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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.

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Old 07-17-14, 06:44 PM   #51
I-Like-To-Bike
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Sure, and if an organisation like Uber can make a taxi cheaper and more efficient it means the people who are on the borderline regarding whether it's worth running their own car are more likely to decide that Uber will meet all their needs and get rid of their car.

At present I'm very car light - I keep my car running because the cost of replacing journeys with taxis would be comparable to the cost of keeping the car on the road, and whenever I use the car to go out of town it starts to pay for itself. Since it's 20 years old I don't have to worry about things like depreciation any more.
Do you really believe that there are that many borderline people on the fence between using taxi service or owning a car only for infrequent use like once a week trips, especially for out of town?

BTW, anybody know how far "out of town" will a Uber rental take a fare paying passenger and what the cost might be (per mile or time unit) to include the return trip?
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Old 07-17-14, 10:32 PM   #52
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No group of investors, has laid out 18 billion dollars for Uber, stories about "Wall Street valuation" can be a sleight of hand to attract attention, jist like National Enquirwer headlines. Time will tell the true value of Uber.

More accurately some investors and speculators are betting that Uber and its associated systems of hailing a rented ride and customer/driver payments, as well as avoidance of the numerous local regulations affecting taxi service will get people to use Uber more, and Uber's effect, if any, on privately owned vehicle ownership or usage is irrelevant.
I wish I could find the article I read about this a few weeks ago...

But yes, the investors didn't pay 17 billion dollars to buy Uber. They paid many millions of dollars to buy a small share of Uber. One would need to spend 17 billion to buy the entire company at the same share price that they paid.

The investors paid so much because they believe Uber will one day be worth many times 17 billion dollars. They think that Uber will disrupt the entire transportation market, especially the core idea of most people owning private cars. So yes indeed, they are gambling that many many people--most people, in fact--will become car-ownership-free as a result of Uber's disruption.

You're right of that only time will tell what Uber will be worth. These venture capitalists invest in new companies and face a lot of risk in hopes of huge payoffs. They're pretty smart, but not even they "know" what will happen with Uber.

Personally, I think the riskiest thing about Uber is that its mainly a software development. It seems like it wouldnt be difficult for other companies to develop software that has the same function as Uber, but works even better. I'm sure you remember Altavista--a very popular search engine in the 1990s that pretty much disappeared when another company came out with a slightly better search engine. I dont see anything that stops something similar from happening to Uber in the near future.
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Old 07-18-14, 02:57 AM   #53
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If I "understand" the poster, if that is possible, he suggests that businesses pay people only just enough to ride a bicycle and take buses.
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Is that worse than the current practice of paying people "only just enough" to afford a car and rent and a bit of disposable income if they work 40+ hours/week 50+ weeks/year? Why would it be shorting them to reduce the amount of hours and pay so that most can only afford to ride a bike or take transit? That way, more people would have jobs with fewer hours each and everything would cost less because of lower taxes and prices due to lower labor costs.
So very glad the current practice is not reducing the hours and pay so that most can only afford to ride a bicycle or take transit. So very, very glad. Here's hoping that never happens!!
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Old 07-18-14, 04:48 AM   #54
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Do you really believe that there are that many borderline people on the fence between using taxi service or owning a car only for infrequent use like once a week trips, especially for out of town?
I have no idea, I'm not the owner of the company nor an investor in the company. Presumably the people who founded it and the people who invest in it believe there is a big enough market for it to work or they wouldn't have bothered.

As to how many people will use it, I can easily see it being very popular in urban areas. When my car finally gives up the ghost I'd rather rent a car for trips out of town and rent a ride for trips within town. As long as I can get a ride within a short time of requesting one it seems so much more convenient than owning my own car, not to mention cheaper.

In rural areas it's hard to see it working. I don't imagine they are targeting rural areas.

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BTW, anybody know how far "out of town" will a Uber rental take a fare paying passenger and what the cost might be (per mile or time unit) to include the return trip?
I guess they'll take you as far as you want to go, if you're willing to pay the fare. If you're going far enough that they expect you to pay the return trip and you're willing to do that, why would they refuse? It would seem silly to decline a substantial fare in the hope of getting lots and lots of smaller fares in the same time. And if they get another customer for all or part of the return trip they get paid twice for that leg of the journey.
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Old 07-18-14, 06:17 AM   #55
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So very glad the current practice is not reducing the hours and pay so that most can only afford to ride a bicycle or take transit. So very, very glad. Here's hoping that never happens!!
Or otherwise put, you hope the cost of living never goes low enough for people to make due with less and have more time for low-cost activities like bike camping?

