If you ever find yourself drunk in Málaga, Spain without a designated driver, don't attempt to drive yourself home. Rapimoto is a new option to Malagueños and citizens of three other Spanish provinces including Valencia, Castellón and Guadalajara, who want to party but don't want to be stuck deciding between driving home while intoxicated or calling a taxi while leaving their vehicle behind for the night.

Here's how it works: You go out, have fun and then give Rapimoto a call. Within a short period of time, a Rapimoto driver will arrive on an electric motorbike. The motorbike is collapsible and is folded into a bag, which the driver stows in the trunk of your car before driving you home using your own vehicle. You arrive home, the driver removes his motorbike from your trunk and you part ways.

Bernardo Bravo, the creator of Rapimoto, says the invention isn't just for those who have been out drinking.

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"Rapimoto … aims to bring you and your car home safely if you are not able to do so [due to] blood alcohol level, fatigue, poor night vision, etc." Drivers for Rapimoto can be men or women, ages 27 to 55 – and among other requirements, they must be able to drive both manual and automatic vehicles.

When I spoke with Bravo, I asked him if Rapimoto had plans to expand to cities in the United States and he told me that although Rapimoto is the first in the world to offer such a service with electric bikes, a similar service in the United States using gas-powered motorbikes does exist.

As it turns out, Bravo is correct. One U.S. company providing a service similar to that of Rapimoto is called Zingo. Zingo originated in Atlanta in 2005 but has expanded to several U.S. cities including Knoxville, Tampa, Charlotte, Phoenix, and San Francisco, among others.

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So, whether you go bar hopping in Spain or clubbing in Atlanta, know that you have one more option to make it safely home.

Tracy López is a bilingual writer living outside the Washington DC metro area. She is the founder of Latinaish.com.

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Tracy López is a bilingual writer living outside the Washington DC metro area. She is the founder of Latinaish.com.

 

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