7kms Commute to Train Station - Suggestions?

I will be moving to a rental accommodation for a year. The nearest train station to the city (V-Line) is 7 kms away - one way.

Considering I don't have to travel to the city a lot due to flexible working arrangements, I don't see this as a big issue. But on the odd days that I do have to travel; I was wondering what are my best options. The nearest bus station is like 4 kms away. Not sure if the stops will be extended to the estate I am moving to, but that surely will be a few months/years away. In any case, I am not too keen to rely on buses that might ply only once in 20-25 mins (probably more).

Naturally, my most preferred option is driving. But I read that the car-park at the train station is generally full by 7:30 AM (even during COVID). Am I legally allowed to park in a nearby street and walk from there?

Other options include getting a bike, electric bike or an electric scooter. I am not sure if Electric scooters are safe and can handle 7 kms one away. Also, I am pretty sure I won't have bike lanes through the whole stretch to ride safely on the road in a two-wheeler. E-bikes should be fine as long as I get the caged-parking in the train station. Final option is to get a 2-wheeler licence and ride a Vespa or a Yamaha 100cc motor scooter. Parking in the station should be fine due to dedicated motorcycle parking spots? (Have to check whether these fill in too). All the 3 have downsides in the form of road safety.

Eager to hear your thoughts for similar commute distances and options.

EDIT:
State is VIC. Suburb is Armstrong Creek. Reason I am moving this far from the station is because it is closer to work for my partner (who has to travel daily to work).
Thanks for your opinions, folks! I am happy I got to hear you out instead of directly splurging on a bike/scooter/train station.
The reason I didn't add Uber as an option is because I don't expect it to be available on short notice in this suburb.

Poll Options

  • 149
    Car (Park nearest street and walk from there)
  • 9
    Electric Scoot till nearest bus stop
  • 91
    Bike
  • 26
    Electric Bike
  • 5
    Motor Scooter
  • 30
    Electric scoot all the way (please suggest make and model for such long commutes)

Comments

  • +21 votes

    either rent other place closer, or buy the train.

    • +97 votes

      where do I park the train?

      • +31 votes

        In your garage like the rest of us

      • +14 votes

        Have you considered renting the train station?

        •  

          What's the cost. Do you have an estimate?

        • +17 votes

          That's not the ozbargain way. You sleep on the bench at the station and save the would be rent money to buy rechargeable batteries, computer parts and a Tesla

        • +12 votes

          Consider buying all the train stations so no one else can

      • +26 votes

        where do I park the train?

        With two wheels on the nature strip.

      • +1 vote

        You don't park the train, you train your helicopter pilot to land on it while it is still moving

    • +13 votes

      What advantages does this car have, over say, a train, which I could also afford?

  • +1 vote

    Other options include getting a bike, electric bike or an electric scooter. I am not sure if Electric scooters are safe and can handle 7 kms one away.

    electric scooters aren't technical legal, and you wouldn't want to do a 7km commute on them anyway (even if the battery can handle it).

    Ride the 7km sounds great in practice but……you'll need to shower at the other end, what about your work clothes? what about your work stuff? what happens when it rains, or when it's 35 degrees?

    sounds like you're up a bit of a creek and your best option is either a scooter or a car.

    •  

      Yeah, fair points there. Especially if it's pouring or a super hot day. By scooter, are you referring to a motor scooter?

      • +1 vote

        The car parks by train stations generally have a motorcycle parking area which is never full. So a motor scooter as you put it would work. A top case on that can store everything and the helmet when youre off the bike.

      • +2 votes

        I ride an electric scooter (Zero 9) 9km each way (20km total). I have flexible arrangements as well so if it's pissing down and I can avoid going to work I just won't go in that day. Sometimes when I'm feeling particularly motivated I just use my waterproof backpack and ride in anyway with a change of clothes (used to ride a push bike to work so sometimes I don't mind even if it's raining. I did do some modifications to improve the water resistance of mine though as I've had issues after riding in really heavy rain before. Light rain is no drama with a stock scooter.

