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Living Car Free/Car Lite Introductions

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
169
16.00%
Car free less than 1 year
98
9.28%
Car light less than 5 years
138
13.07%
Car free less than 5 years
119
11.27%
Car light more than 5 years
93
8.81%
Car free more than 5 years
228
21.59%
Contemplating a car light or car free change
185
17.52%
Not interested in becoming car light or car free
26
2.46%
Voters: 1056. You may not vote on this poll

Living Car Free/Car Lite Introductions

Old 01-23-12, 06:04 PM
  #501  
Youaintgotjack
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Originally Posted by wahoonc View Post
Acclimation!

I have lived a good portion of my life in the Deep South and have almost always worked out of doors. I was in Denver, CO back in 2009 during the July Heat Wave
It was 85* with humidity around 30%...I was wearing long sleeved T-shirts People thought I was nuts.

When the temps are below 40* I am dragging out the long johns and parkas.

Aaron

You are right there, I'm originally from the UK and we don't get those kind of temps on the South Coast which is where Im from. Living in the Pacific NW also takes getting used to.
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Old 01-29-12, 03:38 PM
  #502  
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6 years car free. Started when I moved to London essentially because driving is a nightmare here.
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Old 01-29-12, 06:52 PM
  #503  
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I try to commute and run my errands by bike as much as possible. I recently bought a pickup. It's handy when I have to haul stuff, get to work in bad weather and when I want to treat my dog to a trip to a park. But I love to ride my bike. It's fun, healthy and relaxing. I used to love driving but now I envision it as money flowing out the tailpipe.
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Old 03-11-12, 07:46 PM
  #504  
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I grew up in Southern California (Inland Empire) quite poor so there was never the expectation of being a youngin' with a car. I (inline) skated, biked, walked, took the bus, or carpooled everywhere. I went to college in Orange County and while I worked for extra money, I never considered putting it towards the cost of a car, insurance, and gas. It would have been just too large of an expense. When I finished undergrad, I continued to get along just fine walking, taking transit, and carpooling (yes, even in Orange County) in my professional life. As fate would have it, I stumbled across a career that I can philosophically support and actually spotlights my car-free life.

I'm pushing 30 years old and have still never even had a driver's license. At least 99% of my yearly solo miles are by bike with the other miles made up by bus and train. How? I'm not particularly fit (6'1", 225lbs.) nor do I collect the perfect bikes for the perfect situation. Instead, I have a single very utilitarian hybrid, panniers, great bike education, and have sufficiently trapped myself in a life that requires I ride my bike. I use the money I save from not owning a car to make up for the increase of living near my work (only 3 miles away) and use that extra time that people would otherwise use commuting to be happy with my partner.
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Old 03-12-12, 07:32 AM
  #505  
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Originally Posted by eepok View Post
I grew up in Southern California (Inland Empire) quite poor so there was never the expectation of being a youngin' with a car. I (inline) skated, biked, walked, took the bus, or carpooled everywhere. I went to college in Orange County and while I worked for extra money, I never considered putting it towards the cost of a car, insurance, and gas. It would have been just too large of an expense. When I finished undergrad, I continued to get along just fine walking, taking transit, and carpooling (yes, even in Orange County) in my professional life. As fate would have it, I stumbled across a career that I can philosophically support and actually spotlights my car-free life.

I'm pushing 30 years old and have still never even had a driver's license. At least 99% of my yearly solo miles are by bike with the other miles made up by bus and train. How? I'm not particularly fit (6'1", 225lbs.) nor do I collect the perfect bikes for the perfect situation. Instead, I have a single very utilitarian hybrid, panniers, great bike education, and have sufficiently trapped myself in a life that requires I ride my bike. I use the money I save from not owning a car to make up for the increase of living near my work (only 3 miles away) and use that extra time that people would otherwise use commuting to be happy with my partner.
Welcome to the forum! I like the way you've worked hard and followed your own vision with great success. I keep thinking of the term "American Dream" for some reason as I read this post.
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Old 03-12-12, 10:53 PM
  #506  
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My wife and I have two cars between us. Over the last four years, I've been cycling more and driving less, so I might be considered car-light. It's hard, because we have real weather here and also some real hills. But I'm determined. I'm thinking I might be able to get rid of my car. I can't always borrow my wife's car, but maybe I can get a motorcycle for many of the occasions when I have to go big distances quickly. It could be fun, and it would use a heck of a lot less fuel.
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Old 03-13-12, 04:08 PM
  #507  
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
My wife and I have two cars between us. Over the last four years, I've been cycling more and driving less, so I might be considered car-light. It's hard, because we have real weather here and also some real hills. But I'm determined. I'm thinking I might be able to get rid of my car. I can't always borrow my wife's car, but maybe I can get a motorcycle for many of the occasions when I have to go big distances quickly. It could be fun, and it would use a heck of a lot less fuel.
Welcome! You might want to think abot an electric-asist bicycle, or e-bike. These are bikes that you have to pedal, but they have small electiric motors to give you a little "oomph" on each pedal stroke. They're supposed to be good for hills and for estending your range a little.
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Old 03-15-12, 06:43 PM
  #508  
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I've owned a car most of my life and only ridden my bike for entertainment. But, I can no longer continue to contribute to wars for foreign oil or destroying our environment. Went car light 6 months ago and have been car free for about 2 months now. Lovin every minute of it.
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Old 03-15-12, 07:22 PM
  #509  
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Welcome here, murrikev. Car-light and car-free living can be addicting.
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Old 03-16-12, 12:57 AM
  #510  
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Welcome murrikev. Thank you for doing this.
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Old 03-16-12, 03:14 AM
  #511  
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Well done, and welcome.
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Originally Posted by Bjforrestal View Post
I don't care if you are on a unicycle, as long as you're not using a motor to get places you get props from me. We're here to support each other. Share ideas, and motivate one another to actually keep doing it.
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Old 03-17-12, 10:37 AM
  #512  
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Originally Posted by eepok View Post
I grew up in Southern California (Inland Empire) quite poor so there was never the expectation of being a youngin' with a car. I (inline) skated, biked, walked, took the bus, or carpooled everywhere. I went to college in Orange County and while I worked for extra money, I never considered putting it towards the cost of a car, insurance, and gas. It would have been just too large of an expense. When I finished undergrad, I continued to get along just fine walking, taking transit, and carpooling (yes, even in Orange County) in my professional life. As fate would have it, I stumbled across a career that I can philosophically support and actually spotlights my car-free life.

