For many college students, transportation is a major concern. Whether you’re commuting to campus or trying to get around town, having a reliable and cost-effective mode of transportation is crucial. While cars are a popular choice, motorcycles are seeing a resurgent in popularity among college students for their affordability, agility, and style. However, like any mode of transportation, motorcycles come with their own set of pros and cons.
In this blog post, we’ll explore the five pros and five cons of having a motorcycle as a college student, so you can make an informed decision about whether or not a motorcycle is right for you.
Pro: Used motorcycles offer cost-effective transportation
A low mileage second-hand motorcycle can be a cost-effective method of transportation for a student.
Compared to cars, motorcycles tend to have smaller engines and lighter weight, which means that they are more fuel efficient. They can often be cheaper to purchase, cheaper to insure, and replacement parts are typically much cheaper.
Motorcycles are also easier to work on then cars. Considering that riding season tends to be when students are off of classes and have more free time to work on their machines themselves, there’s a great opportunity to save some money by learning how to wrench on your motorcycle yourself.
Con: Motorcycles can be more dangerous
Motorcycle riding can be more dangerous, especially for new and inexperienced riders. Motorcycles offer less protection, and in addition of having to be aware of the dangers of road conditions, other drivers, etc. you also need to have good balance and control, which only comes from experience, to keep your motorcycle upright.
I bought my first motorcycle as a student and I only made it about 20 feet before wiping out. That’s because I hadn’t taken any lessons. It’s a good idea to take riding lessons like the Motorcycle Safety Foundation course, and if you’re still feeling a little unsure of yourself afterwards, you should consider booking an hour of one-on-one training time with a professional riding coach.
Pro: Easy to park on campus
My college campus was located in the heart of downtown. Parking cost my car-driving friends $15 per day, or about the cost of lunch and a beer at the campus pub. Motorcycles in my city get free street parking, and sometimes we even have special designated motorcycle-only parking spaces, along with other privileges for being a more green-friendly alternative.
In a pinch I’ve even simply parked my motorcycle behind bushes in a downtown park so that the roving campus parking enforcement person wouldn’t spot me in a no parking area and ticket me.
Cons: Weather limitations
It’s no fun arriving to a campus soaking wet and cold from a motorcycle ride to class in bad weather. It’s also no fun to not be able to get to class, or worse, to an exam, because you woke up the morning of your exam to a surprise snowfall. Motorcyclists are a bit more at the mercy of the elements, and this can make things tricky for students.
Be sure to look ahead at what the weather is going to be before you set your alarm for the next morning. You never know when you may end up needing to make other arrangements!
Pro: Motorcycles are quick and nimble
If, like me, your campus is located downtown, you’ll appreciate commuting by motorcycle. Motorcycles are quick and nimble and can find spaces to fit through to help you save a lot of time by not being stuck behind someone else’s car.
As a student, I was often sleeping through my alarms, and running a little late. Being able to save 4-5 minutes off the typical commute time versus a car drive came in handy, and I was easily saving half an hour every trip versus having to take public transit to class.
Con: Motorcycles can lack storage capacity
You can add storage capacity to motorcycles, but only to an extent. Right now, my BMW G650GS has two 41 liter side cases, and a 33 liter top case. That can more than cover everything I need for class, and even allow me to lock my jacket and helmet in the cases while I’m in class so I don’t have to carry them all over campus.
However, a motorcycle will work for most, but not all students. Students in programs like film, music, or engineering may need to travel around with special equipment, instruments, or expensive tech that may or may not travel well on a motorcycle. You should consider what your program’s needs will between now and graduation before purchasing a motorcycle.
Pro: Motorcycles build character
I’ve written a lot about how shy, quiet and, well, invisible to girls I was before I bought a motorcycle. There was just nothing special about me and I was soft-spoken as a result.
Motorcycling helps a young person grow their confidence in two ways. Firstly, it’s something you get better at with every single ride you take. Motorcycling teaches you to really grab the bull by the horns, push aside your fears, and become a better version of yourself each and every week, month, and year. As a young person that can really help your overall development.
Secondly, not a lot of young people ride motorcycles anymore, despite it being on everyone’s bucket list. It makes you immediately stand out. It makes you more interesting and appealing. You’ll notice yourself getting a lot more attention and interaction from women who you might not used to think noticed you. That’s also a great way to build your confidence.
Con: Limited passenger capacity
Of course, if one of these beautiful people who suddenly find you interesting should become your girlfriend or boyfriend, you’ll have to figure out where to put them.
Motorcycle riding with a passenger can be trickier for new riders. It makes acceleration slower, braking longer and more difficult, and handling heavier.
A lot of motorcycles that are more sport-oriented won’t have comfortable ergonomics for a passenger, and some cruisers won’t even come with a rear seat.
Despite all that, I strongly recommend riding a motorcycle. Just don’t get anyone pregnant or you might need a car after all.
Pro: Motorcycle riding is fun
Of course, we all knew this was coming. Motorcycle riding is just plain fun. There’s a feeling of freedom. A release of endorphins from twisting the throttle. A feeling of lightness from leaving your stress behind as the wind passes over and through you.
Some things in life have changed a lot since I was a student ten years ago. Nowadays you can hire someone to do your homework for you at https://writepaperfor.me/pay-someone-to-do-my-homework – but some things never change. Motorcycle riding was just clean, good, fun then, and it’s clean, good, fun now.
Con: You might just do it forever
Most people who try motorcycle riding either never really get into it, and are done within a couple of years. Some get really into it and it stays with them for the rest of their lives.
After I started riding some of my friends followed along, but they never lasted more than a couple years. They wanted to get into it to impress girls, or to go fast. My reasons were simply love at first sight: I saw a beautiful woman zip past me on a Vespa while I was getting a drive to campus from my dad and we were stuck in traffic. It just clicked. “That looks so cool. That makes so much sense. I want that!”
That was sixteen years ago, in a few weeks I’ll shipping my motorcycle to Italy to ride across the country.
If you start motorcycle riding, there’s a good chance this won’t just be a passing fling for you, this could be the start of some of the best moments of the rest of your life.
I guess that’s not really a con after all, is it?
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