At Ecodriving Solutions, we are hardly the only people who think about the best ways to try and safe fuel and the environment. Although we focus on actual behind the wheel driver behavior as one of the fundamental ways to ease our collective affect on the environment and our wallets, out of the car choices are equally important.
For example, does owning multiple cars in a family really make sense? Its actually kind of a tough question to answer if you really are concerned about bottom line budgets and total carbon emissions.
Luckily, blogger Ryan Harrison has some neatly packaged and smart tips to help you answer that question and then take the steps to be financially and environmentally responsible. Check out his latest article below -
Be Green and Save Green by Becoming a One-Car Family
Byline: Ryan Harrison Ryan is a dad of two who blogs about finding the best deals, family budgeting and frugal living.
All that horsepower sitting in your driveway is eating a substantial amount of green each year. According to a 2013 AAA report, the average cost of owning and operating a typical sedan-sized vehicle is $9,122. So if your family is searching for a quick way to save nearly $10,000 a year, getting rid of a vehicle may be the cost-cutting answer you’ve been looking for. By becoming a one-vehicle family, you will be forced to carpool more often, to combine trips or to use other forms of transportation, which means you also will be reducing your carbon footprint.
Choosing Your One and Only
Of course, if you are serious about becoming a single-car family for both financial and ecological reasons, you need to choose your one and only vehicle carefully. Ideally, your automobile should not only be a great value for your dollar, but it also should be fuel efficient and reliable. Don’t fret if you can’t afford a new vehicle that fits these criteria. Purchasing a good used auto with low mileage will be a better deal in the long run since new vehicles typically lose as much as 25 to 30 percent of their value in their first year.
Before shopping for a pre-owned vehicle, make sure to consult the used car section on Kelley Blue Book. The better informed you are about prices and options, the more likely you will be to strike a good deal on a used vehicle when you hit the dealerships.
Options for When You Need a Vehicle
One of the biggest fears for families downsizing to a single vehicle is that they could be stuck in a pinch—that their one and only automobile will break down or will be miles away when someone desperately needs the vehicle. Fortunately, there are a number of options available for those days when you just have to have an extra set of wheels.
- mytaxi: With mytaxi, you no longer have to stand on a corner and hope to hail a cab. This app allows you to call and pay for a cab via your smartphone and is currently available in a number of cities in the United States.
- Uber: This app is similar to mytaxi, except that it also can connect you with luxury town cars and economy vehicles as well as cabs. Uber service is currently available in many large cities in the United States.
- Bikeshare: Maybe you don’t really need a car, but just a set of wheels to get you from one part of the city to another. For those times, Bikeshare may be the answer. Bikeshare is currently available in a few large cities in the United States but its popularity is growing. With Bikeshare, you can rent a bike from one station and then return it to another one near your final destination.
- Zipcar: Members of this popular and convenient program can rent a vehicle by the hour or by the day. All you have to do is sign up and, if approved, you will then receive a little card that will allow you to unlock reserved Zipcars located near you. Once you are done using a Zipcar, you just return it to the parking space where you picked it up from.
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