Menu
Jump to content

What's with the ads?

Miguelsmom

Transportation while on campus

Which would you purchase for a large campus?  

8 members have voted

  1. 1. Which would you purchase for a large campus?

    • longboard
      0
    • Bike
      9


Recommended Posts

My son's may be going to a larger campus. He wants a bike. My concern is space and hassle vs a long board. Now he would have to learn to use a long board but he has time. Both cost about the same. Bikes he'd be able to get to class faster than with a long board. It also will have to be outside all the time meaning it will rust. A long board he can hook to his bag and be hands free. Maybe we should get both?  

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I found with my first 2 students they didn't use the bike they took to college with them. 2nd dd is on a large campus. It took longer to unlock the bike, ride across campus, and find a spot to lock the bike up than it did to walk across. We're waiting to hear what our 3rd decides about taking his bike. I think it depends on distance around campus (and sometimes specifically where the classes will be), climate, and how friends are getting around. My ds is on a campus where they can rent a bike for the semester if they sign up right away. There's always somewhere to lock the bike up (vs. needing to search for someplace) and there's no maintenance. 

Will your ds be living on campus or off? Sometimes the students may take their bikes into their apt.

 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Will your ds be living on campus or off? Ideally on campus but he may be a commuter. It comes down to finances.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I see a bike as far more versatile, as it allows a much wider range. A longboard may be suitable for transportation on campus, but not for the two mile ride to the grocery store. Also, if the student hasn't used a longboard before, I would not make him learn to use one just so he can board on campus.

Also, having to find a place to put the board inside the classrooms can be a hassle in many rooms. We have classrooms that are so packed that the board is a nuisance. Btw, I have not seen any of the students here hook their board to their bags; they carry them under their arm.

How will he be getting around the college town?

What's the culture on his campus? Is the campus so spread out that most students use board or bike? Or do most students walk? is there a good infrastructure in terms of bike racks?

 

 

 

 

Edited by regentrude
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Folding bike?

Is he going to be living on campus? Do you know for sure that all bike storage is outside for the dorms?

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If he stays on campus he will not have transportation off campus. They have stores on campus. However I have a feeling it's overpriced. 

 

 Do you know for sure that all bike storage is outside for the dorms? Yes all bike storage is outside.

 
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When I think of a large campus I assume it will be very busy during class time changes. I think one would have to be a skilled long board user to navigate all the activity safely and courteously. For weekend use and getting around during down times it would probably be fine but I can't see zipping through a crowded campus unless you really knew what you were doing.

 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's so variable... What's the campus like -- if there's a good meal plan and lots to do on campus, a student may not need to leave campus very often. Also, is the campus near other locations of interest -- and if so, would walking or a longboard or a bike work best? Places within walking distance? Good public transportation system? How "friendly" is the dorm (i.e., people frequently carpool together and chip in towards gas to the student who owns the car)? 

DS#1 lived on a smaller-sized campus with no car and no bike. He had a good meal plan and the campus planned a lot of free extra events throughout the year, so there wasn't a need to leave campus that often, if you didn't want to. There was nothing really within biking distance of the campus, and not a very good public transportation system. However, the dorm students were great and had a big whiteboard in the lobby of each floor of the dorm, and would list "need a ride" and "can give a ride" and students would connect up to carpool together.

At the end of the first semester, he got a longboard, which was perfect for getting around on campus. They are easy to learn to use. It took him about 30 minutes one afternoon to get it figured out, and within a week of using it on campus, he was extremely comfortable.

re: needing to go to stores off campus
We sent 2-3 "care packages" per semester, with things that DS#1 might have needed from a store -- fun snacks, cold meds, ear plugs (snoring roommate), paper plates, item of clothing, a few shelf storage packaged dinners in case he didn't feel like going out to get his meal, etc... Whenever he needed anything else, he just caught a ride with someone who had a car and who was heading off campus.


ETA: PS

41 minutes ago, teachermom2834 said:

When I think of a large campus I assume it will be very busy during class time changes. I think one would have to be a skilled long board user to navigate all the activity safely and courteously. For weekend use and getting around during down times it would probably be fine but I can't see zipping through a crowded campus unless you really knew what you were doing.


DS#1 is currently a commuter student to our local large university campus that is very busy during class time; no problems with a long board. He drives, parks, and then boards into campus, and then from class to class. So many students have longboards (or bikes), that everyone sort of naturally "flows" into  "lanes" of walkers / boarders / bikers... 😉  YMMV from campus to campus, though.

Edited by Lori D.
  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

PS -- One other "pro" for longboards and "con" for bikes:

Longboards require very little maintenance.