Machka, I have the idea that your mind works a like Marie Antoinette's when she said, "let them eat cake," if in fact she did say that - insofar as that is a debated historical fact, I've heard.
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Old 07-18-14, 06:29 AM   #56
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Or otherwise put, you hope the cost of living never goes low enough for people to make due with less and have more time for low-cost activities like bike camping?

Machka, I have the idea that your mind works a like Marie Antoinette's when she said, "let them eat cake," if in fact she did say that - insofar as that is a debated historical fact, I've heard.

You really need to stop with the "or otherwise put" stuff. Why do you like to read a things into my comments which isn't there? Why do you like to translate what I say into something I haven't said. That's not what I said at all.
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Old 07-18-14, 06:45 AM   #57
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You really need to stop with the "or otherwise put" stuff. Why do you like to read a things into my comments which isn't there? Why do you like to translate what I say into something I haven't said. That's not what I said at all.
Because you don't give enough information about your reasons and assumptions. All you're really saying is that you hope everyone always has plenty of money to drive and that the economy never restricts the ability to drive to the same degree it restricts, say, the ability to fly.

I don't understand why you feel you have the right to express things like this and not have the implications raised for discussion. It is as when Mary Antoinette said, "let them eat cake," no one avoided extrapolating ignorance for the general shortage of food for the people. I have a feeling if someone would have responded to "let them eat cake," with "or otherwise put: feed some well and let the rest go hungry," you would criticize them for reading into Antoinette's words.
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Old 07-18-14, 06:56 AM   #58
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Because you don't give enough information about your reasons and assumptions. All you're really saying is that you hope everyone always has plenty of money to drive and that the economy never restricts the ability to drive to the same degree it restricts, say, the ability to fly.
All I said was this:
So very glad the current practice is not reducing the hours and pay so that most can only afford to ride a bicycle or take transit. So very, very glad. Here's hoping that never happens!!
Read the words ... not all the stuff you want to insert between the lines and everywhere else. Essentially ... I like my world, not the one you depict.

Anyway talk about economy is P&R stuff, not Uber stuff.
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Old 07-18-14, 08:04 AM   #59
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Maybe I'm paranoid, but I'm a little leery about Uber. It involves getting in a private car which may or may not have working brakes, driven by stranger who may or may not have a valid drivers license.

At least cabbies are licensed, tested, and insured. And the cabs are required to have regular maintenence.

The lower costs (some of the time) are attractive, of course.
I agree with you on this one......

"UberX is the company’s cheaper, more entry-level transportation offering — think a Nissan Sentra driven by a moonlighting grad student rather than the Lincoln Town Car driven by a seasoned professional offered by the company’s Uber Black service.)"

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Old 07-18-14, 08:05 AM   #60
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All I said was this:
So very glad the current practice is not reducing the hours and pay so that most can only afford to ride a bicycle or take transit. So very, very glad. Here's hoping that never happens!!
Read the words ... not all the stuff you want to insert between the lines and everywhere else. Essentially ... I like my world, not the one you depict.
Did you realize there is an objective world beyond your subjective version of it and that real world is accessible by extrapolation from your subjective perceptions along with clear reasoning?

You may think it's your prerogative to imagine the world however you like it and that others have to honor your version of it but that's really not the case. When you make a comment that you hope that never happens, you're simultaneously accepting any tacit consequences of your vision.

Do you think I hope for economic discipline for the sake of making people unhappy? No, I want there to be economic sustainability so people can have more free time to be able to bike and walk around. Is it their prerogative to not want the same thing? Yes, but is it their prerogative to maintain an economy that limits the freedom to have more free time without running out of money quickly because almost everyone else drives? No.

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Anyway talk about economy is P&R stuff, not Uber stuff.
It's just a factor in the discussion topic. In order for Uber to reduce car ownership, there has to be an incentive for people to trade in their cars for taxi rides. That incentive could be money-related or non-monetary but either way it's economic. It is economics to convert a driveway of your home into a play area, storage area, etc. It is economic to forego car ownership to have a bigger budget to do other things by taxi. Would you like to move this whole thread to P&R because it has an economic aspect?
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Old 07-19-14, 12:18 AM   #61
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Anyway talk about economy is P&R stuff, not Uber stuff.
Economics explains everything from a household transportation budget, to the startup of a company that impacts carfree people, to global policies that affect how billions of people travel in their daily lives. Economics even describes natural processes like the carbon cycle and food chains. You can deny the importance of economics if you wish, but your denial doesn't make the topic any less important or less relevant to carfree folks.
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