June 19 marks the start of Ride To Work Week; a week that aims to highlight the benefits of motorcycles, not only as a weekend plaything, but as a practical means of getting about and beating the rush hour traffic, while also enticing new people onto two wheels and out of the cars and off the trains and buses.
So what are the benefits, and why should you, if you don’t already, ride to work instead of jumping in the car or cramming onto the train?
The easiest case to argue is the time saved and the easing of congestion, were more people on bikes. A report from satnav manufacturer TomTom shows that congestion is 14% higher than it was six years ago, and that UK journey times took 29% longer last year than they would in free-flowing traffic, up from the 25% delay in 2010. Meanwhile, the INRIX 2015 Traffic Scorecard calculated that, in London, drivers wasted 101 hours per year in traffic.
Jump on a bike, however, and that problem goes away, with filtering helping reduce journey times back to nearer what they would be were there no traffic. Bikes can also help those who need to use a car or van for business. A separate study by Transport and Mobility Leuven on one of the most congested roads in Europe also found that if just 10% of drivers swapped to a powered two-wheeler, congestion was reduced for all road users by 40%. When 25% made the switch, it would be eradicated altogether.
Handily, the subject of parking helps move us onto another perk, and the money saved. Parking is often free for bikes, but the cost of ownership and the costs of running one is often less than cars or the cost of using public transport.
Insurance, especially on smaller machines such as Suzuki’s Burgman 200, Address 110, or VanVan 200, or even machines such as the SV650, is usually cheaper than cars, while bikes can be incredibly frugal too. The Address 110 boasts a fuel economy figure of 145mpg!
Low-rate finance deals also mean the cost of buying a bike is less than the monthly repayments on a car over the same mileage, or the annual costs of public transport. In fact, last year an annual Regional Travelcard in the West Midlands cost over £850 for the year. The total payments on a bike over the same period will be similar, or if a little more, and don’t forget you’ll have some equity in the bike. You don’t get to keep the bus…
You also won’t be crammed on it either, struggling to find a seat or being uncomfortably pressed into by fellow commuters. Probably more importantly though, you’ll be happier. Who wouldn’t rather flit around town on a bike rather than sit in stationary traffic or cram onto a train or bus?
Of course, there are the naysayers. Cries of how dangerous it is often greet the reasoned arguments for jumping on a motorcycle. But more motorcycles actually mean less casualties. The number of bikes on the road in the last 20 years has nearly doubled, but the number of fatalities has fell by around a third.
Motorcyclists tend to be more skilful road users, more aware of their surroundings. If more people switch to bikes, or ride there bikes to work, the risk factor decreases.
So there we have it. Commute by motorcycle, save money, save time, and be happy. And if the weather’s nice and you live out of town, don’t forget you can take the long way home too.
Visit our shop
Yamaha NMAX 125YAMAHA NMAX 125 The sporty styled Yamaha NMAX 125 scooter makes your daily trip into the city something to enjoy rather than endure. This urban commuter is specifically designed to offer increased riding ...
Yamaha XMAX 125 Tech MAXYamaha XMAX 125 Tech MAX Equipped with a range of exclusive features, the special Yamaha XMAX 125 Tech MAX is premium 125cc sport scooter, that’s designed for practical riders like you, who know the value of exclusi...
Yamaha R125Yamaha R125 The R125 is a motorcycle that stands head and shoulders above the rest. Built with Yamaha’s legendary R-Series DNA, the race-bred Yamaha R125 is a perfect introduction t...£5,302.00
Yamaha XMAX 125Yamaha XMAX 125 The Yamaha XMAX 125 city scooter features dynamic wind-beating bodywork and a compact, agile chassis. The X-MAX 125 has got to be one of the most stylish and desirable mod...
Yamaha PW50YAMAHA PW50 Yamaha leads the way in kids’ mini-bikes. The PW50‘s rider-friendly design makes this 50cc 2-stroke is a firm favourite with kids and of course parents. Safety features include an ...£2,000.00
Yamaha MT-125YAMAHA MT-125 The world of motorcycling is in awe of the Yamaha’s Hyper Naked models with their radical style, thrilling torque and ultra-cool image. The Yamaha MT 125 delivers pure riding thrills. ...