        When I must go to work and the weather is shit I just either drive and then public transport the rest of the way or drive all the way to work and pay for parking near by.

        Honestly, can't see myself going back to public transport. It's a much nicer commute, I'm free to travel when I please (no need to worry about timetables, etc) and it only takes me 20 minutes each way (driving takes 30 including finding a park, public transport takes an hour if everything is on schedule, cycling takes about 40 minutes once you factor in showers and getting dressed).

        In the warmer months I wear shorts and tshirt for the commute and use a messenger bag so I don't have the heat on my back of a backpack and change at work. We also have showers at work if it's particularly hot but I've not had to use them as I don't break a sweat)

    • +5 votes

      electric scooters aren't technical legal, and you wouldn't want to do a 7km commute on them anyway (even if the battery can handle it)

      Up here in Brisbane there are plenty of people scooting greater than 7km each way, I see them every day on my bike and I'm 10km each way, I see them going beyond my exit on the bikeway so presumably over 10km each way.

      EDIT: But I probably wouldn't do it myself unless it was on a dedicated path, so first thing you need to do is check the route for scooting/cycling viability.

    • +1 vote

      Ride the 7km sounds great in practice but……you'll need to shower at the other end, what about your work clothes? what about your work stuff? what happens when it rains, or when it's 35 degrees?

      I assume the OP has the flexibility to avoid commuting on the rainy/35 degree days. Perhaps he can get a ride from a family member on those days, if it's absolutely necessary.

      I'd probably try the e-scooter first. There's something about the convenience of not having to lock it up at the station. I wouldn't lock up an ebike at the station. Motorcycle/scooter is probably fine too.

      • +1 vote

        Thanks, will seriously consider getting the two wheeler motorcycle license. Although it seems to cost a bomb doing the orientation session etc!
        Do most e-scooters do 14+ kms easily or are they specific models in a certain range I need to look at?

        • -2 votes

          Thanks, will seriously consider getting the two wheeler motorcycle license. Although it seems to cost a bomb doing the orientation session etc!

          Yeah - riding a motorcycle/scooter is an expensive hobby. Wait till you research some of the maintenance costs.

          Do most e-scooters do 14+ kms easily or are they specific models in a certain range I need to look at?

          There's a number of factors to consider like your weight, terrain gradient, terrain material, possibly wind, etc

          The entry level scooter from Xiaomi (Mi Essential) claims to have a range of 20km. I don't know how well it works in practice.

          As you go up through the models, the range generally increases, but so does the weight, to support the additional batteries.

          The chargers for these things are cheap enough, that I would rather keep a charger at work recharge during the day, than get a heavier model for the extra range.

          • +4 votes

            @salmon123: "Yeah - riding a motorcycle/scooter is an expensive hobby. Wait till you research some of the maintenance costs."

            What on earth are you talking about? A motorcycle costs ~$3k and only needs a ~$200 service every couple of years. My weekly travel cost went from $50 using public transport to $6 on petrol for my motorcycle. You think that's expensive?

            • +1 vote

              @field1985:

              only needs a ~$200 service every couple of year

              You're forgetting $500/year in rego/ctp.

              Those aren't Sydney prices. Try finding a oil change for under $200, you'll struggle.

              Basic set of tryes for a small bike are $400+

              That's before you get into other maintenance items - brakes $300, coolant $200, forks/suspension - $500, chain and sprockets - $300, timing valves - $500, battery $200. Puncture repair - $100. Towing after a puncture - $100+

              You might even need some new parts once in a while - starter motor, alternator, clutch cables, etc, etc.

              Depreciation can also be a cost, although it doesn't seem to be an issue during covid.

              Often cheaper to sell the bikes and get a new one than do the maintenance.

              My weekly travel cost went from $50 using public transport to $6 on petrol for my motorcycle.

              I suspect your $6 commute costs a lots more than that, but whateva.

              • +2 votes

                @salmon123: Dude, I bought a motorbike new and it has INCREASED in value, not depreciated.

