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Published Feb. 25, 2021

If you are looking for a way to get from point A to point B without relying on a car or a bicycle, a longboard may be an ideal choice of transportation. Not only is it much easier to transport a longboard than a bicycle, but it also requires less maintenance. Riding a longboard is also a great way to get some exercise. 

Longboards are longer and more stable than your typical skateboard: this stability comes from the width and length of the board itself and its position that is lower to the ground. Longboards used for commuting are often shorter than other types of longboards to make them easier to transport. Usually, longboards meant for commuting have a design featuring a drop through, drop down, or double drop construction. We’ve gathered some of the best longboards for commuting available on the market today for your consideration. 

The Best Longboards For Commuting

The Volador 42inch Freeride Longboard Complete Cruiser is a choice longboard for many reasons. For one, the shock-absorbing system will take the brunt of most of the bumps in the road so you can enjoy a seamlessly smooth ride. With a 9-inch wide deck, it is spacious enough to feel comfortable and stable on the board. Low to the ground, it may not be as responsive as other boards, but it will be more stable as a result. That stability is helpful for new skaters who may have trouble maintaining balance. Lightweight, sleek, and durable, this board leaves little to be desired.

However, sometimes the maneuverability may make it difficult to control until you’re more familiar with the board. Some experienced riders may also want to opt to switch out the bearings for a faster ride.

Key Features
  • 9-inch wide deck
  • Multiple deck designs allow you to choose the deck that best fits your style
Specification
  • Brand Volador
  • Model B07CQ499MG
  • Weight 8.4 pounds
PROS

Expertly designed to avoid common obstacles

Manufactured using environmentally friendly materials

Impressive turning accuracy and responsiveness

CONS

Board takes some getting used to

Issues with maneuverability

When or if the price is a primary consideration and you are looking for a dependable longboard, the Retrospec Rift Drop-Through Longboard is an ideal candidate. Its retro design is understated and classic in the best way, and it’s also lightweight and durable. The drop-through design enhances the stability. Before riding it, check to ensure the bearings do not need to be either tightened or loosened to prevent any accidents. Overall, for its price point, this is a great longboard for commuting.

The board is less flexible than other softer woods, so that will impact how it feels to ride. While it makes the board less responsive, that can be useful for new skaters working on mastering pushing, pumping, and stopping. Also, the wheels are subject to cracking.

Key Features
  • Retro design gives the board an old school aesthetic
  • Extra gritty 80AB grip tape gives riders superior control over balance
Specification
  • Brand Retrospec
  • Model B07Z4FB58H
  • Weight 2.2 pounds
PROS

Extremely lightweight

Made of durable materials

Designed with speed in mind

CONS

Not as flexible compared with other boards

Wheels are subject to cracks while riding

For people who want to use a longboard to commute but do not want to power the board, an electric longboard like Skatebolt Electric Skateboard Longboard is a viable option. This is a premium longboard that can travel many miles on a single charge. It also has safety features like two red tail lights for nighttime rides as well as a remote control to monitor the speed and battery capacity. Luckily, it is battery powered because it is a heavier board, clocking in at 19.5 pounds. The weight is largely concentrated in the 7500 mAh battery, which needs enough power to move you and the board forward.

Keep in mind that the brake function can feel abrupt until becoming familiar with it. The remote is also highly sensitive and requires precision when handling.

Key Features
  • Can travel up to 24 miles on medium mode
  • Safety features such as tail lights, a remote control that can be used for monitoring speed, battery capacity, and brake mode
Specification
  • Brand Skatebolt
  • Model B07F6QXYL7
  • Weight 19.5 pounds
PROS

Powerful 7500 mAh battery

Reach and sustain a high speed of 26 miles per hour

CONS

Brake function can feel abrupt

Remote is highly sensitive

The Retrospec Zed Bamboo Longboard is a bamboo maple hybrid board that exudes California vibes. The light wood look, plus its pintail shape, is reminiscent of the iconic surfer style that has become so popular. Specifically designed with wheel wells to avoid wheel bite, this board was made for a smooth and enjoyable ride in mind. Using a hybrid of bamboo and maple woods, the board has the strength of maple and the flexibility of bamboo to allow the board to be responsive to the rider and the environment.

The board may be a little squeaky, which should be investigated to ensure nothing is interfering with the wheels, truck, or bearings. Tightening, loosening, or lubing the bearings should fix the squeak.

Key Features
  • Maple and bamboo hybrid deck
  • Reverse kingpin trucks
  • ABEC-7 bearings
  • Durable 85a PU wheels with rock finish
Specification
  • Brand Retrospec
  • Model B07PPXNY8Q
  • Weight 8.2 pounds
PROS

Wheel wells help prevent wheel bite

Pintail shape for greater speed

CONS

Maybe a little squeaky at first

The Minority Downhill Maple Longboard is a beautiful maple deck with a low center of gravity, preferable for any downhill or speed ride. The deck is wider than others clocking in at 10 inches wide. The extra width is useful for a couple of reasons: it can better accommodate people with larger feet, and it is also that much more stable for downhill riding. The board’s kingpin trucks can be adjusted to either a 45- or 50- degree angle, which provides added customizability to meet your needs. The 78A PU wheels and ABEC-9 bearings both contribute to a fun and smooth ride. The decks’ artwork has come from artists across the Atlantic and culminates in unique and striking designs.

