently the industry globally is worth about $75.7 billion and looking to grow to around $127.7 billion by 2022*. With these small EVs being cheap, quick, and convenient, it’s no wonder hundreds of people now own their own. So what are the benefits?

I’ve been riding electric skateboards for a while, and recently I’ve obtained an electric scooter. Not the weird-sit on ones, but the cool, slick ones you stand on. Having not had a car for a while, I needed a convenient way to get around the city. And here’s the answer. There’s a multitude of benefits to my electric scooter in particular. Let’s go through them.

It’s cheap

Let’s be honest, electric rideables are cheap! Sure you have to put up a bit of money at the start to purchase one, but the cost over the lifetime of your toy is very minimal. You save money on public transport, making it very easy to simply do the “last mile commute”, you save money on parking, and filling up is cheap as chips!

When I was in Singapore, I hired an electric scooter as a fun, cheap way to get around the city for an afternoon. I got in more than I would have without a scooter. I was outside, and able to see everything, rather than being stuck in a bus or on a train.

28827872_10156213248274182_7680791242258404963_o.jpg
Scooters in Singapore

It’s quick

So this is the part that I like the best. At approx. 30km/hr, my scooter gets me to everywhere I need to go – work, sport, meetings, and more. It’s much faster and quicker than walking, or taking public transport, and not having to worry about parking cuts out a heap of time.

One of the biggest areas I save time is meetings. This has had a huge positive impact on my business. The time I need to leave between meetings is much smaller, meaning I can take longer at my meetings, and I get more work done. Another positive is that I feel more confident saying “I can come to you”, even if the client is on the other side of the city. It’s always a plus too if you can rock up to a meeting on a sick electric scooter (or skateboard).

It’s convenient

As I pointed out above, you save lots of money on transport, parking, and time (time is money right?) It’s super easy to fold up your electric scooter and take it into a shop, a cafe, or leave it at the front desk – or under your own desk – so yeah, no hassles!

These reasons are why you see scooters EVERYWHERE in Singapore; just like some of the cheeky snaps I took below. It’s such a hot place that no one wants to walk anywhere, and if you need to get somewhere, you need to get there, and quick.

It’s environmentally friendly

Everyone knows less cars on the road is better, so anything that can achieve that should be celebrated… within reason. Electricity is better than petrol (obviously if the electricity is made from coal then that’s bad), and overcrowded public transport slows down the system, making it much less efficient. So, win-win for everyone!

And it’s fun

Well this is the part that matters most! Riding around on an electric scooter is super fun. Everyone turns heads, and I often take mine out on the weekends for a lazy ride.

Recently I took a friend out for a spin and his comment was:

It’s like your own personal magic carpet!

Yes, scooters are like magic carpets, so what are you waiting for?

Some things they need to fix

Okay everything isn’t sunshine and lollypops, and here’s a few reasons why you might want to wait.

Scooters still aren’t the best. A lot of scooters still haven’t hit the market on being durable, stable, stylish, and more road-friendly. They are still in the realm of super cheap, light, and often a bit well, ugly. So you might want to wait. Word on the street is that an Australian company is developing their own so keep your eyes peeled.

Our roads still aren’t designed for scooters. In Melbourne, we’re lucky. We have pretty good bike lanes and lots of our footpaths are dual lanes, but we still have a bit to go, and especially so in other states. We need to work together on designing a city to be commuter and transport friendly, not just for scooters, but for everything.

In fact, if you have an idea or startup that could help the City of Melbourne‘s accessibility, check out their Open Innovation Competition. With grants up to $30K, this is definitely not an opportunity to pass up.

Well that’s all for this week. Next time you’re in the market for getting around town quickly, think about electric rideables. Oh, and most of the stuff I’ve said here applies as much to electric skateboards too!

* Source: CISION PR Newswire

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