In contrast, bikes need regular maintenance or repair -- tires tubes go flat (and replacing the tube is time consuming and a real pain in the patootie!) and chains need lubing. Brake pads wear down. And if riding after dark, you definitely need a light of some sort -- so, battery expense. If you ride a lot the treads on the tires wear down -- or if you run into a nail or broken glass, you may end up shredding a tire -- and replacements are not cheap.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think it depends on the campus.  Do they have decent bike lanes?  I wouldn't necessarily be excited to buy a longboard for someone who has never used one and hasn't expressed strong interest in getting one and learning to use it as transportation.  I live very close to a huge big 10 campus. The kids with the scooters and boards are often without helmets and often on the sidewalks mingling with the pedestrians with mixed results .  The bikers are more likely to wear helmets and seem more conscientious.  

Does he have a bike?  Could you just send it and see how it goes?  My son had one the first 2 1/2 months, but we picked it up not long ago.  He did use it but found for class runs when a million people were out walking or possibly campus bus in some cases was just easier.   He did use it for fun riding and for some wider errand running.  He has no interest in winter biking, though my husband has the right gear and studded tires, so he does bike all winter.  His campus will be close enough that you could go pick up the bike and bring it home if he weren't using it right? 

At the end of the day, I think it should be his call.  You could get him a longboard for a holiday/birthday if you wanted and see what he does with it.  If he doesn't have a bike at all, I would get an inexpensive used one if it's regularly going to be locked on campus.   My son used a U bar cable combo lock which worked great.   And he always tried to park it in higher traffic areas.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh one thing I was going to add, is our local campus (and I think the large campus my son is at) has some of those rental bike/rental scooter things all over campus.  The student membership on those is extremely reasonable and I think that can be a good option for the occassional wheeler.   My son specifically wanted to do some group rides and joined an outdoors club when he got to campus so having the bike there initially made sense for him.  

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

DS attends a huge university with a very large campus, and for students who live on campus, walking is really the best way to get around. When classes let out, it literally looks like herds of wildebeests crossing a river in an Attenborough documentary. A few kids use longboards or electric scooters* but it's honestly really hard to navigate through the crowds, so it's not that much faster. And kids get injured all the time because they have to suddenly stop short or swerve around someone. Bikes are frequently stolen or damaged, and it can be hard to find places to lock them up, so they are more generally used for commuting to/from campus rather than going from class to class on campus. Most kids just use the bus system for off-campus transport, though. At many schools, students get discounted or even free bus transportation.

*Many campuses now have electric scooters you can rent from companies like Lime and Bird. You grab a scooter, pay with your phone, and then you leave it at your destination for another student to use and the app charges you for the minutes of use.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Does he have a bike?  Could you just send it and see how it goes? He does not currently have a bike.

3 hours ago, teachermom2834 said:

When I think of a large campus I assume it will be very busy during class time changes. I think one would have to be a skilled long board user to navigate all the activity safely and courteously. For weekend use and getting around during down times it would probably be fine but I can't see zipping through a crowded campus unless you really knew what you were doing.

Would a bike have the same issues?

 

3 hours ago, Lori D. said:

Also, is the campus near other locations of interest -- and if so, would walking or a longboard or a bike work best? Places within walking distance? Good public transportation system?

As far as I know there's not many things around that college kids do off campus. It has a good transportation system before 9 pm.

 

2 hours ago, FuzzyCatz said:

Do they have decent bike lanes? 

I saw no bike lane on campus. 

 

2 hours ago, FuzzyCatz said:

His campus will be close enough that you could go pick up the bike and bring it home if he weren't using it right? 

Yes, it is close enough for us to pick it up.

 

2 hours ago, FuzzyCatz said:

is our local campus (and I think the large campus my son is at) has some of those rental bike/rental scooter things all over campus

It looks like there use to be that program but it no longer exists.

 

I'm thinking about just letting him walk.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 minutes ago, Miguelsmom said:

 

Would a bike have the same issues?

Well, in my opinion, yes. If your ds is not a big bike rider I'm not sure that a crowded campus is the place to become proficient. But I don't know your son, of course, or his interest or skills. I know my ds, who is not a big bike rider, was not interested in trying to take one. We admit to being cautious folk though 🙂

I think you might want to let your ds get there and get the lay of the land and decide what he would like to do. My ds really did just opt to walk. I encouraged him to become familiar with the bus system but he just thought it was easier to walk. I think he likes to be in control of his own transportation and not dependent on a bus coming on time/not being full/etc even though I don't have the impression the bus system is inadequate. Maybe just let your ds get there and decide what he thinks he would like. Even though the campus is large the majority of students really are getting around without wheels. A longboard or bike isn't absolutely necessary so maybe just let him decide what he'd like to try. 