                I've done 20,000km's. Only done $200-$250 service every 2 years.

                If maintenance is ever more then $500, I will sell it. It was only $3,500 new (there's a shortage/waiting list here now due to covid).

                Rego is $360 not $500

                Tyre's for my bike start at $60

                Bikes have changed a lot and you have clearly been ripped off (ie live in $ydney)

                • -5 votes

                  @field1985:

                  Dude, I bought a motorbike new and it has INCREASED in value, not depreciated.

                  Thanks sherlock, I already said that, but obviously reading isn't your forte.

                  Only done $200-$250 service every 2 years.

                  Not sure why you even bothered with that, sine you're MO seems to be not to bother maintaining them, which is fine, but it could come back to bite you.

                  Rego is $360 not $500

                  Again, not NSW prices.

                  Tyre's for my bike start at $60

                  Congratulations, your ride a PoS. My pushbike tyres cost more than that.

                  (ie live in $ydney)

                  That vs dictator dan … you decide who's the winner.

                  • +1 vote

                    @salmon123: -"Not sure why you even bothered with that, sine you're MO seems to be not to bother maintaining them, which is fine, but it could come back to bite you."

                    I've followed HONDA'S service schedule to the letter, using only HONDA certified repairers. But go on… tell me how it is again? LOL

                    -"Again, not NSW prices."

                    This whole post is about VICTORIA. We don't care about NSW

                    -"Congratulations, your ride a PoS. My pushbike tyres cost more than that."

                    Congratulations, you're clearly being ripped off. LMAO

                    -"dictator dan … you decide who's the winner."

                    Oh FFS, grow up dude!

                    •  

                      @field1985:

                      I've followed HONDA'S service schedule to the letter, using only HONDA certified repairers. But go on… tell me how it is again?

                      Which Honda bike only requires a service every 24 months?

                      •  

                        @salmon123: It had it's 1 month, 6 month and then 12 month services. Then when the 18 month service was booked in, COVID hit, and we physically couldn't take it the mechanic or ride outside our 5km limit. So I disconnected the battery and placed it in storage for 6 months.

                        This led to an unavoidable 24 month servicing gap, but it wasn't used (so didn't miss the service) and it was serviced for it's 18 month service before returning to the road.

              • +1 vote

                @salmon123: Scooter rego is like.. $60?

                • -1 vote

                  @ATangk:

                  Scooter rego is like.. $60?

                  NSW? Nah … Ctp is the more expensive component.

                  •  

                    @salmon123: CTP is $140 for a scooter. So $200. A fair bit short of the $500 you were suggesting though.

                    • -3 votes

                      @ATangk:

                      CTP is $140 for a scooter

                      NSW doesn't differentiate scooters and motorcycles. They do it based on the engine capacity in CC's.

                      CTP quotes will vary widely depending on your circumstances and postcode.

                      Rego for a scooter in NSW is $134. Someone else said they paid $360 for rego above.My bike rego+ctp costs close to $500, but then I don't ride a crappy 50cc scooter.

                      •  

                        @salmon123: Then why are you bothering to compare if you dont even ride one? Scooters are small cc bikes if you haven't realised. I have a motorbike, I know how much I pay but I dont ride a scooter, and they have it much cheaper.

                        • -1 vote

                          @ATangk:

                          Then why are you bothering to compare if you dont even ride one?

                          I believe the orginal comment was scooter or small motorbike.

                          Scooters are small cc bikes if you haven't realised. I have a motorbike, I know how much I pay but I dont ride a scooter, and they have it much cheaper.

                          But they don't, in NSW …

                          •  

                            @salmon123: Groms and CB125e's would be the same price as the scooters…. <$200 for both rego and CTP.

                          •  

                            @salmon123: "But they don't, in NSW …"

                            I believe the original post was about Victoria.

                            •  

                              @field1985:

                              I believe the original post was about Victoria.

                              I don't think the post actually mentioned that.

