Train ticket prices rise; ride a scooter and save £5k!

Michael Mann - Web Editor, Bike Social
By Michael Mann
MannOnABike BikeSocial's Web Editor. Been riding bikes since 1984 and writing about them since 2013. Commuted in Central London for 10 years, fast and smooth road rider, does a reasonable job in a track day quick group. 6 ft and 14 st.

 

This morning, the rail industry has announced the average cost of a train ticket will rise by 3.4% in January 2018. It’s no surprise that a pro-motorcycling website shouts about the benefits of riding but in terms of a cost effective method of commuting which has massive cool points benefits as well as time saving advantages too, then we could save train folk more than £5,000 over two years.

Passenger watchdog, Transport Focus, said fewer than half (47%) of passengers are satisfied with the value for money of train tickets. So, other than catching up on last night’s episode of 'D-list celebs in a pretend jungle’, the many disgruntled daily travellers should, in our opinion, be better off looking at swapping the expensive, overcrowded and undependable rail network which still requires travel to and from the beginning and destination stations and instead use the finest method transport of them all – powered two-wheeling.

Train

For our example of how horrific the figures look, a journey to Knightsbridge via any central London train station from Hayward’s Heath in West Sussex, including parking at the station will currently set you back £5460 (the annual parking pass alone is £1212), plus the 3.4% rise and that figure increases to £5604.

That doesn’t cover any underground costs assuming you’d walk from London Victoria nor car costs including fuel to the station, wear-and-tear, insurance, etc.

For arguments sake, let’s include a 5-minute drive to the station and a 20-minute walk from Victoria to Knightsbridge meaning the total journey time is 90-minutes…assuming the train is on time. According to Google Maps, that’s about the for a car, but what about some sensible filtering on two-wheels? Surely it’d be faster and we intend on finding out in the new year with a Top Gear-style race.

 

Train ticket prices rise; ride a scooter and save £5k!

 

Scooter

Now consider this: as an example of a cost-effective, popular scooter; the Honda SH125i which can be ridden from 17-years old on an A1 licence and has ABS, electric start, auto stop/start, 16” wheels, a glove box, top box, 7.5 litre tank with a range of up to 230 miles from one fill. According to the official Honda website, the RRP is £3,299 but with a £400 deposit, you can ride it for £89 per month.

Other costs to consider

It should be easy enough to pass a CBT (Compulsory Basic Training) at £150 and sort some riding kit plus security for home and office and insurance for another £1200.

If the same example commute from Haywards Heath to Knightsbridge works out to be 43-miles, then 86-miles per day for five days works out to be two tanks of fuel per week at approximately £18/week.

Assuming a 260-day working year then a monthly cost for fuel works out at c.£54 from a machine that returns around 150mpg.

The average price to insure an SH125i courtesy of Bennetts, is £177.

 

TRAIN

 

 

ANNUAL

MONTHLY (annual/12)

Station Parking

£1212

£101

Season Pass

£4248

£354

TOTAL

£5460

£454

 

SCOOTER

 

 

INITIAL

ANNUAL

MONTHLY (annual/12)

CBT

£150

-

-

Honda SH125i

£400

-

£89

Fuel

-

-

£54

Kit, security and insurance

£1200

-

-

Tyres

-

£85

-

TOTAL

£1750

£85

£143 (x 12 = £1716)

 

Year one cost: £3466

Year two cost: £1835

 

There’s a fair few assumptions here but the crux of the exercise is that not only can commuters save £5,619 over two years but there’s the freedom of travelling by scooter and not being restricted to timetables, the quality of being able to head to the shops, mates house, gym, café with ease plus not only the reward of hours of your life back thanks to the lack of usual train related issues but also the satisfaction of not having to rely on public transport.

We guarantee that more than 47% of scooter commuters are more than satisfied with the value of their choice.

 

Train ticket prices rise; ride a scooter and save £5k!

 

SH125i Finance Details

 

OTR Price: £3,299.00

Deposit: £403.52

Amount of Credit: £2,895.48

36 Monthly Payments: £89.00

Total Amount Payable: £3,607.52

Representative: APR 6.9%

 

Have you switched from rail to two-wheels? Tell us about it in the comments section below.

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