My ds lived at the edge of campus and would have been closer to his classes if he had chosen one of the more centrally located dorms. But even from the edge of campus he did okay walking. You could choose a dorm based on location on where you expect most of his classes to be. 

Edited by teachermom2834
  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
35 minutes ago, teachermom2834 said:

I think you might want to let your ds get there and get the lay of the land and decide what he would like to do. My ds really did just opt to walk...
... Maybe just let your ds get there and decide what he thinks he would like. Even though the campus is large the majority of students really are getting around without wheels. A longboard or bike isn't absolutely necessary so maybe just let him decide what he'd like to try...

My ds lived at the edge of campus and would have been closer to his classes if he had chosen one of the more centrally located dorms. But even from the edge of campus he did okay walking. You could choose a dorm based on location on where you expect most of his classes to be...


Yes. Initially, DS just walked everywhere around campus to get it all figured out. He was in a dorm at the edge of campus, but it also wasn't a huge campus. It was at about 2 months into his first semester when DS came to the decision that a longboard was the best solution for his needs and for what would work on that campus. He asked for it as his Christmas gift, so he had it for the remaining semesters he was there. 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 hours ago, Lori D. said:

PS -- One other "pro" for longboards and "con" for bikes:

Longboards require very little maintenance.

In contrast, bikes need regular maintenance or repair -- tires tubes go flat (and replacing the tube is time consuming and a real pain in the patootie!) and chains need lubing. Brake pads wear down. And if riding after dark, you definitely need a light of some sort -- so, battery expense. If you ride a lot the treads on the tires wear down -- or if you run into a nail or broken glass, you may end up shredding a tire -- and replacements are not cheap.


Lori I found your description about bike maintenance and repairs quite interesting. For me and you, not having the correct tools, or, more importantly, the expertise, something that they can do for me in 5 minutes in the bike store would take me a day.  They can replace a tube (or put a patch on a tube) in 5 minutes or less (I haven't timed it) without taking the wheel off the bike.  Expertise... 

With regard to Brake Pads.  I wish they had told me I needed new ones, because the ones on the rear wheel wore out and it damaged the wheel.  If they'd told me the Brake Pads could do that, I would have had them replaced long before that and probably it would have been easier to stop too. I think it was 1 or 2 dollars for them to replace the Brake Pads on both wheels. The new Wheel was about $10 USD.

We have a bike that is 7 years old, but was ridden only on very rare occasions.  Most of the time it just sat.  We had it built for DD.  She picked the colors and the Frame was built (and painted) by a company near the airport in Cali.  It took two (2) experienced men in the bike store approximately 1.5 hours, to put all of the components onto the Frame. I was there, waiting...

We selected all of the components and they are much better than the ones on my bike, which has been in service for 15 years, with the exception of the Basket.

About tires...    The day I had the problem with that bike,  I had been in  the supermarket and was almost out of cash.  I was coming home (fortunately with only a few things and nothing from the refrigerator section of the supermarket) and boom, the  Front tire went totally flat.  I called my wife and told her I was going to Detour to the bike store.  Started pushing the bike, slowly, with the Front tire on the ground and then the front tire popped out of the wheel and I couldn't push it anymore. Had to lift the front wheel off the ground. I was not happy, but made it to the bike store. They couldn't find what made it go flat. I suspect a tiny piece of Glass in the street.  They installed a Patch and I was out of there in 5 or 10 minutes and it cost me about 50 cents USD.   However, in the course of that, he saw that the Tires were showing signs of decay or disintegration, from sitting for 7 years. He also made a comment that he didn't think that brand of tires was a good one, but I suspect it was because it sat for 7 years.   The next time I take that bike to the bike store, I will have them replace the 2 tires, which will cost a total of approximately $9 USD total and should not take more than 20 minutes.

And then, I will use the bike and have my old bike for a backup.

Again, having the proper tools, and, the expertise, are the critical factors.

I will ask DD if there's a place in her Dorm where they can park bikes. My guess is that if so, it's outside and   rain and snow will cause Rust and/or Corrosion.

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Totally agree with you Lanny re: bikes and campus and having proper tools and expertise

When I was attending the local university as a commuter student many many years ago, my transportation choices were bike and bus. I was able to scrape enough $$ together each semester to buy a student bus pass to use during bad weather, or for when I knew I'd be coming home after dark. But mostly I rode the bike. The bike was great exercise, but it was also not very fun a lot of the time. People do NOT drive nicely around bicyclists, and even though I was an extremely alert and careful bicyclist, I was very nearly hit several times (while ON the campus!), and it was only the grace of God and some very quick reactions on my part from having ridden SO much, that prevented disaster.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

visit campus first

the theft rate on bikes was pretty high on son's campus ... anything bike shop brand was stolen quickly; eventually the school went to a Bikeshare program. $10/yr, $2/hr or something like that.  there are not a lot of places to put privately owned bikes, but there are enough that the U has a bike service station.

