Going on a vacation is your time to relax, unwind, unplug, and see new things while exploring a brand new location.
However, one of the biggest issues that travelers face is that of transportation throughout crowded cities and tourist areas.
In recent years, we have seen the rise of public E-bike and E-scooter sharing services, which provide a cheap (and fun) alternative to walking or taking a taxi/rideshare service in order to go sightseeing.
However, according to the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission, injuries, and even deaths, related to E-bikes, E-scooters, and hoverboards are on the rise.
This article will assess the risks associated with using these devices as modes of transportation while on vacation.
How do E-bikes and E-scooters Compare to Cars?
Although injuries from E-transportation are increasing, cars are still the most dangerous form of transportation, with tens of thousands of deaths each year.
Traditional bicycles on the other hand, usually account for around 800-900 deaths each year.
Due to the new-ness of e-bikes and e-scooters across the country, data from accidents involving them are limited.
It’s safe to say that cars still pose the greatest risk in the realm of transportation.
So, Should You Use Them While on Vacation?
There are a multitude of factors to consider when answering this question.
For starters, if you have never ridden on an e-bike or e-scooter, it is probably not the wisest choice as a mode of transportation. They take some getting used to, and are significantly different from their traditional predecessors.
Additionally, it depends on the area that you are visiting. In an area or city with hills, uneven concrete, and busy street traffic, a device such as an e-scooter or e-bike can be extremely difficult to maneuver.
The laws surrounding these types of transportation also differ depending on your location.
You may be required to wear a helmet in some places, and riding them may be restricted in specific areas.
It’s always a good idea to do your research beforehand to know the laws and regulations in your area before you completely rely on them as your primary method of transportation.
If you plan on drinking alcohol on your vacation, be extra cautious using an e-scooter or e-bike.
Although driving under the influence usually affects those in cars, it is still possible to get a DUI while using alternative modes of transportation.
What Are The Benefits of Electric Bikes/Scooters?
One of the biggest appeals of e-bikes and e-scooters is their accessibility.
Usually, towns and cities have specific stations throughout where you can check out a bike or scooter, and then leave it somewhere on the street for someone else to pick up through an app.
Generally, the cost of using them is relatively low; anywhere from $0.40 to $3.00 per hour.
E-bikes and e-scooters provide a great way to explore a new location without having to worry about the costs of public transportation and parking complications, especially in highly populated, tourist-heavy locations.
Another benefit of using e-bikes and e-scooters is that they are more environmentally friendly than other modes of transportation such as cars and buses.
Forms of transportation that produce little-to-no harmful emissions is an attractive trait for many people who are conscious of their carbon footprint.
Minimize Your Risks of Getting in an Accident
If you decide to use an e-scooter or e-bike while on your vacation, follow these tips to ensure your safety:
- Always wear a helmet: If you do not have access to a helmet, it is best not to ride.
- Follow local laws and regulations: Traffic laws and regulations vary by location. Make sure to read up on the area you are visiting so that you do not break any laws while riding.
- If available, use bike lanes: Most towns and cities in the United States have bike lanes. If they are available to you, always opt to use them over the open road.
- Be aware: Always keep your head on a swivel and be as aware of your surroundings as possible. Cars, pedestrians, and more can pop up at any moment.
In order to answer if you should or should not use electric scooters and electric bikes on vacation, a number of factors need to be considered.
It’s dependent on personal comfortability, local traffic and safety laws, budget, and more.
At the end of the day, it is completely up to you whether or not to use an e-bike or e-scooter as a mode of transportation on vacation, but it is important to remember that your safety should be the top priority.