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Living Car Free Do you live car free or car light? Do you prefer to use alternative transportation (bicycles, walking, other human-powered or public transportation) for everyday activities whenever possible? Discuss your lifestyle here.

View Poll Results: How long have you been car light or car free?
Car light less than 1 year 163 16.50%
Car free less than 1 year 92 9.31%
Car light less than 5 years 133 13.46%
Car free less than 5 years 113 11.44%
Car light more than 5 years 82 8.30%
Car free more than 5 years 204 20.65%
Contemplating a car light or car free change 177 17.91%
Not interested in becoming car light or car free 24 2.43%
Voters: 988. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 11-04-08, 09:25 AM   #151
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I've been car light for the last 6 months, but now am officially car free again. Sold my car just yesterday.
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Old 11-08-08, 04:35 AM   #152
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Been car free for 3 years and loving it
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Old 11-15-08, 09:23 PM   #153
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We have two cars, but I get really mad (at myself) if I have to move mine more than twice a month.
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Old 11-20-08, 09:53 AM   #154
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I've been carfree for 3+ years, about a year in Washington DC and 2 in NYC. Biked around in both cities. I did/do however borrow someone's car maybe once a month or longer.
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Old 11-29-08, 12:33 AM   #155
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I sold my car a little over three years ago. I also moved to NYC at that time, and I fear the day I'll move to a place where a car is completely essential to daily life
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Old 11-29-08, 09:50 AM   #156
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1 week this coming Monday.

Though I don't know how much this week counts since I'm home for the holidays and had to borrow the car.
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Old 12-02-08, 12:36 PM   #157
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In Tucson, AZ. Had an 87' SAAB 9000 and had just bought a crap bike and planning to ride more because I was a jobless college student who could pay for gas about once in never. Right after that my car's clutch went out and saw it as a sign. Bought a nicer bike a few months later. That was Summer '05.

Now me and my girlfriend have a house and a car that we share with our other roommate. We all ride for the most part but use the car for further away, or bigger shopping trips, etc. We all ride to work, my girlfriend rides during work, but I have to drive a work truck a lot, as our jobs are frequently 50 miles out of town. Our house has Five bike racks and I think we need more...

I think reading and posting these is a good encouragement for anyone trying to do this or thinking about it! Keep it up!
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Old 12-02-08, 01:09 PM   #158
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In Tucson, AZ. Had an 87' SAAB 9000 and had just bought a crap bike and planning to ride more because I was a jobless college student who could pay for gas about once in never. Right after that my car's clutch went out and saw it as a sign. Bought a nicer bike a few months later. That was Summer '05.

Now me and my girlfriend have a house and a car that we share with our other roommate. We all ride for the most part but use the car for further away, or bigger shopping trips, etc. We all ride to work, my girlfriend rides during work, but I have to drive a work truck a lot, as our jobs are frequently 50 miles out of town. Our house has Five bike racks and I think we need more...

I think reading and posting these is a good encouragement for anyone trying to do this or thinking about it! Keep it up
!
Welcome to the forum--very good post.
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Old 12-02-08, 04:19 PM   #159
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I've been car-free about two months now. It's really odd because for the last seven years I've been really into import cars, building a couple from the ground up and always working/driving them. I used to spend on average 3-4 hours a day in my garage, moved up to Seattle a little over a year ago, but still had cars, and now I don't even have a car.

It's actually really, really nice, and I plan to keep it up. Though at times I really do miss spirited driving in my fast cars.
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Old 12-02-08, 04:33 PM   #160
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I've been car-free about two months now. It's really odd because for the last seven years I've been really into import cars, building a couple from the ground up and always working/driving them. I used to spend on average 3-4 hours a day in my garage, moved up to Seattle a little over a year ago, but still had cars, and now I don't even have a car.

It's actually really, really nice, and I plan to keep it up. Though at times I really do miss spirited driving in my fast cars
.
That is quite a change. What made you decide to give up cars?
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Old 12-02-08, 04:46 PM   #161
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Well, it was never very practical having a car up here in Seattle. I moved here a year ago and I live downtown, so parking is expensive, traffic sucks at times, and there's nowhere to work on a car. Also, I live about a mile from work, so I can walk/ride everywhere I need to go. The car was mainly used just for fun spirited drives when I felt like it.

So I decided I'd buy myself a fixed gear, completely loved it, and had my parents take my car back home with them a couple weeks later when they came to visit.
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Old 12-02-08, 05:35 PM   #162
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Well, it was never very practical having a car up here in Seattle. I moved here a year ago and I live downtown, so parking is expensive, traffic sucks at times, and there's nowhere to work on a car. Also, I live about a mile from work, so I can walk/ride everywhere I need to go. The car was mainly used just for fun spirited drives when I felt like it.

