View Full Version : Cost per Mile of Biking

Tim Kelley
04-06-2010, 01:51 PM
A Canadian study I came across did some calculations and came up the following on biking and walking costs in USD:

"A good bicycle with accessories typically costs $500-1,000, or $50-100 annually over a ten-year operating life, plus $50-200 annually for maintenance if ridden 2,000 annual miles, averaging 5-15 per mile. Many households own bicycles for recreational purposes so the incremental costs for using them for utilitarian trips is small. Shoes typically last 500-5,000 miles of walked. Walking and cycling burn calories that may increase food requirements, although most North Americans benefit from losing weight, so increased energy consumption is often considered a benefit rather than a cost (i.e., a weight loss strategy or an opportunity to eat more enjoyable foods). If utilitarian bicycling or walking substitutes for other exercise activities they can be considered to have negative costs (i.e., if bicycling or walking reduce the need to pay health club dues or medical costs associated with sedentary living they provide benefits and save money)."

Page 10, here (http://www.vtpi.org/tca/tca0501.pdf).

04-07-2010, 08:04 AM
Great point Tim. Additionally for myself; I save about $8 a day in gas commuting by bike. I get to work with a lot more energy (believe it or not) and I get a huge laugh every morning when I zip over 66 and look down on the parking lot they call a highway.

Brendan von Buckingham
05-14-2010, 06:45 AM
In our household budget I have a column called Metro/Bike. That column gets enough money to pay for a month's worth of commuting to work by Metro: $110.50 ($5.10/day). But I rarely ride Metro to work. So most of the expenses out of that column go towards bike costs like equipment, wardrobe, tools, shop maintenance. After expenses I have a surplus every month and after 5 years the balance is large enough to buy a new commuter bike.

05-14-2010, 08:27 AM
I am glad I am not the only one who has a real budget with different buckets of money. People call me anal...I call it cash in the bank for very little effort.