Segway Tours: Fun for Teens and Adults Alike!
Ever see people riding around on vehicles that almost look like a two-wheel unicyle and wonder about them? I can tell you from experience that these zippy little electric Segways are fun, safe and easy to learn!
While in Toronto to celebrate our twin daughters' 17th birthdays, we booked a half-hour tour of Toronto's Historic Distillary District as a birthday surprise, with the company Go Tours. (Go Tours also offers walking tours, longer Segway Tours, and off-road Segway Tours as well).
After less than five minutes of training on them, my husband, our daughters, I and our two great tour guides were off!
The Segways we rode (and probably most that are available for public use), had handles to hold onto. Maneuvering them is easy! To go forward you lean forward, to go backwards, you lean back a bit. Want to go a bit faster? Lean a little further forward. Want to slow or stop? Straighten. To go right or left, you simply tilt the handle in that direction. The vehicles we rode went about 6 mph, but would go up to 12 mph. During the entire time, I never felt concerned about safety.
Our tour guides, Josh and Gavin, were very knowledgeable about Toronto's fascinating Historic Distillary District, giving just enough info so everyone stayed interested, but easily able to answer all our additional questions.
So, if you're thinking of trying a Segway Tour, here are tips about some of the things to ask:
- How old do you have to be to ride? The lowest age for this tour was 12, but at many places, 16 is the lowest age you can ride. Riders between 12 and 18 had to be accompanied by a parent.
- Are there weight limits? For this one, riders had to be between 100 and 280 pounds, but each company has its own restrictions.
- Do you provide a helmet? Although these vehicles are safe, never ride without one.
- Do you sanitize the helmets after each rider? The answer should definitely be YES! If the thought of riding a helmet someone else has worn makes you feel queezy, ask whether they provide head covers for under the helmet. Most good companies will.
Some other things to think about:
- Dress for the weather. Don't forget that you'll be outdoors in the open, so brring sunscreen and sun glasses for summer. For cooler weather bring jackets, gloves and ear/head coverings because when you're tooling around on these vehicles, it's a bit breezier or cooler than when you're standing still.
- Wear comfortable flat shoes. You'll be standing on the footbed (essentially, a flat wide plank conformed to hold two feet) for the duration of your tour, so heels or dress shoes that are uncomfortable are a very bad idea.
- Follow each other, rather than ride side-by-side. We were told that most of the very few accidents that happen occur when riders get to close too each other and their wheels collide.
- Check their weather policy. Segways are pretty rugged, so many tour companies go out in pretty much any weather. Go Tours even does tours around the Distillary District in the Winter. The only time they mentioned that they halt tours completely is during the holiday season when the area is teeming with holiday booths, decor and visitors.
So whether you have teens with you, or whether it's you and a friend, spouse or significant other, if you're looking for a fun way to have an adventure, consider a Segway Tour!