In this day and age of technology reigning supreme, little things that ground us give us a sense of novelty when we’re traveling around an area that we’ve never been to before. Pedicabs are part of that scene, as they give you a different way to get from point A to point B and let you experience the city while doing so. And while that notion still holds true for most, PDX Pedicab is a special brand of “transportaintment”, in which they give you a more in-depth look at what makes Portland, well, Portland!
Kyle Kautz, the owner of PDX Pedicab, joins me this week on the PDX Small Business Network podcast, and together, he and I talk about this amazing business he’s cultivated! Kyle runs through how his company differs from other pedicab businesses, what kind of things you can expect when you join PDX Pedicab for a tour, and what initially got him interested in the pedicab industry, and what he’s currently doing today. Let’s get started!
IN THIS EPISODE YOU WILL LEARN:
- What makes PDX Pedicab special! Aside from providing transportation, Kyle states that PDX Pedicab is better known for their tours—specifically, their beer tours, distillery tours, winery tours, and cocktail tours throughout the city. Kyle states that they also go team building tours, which they’ll assist in transporting clients from location to location among the various stops that have been set up for the entire event! Lastly, they also help with a lot of outdoor advertisements, where they’ll wrap the pedicabs in different ads that promote small businesses in Portland and give them promotions during their tours.
- Kyle talks to us about the “That’s So Portland” tour, which came about after the rise of the successful television show, Portlandia. It doesn’t really revel in historical value, but rather, is designed to show off some of the quirky nature around Portland, and the company collaborated with Kyle to construct the tour to reflect that feeling!
- Kyle also talks to us about his favorite tour, the Distillery Row Tour. Portland has the largest concentrations of distilleries in the country, and Kyle loves going out to talk with the local distilleries in the area to see what new things they’re coming up with. The Distillery Row Tour takes place in the industrial Southeast area of Portland, and out of the eleven that exist, they focus on the fix. While on the tour, guests get to sample the spirits from each distillery, while also engaging in a fun Distillery Row Passport, that shows you the locations you’ll be visiting, tasting notes, cocktail options, and a place to receive a stamp after your visit is complete! Additionally, you also receive a $10 gift card to use while on the tour, if you taste something you want to bring home.
- Kyle talks to us about when they provide travel services, stating that it’s usually on Friday and Saturday nights. In general, the offices open at 11 AM, and their latest tour starts at 7 PM for a brewery tour. If you hire them privately, however, the timing in which things get started is totally up to you!
- Kyle explains why he does what he does, explaining that he gets so much enjoyment out of his business, and what he does. He loves touring Portland, and he loves the city as a whole—on his own, Kyle tours around the city for new places to see, and sharing those places and new found gems with other people give him a sense of pride and happiness. He also enjoys seeing people fall in love with the city the same way he did, and watching them leave happier than ever makes this the best job he could be doing.
- Kyle briefly tells us the process he goes through when hiring a new rider, stating that he tries to find people that are personable. Being an introvert isn’t recommended, as you need to be able to talk to people and have a good energy when giving these tours. Overall, he looks for really energetic cyclists.
- Kyle goes through the process of how he got into this business! Often referred to as his “second life”, Kyle was previously involved with investments and commercial real estate. Sadly, though, he lost his job, and he fell into a pattern with friends who also lost their job of restlessness. After hunting for something to replace what he’d lost, he took a pedicab job, thinking he wouldn’t get attached. However, after seeing the potential for the business model, Kyle bought PDX Pedicab from its previous owner, and turned it into what it is today!
LINKS MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:
Did Kyle not get to answer a burning question on your mind? No problem! You can get ahold of him here, or through the social media links listed above (he says they use their Facebook account the most!). Pedicabs are a wonderful way to look at a city through new eyes, and the kind of tours and community that Kyle invests both himself and his team in with their amazing company is more than enough to visit them and see for yourself!