I posted about a month ago that I was considering purchasing an electric scooter. I did, in fact, end up buying one. It's the one I blogged about before, the Go-Ped ESR 750 Sport.
I've had the Go-Ped for a few weeks now, and it's great. I've been scooting back and forth between buildings 17, 117, 118, 113, and 50 a bunch over the past few weeks. It's a blast.
Even though it's a lot of fun, I wasn't sure it was the right thing to do with $600, though. Until yesterday.
Yesterday morning, I had a meeting over in building 118. Typically, since buying the scooter, I'd just scoot on over. Yesterday, though, I forgot my coat when I came to work, and scooting at 15 MPH in 50 degree weather, isn't all that enjoyable.
So ... I went down to the lobby and called a shuttle. That was at 9:15am. About 9:25, I asked the receptionist if she could track down where the shuttle was. She tried, but said it wasn't really possible to know. But ... That the shuttle would be here any minute now.
At 9:29 the shuttle showed up. I got on, thinking, "Now there's no way I'm going to make it over to buliding 118 by 9:30.... Hmmm...." Then the shuttle driver informed me that he had to make 3 other stops before leaving "Main campus" to go over to building 118. I politely asked him to just let me off the shuttle and I'd drive myself. You see, my meeting in 118 that started in 1 minute, was only for 30 minutes, and then I had another meeting at 10am I had to be back in 17 for. He declined to let me off. So, in effect, I was a prisoner on the bus. He told me I could get off at the next stop (about 1000 yards from building 17 where my car was parked downstairs). Sigh...
At 9:42 I showed up at building 118; 27 minutes after I initially called the shuttle. My trip back to building 17 wasn't much better. Granted, it didn't take 27 minutes, but it did take almost 20 minutes.
Now maybe this is better than the red/blue lines we had a year ago, and in fact I think it is. But ... It certainly doesn't beat taking my Go-Ped out for an 8 minute trip. Yeah, that's right. I can get from building 17 to 118 in precisely 8 minutes. I wasted 19 minutes on the way there, and I wasted 12 minutes on the way back. 31 minutes wasted.
If I only worked 40 hours a week (which isn't really very close to how much I work... but let's just use it for this calculation) that would account for 1.3% of my work week: waiting for shuttles and travel time. That's kind of high. Compare that to my 16 minute round trip time on the Go-Ped. The Go Ped would save me approximately 50% of my wait/travel time compared to a shuttle.
15 minutes of wasted time per meeting off main campus. At this rate, the scooter will pay for itself in no time. I wonder if I can expense it... :-)