Rideables: A Trend Coming To An Event Near You
After several years of hype and despite sneers of derision, rideables are here and people are beginning to make practical use of them. If you spend hours on your feet at events, maybe you could too? We say, don’t knock it until you ride it.
Rideable technology has had a tough time over the last 30 years. In the 1980’s, when British computer engineer Clive Sinclair released the infamous Sinclair C5 battery powered tricycle, it didn’t go well at all. Thousands of units went unsold and the whole project was labelled by everyone as a failure. In a blink of an eye, rideables came and swiftly went. A cautionary tale that is no doubt on the mind of every would-be rideables inventor.
Here we are in 2017 and it seems that cautionary tales of yore are gone and long forgot. Hoverboards (which don’t hover) have become a thing, and people are zipping about on electric scooters. I wouldn’t say we’re anywhere near the peak of adoption for rideables yet, but we’re getting closer. Some of us who once scoffed at the concept are now thinking, “that might just make my life easier”.
If you’ve ever been part of an event management team for a large trade show or expo, there’s no shadow of a doubt that you and your poor aching feet will have covered a lot of miles by the end of each day. That’s all good and healthy to some degree but as you will no doubt know, you can have too much of a good thing.
Until recently, the only thing that has ever come close to being a practical rideable for event professionals has been the trusty LSV (Low-Speed Vehicle – looks like a golf cart). At a couple of hundred dollars a day, it’s not a bad solution for getting around a large event but quite costly to equip a whole team. They’re also quite big, which means it can be difficult to manoeuvre around lots of people and/or in tight spaces.
Compared with the LSV, modern rideables, such as electric scooters and “hoverboards” definitely have size and portability on their side. The sudden deluge also means that the price is coming down. For example, a self-balancing scooter (also known as a hoverboard) like the Swagtron T5, will only set you back about $300 – roughly the same as a weekend LSV hire. If you want something with a little more gravitas and a brand that doesn’t feel like it’s just been invented for millennials, Segway also offers some very attractive models such as the miniPRO and the one wheeled S1, available for a very accessible $600. We’ve attached a video of the S1 after our conclusion below.
For those that don’t trust or feel safe on the self-balancing models, there are plenty of more traditional scooters to choose from too. Battery powered scooters are available for as little as $100 but like anything in this world that has a battery, you get what you pay for. Pay less and it usually means you’re getting less in terms of battery.
Batteries Not Included
In this article, we are of course talking about electronic gadgets but let’s not forget that foot powered scooters or even pedal cycles are a healthy alternative and can also be a little easier on the pocket. Push scooters are gaining popularity in cities, as a way of getting around quickly and cheaply.
Whether it’s a fad or not, rideables clearly have a practical application in the event industry and have now reached an accessible price point. With so many options at so many price points, there may even be a rideable out there for you.
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