One of the best parts of going to the Netherlands was biking. The country makes it easy and safe to do so with bike lanes everywhere, parking lots, and an informed public that makes it less likely to get hurt. Biking is great for exercise, enjoyment, and saving money and is beloved by Mr. Money Mustache.
Since this blog is about saving Hamiltons I’ll tell you right away that a bike is going to save you a ton of money. This summer I’m in Austin and have no car. Today I took a trip down to AAA to get an international driver’s permit which was around ten miles from where I’m living. Such a trip in a car would have cost around $10. However, I rode there in the blazing sun, bought lunch, and took the $1.25 bus back all for $10. If you can have a bike instead of a car then you are saving hundreds a month in addition to each trip.
In order to bike around you need a bike. For my vacation I rented one, but if you have somewhere to call home, buying one will be the cheapest way to go. In fact, I asked about a two month rental once I arrived in Austin and the shop said it would be cheaper to just buy a bike, so I did. When buying a bike get something that is comfortable for you and the proper size. As far as the cost, you don’t need anything fancy, but I’d probably stay out of the super cheap territory because it will wear out faster and I don’t feel as confident on such a bike. Start on Craigslist where you can find something good at a good price because it is used.
Occasionally if you are lucky you may be living in a city with city bikes for rent. In this case you can get a pretty good deal, but will be limited to a basic bike. Austin has a $11 a month plan which is so cheap given that it is something like $4 an hour. Austin B-cycle even keeps stats and says she has biked over 100 miles and burned more than 4500 calories.
Get off your butt so you can sit on your butt and ride! Sometimes when I ride I sense the small changes in temperature and breezes. However, being in an air-conditioned car isn’t going to provide these small pleasures. I hope this article convinces you to pull your bike out of the garage and start riding a bit more around town.