Motorcycle commuting is a popular mode of transportation, and is becoming increasingly common for all kinds of people as an alternative to driving to the office. So what are the pros and cons of riding a motorcycle to work, and is it worth it?
A Healthier Alternative to Driving
Riding a motorcycle to the office is an easy way to burn some calories with what feels like minimal effort. Studies indicate that you can burn many more calories per hour than you would sitting in your car.
Greater Parking Options
Being in a smaller, more manoeuvrable vehicle means more parking spots may be available to you than car commuters. Being able to save some minutes by finding a parking space quickly can improve your mood and cut down your commute.
You can save money on commuting due to the lower petrol/gas usage. Motorcycles consume 6.72 litres to 4.28 per 100km (35-55 miles/gallon), compared to an average car’s 11.76 to 7.84 litres per 100km (20-30 miles/gallon). A motorcycle will generally be much cheaper to purchase, insure, and maintain. You can expect your motorcycle commute to be a cost-efficient alternative to driving into work.
With lane filtering (not splitting), you can safely manoeuvre through stopped cars to continue your journey. This can really cut down your time spent in traffic and reduce your overall commute – a huge benefit. Most Australian states allow for lane filtering up to 30 km/h when it’s safe. For commuters in the USA, lane splitting is legal in California but not in other states. Read up on the law in your state before attempting lane filtering or splitting, and always ride safely.
Riding a motorcycle can be considered more dangerous than commuting in a car. Considering you need to navigate peak-hour morning traffic, being on a bike that is much smaller than a car can make you harder to be seen, and more vulnerable if you were to be involved in an accident. You’ll want to dress brightly to reduce the risk of not being seen by other drivers.
Environmental Factors to Consider
Of course, riding on a motorcycle makes you more exposed to the elements. Wind, rain, snow or hail can be quite unpleasant to drive through on your bike. Not to mention the pollutants that come from sitting in traffic in population-dense cities. These can be harmful to health over time and are also unpleasant to smell.
Bringing a Change of Clothes
You will also need to get dressed in fresh business-appropriate clothing once you arrive at the office, and this can be a bit of a hassle. To make your life easier, use a garment bag for commuters such as the Wingman backpack that has been specifically designed and engineered for commuters.
Is commuting on a motorcycle worth it?
In general, motorcycle commuting is a fun and cost-effective way to get to the office. Keep in mind the disadvantages, and have a backup plan for days when the weather isn’t ideal for riding in. Rather than selling your car, keep it as your Plan B.