If you’ve always had access to a car, ditching your wheels may seem like a scary endeavor. But if you’re lucky enough to live in a city or an area with good public transportation, it’s entirely possibly to get rid of your car and still get by quite comfortably.
Living the car-free life will save you money on gas, repair bills, car payments and car insurance. If the savings sound appealing, read the following 5 tips for living without a vehicle.
Ride A Bicycle To Work
A bike will be your new wheels and best of all, it doesn’t run on costly fuel. Besides letting you easily navigate city areas, riding a bike is environmentally friendly and it keeps you in shape.
This GMC Denali bike from Amazon has 600+ reviews, is about $200 with free shipping. You can also find great deals on used bikes at garage sales or on classified sites like Craigslist.
You’ll also want to purchase a bike lock to prevent your new set of wheels from being stolen. The Kryptonite Kryptolok is Amazon’s best seller.
Get Used To Public Transportation
To live a car-free life you’ll want to learn how to navigate public transportation. Familiarize yourself with the routes of the busses, trains and subway systems in your city. Odds are they’re going where you’re going and for a small fee they’ll do all the hard work for you.
Google Maps on your smartphone is your friend who can help you choose the best route to and from work. You can even adjust your route by choosing options with fewer stops or less walking.
Have a solid plan in place for your weekday commute so you never have to wait too long or get stranded. While these services (almost) always run like clockwork, it’s good to have a backup plan in place. Google Maps again will help you find alternate routes if there’s ever any service disruptions.
While you’re at it, look for a discount card. Frequent riders can buy multiple rides at once in most cities to get a discounted rate. Reusing a reloadable card can provide even more savings.
Plan Your Commute Ahead Of Time
Without your car, it will probably take much longer to go where you need to go. If you’re walking, riding a bike or taking public transportation, odds are that you won’t be able to get anywhere in 5 minutes anymore.
Instead of being chronically late, plan your commutes ahead of time and leave a buffer in case the public transportation system is delayed or if you run into problems along your way.
Download A Weather App
When you had a car, the weather wasn’t much of a concern. However, when you’re relying on public transportation, a bike or your own two legs, knowing the weather can make a huge difference.
Since you’ll be exposed to the elements, check the daily forecast and plan ahead to see if you need to bring a raincoat, umbrella or a pair of boots with you.
Carpool To Work
In today’s society, it’s almost impossible to avoid riding a vehicle altogether. You may work in an area where transportation service is spotty or you may just work too far away.
An alternative to not owning a vehicle is to carpool with a co-worker. Agree on a monthly payment plan and both of you will be happy.
Your co-worker will get to work sooner since they can ride the carpool lane, they’ll get some money to offset the cost of gas and some company for their commute.
You will benefit the most though. No more insurance premiums, no more vehicle maintenance fees, no more trips to the gas station, no more car washes, no more vehicle registration fees. You even get a driver and you’ll help the environment.