Keep in mind if you are biking, its harder to socialize with classmates coming/leaving class as most won't be biking

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I’d wait to see how he feels once he gets there. It’s not like high school, usually, when you only have 5 minutes to get between classes, unless he schedules his courses right after each other. I went to a huge university and there was only once or twice that I had to hurry across the vast campus.

Is the campus hilly, are the sidewalks in good shape with no large cracks or craters, lol. I have no idea if those would affect a skateboard. 

I think once he gets his schedule he’ll see if one is needed. I’d prefer a bike, but then I’m an old fart and longboards may be more in style now.

  • Like 2
  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks to this thread, I now know there are things called "Longboards" and that they are in common use. I knew about "Skateboards", but I had never heard of "Longboards"   😀

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
20 minutes ago, Lanny said:

Thanks to this thread, I now know there are things called "Longboards" and that they are in common use. I knew about "Skateboards", but I had never heard of "Longboards"   😀


I learned about them from DS, when he asked for one! 😄 

They are very similar. The design of longboards makes them easier to use, with less chance of accident,. And longboards are designed for long distances (rather than for doing tricks, like skateboards), so they're perfect for getting around on a college campus.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Neither, if living on campus and the person does not enjoy using these for recreation/transportation currently.  

They won't get used. Walking, even long distances, is quicker. There are usually short cuts through buildings to get to classes quickly, if needed. In poor weather, they won't be used. 

If he decides he needs/wants either, he can request as a gift or buy it himself. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When my kid was living on campus, which was very large, she originally brought her bike, but brought it back home when she came for winter break.  She literally never used it.  Prt of that might be that if she had any distance that was more than a block or two, she used the campus/city provided buses.  (city buses, available to everyone, but the school contracted with the city so that students didn't pay directly ( I am sure the school accounted for the use of the buses in the tuition lol)

 

My kid has never used any form of skateboard in her life, and also was never interested in anything like roller skates or roller blades.

 

She did however find it incredibly interesting that one student on campus used a unicycle.  ALL the time.  It was often parked outside classroom buildings during class times, and he could regularly be seen riding between buildings during normal class times etc.  He was a year ahead of her so unicycle man disappeared in her senior year lol.  

  • Like 1
  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I asked  DD what the situation is for bikes at Carolina.  Her reply is below. I responded that it would be very bad for a bike to be outside in the Snow and Rain and also there's a high probability that a bike like that would be stolen.  I suggested that with time, as she uses the App, it may become easier to use the Free Bicycles if they are available.  Possibly a "Learning Curve" to that App.

"I don't know. there's an app for bikes, no pay, but a bit cumbersome. doesn't always work. personal bikes are stored outside"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If it is that big a campus, donxt they have a campus bus? Usually they run both directions on a loop. Large off campus apt complexes that cater to students often have bus service that stops either in the parking lot or close by. 

Dd lived in a dorm at the far end of campus her freshman year; she was on the other side of a major highway. She just put the bus app on her phone and knew when it would be coming to whatever stop she needed). Super convenient. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Most campuses do not allow scooters, or skateboards or anything other than a bike which would have to be ridden on the roads. 
 

....you need to check the rules and also find out if there are decent bike lanes. Some campuses are awesome for bicycling but many are an accident waiting to happen. At my sons campus there have already been three bike/car accidents This year and those are only the ones I know of. 

When it’s busy and kids trying to get from A to B scooter ands skateboards are extremely rude and dangerous. There just isn’t room for the faster moving objects to make it through the crowds. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Also in the rainy and wet winter climates there is very little time for use of bikes. And also they might provide a free campus bus link. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
20 minutes ago, Calming Tea said:

Most campuses do not allow scooters, or skateboards or anything other than a bike which would have to be ridden on the roads....
...When it’s busy and kids trying to get from A to B scooter ands skateboards are extremely rude and dangerous. There just isn’t room for the faster moving objects to make it through the crowds. 


Hmmm...  I totally get it if that has been your DS's experience at Penn State. 

But the above statements have NOT been the case for DS#1 on EITHER of the university campuses (one small/medium-sized, the other large) where he has been a student. And I know of other students on other campuses where longboards are NOT prohibited, NOR are the riders rude and dangerous... So I would hesitate to make sweeping generalizations about "most campuses..." 😉 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Calming Tea said:

Just check the rules...


Always a good idea about anything having to do with any college. 😄 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...