I admit, the first time we went on a Segway tour I was pretty nervous. We were with a group of friends and as we were getting fitted for helmets and waiting for our indoor introductory lesson, I wondered, would I really be able to balance on this thing? Will I be the one who keeps falling off and holding up the group?
Fifteen minutes later, I was gliding forward and backward and letting out a “Woohoo!” as I turned in circles in the practice area. And before I knew it, our tour guide was leading us up the street and out on a path along the beach south of San Francisco.
Dave and I were both amazed at how easy it was to learn to ride a Segway – somehow the body intuitively catches on to the gyro affect and balances in no time – WAY easier than riding a bike!
After our first exhilarating experience, we were hooked, and since then we’ve kept our eyes open for Segway opportunities when we travel.
Here’s a video Dave took of a recent ride in the small town of Salida, Colorado. We took a really fun Segway tour with Mark and Lisa Glasby from Electric Avenue (eRides, LLC):
Segway i2 SE vs x2 SE
There are two main models of the Segway PT (personal transporter): the i2 SE and the x2 SE. The i2 SE is a versatile “commuter” model that is designed for both indoor and outdoor use. It can go through doorways, get onto an elevator, and ride comfortably on sideways and walking paths. This model can travel up to 24 miles on a charge,
The x2 SE is a more rugged outdoor model. It’s equipped with larger 7-inch tires that provide extra traction and shock absorption, and also raise the X2 SE to a ground clearance of 4.5”, perfect for handling bumpy trails, beaches, and other off-road terrain. This model can travel up to 12 miles on a charge.
Both of these models can reach speeds of 12.5 mph (which can feel surprisingly fast and fun when you’re on one!).
Most tours use the Segway i2 SE for traveling on city streets and country roads. But on a recent trip we had the chance to try the more rugged x2 SE model. And what a blast that was! It’s hard not to smile and laugh when gliding on one of these, and pretty much everyone we’d pass on the street was all smiles too.
Where Can You Find Segway Tours?
So if you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to glide on one of these, we highly recommend that you give it a try. It’s a great way to explore a place at your own pace, taking in the fresh air, and see the sites from a unique perspective.
Want to Buy One of Your Own?
Segways can be great for recreation, but may be a practical solution too. People typically purchase the i2 SE for casual neighborhood use, commuting to work, shopping, or country path enjoyment. It’s not uncommon to see them used by shopping center security, airport security, and parking police.
Those who want to use it on rougher terrain choose the x2 SE. We’ve seen them in use at the beach (for fun, security, and life guard monitoring), on the golf course and other sports fields (maintenance), and on farmlands, orchards, and vineyards (for ease in checking rows of crops).
If you’re considering buying a Segway of your own, just know that they are fairly expensive, starting upwards of $6,500 new. For the more economically minded, another possibility is to look online for used Segways for sale in your area.
There are also other brands of similar transporters that are less expensive, and might be easier to bring along on a road trip.