Without any reason to believe I’d be able to afford a car in the near future, I resigned myself to waiting at bus stops and guiltily asking for rides around the city. To say I’m fed up with my lack of transport is an understatement. I did a bit of research on alternatives to buying a car for city life and was shocked to find that not only is there some variety in car alternatives, but they were almost all affordable and stylish too!
Making It Work By Working Out
My life without a car has, above all else, involved a lot of walking. While any trip over an hour on foot gets unreasonable for me, I do rely on a great pair of shoes and sunglasses as my travel necessities for getting most places. I did invest in a bike during the pandemic to get me to and from the local food trucks, and although it took a few weeks to get the hang of it again, cycling has become a regular activity for me now. I highly recommend y’all invest in two things right away if you choose to get a bike. First, get a bike lock that you have faith in and a basket for your bike. It only took my wallet slipping out of my pocket while I was on my bike one time for me to realize how much I needed a place to put my things.
Electric Bikes (and Trikes?)
I had never considered the rentable e-bikes and e-trikes I see around my city as something I could own until I was looking for an alternative to buying a car. Electric bikes (or electric-assist bikes) augment the power you put in when pedaling, making the work easier and getting you where you need to go faster. Some e-bikes come with multiple levels of assist so that you can decide how much work you want to put in that day, an idea that I really liked as someone looking to work out more often. It ended up being hard to decide which e-bike or e-trike I’d want most because the price range on all models seemed pretty fair.
Motor Power Mopeds
The vehicle that set me onto the entire search was the moped. Instead of a car, I figured I could buy a scooter for a fraction of the price and, depending on what roads I wanted to take it on, I might not even need a license in my state (check yours to be safe!). While the price for these vehicles is higher, certain models stand out as items of luxury to me still, and I can’t help but love them, gas bill and all.
When public transportation and ride-sharing aren’t realistic or reliable enough for your needs, finding an alternative to buying a car for your city life is a necessity. I recommend looking at virtual maps for accessible bike lanes and sidewalks and, of course, your budget before you choose what car alternative is right for you. Who knows? Maybe roller skating will be your primary mode of transportation.