Due to the prohibitive prices of cars and gasoline, people all over the world are looking for cheaper ways to get around. Let's take a look at some practical (and not so practical) inexpensive modes of transportation.
Bullock carts have been used for transportation since ancient times in many parts of the world. People still use them today in areas where cars are too expensive or there isn't appropriate infrastructure for cars. They're still widely used in Malaysia, for example. The bullock cart is powered by one or several bulls. Did you know that in Mumbai the number of bullock carts registered in the city went up by 770 percent from from 2008 to 2009? Chances are you didn't!
Instead of buying an expensive 2011 Mercedes-Benz CL-Class automobile (MSRP $110,400, MPG - 11 city/17 highway), consider purchasing a 1200-pound Angus bull for about $2,500. If you're handy, make your own cart, buy some wooden wheels, and remember to stay off the freeways.
An auto rickshaw is a motorized, three-wheeled version of a traditional rickshaw. The popular air-cooled scooter has a two-stroke engine, with handle bar controls instead of a steering wheel. Originating from Thailand, auto rickshaws are widely used all over Asia. An Indian-made auto rickshaw typically gets 82 miles per gallon! They have a top speed of about 31 mph, so, again, stay off the freeways.
If you and your llama are interested in getting a llama cart, there's an instructional video available that shows you how to train your llama to properly pull it. According to one expert (yes, there are experts on this subject), not all llamas are suited for pulling a llama cart.
Let your dog take you places in a dryland sacco cart! You probably shouldn't try this with a chihuahua.
Alright, time to get into some more practical alternatives! Buses are a cheap mode of transportation used all over the world. If you live and work in or near a city, buses or other modes of public transportation can bring you just about anywhere you'll need to go.
Scooters get a whopping 80 mpg or higher. A small 50cc scooter gets 100 miles per gallon and costs about $750. It has a top speed of about 40 miles per hour. A 150cc scooter averages about 70 miles per gallon, can go 60 miles per hour, and costs about $1500. You might feel silly riding one around town, but they are very cost efficient alternatives to cars.
The American Automobile Association (AAA) reports that in 2008 it cost approximately 54 cents per mile to drive a medium size sedan, including gas. This number was based on a gas price of $3 per gallon, which seems like a bargain right now. Mike Mount, a spokesman for the Motorcycle Industry Council, mentioned that it costs about 30 cents per mile to ride a scooter. Also, scooter insurance is significantly less than car insurance.
According to Allstate Insurance, the average motorcycle rider reports getting just over 56 miles per gallon, with some getting over 100. Automobile drivers, on the other hand, report an average of 22.4 miles per gallon. Also, on average, motorcycles cost less than cars. The list price of a Kawasaki KLR650, for example, is $6149 and it gets 60 miles to the gallon.
At a big box store, you can purchase a decent bicycle for about $100. At a store that specializes in bicycles, a good, comfortable hybrid bicycle costs between $300 and $600. You can cruise at about 10 to 15 miles per hour. Best of all, you won't have to worry about traffic jams anymore. A bike is a good alternative if your commute is minimal and you don't mind getting a little sweaty before work!
After you start pedaling, turn the throttle and get a boost. You only have to pedal the bike lightly to keep it moving. U.S. law limits the speed of electric bikes to 20 mph, so in most states you won't need a special license, insurance, or registration. Some of the bikes using an internal combustion engine are powered without any need for pedaling.
According to eco.wheelz.com, it only costs $0.10 on average to fully charge a battery. Given that, it costs less than a penny per mile to ride an electric bike. Retail prices range form $600 to $1100.
There are a variety of cheap modes of transportation out there. A llama and llama cart can pay for themselves if you're interested in selling llama fiber yarn! If owning livestock isn't really your thing, however, there are other options out there!
Besides being an "expert" on goat and llama carts, Brady Daniels also knows motorcycles. He writes feature articles about them for Motorcycle Insurance Quote.