                              Groms and CB125e's would be the same price as the scooters…. <$200 for both rego and CTP.

                              Nope, spend 30seconds on google and you'll see it's $412 for a 61-125cc bike, in VICTORIA.

                              I don't even know what you geniuses are arguing about now.

                              Happy to shoot you down about your magical honda that only needs a service every two years when you're ready.

        • +4 votes

          Expect approx 50% of manufacturers claimed range. Segway ninebot max upto 65km. ($800 jbhifi deal) Reality is around 30ish in real world.

          Another way to calc is get volts x amps of machine then divide by 25 and this gives you rough miles, simply convert to km

          Eg. 36v x 15.2a = 547w / 25 = 21.8 miles or 35km

          Also ninebot max uses a $10 kettle plug, so u can leave one at work. As charger is inbuilt.

          Avoid the v2 international models spruiked by grey sellers, has less range and no inbuilt charger. Clearly a attempt by manufacturer to lower costs. But sly sellers will tell you its 'better' and 'upgraded model'.

          •  

            @t_c: I'm not sure if your maths works out. You'll probably need to know the battery capacity of your scooter too, right? Distance travelled should be proportional to energy, not power.

        • +1 vote

          Get the two wheeler motorcycle license. I strongly recommend it. I know it seems to cost a bomb doing the orientation session, the "check-ride" and the test. But all up it's only ~$1K which you will easily recoup in fuel savings (compared to a car) in the first year riding.

          I did it when they did level crossing removal on my train line (8 weeks no trains). Since then I haven't looked back. The time and money savings are more then worth the slight hassle (putting on a jacket/helmet).

          You can ride from door to door, never have to look for parking (it's legal to park on footpaths in Vic), ride "through" the heavy traffic (it IS legal to lane filter). The benefits are endless. My commute went from 75mins (train) to 20mins (moto) and $50pw (train) to $6pw (moto).

          You wont regret it. Trust me.

          • +1 vote

            @field1985: Damn, your commute cut down sooooo much. My commute by motorbike is still 50 minutes in traffic!

        • +2 votes

          Get your bike licence. had mine >30 years and it's a no-brainer ~ next you need a cheap bike and instead of buying used (an option) id recommend @braaapmotorcycles.com like the (L) Cruiser 400. Good for weekends and milk runs as well as trips to the CBD. Way easier than a car. better range & comfort than any eBike or worse, scooter (had one) and cheap with single pillion rego a year!

          • +1 vote

            @srhardy: Jeez, nice-looking bike - and cheap too! Sigh!!…I'd love one of these, but I'm utterly terrified of other road users! Motorbikes - even lovely ones like this - remind me of chainsaws (I was a small-holder/hobby farmer): marvellous things and thoroughly scary!

        • +1 vote

          A 50cc motorbike/scooter can be ridden legally with a car licence, they are generally $2k-2.5k to buy new (plenty second hand for less) cheap on registration and run on the smell of an oily rag.

          • +3 votes

            @Monad: I don't think this is the case in Vic.

            •  

              @Franconian: Yes, I looked it up, you are right.

              •  

                @Monad: And that is how you solve interstate squabbles. None of that "But I live in NSW…" and "dictator dan" nonsense

    •  

      I've done rides longer than 7kms easily on my xiaomi pro 2 scooter. Not a problem - but many factors at play. to be safe, as per above, expect 50% of claimed range.

      A (normal) escooter will get you 25k/h and 7kms will take you about 25 min though so thats pretty far just getting to the station, and a long time being miserable if its crappy weather…

      •  

        It's more like 15min. 7km is really close

  • +3 votes

    walk br0
    if you lift alot u have to do legs as well

    • +22 votes

      Think I will stop lifting instead :D

      • -3 votes

        OMG br0
        u need the guns br0
        the guns show!!!!!

  •  

    Sounds like another variation on the cost - convenience - safety pyramid. You'll get to pick two.

  •  

    in sydney, using bus then train gives us a discount, not sure vic has that
    i just catch the bus, have an app, can get all the timings right

    •  

      Don't believe VIC has that.

