Cars vs. Bikes for Daily Commuting
Although there are lots of people who use bikes daily to travel to work in many European countries, as far as ladies are concerned, except for the bike from the gym or the one you use for some weekend practice in the park, other times when using a machine of this kind should be totally excluded.
Now let's take a look on the advantages offered by bikes and see why a distinguished lady would say thanks... but no, thanks.
Exercise on the way to work
Oh, yes sure. And lose all those extra pounds the diet didn't manage to melt. Only that you can do this at home for only 30 minutes of daily practice. Or at the gym if you don't happen to possess an exercise bike. What if you lose more time? At least, you won't arrive all sweating at work in a badly need to take a shower allowing the gossiping voices at the office to call you a skunk.
Of course you can change your clothes at the bathroom but the smell will last all day. Speaking about luggage, try to figure out how on Earth will you transport all those things? Just imagine yourself riding the bike, hair in the wind, flashy smile, outstanding appearance...and carrying a small trailer behind your two-wheel vehicle or a huge rucksack on her back. Are you going to work or hiking?
You save money but you lose comfort. What's going to be? Well, it's not as if you were going to live forever...and even then, why would you live a never-ending life without the slightest sense of comfort? Bicycle commuting is free as long as you get the basic equipment, so no more costs for petrol or parking. But is it worth the sacrifice? Sitting on the bike hard saddle in comparison to the soft seat of your car? Not to mention cold winter days. If your bike has suddenly turned into an open sleigh, you can hurry to sing “Jingle Bells” to work.
So are cars if you keep them in good shape. Of course the repair bills are higher than those for a bike. But “luxury” costs and that's why, you work longer hours at the office. Besides, riding a bike daily to work will deteriorate in time even faster than driving your car for the same distance. Who said bikes are never-dying?!
Bicycle commuting is fast
True... if you live five minutes away from your office. Then you can opt for a bike and you'll certainly arrive much faster than if you walked to work. You will save about 3 minutes which is a considerable achievement for your morning sleep. Now seriously speaking, it's said bicycle commuting is faster than driving to work for short to medium distances. But the logic questions would be: if the distance to work was so short, why wouldn't you rather walk and use your car only when necessarily needed?
It may be true that some cities are so overcrowded that driving to work might eventually turn into a traffic nightmare but just imagine the following scenario: assuming that everybody was aware of that specific aspect and many people would opt for a bike as means of transportation to work, how would the bicycle track would look like? Maybe just as crowded as city streets are. So perhaps overcrowded streets are just a sign of economic prosperity and we just have to take the situation as it is...
No more parking problems
This point might actually be quite tempting. The dream of every female driver might be exactly this: no more parking difficulties. Too beautiful to be true. If riding the bike to work spares you from the ordeal of parking your car, it doesn't spare you from the nightmare of having your bicycle stolen. In case you are not allowed to take the bike with you in the office or don't have a special “garage” at work for the two-wheel vehicles, the possibility of not finding your dear bike at the end of the day is not at all insignificant.
For whom? Cyclists maybe. Definitely not for a female executive in a PR company. Perhaps only if she's working on a new campaign struggling to rise general awareness concerning environmental issues. Even then it would be one occasion in a million. If you want to enjoy the fresh air and feel full of energy when you arrive to work, here's what you can do: wake up half an hour earlier, go jogging during that time and you'll feel as fresh as you want.
Bicycling is good for the environment
Well, it seems man created lots of things that pollute the environment. Cars are just one of them, a very significant part though. However, the image is not as gloomy as it seems. Cars becoming extinct just as dinosaurs did is not the solution. Reducing the number of vehicles would be a more attractive alternative. For instance, a car per family. Would it be that difficult to travel together with your husband/boyfriend to work? If the distances between where the two of you work might be a problem and then you can afford the “luxury” to have a second vehicle in the family. Yes, it reduces a big part of your independence and freedom but since saving the planet is on the priorities list, any small compromise is welcomed. Besides, scientists will soon come up with the solution: biofuels.
All in all, bikes can be magnificent companions but not when it comes to daily commuting to work. Even if environment was at high risk and you had to give up driving to work, taking the subway would be a faster and more comfortable alternative. Bikes can be great in any other situations as long as it's not an important meeting or event. As for traveling to work, ladies might just say no to bikes. Maybe in another life, galaxy, universe...
comments written so far
As for locking issues, it's all down to the equipment you carry to secure the bike. I've had cabled bikes stolen from time in Manchester, but that's because the bike thieves carry round the tools to cut them, so the problem requires a heftier solution, though many a day outside our plagued uni hasn't seen sign of effort to permanently borrow my beloved. Riding an older second-hand bike is a good plan too, they're worth nothing to the thief, and with modern tyres you won't be getting punctures and with everything else on the bike pretty bullet-proof, provided light servicing's done once a month or so, they're the finest budget transport option.
Sailing past queues of traffic is pretty satisfying too, certainly helps one's mood in the morning to know you're getting one over on the lazies in cars and buses.
Other arguments are pretty sound though, but for a fit person living in a busy city less than 15 miles from all destinations, I'd say bikes are very much the business. (Plus the police can't take your license away for that after-bar journey home if there's no engine turning your wheels, that fact alone sold me on the matter.)
Cars are vital for going further though, no question.