Hoverboard, Segway & Co : new ways of moving

Segway, monorail, hoverboard, trendy objects that belong to the field of multi-modality and that attract more and more people. But what does the Highway Traffic Act say about them? And do you have to insure them? Follow the guide!


Segway, the forerunner

Let us give back to Caesar what belongs to him. The Segway is a pioneer in what are nowadays called “motorized transport vehicles”. Modern and playful at the same time, it seduces and fascinates.

Released in 2001 in the United States, this expensive machine (count 7 to 10,000 euros for the original depending on its version) is increasingly seen in our cities.

The “gyropod”, as it is called in France, is no longer just Segway’s business. Other brands offer this type of machine for more democratic prices. Still, count 3,000 euros for a quality product, both in terms of batteries and reliability. However, you can find second-hand segways at a much lower price: you will then have to pay 1500 to 2000 euros.

The electric scooter, light and fast

Our editor had tested it, the electric scooter offers a lot of advantages: lightness, electric motor to move faster with less effort… Obviously, there will also be some disadvantages such as lack of flexibility (no inflatable tires or suspensions) and a significant purchase price. Indeed, you will have to pay at least 800 euros for quality models.

Our editor had tested it, the electric scooter has for her a lot of advantages like its lightness, its help to move faster with less effort…. Obviously, there will also be some disadvantages such as the lack of flexibility (no inflatable tires or suspensions) but also a significant purchase price, from 800 euros for quality models.

The electric scooter is quite far from the alternatives presented here: it is the only one that does not use the gyroscopic effect to stabilize itself. You will also have to insure it otherwise.

Hoverboard, as in Back to the Future

You’ve probably already seen the “classic” skateboards with small electric motors. But the hoverboard (named after the movie “Back to the Future”) is something else. Here, we no longer move in a lateral position as with skateboarding but in front of the road. It is a recent invention born a priori in China, although this fact is sometimes contested.

The device that could be assimilated to a Segway without a joystick is much lighter (about ten kilos at most), easier to handle on public transport and to take in hand to store it in the trunk of your car or in the corner of the entrance to the apartment…

Count between 300 and 400 euros for a basic reliable hoverboad model. Be careful, in the United States where the object has been widely distributed for more than a year now, accidents are numerous.

Not so much because of falls or collisions with other users (even if cities like New York prohibit its use for this reason) but rather because some low-end models sold on the Internet present a risk of fire and explosion because they overheat when charged.

Monorroue, the last little one

Recently, this new gyroscopic device has become all the rage.

It is in the form of a fairinged wheel with a tyre, equipped on both sides with retractable steps, all driven by a gyroscopic engine based on the same technology as the Segways. Just climb on it, lean forward to accelerate, backward to slow down… and off you go.

It takes a good hour of learning to start moving without falling. But, a priori, the efforts made are rewarded because these machines give addicts a feeling of freedom close to that provided by skiing… Pierre, who goes to work every day in monorail, will tell you about it mountains and wonders. You should also know that the machine is quite handy even if it still weighs more than 14-15 kg, easily transportable but that here too, quality and reliability are paid for. Count a good thousand euros to enjoy it.

The most used means of transport in England

Although walking is still the best advice because of the pleasure of being able to discover a city by breathing the fresh air and because it is good for your health, I will nevertheless tell you about the most commonly used means of transport in England.
Some distances or the time available for our trip can sometimes force us to use various means of transport, both for their convenience and speed. In England, there are many means of transport that are not as expensive as you might think and really practical. Here are the main ones….

The car

As in any country, the preferred means of transport for the English remains the car. Personal, individual and independent of schedules, it provides a certain comfort that public transport does not have. However, petrol is still quite expensive and traffic is not always suitable for car travel (traffic jams, ice storms, etc.). It should also be noted that this means of transport is not very environmentally friendly if you use it alone on a daily basis and that it is not economical either, especially if you travel to the city of London since you will have to pay a £10 tax just to enter! After that, it is not always easy to find a place to park for free.
As you will have understood, it is a means of transport widely used in England but mainly outside major cities such as London where public transport is preferred.

London’s Underground

Certainly one of the most widely used means of transport in England and especially in London: the underground. It is important to know that if you are in the capital, it is the fastest and most convenient way to get around. Everyone says that the London Underground is expensive but that is not true, it is not particularly more expensive than elsewhere if you know what type of ticket to take. It should be noted that the London transport network Transport For London has made really great cards available to everyone, allowing us to travel freely throughout the city at a reduced price!
In fact, all you have to do is buy the Oyster Card for £5, put the amount you want in one of the terminals you can find at the station and finally let it do the rest. The Oyster Card will take care of choosing the most financially advantageous type of ticket for you, depending on your travel needs. A subway trip will only cost you £2.20 instead of £4.70 and if you make more than 3 trips, it will automatically switch to a Travel Card, i.e. an unlimited day pass for only £8.
You’ve seen it, the Underground is cheap, fast and Londoners love it so don’t hesitate anymore!

The English bus

The famous English bus… You probably think of the red double-decker imperial buses that are mainly found in the city of London but in reality, they are found all over England. It is the most widely used means of transport in England with the metro and their price is far from being excessive with an average of £2.40 per journey. Although this mode of transport is much slower than the metro and totally dependent on traffic, unlike the metro, it is still found everywhere in the country and, in addition to being very practical and comfortable, it allows its users to fully enjoy the view with the magnificent neighbourhoods and landscapes that the country has to offer.

The train, a widely used means of transport

For those who are a little further away from the big English cities, the train is really the main means of transport! Although it is particularly expensive with tickets averaging £15 to travel from Dover to London for example, it is still the only real solution available to all those who do not have a car and who can neither use the bus nor the metro. In terms of design, these trains look a little like our TGV trains with a lot of space, “boxes” with 4 seats and a folding table in the middle, light and even air conditioning. They are really comfortable and make many stops. Be careful, however, to be in good standing with your tickets when you take these trains in England, as you may meet nearly 5 or 6 controllers during your journey!