      •  

        Yeah, though apparently VIC pt prices are just generally lower. Would be nice to have live updates on the trains and buses.

  • +1 vote

    I was in a similar position and decided to get my motorcycle license, saves me time, really enjoyable but definitely not the cheap option

    •  

      Is this in Melbourne? I am worried about the blatant disregard for 2 wheelers here. Not really worried about the cost to be honest.

      • +1 vote

        Yes Melbourne, in my 2 years of riding haven't had too much disregard for me on the road, nothing that would sway my position, people do love driving right up your rear but that's not specific to motorcycles

    • +2 votes

      May as well skip the train and keep riding all the way into City if you're on a motorbike.

      • +1 vote

        Yes that's what I meant, don't have to worry about parking either

  • +2 votes

    Get to the station before 7.30?

    • +9 votes

      No logically correct options, please 😁. Guy needs his sleep!

      • +1 vote

        Go to sleep earlier 😂

        • +28 votes

          That's not logically correct either. Just sleep faster

  • +3 votes

    Where's the helicopter option?

  • +3 votes

    Bicycle to the train station then you won’t need to go to the gym.

  • +6 votes

    Am I legally allowed to park in a nearby street and walk from there?

    Sure, check the street signs. Easy.

    Hope you don't come back again with a new post.

    "I live 7km from station, I got fined parking near the train station, cAn I gEt OuT oF tHe FiNe?" :)

  • +1 vote

    Could bike/walk with a change of clothes,

  • +3 votes

    7 klms a bike wouldnt have warmed up yet.

  • +1 vote

    Car is the only realistic option come winter time…
    Guy I work with spent $2k on an electric skateboard so he can save driving his Landcruiser 10kms to work….now that it's been raining and cold in the mornings (we start at 6am) he's been driving anyway. Should have just got a cheap run around car.

    I'd also be getting up half an hour early or whatever when it's raining just to get a park at the train station. Set the alarm for 5 mins before whatever time your train is coming, eat breakfast in the car, watch some Netflix…even snooze if you really want. Better than risking a parking fine and walking in the rain. You'll also appreciate it on the return trip when you don't have to walk 10-15mins to your car in the rain.

  • +1 vote

    Am I legally allowed to park in a nearby street and walk from there?

    What do the street signs say for parking?

    If its untimed parking then yes, if its 2 or 4 hour or permit parking, then no.

    •  

      What if it is 3 hour parking

      • +1 vote

        Park all day and let us know.

  • +5 votes

    I've seen people buy their own eScooters, and they're doing like 15km one way, and another 15km back. eScooters are cheap (under $1k) and they're reasonably comfortable… until it's cold and raining and you've got a heavy postal bag and you find the battery has run out midway and now you have to push along a heavy scooter too. Range anxiety is a real thing with eScooters, only the most expensive models alleviate this somewhat. 7km one-way, at an average 17kph (bumps/turns on pavement), should take you about 25mins. But no license, no worries.

    Personally, I think you should get a decent Bike with eMotor/Pedal Assist. I'm sure they're around the $1k mark as well, just don't look at the hardcore $5k bikes. That way you're slightly more comfortable, slightly faster distance, slightly better range, etc etc. For the 7km travel, at an average 30kph (some pavement, some road), should take 14mins. Again no license, no worries.

    Your only worries would be to lock up the bike, which could get stolen. You can also risk locking up the eScooter, which is easier to get stolen. You might take the eScooter on the train with you, pretty compact, and take it to work and put it someplace safe in the worksite. The bike is cumbersome in the train, but potentially an option, but again cumbersome to lock up when you get to work.

    Last option is a $3,000 beater (car). Not the best time for buying cars. And technically if you park at the station, it also can get stolen, but much less risk than eBike, and eScooter. Much more comfortable and handy. However, you'll probably have to shell out $1000 yearly for rego-ctp, then there's some maintenance costs (tyres, oil, etc), but the biggest is the fuel costs. All up this is more expensive than both eScooter and eBike combined.

