Latest Savings Vehicle Comes on Two Wheels

By Candice Choi
Associated Press
Sunday, May 24, 2009

Bike to work, save money, get fit, help the environment. It seems like a no-brainer, yet you still drive to the office every day.

One reason for putting off your bike-to-work resolution might be all the logistics involved, such as where to store your bike and how to get your belongings to and from the office.

If the goal is to save money, you might be reluctant to spend hundreds of dollars on a bike and equipment before knowing you can stick with the habit.

For Jason Kiker, a 38-year-old research analyst who started biking to work last year, the seven-mile trip from his home in Arlington to the education nonprofit where he works takes about 35 minutes. That's about 10 minutes faster than taking public transit.

Here's a rundown of some common excuses and why they shouldn't stop you:

I'm not sure it's right for me.

To get started, it may be right for you to rent or borrow a bike. That will let you test different models before making a commitment.

If you can't find a friend or co-worker to lend you a bike, check if there's a rental shop nearby.

If your office is far, consider a hybrid commute. It might sound complicated, but plenty of people bike part of a commute and take public transit for the remainder.

I'm worried the costs will outweigh savings.

Even though biking can save money in the long run, there are still significant upfront costs.

Prices vary widely, but a basic bike could cost as much as $500, said George Gill, president of RentaBikeNow.com, a Chicago-based company that lists rental shops nationwide. Equipment and add-ons could tack on another $200 or $300.


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