For most people, driving a car feels like a necessity. It is almost impossible for many to consider going an entire day without getting behind the wheel.
With gas prices continuing to rise, more people are concerned about their bank accounts. Less gas usage is a key component to lowering expenses and a great way to be eco-friendly.
Individuals looking for ways to cut back on car and gas usage have likely seen the same tips time and again.
However, telecommuting is not possible for every career and carpooling is not always realistic.
Purchasing a more fuel efficient vehicle is a great choice for those who can afford it. The rest must get by on the vehicles and the jobs that they already have.
Swap the Car for Sneakers
Walking is not just an environmentally friendly alternative to driving, it is also one of the best ways a person can improve their health. It is said that regular exercise can decrease the risk of diseases such as cancer and diabetes. Walking also lowers stress and helps individuals to sleep better at night.
Those who have not spent a great deal of time on their feet may need to start slowly. A trip around the block or to the end of the street may be enough for a while. Over time, most pedestrians are able to walk three to five miles with little trouble as long as safe walking paths are available.
Set a Mileage Budget and Stick to It
Mileage budgets work similarly to financial ones. At the beginning of each week or month, drivers allot themselves a specific number of miles. Drivers must be careful to stay within these miles so that they have enough to last the entire length of the chosen time span. This is an excellent way to cut back on unnecessary car travel.
Similarly, one can create a tight budget for purchasing gas. These drivers only allow a certain, small amount of money to be spent on gas in a pre-determined time frame. This causes the drivers to have to choose between necessary trips and unneeded drives.
Rethink Driving Routes
Most people drive the same way using the same roads to any given destination. This is particularly true of work commutes, which are the routes that see the highest amount of car time. Taking a few moments to study local maps can provide drivers with shortcuts they had never considered before.
Drivers should not limit themselves to seeking new routes to work. Driving to the supermarket, to the local mall, or to regular entertainment venues should all be re-evaluated as well. These drives become second-nature, but re-examining them can save significant time and money.
Stop Driving on Weekends
Those who pick one or two days per week to park their cars can realize a significant dollar savings. Let it be known to family and friends that these days are non-driving days. Make sure any plans that are made are within walking distance or are on a public transit route. Do not cave to pressure from others to drive out of convenience.
Choosing to drive less frequently is easier said than done. Driving is as easy as it is pervasive. However, many have proven that the desire to live a greener lifestyle by driving less frequently is healthier and saves money as well.
Photo by Danielle Scott