“I could never give up my car.”
While becoming a single family may seem daunting or darn near impossible, it’s becoming more and more common for spouses to scale down to one vehicle.
Whether by choice or out of necessity, many moms are managing to get by just fine in a single car household. Besides, the benefits of doing so are difficult to ignore…
- Saving money: between the cost of gas, nagging repairs and car payments, the financial incentives to drop your second vehicle are rather obvious
- Simpler living: driving less means less stress from commutes and traffic jams, plain and simple
- Embracing an environmentally friendly lifestyle: in an era of gas-guzzlers, scaling down to a single car is the conscious thing to do
That said, surviving as a mother in a single car household indeed comes with its challenges. Making it work is far from impossible, though. In fact, the following five tips can help you make it happen.
Know When to Get a Ride
First thing’s first: you need to acknowledge that there will be times when you have to suck it up and call for a vehicle to get where you need to go. Whether it’s because you need to run to the store or make a doctor’s appointment, sometimes playing the waiting game or going on foot isn’t going to cut it.
Luckily, the popularity of ridesharing services such as Uber have emerged as lifesavers to single car families in a band. Additionally, this guide from Ridester outlines how existing Uber users can score big discounts if they know how to find them. Understanding how new and existing Uber discounts work is a major plus if you’re frequently using the app to get to Point A to Point B.
Plan Out Your Schedule
Smart planning is key to making your experience as a single vehicle household work. For example, if you’re a stay-at-home mom you’re obviously going to be without a car if your spouse is working. That said, that doesn’t mean that you can get to where you need to go, but you should expect to communicate when you’ll be able to drive when necessary.
Also, smart planning for family outings to the store, restaurants or other fun trips need to be taken into account to minimize mileage on your car. Ideally, you should strive to knock out as many errands as possible one a single trip rather than spread them out throughout the week.
Buy a Bike
Depending on your area, biking is a solid option to get around if you live in an area that’s friendly to pedestrians in general. Not only are bikes ideal for short trips, but you can also get some exercise in as well. If you haven’t biked in quite some time, review basic bike safety tips in terms of how you should ride.
Never Neglect Routine Maintenance
Perhaps the biggest burden of being a one car family is the back-of-your-mind worry that the family breaks down. As a result, you and your spouse absolutely cannot afford to ignore routine maintenance on your car. Pay attention to problem signs and understand the most important preventative maintenance that any given vehicle needs.
It may require a bit of an adjustment period, but becoming a one car family can be done. By understanding these tips and the benefits of dropping your second vehicle, your family could be well on your way toward doing the same.