The cost of living in the United States has increased throughout the years. This year, the overall cost of living has risen by a staggering 8%, one of the highest increases since the 1980s. The cost of living is making it harder for many families to save for things they want to do, such as a vacation.
The average household budget of an American family is around $63,000. The two highest is housing which is valued at $10,000. This is primarily because of mortgage payments annually. The second largest is transportation, which takes up $9,000 or 14% of the family’s budget.
Transportation shouldn’t be eating up that much of the family budget. However, there are ways to save on transportation without making too many lifestyle changes. Here are some options.
Use Mass Transit Whenever Possible
Mass transit is available in almost every city in the United States. It’s a great way to save on transportation costs because it’s much cheaper than driving your car. For example, the average monthly subway or bus pass cost is only $60, which is a fraction of what you would spend on gas and car maintenance if you drove your car.
It’s estimated that public transit users can save over $10,000 annually if they dedicate their time to using public transit alone. However, that might not be feasible, especially if you consider the possibility of being late.
With this in mind, consider using public transit for your commute to work or school. You can take the bus or train a few days a week and drive the rest of the time. Moreover, you can consider public transport if ever the location is close to your home. This will still help you save money in the long run.
Carpool with Co-Workers or Neighbors
If public transit isn’t an option, carpooling is the next best thing. Carpooling with just one other person can cut your transportation costs in half. Consider carpooling together if you have two people in your household who commute to work.
You can also carpool with neighbors or friends who are going to the same place as you. For example, if you’re going to the grocery store, see if any of your neighbors want to come along. This way, you can split the cost of gas. It can also be great for the environment!
Rideshare services, such as Uber and Lyft, are becoming more popular in recent years. These services allow you to share a ride with other people going to the same place as you.
Rideshare services are a great way to save money on transportation because they’re usually cheaper than taking a taxi or driving your own car. Plus, you don’t have to worry about parking fees.
If you’re going to be using a rideshare service regularly, consider signing up for a monthly subscription. This way, you’ll get a discounted rate on all of your rides. It’s also good to share rideshare with people you know so you can deduct half the overall costs. If you want, you can even join these rideshare services. You can make extra cash while you travel.
Bicycle Whenever Possible
Another great way to save on transportation costs is to bicycle whenever possible. Bicycling is good for your health and the environment. Plus, it’s free!
If you live close to work or school, consider biking there a few days a week. You can also use your bike for errands, such as grocery shopping. Biking is a great way to save money and get some exercise at the same time.
Lease Your Car
Instead of buying a new car, consider leasing one. Leasing a vehicle is usually cheaper than buying one outright. Plus, you won’t have to worry about maintenance costs or repairs.
There are two ways to lease a car. The first option is a long-term lease which is excellent if you want to have a new car every few years. The second option is a short-term car rental which is perfect if you want to use it to travel to other countries or go on a road trip. It’s much cheaper because you don’t have to worry about maintenance costs. It’ll also put your mind at ease, knowing that these companies offer comprehensive vehicle insurance.
These are just some ways you can save on transportation costs in your family. With the rising cost of living, saving money where you can is more important than ever. Following these tips can make a significant dent in your transportation expenses.