7 benefits of using cycle as the main mode of transport in Nepal.
Who would have thought that cycling even has benefits right? For most of us, cycling is mostly a hassle or a way to kill time. That is not entirely false but there is more to cycling than these things.
For one, a cycle is super cheap if you compare it to any other vehicle. The features are less admittedly but regardless of that cheap is cheap if you are just looking at the price. Plus you have a lot of hidden benefits as well. What benefits do you say? Well let’s talk about that, shall we?
Before we begin we know that a lot of you have considered using cycles for more than just fun. Well, some of you might have gone to Pokhara or any other city to enjoy the nightlife through cycles. We do this to enjoy the roads and nightlife while moving at a rather fair pace. So a lot of you probably know how it feels to cycle. Saying this, let’s begin the list of benefits.
Table of Contents
Benefit 1: Fuel
This is probably the first thing that you thought when this topic came. This is the most basic benefit as well and common knowledge. You do not need any sort of fuel to ride a cycle. That is beside the energy you have in your body. This hunk of metal is purely run by muscle power.
This is good and all in terms of economy but also a better choice for the environment as well. Keeping the environment aside, for now, the uselessness of fuel in itself is a huge benefit. Think about it, you won’t ever have to worry about not having enough fuel for the day or running out of fuel midway. This especially sucks when you are not in the immediate range of any fuel pump.
If you ride a bike or drive a car, admit it, all of you must have this fear once a while. Yo do right? Well, the cycle eliminates this fear completely. The only thing you might have to worry about that is close to this is running out of the air in the tires. This too however can be solved with a small portable pump which is no bigger than a water bottle.
Benefit 2: Cost of cycle
Yes, we know that a lot of you have already thought of this benefit as well. We are among you as well. So this is another common knowledge of cycles. A normal cycle is very cheap when compared to any other mode of transport that is practical. Note that the word is “practical” so this does not include skateboards or kid-scooters.
Anyway, an average cycle with 3 gears costs from 15,000- 30,000. This is by no way cheap but it is still cheaper than a cheap bike whose minimum price can reach anywhere from 50,000-1,00,000 for even a second hand one. Now bikes do have their own benefits but they have their drawbacks as well. Along with that second hand, bikes are not always reliable as well.
This is just the cost of buying. Now only this the maintenance cost is way cheaper as well. Quick break maintenance costs only 5 or 10 rupees while the same for bikes costs at least 30-50 rupees. Even major repairs can be done within a few thousand rupees.
Benefit 3: Mobility of cycles
We all know that we can ride cycles almost everywhere. There is virtually no restriction on terrain when it comes to cycle. There is a bit of an issue with suspension if you go offroad but you can add that to any cycle with just a few thousand rupees. When we say this we are not kidding. You can ride cycles on mud, on dirt, on-road, on hills, on rivers, and with a bit of attachment even on snow. Now Nepal does not have much snow to ride it on but regardless you can ride a cycle there.
That aside, there are gallis. That is the main enemy of anyone who drives cars and a major annoyance for bike riders. A lot of you who like in Kathmandu valley or other compact residential areas must be used to riding bikes in a narrow road by now. But even then you do wish that you had a bit more mobility, don’t you?
Those small areas are a real headache and those tight turns as well. Along with the hills and the lack of roads must be giving you a real headache. But this can be covered with cycles. So this can be called an all-terrain vehicle for Nepal.
Benefit 4: Health Benefits of Cycling
The Health Benefits of Cycling is something that we see a lot on the internet. Cycling does have huge health benefits. A lot of these health benefits have to do with the circulation of blood, lung exercise, and cardiovascular benefits. Exercising helps you maintain your mental health. It is that simple. Cycling is basically exercised as well as it is basically the same as walking but just faster.
What a lot of people don’t know are the mental benefits of cycling. Did we mention the maneuverability of the cycle in the narrow road before right? Well, guess what another benefit this brings? You can avoid traffic by using the narrow roads that you would not normally be able to use with bikes or cars. Some girls are too narrow for bikes after allor have steps that you can’t cross with bikes.
Along with this with the narrow frame of the cycle, you can slip between gaps in the main road as well so you can avoid a lot of traffic jams as well. This results in less frustration. Plus there is always the correlation between exercise and mental health as well.
Benefit 5: Learning
The cycle is the most basic form of transport and the easiest. Let’s be honest here, all you have to learn is how to balance and pedal. Humans naturally have a sense of balance and pedaling is the same as walking. As for the brakes and gears you don’t even have to worry about them. The greater the gear, the looser the chains will be, and the easier it is to speed up climb hills. The back brake is for slow and gradual stops and is your primary brake and the front brake is the emergency brake. That is all there is to learn the cycle.
Almost all of us have ridden a cycle as kids so that tells a lot about how easy it is. If a kid’s version of us can learn how to ride this, how difficult can it be?
Benefit 6: No need for any papers
Another common knowledge that a lot of us forget. You don’t need to have any formal papers to ride or own a cycle. This means no need for ownership papers, no need for licence, and no need to pay transportation tax. Why is it this way? The main reason is that this rule applies only to vehicles that run via motor. The secondary reason is the average speed of cycles. An average cycle is around 10-20 km which is way less than an average bike.
Now while this is still fast, it is not enough to be considered as a dangerous speed. This means no need for any papers. Attached to this, there is also a benefit of not having to pay speeding tickets as well if you are in a zone where that rule is applied.
With this being said, a good cyclist can easily reach up to 40 or 50 kmph easily so the speed really is not a drawback here. You just need a bit of practice and stamina to reach the same speed as the bikes.
Benefit 7: Breakdowns and Repairs
We have mentioned earlier that cycle repairs cost much less than other vehicles. In addition to this, cycles rarely have major breakdowns as well. Let’s think about it, the worst that can happen is your chain breaking or handling twisting.
If you have a steel pin, a hammer/stone, and a bit of knowledge, you can fix the chain issue yourself. As for the handle twisting, all you have to do is twist it yourself. Now the issue of break snapping is somewhat of a dangerous one but you can still ride a cycle without brakes. If it snaps mid-ride you can use your feet as a makeshift brake. Let’s admit it, we all have done this if we have ridden a cycle before.
But that being said, there can come a time when instant and makeshift repairs are not possible. When that happens you can just drag it along with you. The cycle is rather light. Especially the new ones which use carbon fibers instead of steels. You don’t have to waste energy pushing it like other vehicles or time waiting for a mechanic. If we factor in the cost then it is easy to know why cycle and cycling are practical in Nepal.
If you have someone you are interested in and want to go on a date, why don’t you try cycling with him/her to these “20 Best dating Spots in Kathmandu”? A long ride and a date might just be what the two of you need to bond.
Related topic: Tips On How To Buy Bicycles