After 5 years of dreaming about about not owning car, we finally sold our car. It was exciting and slightly unnerving as we had been car owners since age 16. The timing felt right to sell our car. The sharing economy became a proven business model giving us ride service choices like Uber and Lyft, which were widely available and affordable. Public transportation in San Francisco, was widely available. Our kids were older (7 & 9) and more willing to walk and I was more comfortable relying on public transportation to meet the needs of our schedule.
Without a Car, We Made Better Choices
Not owning a car immediately limited the amount of activities that we would be able to do, and that turned out to be Fantastic! Having a car meant that any class, play-date, trip or activity was a possibility. Selling our car helped us focus our time, attention and cash on the experiences that mattered most. We stopped doing it all and started planning our days around the people with whom we wanted to spend time, doing the things that we absolutely loved.
We Spent Less Money – Thousands less.
Beyond the benefit of focus, we also spend less money! In San Francisco, owning one vehicle cost us ~$10,800 annually (mostly depreciated). We drove our Jeep about 5,000 miles a year. According to AAA, the average cost to own a car in the U.S. in 2015 was $8,698 and $10,624 for an SUV annually based on 15,ooo miles year.
When we sold our Jeep, we stopped spending money on:
- Vehicle Registration
- Repairs and Maintenance (1.5k annually)
- Car Insurance and AAA
- Garage parking ($225/month +)
- City parking
- Car washing
We calculated, based on our commitments, that we could use car sharing economy services (Uber or Lyft) 70 times a month and still spend less over owning a car. I share how much we spent on transportation over the next two years without a car.
Exercise | Getting there makes us Healthier
We started walking, scootering, running and exploring our city more. At a minimum, we doubled our physical activity.
Transportainment | Getting there is Now part of the Fun
The Sharing Economy + Public Transportation
Not only did we become comfortable users in the sharing economy, we began relying on all forms of public transportation. Getting comfortable with multiple transportation options turned out to be immensely helpful because in less than a year, we would set off traveling the world full-time.