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Distinguishing between Utility Cycling and Commuting

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Distinguishing between Utility Cycling and Commuting

Old 09-24-15, 05:38 AM
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chefisaac
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Distinguishing between Utility Cycling and Commuting

Hello all.

I was wondering how you distinguish between utility cycling and commuting. I'm just curious.
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Old 09-24-15, 05:44 AM
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They can be the same. But usually utility cycling also involves shopping etc. whereas commuting doesn't have to (but can). The definition of commuting is this:

travel some distance between one's home and place of work on a regular basis.

"he commuted from Corby to Kentish Town"
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Old 09-24-15, 07:11 AM
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I have what I call a "utility bike" which was originally a MTB but is optimized for road use, for hauling a trailer. I use it for shopping or pulling my son. Most rides on that bike are utilitarian in nature, directly replacing car use.

I commute to work, however, on a regular road bike which I have rigged up a rear rack, and use clip-on fenders when wet.
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Old 09-24-15, 07:17 AM
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It's all bicycling.
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Old 09-24-15, 07:27 AM
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If your destination pays you, it is commuting.
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Old 09-24-15, 07:42 AM
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And if I pay the destination, it's utility
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Old 09-24-15, 02:37 PM
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Love number 5 and 6
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Old 09-24-15, 09:27 PM
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Depends on how much stuff I've bungeed to the rear rack and handlebar.
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Old 09-25-15, 04:28 AM
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Originally Posted by MichaelW View Post
If your destination pays you, it is commuting.
Originally Posted by PatrickGSR94 View Post
And if I pay the destination, it's utility

I would say that sums it up!

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Old 09-25-15, 02:43 PM
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Well played, numbers 5 and 6!
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Old 09-26-15, 05:15 PM
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Originally Posted by MichaelW View Post
If your destination pays you, it is commuting.
Originally Posted by PatrickGSR94 View Post
And if I pay the destination, it's utility
That seems to cover it.
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Old 11-11-15, 11:16 AM
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Commuting = travel to and from work.

Utility = everything that you use the bike for, including commuting.
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Old 11-11-15, 02:05 PM
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whether or not you carry stuff other than the on the job clothes change ..
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Old 04-23-16, 05:36 PM
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Most bicycle commuting is a subset of utility cycling. (Some people who ride their bike to work are not bicycle commuters in the utility sense; they're recreational riders who have traded their commute for a recreational ride, and there's nothing wrong with that.)

From Wikipedia: "Utility cycling encompasses any cycling done simply as a means of transport rather than as a sport or leisure activity. It is the original and most common type of cycling in the world."

Last edited by Jaywalk3r; 04-23-16 at 05:41 PM.
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Old 06-21-16, 05:48 PM
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<shrug> How much does it really matter?
Back in the day when I worked downtown, I'd take the utility bike (Schwinn cruiser with old-school fenders, rack, Wald baskets, etc.) to the train station in the morning. In the afternoon, if it was a nice day and I wasn't in any particular hurry I might take the long way home. I might also stop to pick up a loaf of bread on the way.
So, what started out as a commuting ride (transportation to work), became a recreational ride (riding for the pure enjoyment of it), and perhaps a utility ride (transportation of goods from store to house). And throughout that entire process it was still the same old me, sitting on the same old Schwinn, enjoying every minute of it.
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Old 07-26-16, 05:40 PM
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Well said Trek75
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Old 07-27-16, 06:03 PM
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I do most of my grocery shopping and errand running on the homeward commute, so I'd have to say they're pretty much the same thing.
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Old 07-28-16, 06:21 PM
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When the Walds are folded up, I'm commuting. When they're unfolded, I'm utility cycling.
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Old 07-29-16, 07:32 AM
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Really it's anything that replaces car use. Even riding to the start of a recreational group ride, IMHO is utilitarian cycling, because you're not using the car to get there. You're using the bike for actual transportation.
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Old 09-01-16, 04:14 PM
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My work circumstances have changed, so I am no longer able to bicycle commute, but did so nearly every day (all but perhaps 10 days/year) for a couple years.

And I have done a fair amount of utility bicycling.


With both, the point is using a bike to get myself and my stuff somewhere, but for me, they involved a very different mindset.

On the way to work, I was on a schedule, I needed to be there at a particular time. On the way home, I was spent from working all day, and just wanted to get home. Tick-tock, tick-tock. I need to be at work M-F regardless the weather, the wind, etc.

When I ride the bike to a store, I get there when I get there, and they are happy to take my money...then I ride home, and amazingly my house is still there even if I stop for a coffee on the way. If it is raining cats and larger cats, then I can go another day.

One big similarity is that for both I came to value bikes that were low maintainance...always ready to go without fuss. Armored puncture resistant tires that hold air for weeks, Internal gearing that doesn't require frequent cleaning. Panniers that don't require figuring out how to carry things.
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Old 11-29-16, 04:26 AM
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Originally Posted by Trek75 View Post
<shrug> How much does it really matter?
Back in the day when I worked downtown, I'd take the utility bike (Schwinn cruiser with old-school fenders, rack, Wald baskets, etc.) to the train station in the morning. In the afternoon, if it was a nice day and I wasn't in any particular hurry I might take the long way home. I might also stop to pick up a loaf of bread on the way.
So, what started out as a commuting ride (transportation to work), became a recreational ride (riding for the pure enjoyment of it), and perhaps a utility ride (transportation of goods from store to house). And throughout that entire process it was still the same old me, sitting on the same old Schwinn, enjoying every minute of it.
Oh man, how did you manage to keep track of what miles were for what... at just what point along the pleasure ride, did it become a utility ride... oh I'm so confused.
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Old 11-29-16, 11:45 AM
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Originally Posted by genec View Post
Oh man, how did you manage to keep track of what miles were for what... at just what point along the pleasure ride, did it become a utility ride... oh I'm so confused.
No problem, I just use the worksheet they gave me for filling out my weekly TPS report (Office Space reference).
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Old 11-29-16, 01:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Trek75 View Post
No problem, I just use the worksheet they gave me for filling out my weekly TPS report (Office Space reference).
Don't forget the cover sheet. You got the memo, right... Uh, um... I'll have it sent to you again.
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