This is another entry in a series of posts about why I enjoy cycling. Check out Reasons 1-3.
Number 4: It’s Cheap
Other than the initial cost of purchasing the bike, the ongoing maintenance costs are quite minimal. I take my bike in for a spring tune-up at a local bike shop (Bikes @ St. Clair) and address any issues that may come up, such as a flat tire, worn out shifter cables, or depleted brake pads, as needed.
I estimate the overall annual cost for repairs and gear to be about $250. Given that I ride about 9-10 months out of the year, it costs me $25-$30/month to ride a bike.
Compare this with a Metropass at nearly $130/month or the costs of using a car, including gas, parking, insurance and maintenance.
Reason 5: It’s a Good Travel Companion
Renting a bike can be a great way to get around a new city as a tourist. You can cover a much wider area than you can on foot, in a shorter period of time. The exercise is great and allows you to stimulate your appetite for the culinary delights of a new city.
See my reviews of biking in these places:
You can pass for a local, or at least feel more like one than you would on the top of a double-decker tour bus.
I find it interesting to compare the degree of cycling infrastructure, from paths and signage, to bike racks and rental outfitters, in different cities.
Reason 6: It’s fun!
Without a doubt, this is one of the main reasons I ride a bike. It gives me joy to be outside with the wind in my hair, move efficiently to my destination and enjoy all the benefits that come with this choice.
When you’re in a car, you’re separated from other people. On a bike, I can have a conversation with other cyclists or pedestrians. I’m more apt to comment on something in the immediate environment (“Look at that massive balloon!”) or ask questions, (“Hey, do you know if there’s an exit to Bloor Street through this alleyway?”)
Cycling offers a ground-level perspective of a place, with all the sights, sounds and smells you can take in. It gives you a sense for how people interact with each other and the pace of life because you’re constantly negotiating with and taking cues from others in the flow of traffic.
You’re saving money, keeping fit, not polluting the environment and often saving time. Sold!