I've been looking at other forms of alternative transport besides bicycles and the local distributor for Xootr (pronounced zooter) loaned me this Xootr MG kick scooter to try.
It is a kick scooter but on steroids. This is not your kid's Razor scooter (or Razor knockoff, as seen everywhere). While kids can certainly ride it, the design is very suitable for big kids like me too.
First of all, the deck (the base) is bigger than regular kick scooters. That means you can put both feet on the deck and ride more comfortably. My MG model's deck is made of solid magnesium, while you can also get decks made of wood and carbon fibre.
Secondly, the wheels are really smooth. They are larger than most kick scooters and feel more stable. The bearings inside, I don't know what they use but they is incredibly smooth, almost frictionless. One push and off you go, gliding for a really long time.
There are fenders you can include, and there is a front AND rear brake as well. I added my own bell and blinkie light.
When folded, the whole thing can be carried with an optional strap, and it weighs about 4.5kg. Quite manageable, and more compact to lug around in a crowded train or a mall. You just remove a locking pin and flip a lever, and the whole thing folds down.
It rides really well on pavement but you have to be careful. It does not like curbs very much, or bumpy bits you find on many sidewalks, so avoid those. I usually jump off if I have to, and walk a bit, before jumping back on when I am back on good smooth ground again.
After a while, you learn what can trip up the scooter and avoid those. Like drain grills, curbs higher than 1cm, and wet pavements.
Going up slopes is okay as long as the incline is not too steep. Downhills are fun but you have to ensure you don't go too fast. Those brakes are not designed for stopping at high speeds.
I tried scootering from Katong to Eunos MRT and it took me about 15-20 minutes. I go banking at Parkway Parade sometimes, and scootering there shaves off at least half the time it takes to walk. It is also way more fun. I keep thinking of errands to run so I can use the thing.
I rode it once to a US Embassy lunch, wearing a shirt and tie. Riding in formal clothes to the Orchard MRT was a blast.
Nice to have another personal transportation tool to add to my avoid-feeder-buses plan.