Going into the trip I knew I wanted to make good use of the B-Cycle network within Nashville, a docked bike-share which makes getting a few miles across the city much easier. However, since my last visit, Nashville has opened up to dockless electric scooters. After some initial troubles getting them to work, I found that the scooters were a lot more fun to ride around when compared to the bikes.
The high points of using a scooter are:
- They’re fast. Maxing out at 15mph, you can easily keep up with downtown traffic.
- They’re convenient. No looking for the nearest bike dock (which might be full or closed).
- They’re crazy fun. Awesome acceleration, and you feel like a kid again riding a scooter.
The scooters are operated by a mish-mosh of companies; Uber, Lyft, Bird, Lime, and others all had scooters available lining the streets. Pricing was reasonable at ~$1 to get started and then $0.15/min after that. Of course, after riding them all day long you could easily rack up a $10-20 bill, which seems slightly less reasonable for a day’s worth of riding. Compared to a day’s worth of Ubering around, however, the scooters allow you to take more rides shorter distances, whereas Ubering for the price-conscious would demand more careful itinerary planning to ensure fewer trips.
For getting some exercise on a nice day and if you have something to carry, B-Cycle is still a better option. Unless you have a backpack or side bag, you won’t be riding an electric scooter and carrying items in your hands – too difficult to maneuver safely. For times when ultimate convenience is desired, or just a bit of fun, the scooters are an excellent choice.