So I decided I'd buy myself a fixed gear, completely loved it, and had my parents take my car back home with them a couple weeks later when they came to visit
.
Wow, some of us look for a long time to find a good carfree location, and it sounds like you stumbledon it by accident. Or was there more to finding the location?
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Old 12-02-08, 05:56 PM   #163
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Well, I knew ahead of time that I wanted to move to Seattle because it's great for my industry (website development). I also knew that traffic sucks here and I'd want to live close enough to never have to drive if I didn't want to. So when I found a job at an office downtown, I found an apartment nearby.
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Old 12-05-08, 11:09 AM   #164
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I was car "lite" about 10 years. I live in Key West so any vehicle was only used to get off the rock from time to time. I just recently sold my 1982 VW Westfalia so I am now car free. I just couldn't see maintaining a car on a 1.5X4 mile island. If I need to I can rent a car. I did keep my license and some insurance coverage. My insurance is about 1/2 what it was for a vehicle. When fuel went up over $4 a gallon that was the catalyst for me. At some point I count on it going back up again.
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Old 12-08-08, 02:57 AM   #165
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I lost my DL for medical reasons of june of 07, and odds are pretty slim of me getting back, I was already a heavy cyclist

my car is still in storage i would rather not sell it. , i am surprisingly ok with how things are going
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Old 12-08-08, 12:40 PM   #166
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Shalom!

During the 25 years in which I lived in Israel (1/1980-6/2004), I didn't own a car.

At first, I was like most Israelis, who relied completely on foot-, bus-, and taxi-borne transportation. Later on, when having a car became of paramount importance to one's psyche, I continued living "car-free". Granted, I lived in Jerusalem, then Tel-Aviv; both serviced by a huge number of bus routes, all of which run with 5-10-minute frequency.

But now I'm living in [gasp!] South Florida... with a 1998 Dodge Neon "beater". I drive neither often, nor for long times/distances, but the cost of automobile insurance is effing killing me! With "bad credit", my rate for the minimum required coverage was $500/6-months. Recently, because I was "involved" in two rear-end collisions (mine was the car rear-ended), my rates have jumped to $900/6-months. Hey! I only paid $2450 for the car!!

So, after a 40-year hiatus from cycling, I just bought a 1995 Cannondale M500 on eBay (it ought to arrive by the end of this week). If things work out (and they should), I will de-register my car when it comes due for re-registration, at the end of January 2009. Everywhere I go is within a 5-10-mile radius (most closer to 5 miles), and I look forward to the change. The monetary savings over a two-year period will more than cover rent-and-utilities for a year! for frugal living.

I found a listing for this forum in the results of a Google-search for "How to live car-free", and made time to read the archives from the beginning. Aside from this introductory post, I'll probably remain a lurker. Go ahead... talk amongst yourselves.

Jonathan B. Horen
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Old 12-09-08, 03:56 PM   #167
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Shalom!

During the 25 years in which I lived in Israel (1/1980-6/2004), I didn't own a car.

At first, I was like most Israelis, who relied completely on foot-, bus-, and taxi-borne transportation. Later on, when having a car became of paramount importance to one's psyche, I continued living "car-free". Granted, I lived in Jerusalem, then Tel-Aviv; both serviced by a huge number of bus routes, all of which run with 5-10-minute frequency.

But now I'm living in [gasp!] South Florida... with a 1998 Dodge Neon "beater". I drive neither often, nor for long times/distances, but the cost of automobile insurance is effing killing me! With "bad credit", my rate for the minimum required coverage was $500/6-months. Recently, because I was "involved" in two rear-end collisions (mine was the car rear-ended), my rates have jumped to $900/6-months. Hey! I only paid $2450 for the car!!

So, after a 40-year hiatus from cycling, I just bought a 1995 Cannondale M500 on eBay (it ought to arrive by the end of this week). If things work out (and they should), I will de-register my car when it comes due for re-registration, at the end of January 2009. Everywhere I go is within a 5-10-mile radius (most closer to 5 miles), and I look forward to the change. The monetary savings over a two-year period will more than cover rent-and-utilities for a year! for frugal living.

I found a listing for this forum in the results of a Google-search for "How to live car-free", and made time to read the archives from the beginning. Aside from this introductory post, I'll probably remain a lurker. Go ahead... talk amongst yourselves.

Jonathan B. Horen
Jonathan,
You write well and have an interesting background. I hope you'll reconsider and post often.
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Old 12-11-08, 03:33 PM   #168
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I'm 51. I've owned a car for about 4 years of my adult life, relying on buses and bikes for the other years, occasionally renting cars when necessary. I own a car now, but I can't wait to sell it, reverting to my preferred car-less state. I own a car because of work, which is a 20 mile commute each way with other drives required during the workday. I hate-hate-hate Austin traffic, particularly freeway commuter traffic. Thankfully I'm transferring to a workplace much nearer home next month. Not owning a car is so much better for you and everyone else, if you're fortunate enough to take advantage of the situation.
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Old 12-15-08, 09:06 PM   #169
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I had been going car light this past year, either riding, or taking the bus for the vast majority of my travel. Then I got sick -- bad bronchitis, so I slacked off.

