You Drive Too Much – The $5 Plan

You drive too muchYou probably don’t realize it, but you drive much more than you need to. You get into your car much more often than you should, but there’s a simple way that you can make sure that you only drive when you need to — by paying yourself a small fee every time you get into your car.

Basically, the reason that you drive more than you need to is because there is nothing to encourage you to take a moment and consider whether or not you really need to to use the car. While there are costs that are associated with driving the car, you don’t actually see these costs as you drive. When you decide to take a quick trip to the store to get something that you accidentally forgot to


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9 Responses to You Drive Too Much – The $5 Plan

  1. The Driver's Notebook says:

    Great tips! Those simple things can help save money as well as protect our car. Cars if well taken care of can prevent it having trouble such as damages and this also help save fuel mileage. If only these things be taken into consideration, we can really improve our driving habits and at the same time help ourselves save money and free from those unnecessary expenses.

  2. Jamie says:

    I’m car-free by choice. I walk to the grocery store once a week, I walk to the downtown shopping district, I walk to work, I walk to grad school, I walk to the doctor’s office. I take the bus to the vet, I take the bus to the mall. On those rare occasions (about once every 2-3 months) when I need kitty litter or another heavy or bulky item that just doesn’t work well on the bus, I use Flexcar – a car sharing program. I pay $8 an hour for the car, and beleive me, by having to pay for the car, I know exactly where I’m going, and I schedule for a time of day with light traffic! I gave up my car over a year ago, and now my transportation costs are down to an average $27 a month (bus pass and Flexcar) from over $1000 a month (insurance, parking, gas). It’s so nice to not have to worry about a car anymore. The best part is, with the money I’ve saved, I’m able to finish my last year of grad school without loans!

  3. Melisa says:

    I LOVE this article. What a great idea. I have a love/hate relationship with my car – love how convenient it is, but how how much it costs and how much I rely on it. I’m going to implement this plan starting today. I love the idea of saving money in a “car fund” for repairs and future financing. And helping the environment is pretty great too! Thanks for the info!

  4. Wai Yip Tung says:

    This is an excellent scheme! Use the ‘car fund’ piggy bank to pay for gasoline, maintenance, insurance, car loan, tax, etc. If the money you put in approximately cover these expenses, you have arrived in a correct pricing for car use (it is like to be even more than $5).

    Right now the price indicator of car usage is broken. Since the owner do not need to pay any cash to use his own car, the marginal cost per trip is considered free. Most costs are paid upfront (car price, insurance). Even those directly related to usage, such as gasoline cost, the driver has difficulty to relate this to his car usage. This sometimes reflected in irrational behavior such as driving an extra 10 miles to a gas station that is 5% cheaper, such that the saving in price offset by extra fuel consumption. As the marginal cost of driving is consider 0, people ride their car instinctively for anything.

    Car sharing has an excellent pricing model. Members pay nothing upfront. They are charged base on actual usage. While it seems expensive to be billed for something like $20 for a one to two hours trip, this price is actually closer to the real cost. When you project this number over long term it is likely to result in substantial saving over owning a car. Just because it costs $20 for a short trip ready makes you cut down on impulsive driving.

  5. Pat says:

    Very good article! This is being discussed by The Dollar Stretcher Community, so I had to come and see what they were talking about.

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  7. Fern says:

    good article!

  8. Gail says:

    My parents sold me their old van for $1 last Nov.1. Since that time I think we have filled up the car 5 times and have only driven about 1500 miles. I have arthritis and it is very tempting to use the car for every little thing I need to do. Instead I tell myself I’m getting necessary exercise which is far more important. Of course, if I have to go somewhere when I’m having a bad flare-up, the car is there, one of the big reasons that my parents sold it to me. I also ride share trips to the grocery store every couple of weeks. I like the idea of paying to use the car, but I’m into dollar stretching to make the most of our money and so don’t have $5 to stuff in the kitty every time I use the car, but I am very conservate with its use, especially since I went 2 years without us having a 2nd car, we had to get creative on car use with hubby going to work.

  9. Quest says:

    This is the 21th century. How about coming up with some new inventions and ideas to help improve gas mileage.

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