Patrons to local bars and restaurants who are committed to drinking responsibly have a new, “green” option thanks to Tim Ricker, founder of Round-Trip 101.
Ricker has developed an innovative concept using a zero-emission, foldable electric scooter.
After receiving a call requesting a drive home, Ricker, or one of his licensed, insured drivers, travels to the customer’s vehicle on the scooter. Ricker folds up the scooter, slides it into a canvas bag, places it in the trunk, then drives the customer to their residence. Afterwards, he uses the scooter to return to his home base.
“We are a transportation company that assists clients in reducing their carbon footprint,” he explained.
“People use this service because they don’t want to support a ‘roaming’ cab which pollutes the environment.”
Ricker added that many taxis are former police cars with large engines that translate to an average of 10 mph gallon of gas.
“It takes most taxi drivers $70 to fill their gas tank,” he said. “It takes me 10 cents to charge the battery of an electric scooter.”
Ricker said that the impact to the environment grows exponentially depending on how many trips are required to get both the driver who has consumed alcohol, and his car, home again.
“A roaming taxi makes one trip to pick you up, and another to take you home,” he said. “The next morning your friend gets in his car to pick you up at your home, and take you to your car. Then both of you get in your separate cars and drive to your respective homes again.”
He adds, “When I drive you home, there is only one trip. I leave using a scooter that has no emissions.”
Round-Trip 101 charges a flat rate of $20 plus $3/mile for the service.
So far, Round-Trip 101 has been well-received by local establishments.
“I think it’s a great alternative to taking a cab,” said Eric Leitstein, owner, Union Kitchen and Tap in Encinitas.
Like-minded companies including Patagonia in Cardiff have shown their support for Ricker’s vision of a “green” transportation service by serving as sponsors of Round-Trip 101.
According to the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department, the number of DUI arrests this holiday season is already more than this time last year. During the weekend of Fri., Dec. 16 through midnight of Sun., Dec. 18, deputies and officers representing 14 county law enforcement agencies booked 212 people for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. In 2010, 196 DUI bookings occurred during the same three-day time period.
“There will be no spreading holiday cheer behind the bars of a jail cell,” Sheriff Bill Gore said. “Don’t let your 2011 holiday season end in an arrest or worse, death. Remember, whether you’ve had way too many or just one too many, it’s not worth the risk.”
Ricker also offers his services as a licensed chauffer by transporting clients to outpatient surgery appointments as well as wine tastings and day trips to nearby resorts such Big Bear. The price is $25/hour.
“I eliminate the headache of returning your car after celebrating – or throwing the dice and risking the consequences of driving drunk,” he said.
He adds that Round-Trip 101 is also good business for local bar and restaurant owners.
“Customers are more likely to go out and have fun knowing about the option of Round-Trip 101,” he said.
For more information, visit round-trip101.com or call (760) 500-5000.