I just found this site a few days ago and have spent those days reading through posts. I'm glad to have found this forum as I've already read a great wealth of information!
I've just begun the journey of becoming car-lite. After finally(!) getting sick and tired of vehicle repair costs, gas prices, insurance rates and traffic, I decided that it is not only a great idea but a very do-able idea to get by on a bike. I've tossed the idea around for awhile but always thought that I a)needed a car because God forbid "x" happens!, and b)I bought into the status symbol illusion that vehicle ownership provides.
A few weeks ago I really started to assess things. I put a stop to unnecessary trips outside of my city and replaced them with their equivalent within my city. Once I did that I realized that almost everything I need is now within a 7 block radius, with a few exceptions being just a bit farther out than that. I started thinking how easy it would be to ride a bike everywhere and I started hating the fact that I was paying so much money on a vehicle I hardly used. Granted my van is paid for, but other costs add up and do not justify the use. I work from home as a daycare provider and initially had bought my minivan as a means for driving kids around. Aside from my own two, that has never happened. Not even once. Being that we are headed into summer I thought it would be a great idea to try out being car-lite and parking the vehicle for as long as possible. I'm leaving it insured for one month to give me time to buy a bike, a trailer and the gear needed (helmets, locks, etc.) and then I'm pulling it off the road. If this goes well then I will down the road consider getting rid of the van altogether. For now I like the idea that it's there if ABSOLUTELY necessary, and it will be there in the winter. Even so, I am going to give winter riding a try, but also plan on utilizing other means and services in the winter (grocery delivery, transit, family members, etc.). I'm very excited to get started, and so are my kids!
I look forward to chatting and getting to know you all