However, some reviewers have said the product sometimes arrives damaged due to insufficient packaging, so be sure to inspect your longboard upon its arrival.

Key Features
  • 10-inch wide deck
  • Adjustable kingpin truck
  • ABEC-9 bearings
  • 78A PU wheels
Specification
  • Brand Minority
  • Model B07C345CBG
  • Weight N/A
PROS

Wider deck increases comfort and stability

Customizable kingpin truck

Unique artistic designs

CONS

Product sometimes arrives damaged due to insufficient packaging

If you are looking for a starter board, the Quest Super Cruiser is a viable option for beginner skaters. It is made of a hybrid of bamboo and maple and has a kick tail and nose shape. Both strong and flexible, the board can respond to the rider while riding. This shape enhances the aerodynamics of the board, making it faster. The lightweight aluminum trucks also improve your speed by not weighing you down unnecessarily. Measuring 44 inches long, this board is longer than the typical longboard—its longer length makes learning and performing dancing or board walking tricks more feasible.

Due to its long nose, it is not ideal for other moves like pivots or slides. Instead, riders should stick to cruising and straightforward commuting.

Key Features
  • Hybrid bamboo and maple deck
  • Kick tail with nose shape
  • 44-inch longboard
Specification
  • Brand Quest
  • Model B01MEE23HX
  • Weight 10 pounds
PROS

Longer deck Ideal for cruising and commuting

Lightweight aluminum trucks improve speed

CONS

Nose shape is not ideal for certain kinds of tricks

Best Longboards For Commuting Buying Guide & FAQ

Before you commit to buying a longboard, knowing what a longboard is and how it works will help ensure that you pick the best longboard for you. There are different kinds of longboards meant for different types of skating that handle differently while riding on them. If you have a commute full of turns or curves, you might prefer a higher board that enhances the maneuverability. If your commute is a relatively straight shot, choosing a board that sits lower to the ground will increase stability and offer a smoother ride overall. Your longboard should fit your needs and not the other way around.

Do You Need a Longboard For Commuting?

Using a longboard to commute is relatively easy to pick up and should be considered an option for people of all ages with only a little practice. Compared to a skateboard, a longboard’s construction is meant to enhance the ride’s smoothness, the sturdiness of the board, and the agility of the maneuverability. Ditching the car or bike can provide a measure of freedom that not enough people get to experience. The portability, affordability, and fun of riding on a longboard for longer rides are unmatched. 

Woman walking with skateboard in hand on city
Longboards used for commuting are often shorter than other types of longboards to make them easier to transport

Not only are there the benefits listed above, but there are also numerous fitness benefits from aerobic exercise, enhanced balance, increased flexibility, better muscle definition, and lower cholesterol.

  • Cost-effective means of transportation. Aside from the board’s initial cost, there is virtually no maintenance or upkeep unless customization is a priority. The longboard is relatively simple, with bearings and wheels that only rarely should require replacing. 
  • Better portability. With a bicycle, locking it up or carrying it inside have downsides. On the other hand, a longboard can easily be brought with you without exerting too much effort. 
  • Environmentally-friendly option. There is no need to fill up the gas tank when it comes to commuting on a longboard, especially if you’re riding an electric board.
  • Helpful practice for those learning to surf. The core strength, balance, and flexibility that riding on a longboard helps develop are the same that make surfing easier. 
  • Ability to travel long distances. Longboards are better for longer distances because they provide a smoother and more stable ride than smaller skateboards. 

The Most Common Types of Longboards For Commuting

Drop Through Longboards

A drop through longboard gets its name because the truck mounts are mounted through the original board. Drop through longboards have gained greater popularity in recent years due to their unique and aesthetically pleasing shallow platform design. 

While drop through longboards have less responsiveness and turn accuracy due to their more even distribution of weight over the deck, they do have better stability. These kinds of boards are better for taking your time at a lower speed point. 

Cruiser Longboards

Cruising longboards are great for commuting or going for a ride just for fun in the city, on campus, or through the neighborhood. The big wheels stabilize the board and help make it a smoother ride as well. The board’s construction is much simpler than other types of longboards and is shaped like a surfboard with its pintail shape. 

However, these boards are not designed to go as fast as other boards, like the downhill board, and are more suitable for relatively flat landscapes. Thanks to a wider deck, people who are either tall or have larger feet may find using a cruiser longboard more comfortable. 

Drop Down Longboards

With drop down longboards, the noose and neck are lower than other boards. The name is derived from the fact that riders stand on the foot platform at a lower position than the truck mount points. This lower center of gravity makes pushing easier and increases the board’s stability overall, and for beginners, stability is critical in preventing falls and other accidents. These boards are ideal for commuting, cruising, and pushing. 

