Without owning a car

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When does owning a car make financial sense?

click here to see the calculator

I don’t own a car, and haven’t for 4 years. My choice isn’t based on an environmental standpoint, rather it is purely economic. I save money by not owning a car. From time to time I question whether or not this is true. Especially now with a small child and more frequent trips to visit grandparents - Is owning a car cheaper?

Today, I present the car cost calculator. Use it, and adjust the assumptions to suit your own situation, perhaps it is cheaper for you too.

Though I don’t own a car, I still drive. At times when I need a car, I’ll do a daily hire. There are cars located around my apartment that I can scan with my wallet to unlock the door and take for a drive. Typically this costs around $70 for 24 hours, all petrol costs are included. This system of taking a car whenever you like, is called “car share”. Two of the “car share” companies listed here are Flexicar and Goget.

Try the calculator for yourself below. Only read on here for information about how the numbers work.

Typically, I use the car 4 times a month, and one month of the year I don’t use the car at all (perhaps because of a 3 week holiday overseas). You may also believe that you don’t pay for parking. However, most inner city apartments are $40 cheaper if they don’t come with a parking space. If you don’t have a car, you can rent your parking space out to someone else. We used to get $50 a week for our parking spot near the city.

The only other variable to watch out for is Flexicar’s daily rental fee. The lowest you’ll pay is $55/day, however quite a few of their cars are $65/day. And you may not be close by to a $55/day car - something for you to consider when weighing up your options.

Car Cost Calculator
The results

“Goget” and “Flexicar” are both competing car sharing services.

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