Better to own than rent...as usual!
The latest e-scooter news in NZ is that both Onzo and Lime are about to launch scooter sharing, Onzo in Auckland and Lime in Christchurch. This means that within the next few months brightly coloured e-scooters are about to start showing up on the streets of these cities available for rent. This is going to be fantastic for people visiting the cities and will no doubt help towards the goal of getting cars off the road. However,if you plan to use an E-scooter as part of your daily mobility,it is undeniably more financially prudent to buy rather than rent.
The cost to rent e-scooters in NZ is $1 to unlock and $0.30/minute. This is $19/hr to unlock and hire an e-scooter. This is an 1875% more expensive than it costs to rent an Onzo bike (which cost 25 cents per 15 minutes, or 1.67 cents per minute).
Whereas the cost to buy a quality e-scooter from BATT is $999 which can be paid off over 8 weeks with 0% interest when bought with Oxipay.
Therefor the payback period for ownership is 52.57 hours ($19/hr x 52.57 hours = $999)
Q: So how long before renting e-scooters is more expensive than owning one?
A: Depends on your use but for moderate to frequent use, only 1.5-2.5 months until you are paying more to rent e-scooters than owning it!
Scenario 1: Use e-scooter for your commute to and from work 5 days per week, say for 1 hour a day (30 minutes each way). Payback period: 2.5 months.
Scenario 2: Scenario 1 plus an additional 30 minutes/day as you use it to go to meetings/coffee/lunch. Plus 1 day/weekend for an hour to get around. Payback period: 1.5 months.
One thing you have to bear in mind is that you are not only paying for the time you are riding the scooters but also the time you are reserving them. Say you want to go and check out a new store, for instance. You would have to pay to reserve the scooter while you are inside the store shopping, otherwise, you will return to your ride with your shopping and it will be long gone. We observed this frequently in LA when we went to use a Bird e-scooter only to find that we could not unlock it because someone nearby was just paying by the minute to retain it.
Conclusion, renting is not cheap (as anyone who is renting housing in Auckland knows!) and once you find out how fun and convenient it is to use a E-scooter as part of your daily mobility it won't take long until the cost to rent exceeds the cost of owning a scooter…without having anything to show for your hard earned money! Owning e-scooters is more cost effective, period. Not to mention the benefits of ownership including the convenience of not having to search for a dockless one, that has battery life in it or hasn't been pointlessly vandalized.