As we reach adulthood, one of the biggest milestones for teenagers is that they are allowed to take a driver's test, get their license, and drive and own cars. Car ownership is seen as something to strive for but, looking closer, what if it actually isn't? Here, we will talk about why people should go car-free or use cars far less often.
Car ownership can be incredibly expensive. Not only do you pay thousands of dollars for a vehicle you have to make payments on if you don't buy it outright, but you also have to pay for insurance, for fuel, license plate and registration, getting the vehicle serviced, etc. That doesn't even begin to cover what would happen if a part needed to be replaced, such as a transmission. The average price of a rebuilt one up to about $3,000 on up to $8,000.
Then you have to take into consideration depreciation. According to Carfax,* cars can lose more than 10% of their value the first month after it is driven off the lot and drops more than 20% after the first 12 months of ownership and loses 10% of its value each year. This means that by year 7 or 8 of owning the car, the car will be worth less than the new transmission it needs.
Traffic is another consideration. Certainly, many people have read and listened to the reports of how long people have been stuck in traffic, and even how stressed out this makes people? Well, why not take one more car off the road and use public transportation such as shuttles, buses, trains, or whatever is available in your area? While there may not be public transport in places with smaller populations, there is no harm in walking. If you do have to go somewhere outside of walking, or even biking distance, why not borrow, or rent, a car?
Walking is actually a healthier alternative to driving, as is riding a bicycle. With the right equipment, you can purchase and take home your groceries, or even move your belongings from one location to another. There is at least one video on YouTube of people using bicycles to help other people move to another house.
Going car-free might not be something that is done instantly but trying a car-free weekend and practice first. Once you get the hang of going car-free on the weekend and figure out how you are going to go car-free during the week, then you can switch over to being permanently car-free, which will save you time, money, helps with air pollution and traffic. Then you would never have to worry about parking wherever you decide to go.
*Add link wasn't working https://www.carfax.com/blog/car-depreciation