In today’s modern world, cars can seem like a necessity, and it’s not hard to see why. Many jobs will require you to have your own form of reliable transportation, and for most people that means saving up to purchase a vehicle of their own. This could be why the auto industry is continuing to grow, with experts predicting that approximately 107 million vehicles will be manufactured worldwide in 2020.
But is your car really worth owning? Cars can be incredibly expensive to maintain, lose their value quickly, contribute to climate change, and are risky to both you and others. Here are a few reasons it might be time to ditch your car for good.
When it comes to cost, it might seem cheaper at first to have your own car so you’re not paying for public transit costs. However, the costs of car ownership can add up quickly. Between car payments, gas, regular tune ups, license and registration fees, and more, cars can quickly become expensive, even once you’ve paid it off.
Cars are clearly expensive to maintain, but you’ll get your money back when you trade in your car later on, right? Don’t be so sure. Cars can reduce in overall value the second you drive them off the lot. The longer you own your car, the less likely it is that you’ll be able to get rid of your car and get something of value in return.
Not only are cars hurting your wallet, they’re also hurting the environment. Cars are one of the least efficient forms of transportation when it comes to carbon emissions; motorcoaches are on average 6 times more energy and fuel-efficient than single occupancy automobiles. People are beginning to catch on to the environmental, and financial, savings that come with public transportation. In fact, in 2014 alone, the American and Canadian motorcoach industry made 604 million passenger trips. On average, a single motorcoach can provide 16,500 passenger trips. Public transportation uses less fuel per passenger, even if your personal car gets great mileage.
While many cars nowadays are designed with high-tech safety features in mind, they’re still dangerous pieces of heavy machinery. Even though people don’t think of cars as being risky as often as they should, 52% of personal injury cases relate to motor vehicle accidents. The more cars are out on the road, the more likely it is you’ll be involved in an accident. The top three causes of car crashes in the United States are distracted driving, speeding violations, and drunken driving.
So is getting rid of your car an option? Surprisingly, yes; there are many alternatives available to driving that will still get you where you need to go. Public transportation can be a great affordable option to owning your own vehicle that also helps reduce carbon emissions. Also, look into ride sharing services like Lyft, Uber, and other apps. Technology has made it easier than ever to find rides without needing your own car. You could also consider renting out your personal vehicle to help budget new car payment costs.
Remember that a car or other vehicle isn’t always necessary for short trips. Try swapping out quick car rides in your daily routine to walks and bike rides; this will help you see what it might be like getting rid of your car altogether. Would you ever ditch your car for these driving alternatives? Why or why not?