    So weigh the pros and cons, and decide for yourself.
    I think you should look into facebook/gumtree/etc etc and see if you can negotiate to hiring out an eScooter for 1-week. Then negotiate if you can hire an eBike for 1-week. Then you'll get a better idea, and see if any of those options work for you. That might help make your decision easier.

    •  

      get a decent Bike with eMotor/Pedal Assist

      Some of the Aldi stores in Adelaide still had some eBikes this week for $999.
      https://www.aldi.com.au/en/special-buys/special-buys-sat-17-...

    • +4 votes

      For the 7km travel, at an average 30kph (some pavement, some road), should take 14mins.

      E bikes are limited to 25km/h in assist mode and you’d be pretty fit to average 30km/h pedalling if it’s not flat.

      Still, I did a 6.5km bicycle commute to work for years. Took around 17min depending on bike style and effort. Best way about 13 with a strong tailwind. Slow was around 21min.

      •  

        If you're even moderately fit, 7k on a bike @30kmh on the flat is nothing. But you will need a shower at work in summer unless your colleagues are VERY tolerant (work clothes are no problem - there's these things called "backpacks"). With an ebike you won't even need that - sitting on 25kmh adds only a couple of minutes each way, and exercise needed (hence sweating) is minimal.

        But both of these depend what traffic and roads are like - you don't want to be playing witth B-Doubles on a pushbike.

        • +1 vote

          But you will need a shower at work

          Definitely in an office environment. Not so critical in construction etc.

          My 17min cycle commute blew out to 30-35min door to desk by the time I took 10min to cool down before showering. The few times I rushed from bike to shower I ended up still sweating after the shower and almost needed a second wash.

          Averaging 30km/h takes a big effort. I was probably more than moderately fit wth a virtually flat commute and could only get close to 30km/h AVERAGE if the traffic lights, intersections and wind were in my favour. It doesn’t take much to drop your average quickly despite being able to hold a bit over 30km/h while moving.

    •  

      Ride one of them pedal buggy karts, or have custom one made with a motor, with or without pedals(If without pedals and the engine dies, have fun pushing it…). No one's gonna steal that. Or at least I don't think it would be as attractive as stealing a bike or a scooter or a skateboard?

      Actually skateboards would be the best form of transportation, assuming you know how to skate because it's small and discreet enough no one will notice you storing your skateboard under your desk.

  • +6 votes

    Go by Uber.😊

    • +6 votes

      Yeah, if it's only for a year, and only once or twice a week an uber would be the easiest option.

    • +3 votes

      OP should moonlight as Uber driver from his place to the station, get paid for each 7km trip!

  • +1 vote

    Segway Ninebot Max eScooter has a real world range of over 40km with a 80kg rider, often on special at JB HiFi for $799. I'm in Qld so legal up here, you are in NSW so not legal, however I've been told most cops ignore you if you are wearing a helmet and not riding it like an idiot.

    Sorry just noticed you are in Victoria so I think they are legal but have to be less than 200 watts. The Ninebot is 350 watts.

    • +1 vote

      Unfortunately most Aussies these days weigh well over 80kg.

  • +2 votes

    Does the station provide bike storage? Many stations allow you to apply to use their bike cage/rack.

    Otherwise there are folding bikes and scooters.

    I have an Aldi scooter. It’s great for getting to the station quickly and folds up quite small.

  • +1 vote

    So nobody is going to ask why rent that specific place that is 7km from the nearest station and without bus stops within a 4km radius?

    •  

      OP has stated they will be working from home most days. I think we can assume that the place meets OP's other lifestyle needs.

    • +1 vote

      Work is closer for my partner and as @trongy pointed out, I will be working from home most days.

  • +2 votes

    Is it Tarneit station? can you drive to station and start work early and finish early?

    •  

      Chuckle. Why does everyone think it's Tarneit :D

      It's not. I will be moving to Armstrong Creek, close to Geelong