Thursday, May 10, 2007

Just the financial side

We all know cycling is more fun than driving. But you need to know the wallet side, too.

How much does it cost to own a car and drive it? On average... 52.2 cents/mile!

That comes to more than $7k per year for the average *new* vehicle.

"The expenses for a small sedan averaged $6,219 a year, compared to $9,373 for a large sedan. Driving 15,000 miles a year in a minivan costs $8,639 compared to $9,997 for the same distance in an SUV." -

Ummm... let's look at a bike and ALL (and I do mean all) the accessories and extras you could possible want/buy. I'm going to be generous. Clearly, you could spend more, but we are only commuting here.

Solid commuter bike - Jamis Coda Comp - $800
Lights/Bags/Racks - $300
Lock - $60
Helmet - $150
Cycling computer - $30
BUS Pass - (Most expensive one I could find from RTD) - $1620
Apparel for all conditions - $500
Extra food from burning all the calories - $1200

Total $4660

But that is for the first year. The next year, you don't have to buy another bike, or accessories or clothing.

That is an easy way to save over $2000 per year (being completely not thrifty with your money).
If you live close to where you work, then the RTD Pass is unnecessary. Perhaps you already have a bike. That means you could save nearly $6000 a year by not owning an automobile. Craziness. Now multiply that by lets say a safe 30 year career... That is somewhere between $60,000 and $180,000 during your working years. That is a lot of extra work for decadence.


griswold said...

The problem with your argument is that it is fundamentally un-American. Bike riding doesn't use up the resources that the Constitution entitles me to. Even if I pimp out my carbon fiber LeMond lowrider style with velvet banana seat, 58 side mirrors and wheels with whorehouse gold spokes, I still end up feeling a little empty. I am actually considering duct taping a leaky Geo Metro gas tank under my top tube that will dribble a thin stream of Unleaded everywhere I go, and which I will occasionally light on fire, just for teh heck of it. Take that, Escalade! Also, all that physical activity contraindicates my self-medication program of coma-inducing buckets of KFC, and Pizza Hut...did you know you can now get KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell at one location? And Pizza Hut has perfected the technology wherein they can actually put a pizza inside the crust of another pizza. It is only a matter of time before you can order a 7 Layer Burrito-stuffed biscuit and taters lovers pizza with extra crispy batter topping. You won't find that in Rotterdam or Beijing, or any other bike-friendly city, 'cause even an extracycle would buckle under the weight of that bad mama. Which is why you see so many slender, happy people (foreigners) in other countries riding bikes. They aren't burdened with the worry of how to haul fast food home.

Cellarrat said...


All very good points!

Its gonna take something way huge to change the way people think in the good ol' US of A