However, turning sharp corners may prove difficult on a board as low as a drop down, and your commute should be taken into consideration when deciding what type of longboard is best for you. 

What to Look for When Buying Longboards For Commuting

Shopping for a longboard, especially one intended for commuting, does not have to be daunting or difficult. There are a few no-brainer options that are known to be great for beginners. First, you will want to consider the type of longboard: drop through, cruiser, and drop down longboards are all possibilities for commuting. 

Second, considering the environment and the terrain you intend to travel on will determine which kind of wheels make the most sense for your ride. For instance, if you anticipate riding through grass or uneven landscape, choosing larger wheels with tread will be useful. Conversely, if you envision yourself only riding on relatively smooth surfaces like asphalt or concrete, a harder wheel will be preferable. 

The Most Important Features of Longboards For Commuting

Effort

The less effort needed to move the board forward, the better. The longer the commute’s length, the more important the effort to push the board becomes for consumers. Not wanting to fatigue yourself before you arrive at your destination—whether it is to work or just running errands—and lessening the strain and burden of pushing yourself forward is an important consideration. 

Low deck boards are known to be easier to push due to the lower center of gravity. Larger wheels will also decrease the effort needed to move farther on the board. Wheels measuring anywhere from 70 to 80 millimeters are ideal for commuting.

Maneuverability

Maneuverability is also another word for the control and precision with which you can operate on your longboard. A few things affect the maneuverability like deck height, deck length, wheel hardness, truck bushings, deck stiffness, and wheel mount. The lower the deck, the less maneuverable the board. Also, the longer and stiffer the deck material is will make the board generally less maneuverable. Softer wheels will have a better grip and provide better maneuverability. With harder truck bushings, the board may be more stable but harder to turn.

Stability

Stability is important for any rider, but it is essential for beginner riders. For this reason, lower deck longboards are great boards to get acclimated to riding and commuting. The stability is enhanced by a lower center of gravity, larger wheels, wider deck width, and harder truck bushings. Stability can also be enhanced with super gritty grip tape. The grip of the grit will help stabilize riders on the deck even when moving at higher speeds, like when riding on a downhill trajectory. Keeping yourself stable on your deck will also help prevent injuries that can result from falls. 

Care and Maintenance for Longboards For Commuting

As many longboards are made of maple and other woods, it is important to keep your board dry and avoid excessive sun exposure. If your board becomes wet due to rain, drying it as soon as possible is necessary to ensure that the board does not become warped. Sun exposure can also weaken the board by making it more likely to crack. By disassembling the board, you can better clean and dry the board should it become wet or dirty. 

Another warning sign that your board is due for some maintenance is if you begin to hear squeaking or unusual sounds coming from the wheel mounts while riding. These sounds could indicate that the bearings need to be lubricated. When cleaning and maintaining the bearings, make sure to dry them quickly to avoid the opportunity for rust or rot. 

  • Rotate the wheels every six months to ensure they do not become misshapen over time due to use. 
  • Replace wheels at the first sign of wear and tear. 
  • Clean your deck regularly to remove dust, dirt, and other irritants that can compromise your board. 
Longboard with backpack on it at the bench
Longboards are better for longer distances because they provide a smoother and more stable ride than smaller skateboards

Best Longboards For Commuting FAQ:

There are a few things to keep in mind when considering buying a longboard for commuting purposes. First, what does commuting with a longboard involve? Second, what are the benefits of commuting with a longboard compared with other environmentally friendly transportation means? These are all questions that can be found below. 

Q: Which techniques do you need for commuting on a longboard?

Pushing, pumping, and stopping are important techniques when riding a longboard for commuting. Pushing off the ground using your foot and pumping by swaying creates and maintains momentum. Stopping involves dragging your foot or hopping off. 

Q: Is a longboard better for commuting than a skateboard?

Longboards use bigger wheels and have larger decks making the ride more stable and smooth, which is useful for a more enjoyable commute.

Q: How do longboards compare to bikes for commuting?

Commuter bikes are faster and make climbing steep hills easier than longboards, but longboards are cheaper and more transportable than bikes. Longboards also require less maintenance.

Our Top Pick

We chose the Volador 42inch Freeride Longboard Complete Cruiser as our overall top longboard for commuting, thanks to being lightweight, sleek, and durable. We love the 9-inch wide deck and the multiple deck designs to choose from. Its shock-absorbing system will take the brunt of most of the bumps in the road so you can enjoy a seamlessly smooth ride. 

Final Thoughts

Now that you know the nuances of longboards for commuting, you can make your pick. Whether it’s the overall quality of the Volador 42inch Freeride Longboard Complete Cruiser or the value of the Retrospec Rift Drop-Through Longboard Skateboard Complete, any of these options on our buying guide make a great choice. 

Sources:

  1. Longboarding – Wikipedia

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