This past summer I was minding my own business at a local establishment when a friend of a friend approached me somewhat hesitantly, looking as if he wanted to confess a dark, shameful secret that he had buried inside his soul for years. I figured whatever was troubling his mind had to be somewhat transportation-related because he would boast about his pickup truck like it was his own son, and he knew I worked at Jalopnik.

“What’s up?” I asked him, concerned.

“You ever heard of Revel?” He whispered in shame. “You mean those funny looking scooters I’m seeing all over Brooklyn?” I asked. “Yes!,” I said, and his eyes lit up.

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“I see people breaking traffic laws in them all the time. I’m actually curious to try them myself.” I told him sincerely, giving him reassurance that whatever he was going to say next would be fine.

“I hate the way I look riding in them, but I gotta tell you, I haven’t been using my truck as often because I’ve been reveling.”

Wow. I enjoy bike riding, and I partake in public transportation daily like most New Yorkers, but I also know how loathsome it can be sometimes.

So signing up for an all-electric moped, ride-sharing program was never out of the question, but this was exactly the type of word of mouth reassurance I was looking for. Here I found myself chatting with a proud pickup truck owner about how he had been “reveling” in favor of using his truck.

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With this newfound sense of urgency, I wanted to see for myself what these emissions-free, and possibly lice carrying mopeds were all about.

So I signed up for an account and made a video about it with a friend that’s not afraid to commute on two wheels when the L train is out of service, Jalopnik Social Media Editor, Aaron Brown.

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It costs $19 to sign up, and rides cost $1 to start with each mile costing 25 cents. They’re fun to drive and with a minimal learning curve, although riding training is highly recommended if you don’t have it. I found it’s a great, guilt-free way to get around, and maybe even an effective car replacement for some people. 

I have to say I’m a fan now. Revel is only in Brooklyn, Queens and Washington D.C. for now—though they are expanding—but I think they’ve hit on a “mobility” solution that’s clever, not annoying (since they get street parked and aren’t just left everywhere) and, above all, fun.

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Check the video above to see how it went.

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About the author

Eddie Costas

Video Producer, Jalopnik

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