I was being forced to go back to car-light when my insurance company dropped me (I've been out of work and not able to make my payments) and now we are in the midst of a minor snowstorm.
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Old 12-22-08, 08:55 AM   #170
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Car insurance,

Just wondering if anyone else kept up their car insurance? I was pleased to find out that my insurance company (Geico) would insure me even if I didn't have a car. I do still rent vehicles from time to time and borrow friends vehicles so it was important for me to keep some kind of policy. It's nice, I'm paying less than 1/2 what I would covering a vehicle. I really had to think about it though. I really wanted to go 100% car free but I think this is a good compromise.
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Old 12-22-08, 02:29 PM   #171
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Just wondering if anyone else kept up their car insurance? I was pleased to find out that my insurance company (Geico) would insure me even if I didn't have a car. I do still rent vehicles from time to time and borrow friends vehicles so it was important for me to keep some kind of policy. It's nice, I'm paying less than 1/2 what I would covering a vehicle. I really had to think about it though. I really wanted to go 100% car free but I think this is a good compromise.
Check your state requirements. In a "no-fault" state, insurance goes with the car, not the driver, so it doesn't make sense to buy insurance if you don't have a car.
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Old 12-23-08, 06:15 AM   #172
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Shalom!

During the 25 years in which I lived in Israel (1/1980-6/2004), I didn't own a car.

At first, I was like most Israelis, who relied completely on foot-, bus-, and taxi-borne transportation. Later on, when having a car became of paramount importance to one's psyche, I continued living "car-free". Granted, I lived in Jerusalem, then Tel-Aviv; both serviced by a huge number of bus routes, all of which run with 5-10-minute frequency.

But now I'm living in [gasp!] South Florida... with a 1998 Dodge Neon "beater". I drive neither often, nor for long times/distances, but the cost of automobile insurance is effing killing me! With "bad credit", my rate for the minimum required coverage was $500/6-months. Recently, because I was "involved" in two rear-end collisions (mine was the car rear-ended), my rates have jumped to $900/6-months. Hey! I only paid $2450 for the car!!

So, after a 40-year hiatus from cycling, I just bought a 1995 Cannondale M500 on eBay (it ought to arrive by the end of this week). If things work out (and they should), I will de-register my car when it comes due for re-registration, at the end of January 2009. Everywhere I go is within a 5-10-mile radius (most closer to 5 miles), and I look forward to the change. The monetary savings over a two-year period will more than cover rent-and-utilities for a year! for frugal living.

I found a listing for this forum in the results of a Google-search for "How to live car-free", and made time to read the archives from the beginning. Aside from this introductory post, I'll probably remain a lurker. Go ahead... talk amongst yourselves.

Jonathan B. Horen
How is it riding in Israel? Is the traffic really bad in the cities? Are the roads pretty good - shoulders, etc?
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Old 12-29-08, 10:49 AM   #173
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How is it riding in Israel? Is the traffic really bad in the cities? Are the roads pretty good - shoulders, etc?
Sorry, but the only thing I rode was the bus. Israeli drivers are, uniformly,
  • stressed
  • angry
  • anxious
  • in a hurry
  • talking on their cellphones
  • smoking
  • <your_company_logo_here>
The traffic in cities is really bad. The roads aren't bad, but they're full of Israeli drivers...
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Old 01-20-09, 10:57 PM   #174
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I became car free about five months ago mainly due to the monthly expenses of owning a car and the idea of sustainable living. Temporarily since Christmas, I'm back to car light using a borrowed car from my parents for the winter months. My main use of the car is for work or getting groceries and I average 10km or less per day. It does make it a little bit easier being car light in central Ontario winters but I do prefer being car free over car light.

The city I live in has a population of about 30,000, it has a good bus system but it's not a very bike friendly city. I'm hoping that will change. Last September there was a week long series of newspaper articles about local people that commute daily by bike and this was about the same time I was planning on getting rid of my car. After reading those articles, it made me think that it wasn't going to be as bad not having a car and knowing that I can also commute by bike or take the bus system.

I have yet to start commuting by bike, but once the weather starts to warm up and the snow melts, I'll be outfitting my bike with lights and a bike rack to make commuting easier. I've also found a facebook group that has provided some inspiration on taking that step towards commuting by bike.

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Old 01-21-09, 12:06 AM   #175
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I became car free about five months ago mainly due to the monthly expenses of owning a car and the idea of sustainable living. Temporarily since Christmas, I'm back to car light using a borrowed car from my parents for the winter months. My main use of the car is for work or getting groceries and I average 10km or less per day. It does make it a little bit easier being car light in central Ontario winters but I do prefer being car free over car light.

The city I live in has a population of about 30,000, it has a good bus system but it's not a very bike friendly city. I'm hoping that will change. Last September there was a week long series of newspaper articles about local people that commute daily by bike and this was about the same time I was planning on getting rid of my car. After reading those articles, it made me think that it wasn't going to be as bad not having a car and knowing that I can also commute by bike or take the bus system.

I have yet to start commuting by bike, but once the weather starts to warm up and the snow melts, I'll be outfitting my bike with lights and a bike rack to make commuting easier. I've also found a facebook group http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=8312296525&ref=mf that has provided some inspiration on taking that step towards commuting by bike
.
Hi dgas. Welcome to the forum.

How far is your commute to work?
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