Considering Scooters and Motorcycles
I recently got my scooter fixed. It was giving me some issues, so I had a friend look at it and now it’s fixed! I was quite happy; the weather is getting warmer (I’ve been in shorts the past two days) and I can’t wait to start riding it around town again. It’s really been the best investment that I’ve ever made.
I noticed something these past few months. Gas prices are going up, and as they do, I see more and more people on motorcycles and mopeds. It’s been odd, because I didn’t see a lot last summer, but now gas is $4 a gallon.
In 2005, Hurricane Katrina ripped through the southern United States. I was working on my Bachelor’s degree, and I remember deliberately avoiding the use of my car. Gas went through the roof, and peaked out at almost $4 a gallon. Then, about a month later, it finally dipped back down. Eventually, it was back under $2 a gallon (remember those days… feels like forever ago, doesn’t it?).
I had a really weird dream a couple of weeks ago about gas being .50 a gallon. I don’t even remember that; the lowest I remember was back in like 2001 when gas was .95 cents a gallon. I wasn’t driving yet, of course.
The times now are very different. We’ve been paying absurd gas prices (over $3 a gallon) since late 2010. Unlike post-Katrina, the gas prices have not fallen. It’s honestly looking like they may never be back under $3 (heck, we’re struggling to get less than $3.50, unless things change drastically. With these changes, it’s no wonder that scooters and motorcycles are doing so well!
I’ve read some economic commentators, and many of them have commented on this being the end of the age for the SUV. As gas prices increase, buying these expensive gas-guzzlers becomes less and less appealing, unless it’s smaller SUV’s or the newer hybrid ones. People are back to buying cars, and if their budget and lifestyle allow, vehicles that are even smaller, like scooters and motorcycles.
Now, obviously this isn’t practical for families; they need at least a car to fit everyone. But, if you’re in a situation where there are only one or two of you using transportation, then why don’t you consider it? I live alone, and even though I occasionally have people in my car because of my volunteer work, getting a scooter was totally in the realm of possibility. I didn’t totally ditch the car, but I use it much less. In that, I’m paying less for gas and less for regular maintenance. In the future, I’ll probably pay less for repairs as well. Getting my moped fixed this time cost me $50, and that was only because I needed a new battery. Not a big deal compared to the several hundred dollar repairs that people often need on their cars.
What have you been doing to thwart the horrible gas prices? Have you considered a moped or motorcycle, or is that just not feasible for you and your family? Leave some thoughts in the comments, we’ll see you back here tomorrow. Until then, spend smart, save smart!