reasons to use an e-bike for commuting

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There’s never been a better time to make the transition from using a car or public transport to an e-bike for getting to work. In this article, I’ll be looking at the top 3 benefits of commuting by electric bike.

Reasons to Use an E-Bike for Commuting

1. Cost – commuting by e-bike is cheaper

The cost of charging your battery will vary depending on your electricity supplier’s price per kW. There are other factors to consider like your battery’s capacity, and the frequency and time of day you charge.

As a rule of thumb, you will be looking at between 25p – 50p to charge a typical battery over 4-6 hours. If you have an e-bike that uses a fast charger, then charging times will be reduced.

If you are commuting 15 miles a day and have a battery range of approximately 30 miles, then you would charge your battery every other day.  Assuming it costs you 50p per charge, then you may spend £1.50 per week on your electricity bill. Multiply that by 52 and you would be looking at £78 per annum.

expensive fuel costs

Compare that figure to the cost of public transport or even a car or motorcycle and you can see that e-bikes will save you a lot of money in the long term. Even offsetting the initial purchase cost of a decent e-bike of say £2000 (including helmet, gloves and waterproofs), that money could be recouped in the first year.

To put the above figures into perspective, the average car costs £155 per month to run (in the UK) which equates to £1860 per annum [source], and that is excluding any finance or loan repayments on the car. Bearing in mind, these figures don’t take into account the recent massive rise in fuel prices.

2. Exercise – riding an e-bike is great exercise!

The figures speak for themselves. A lot of us are leading more sedentary lifestyles and find it increasingly difficult to factor in some meaningful exercise into our daily lives.

Although you are getting some electric assistance with an e-bike, you still have to pedal. This action, even when performed with the minimal resistance of an electric bike is still an incredibly good low-impact exercise.

riding a flatter route to increase e-bike battery range
Riding an e-bike is great for fitness and mental well-being

If your job involves being sat down for long periods, this kind of exercise is excellent for your circulation, and while you will not burn as many calories as if you were using a conventional bicycle you will be burning the equivalent amount of calories as a brisk walk or a moderate session on an exercise bike.

The other great thing about e-bike commuting is that you will not turn up to work sweating buckets and need to change your clothes.

Not convinced about the health benefits of riding an e-bike? Read my full article on using an electric bike to get fit.

3. Beating the traffic

If you have to commute to work in a large town or city, the chances are, if you commute by car you will spend a lot of time stuck in traffic. Recent studies have shown that car commuters spend on average 24 hours every year stuck in traffic. That figure increases to 39 hours in bigger cities and 74 hours in London.

car drivers view of traffic from wing mirror

These figures are similar for commuters in the US and other parts of the world. Life is too short and precious to spend all that time stuck in traffic inside a metal box!

E-Bike vs Public Transport

Let’s face it, who likes being crammed like cattle inside a train or bus on their daily commute? I have experienced it, and it is soul-destroying.

crowds of people trying to get on to a train

I would much rather commute using an e-bike in all weather than using public transport. There have been significant advances in weatherproof clothing in recent years, so you can still arrive at work dry and warm, even if it is cold and wet on your commute.

Check out the Fiido X V2 folding e-bike – full review article

Is Commuting by E-Bike Dangerous?

It is true that today’s roads are becoming increasingly congested and are not always cycle friendly. There will always be a certain degree of risk cycling on busy roads, you should always use cycle lanes if they are available. Make sure you wear a high-visibility vest or clothes and always wear a good-quality helmet and gloves. Good quality lights are a must if you’re riding through the year.

The good news is that more and more towns and cities in the UK and other parts of the world are investing in improving cycling-friendly infrastructure. Even my local city of Plymouth is fairly cycle-friendly (although there’s a lot of room for improvement!).

The Green Commute Initiative

a row of electric commuter bikes parked up

Unlike the Cycle to Work Scheme** that has a £1000 cap on a bicycle purchase price, the Green Commute Initiative is a social enterprise focusing on getting more people out of cars and onto bikes.

Most good quality factory-produced e-bikes cost over £1200, which puts them beyond the reach of the Cycle to Work Scheme. The GCI however are particularly focused on promoting e-bikes as a sustainable, clean and healthy form of transport.

**Update – in 2022 the Cycle to Work Scheme has now increased its price cap to include electric bikes.


With the cost of running a car spiralling out of control and increasing traffic congestion, using an electric bike for your daily commute makes a lot of sense.  There are e-bikes to suit all tastes and battery technology has come on in leaps and bounds over the last few years – some e-bikes will now do over 100 miles on a single charge.

Getting a bit of light exercise every day will have great benefits for your health and well-being – using an e-bike to get to work is the perfect solution.

There are plenty of electric bikes suitable for commuting, or you could even convert a bike you already own to electric. If you need to carry lots of stuff to work with you, electric cargo bikes are ideal.

If you’ve been thinking about using an electric bike for commuting I would highly recommend giving it a go. I know lots of people who’ve made the switch to commuting by electric bike and haven’t looked back!

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One Comment

  1. I like that you said that a great thing about e-bike commuting is that you will not turn up to work sweating buckets and need to change your clothes. I am thinking about getting an e-bike because I think that it would help me get outside more and help me work out more. I think it would be nice for commuting because since I wouldn’t be as sweaty I wouldn’t have to worry about trying to shower at work or trying to hide the fact that I smelled bad all day which would be really nice.

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