I ran across this: http://abacus-es.net/motorscooter/scooterbreakeven.php
I would like to do something similar, but one that is a little more honest. This seems to be very slanted towards getting you to buy a scooter. Which I’m all for, but most reliable scooters don’t cost $800. I would also like to do one that includes gear and insurance and things like that. And maybe even a fancier one that includes those pesky externalities.
Externalities is just economic-speak for “crap that everyone pays for.” The classic example is car exhaust. The car driver isn’t affected, he doesn’t even breathe it. The poor schmoes walking around behind him have to deal with it. So he does not internalize the cost, as he does with gas prices, and therefore it’s an externality. Externalities can also be good though, like when you paint your house.*
Some externalities I can think of for scooters include:
- less wear (weight) on street pavement
- smaller required parking footprint
- change in emissions
- quicker travel times (probably only applicable in places like Asia where lane-splitting is super common and encouraged)
- less time spent refueling (hey if they can count all the time we spend sitting in traffic, I can count this!)
- negative health affects if you are sitting in traffic breathing in exhaust (but this would be trickier to calculate than most of the others)
Now all of these could be good or bad depending on how else you might travel, ie scooters are worse than bikes but better than the typical car. Any other ideas? Comment away.
*Thank you to a professor who shall remain nameless for explaining this quite well.