Longboards are sort of the lovechild of a surfboard and a skateboard. They allow higher speeds, increased maneuverability and a smoother ride than skateboards do. They’re light and easily placed under desks, and campus is primo for this mode of transportation due to a multitude of even roads and gradually sloping hills. But be wary of picking up too much speed. “People are hesitant to get out of your way, especially compared to if you are a biker. The key is to ride so aggressively that they know you’re going for the gap in the crowd whether it’s a sure shot or not. Then they have to get out of your way,” Thomas Beam, a first-year pre-pharmacy student and longboarder, says. Invest in an air horn or steal your sister’s bike bell if you plan on shredding the streets at class change.
Save: Sector 9 OG Series Joel Tudor Complete Longboard 38.3”, $169 (from Salty’s Surf Shop).
Splurge: Loaded Tan Tien Complete Longboard 39”, $321 (from Salty’s Surf Shop).
Skating isn’t just for John Travolta. Rollerskating/blading is both efficient and enjoyable, but what really distinguishes this mode of transportation is the retro factor. If only your grandparents could see you now! Zoom down Greene Street like it’s a roller derby, and keep a change of flip-flops in your backpack for class (or just high-five slowpokes as you whiz by). Skating will give you ultra-defined calves and save you bundles of time. Slap on some old-school elbow pads, and be on your way.
Save: Wheelies—those shoes you really, really wanted in fourth grade. Heely Jazzy HX2 Two-Wheeled Shoes, $49.99 (www.InLineWarehouse.com/AggHeelys).
Splurge: LandRollers with large, highly efficient wheels, $200 (www.Landroller.com).
This method of transportation is so new and unexplored that it barely has a corresponding verb yet. Segways are mainly used by forward-thinking engineering profs right now, but you could be the trendsetter for this green machine. Once your friends see you leanin’ and rollin’ at 12.5 mph, they’ll invest too, and then you can start your Segway gang, the East Side Rollers. You’ll have races around the Horseshoe not unlike ancient Greek chariot races, and if you install a subwoofer, who could deny you a vertical dance?
Save: Foam Maverick Pogo Stick, $30 (www.Amazon.com). There’s really no way to obtain a knockoff Segway, so if you’re tight on cash, consider America’s favorite (and somewhat aesthetically similar) driveway toy. Bust this baby out as you leap across heavy traffic on Assembly Street, but be warned: Columbia drivers do not appreciate hood dents.
Splurge: Segway i2 Commuter, $6,200 (www.Segway.com). Consider it an investment in your future.
Don’t settle for never-ending treks from Swearingen to the BA. Upgrade your gear, and you’ll marvel at how you ever got to class on time without these sweet rides!