Once upon a time, we all had to actually go to work, didn’t we? Before remote working became so popular, ‘working from home’ was seen as the reserve of the lucky few; now though, every Dick and his dog’s at it. But at the same time, there are still oh-so-many jobs that you can’t do remotely. Brick layer, lorry driver, nurse, to name but a few. And for many of those ‘lucky’ enough to be able to work from home, after a couple of years staring at your own four walls 24/7, the novelty might be starting to wear off. And because of that, a lot of us are starting to go back ‘to’ work. Embarking on the daily commute once more. If that’s you, and you’re trying to decide whether to drive in, get the bus, or go to work on your motorbike, hopefully this will help you decide.
You’ll save time
Ever been sat in traffic in a car and had a bike filter past? It’s frustrating isn’t it? Almost annoying. But really, were only annoyed about the fact that we’re in a car doing zero mph, and not on a bike doing 30mph. Because the bloke on the motorbike is probably going to get to work on time. And you might too, but only because you set off painfully early; you knew what the traffic situation was going to be like. Because it’s like that every day.
Think how much later you could have set off if you’d have been on a bike, like that clever feller that’s just nipped past. You could have had an extra 45 minutes in bed. Or actually enjoyed that morning coffee, rather than rushing it down and scalding your insides.
And then of course there’s the 45 minutes you’ll save at home time, too. Because all the people clogging the roads up on their way to work this morning, will be clogging it up on the way home, too. You lose a lot of time in the AM as well as the PM, sat stationary in a queue, or behind a tractor doing 30mph on a 60mph road. You don’t have to worry about that on a bike.
You’ll save money
How much cash you’ll actually save by riding into work depends on a lot of things really. Like what you’re comparing it to; you’re going to save a lot of you’re used to taking taxis into work every day, but if you’ve been walking in, you’re probably not going to save anything. But for the sake of this exercise, let’s consider how much you could save by leaving the car at home and going to work on the motorbike instead.
The average MPG figures for cars in the UK is 38.8MPG, according to Google (so it’s bound to be totally reliable and accurate). I’ve done quite a few MPG tests on bikes so I know from experience that you can easily manage 50mpg, on plenty of bikes, as long as you don’t go nuts with the throttle. That’s about 25% more fuel efficient. So you’re going to save about 25% on your fuel costs. No brainer.
You’ll save the planet
And if you’re going to save all that fuel, think of all hydrocarbons you’re not firing into the atmosphere. The ozone layer’s choked up enough without another gas guzzling Chelsea chariot on the road. No, taking your motorcycle to work is definitely doing your bit to save the planet; even if it’s only a small bit.
But of course, it’s not only your own carbon footprint that you’re helping to reduce. If you taking your bike to work means there’s one less car on the road, it also means there’s a little bit less congestion. A little bit less congestion means freer flowing traffic, and freer flowing traffic means less pollution. Because if a car is stationary, with it’s engine running, it’s essentially doing zero miles per gallon. Or, to put it another way, infinity gallons per mile. And the more time people spend burning infinity gallons of fossil fuel per mile, the sooner we will fry planet earth. And then what will we do?
You’ll become a better/safer rider
There’s definitely something to be said for riding every day, and how much it’ll help you improve as a rider. Practice makes perfect, and riding a motorbike is absolutely no exception to the rule. Whether your daily commute is 20 minutes picking your way through a labyrinth of back streets, 30 minutes of filtering your way through endless queues of gridlock, or 40 minutes of fast and flowing A roads, the more you do it, the better you’ll get at it. And the safer you’ll be when you’re doing it.
And you won’t just be safer during your morning (and evening) commute. You’ll be safer every time you swing your leg over your bike. After a few months of riding every day, even if it’s just to work and back, even if it’s just ten minutes each way, you’ll feel more at home on your bike than you probably ever have done. You’ll be totally at one with your bike. Man and machine, in perfect harmony.
I’m sure I’m not the only one who has jumped on a bike for the first time in a few months and felt a bit ‘rusty’. That doesn’t happen to people that ride to work every day.
So if you want to save time, save money, save the planet, and become a better rider, sack your rail card off, leave your car on the drive, and go to work on your motorbike.