I'm pushing 30 years old and have still never even had a driver's license. At least 99% of my yearly solo miles are by bike with the other miles made up by bus and train. How? I'm not particularly fit (6'1", 225lbs.) nor do I collect the perfect bikes for the perfect situation. Instead, I have a single very utilitarian hybrid, panniers, great bike education, and have sufficiently trapped myself in a life that requires I ride my bike. I use the money I save from not owning a car to make up for the increase of living near my work (only 3 miles away) and use that extra time that people would otherwise use commuting to be happy with my partner.
This is a cool post. You make cycling sound so, so, ordinary....and that's a good thing!

If you don't mind saying, what career do you have that you can philosophically support and spotlights (I take this as meaning an advantage to,) having a car-free life?
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Old 03-20-12, 12:07 PM
  #513  
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
My wife and I have two cars between us. Over the last four years, I've been cycling more and driving less, so I might be considered car-light. It's hard, because we have real weather here and also some real hills. But I'm determined. I'm thinking I might be able to get rid of my car. I can't always borrow my wife's car, but maybe I can get a motorcycle for many of the occasions when I have to go big distances quickly. It could be fun, and it would use a heck of a lot less fuel.
We've been car-free for a while now with just a single motorcycle with a trunk on the back to get some items and it works well for me to get places when needed. We are also fortunate to have buses, most things walkable and access to neighbors cars on occasion.
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Old 03-27-12, 09:58 AM
  #514  
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Originally Posted by cycleobsidian View Post
This is a cool post. You make cycling sound so, so, ordinary....and that's a good thing!

If you don't mind saying, what career do you have that you can philosophically support and spotlights (I take this as meaning an advantage to,) having a car-free life?
I work in Sustainable Transportation. My job is to get people out of driving cars alone and to start carpooling, vanpooling, busing, taking the train, biking, and walking. It's a lot of incentives, education, marketing, and a lot of input with municipal and county agencies.
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Old 04-02-12, 10:11 AM
  #515  
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
My wife and I have two cars between us. Over the last four years, I've been cycling more and driving less, so I might be considered car-light. It's hard, because we have real weather here and also some real hills. But I'm determined. I'm thinking I might be able to get rid of my car. I can't always borrow my wife's car, but maybe I can get a motorcycle for many of the occasions when I have to go big distances quickly. It could be fun, and it would use a heck of a lot less fuel.
Be careful with the motorcycle idea, especially on the east coast. We're in Maine, without a car, but do have a motorcycle to supplement our transportation, and it is completely unusable from December through April, not because of snow or ice, which are manageable, but because of the sand which is a total death trap. You hit sand in a turn on a motorcycle and you are going down, no matter what. It like riding on greased ball-bearings.

If you're in a more metro area, then consider using rental cars. Most companies are dirt cheap, especially on weekends.
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Old 04-05-12, 02:33 PM
  #516  
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I still have a car and very much want to use it a lot less. I'ts only been a couple of months since I was able to ride my bike to work and I am taking advantage of it as much as possible. Here's the thing, I instinctively will use my vehicle for mundane, unplanned errands. I used to be Mr. Efficiency and these days I have to catch myself wanting to get in the car for some groceries. I love riding (my sig) and really want to increase the amount I do. I guess i came back to get some insight and tips from some of the experienced car free people. I'm building a base that will increase my time on the bicycle, funds in my bank account and, last and certainly most important get healthy again.
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Old 04-07-12, 08:54 AM
  #517  
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Ok, so I wanted to go ahead and do an introduction in this forum as I have posted in another thread here but mostly I've jusst been lurking. I have made the decision that for myself, I'm going to work towards becoming car lite finally. I am married and my wife goes to school full time and will graduate next year with a BS in Nursing. I am in the Air Force, and really have no clue as to whether I'm going to stay in or get out or what I really want to do in life other than live and explore. I am only working on making myself car lite right now because my wife does not have an interest in it at all, yet.

As for myself, I have a 2006 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon and a 2000 BMW R1100RT motorcycle. I love them both because of their abilities and the adventures that I have with them. I have been commuting mainly on the motorcycle unless I have a lot of gear to bring to work which requires me to use the Jeep. I don't plan on getting rid of either of my vehicles because I will still use them in the future for certain trips. I do love touring by motorcycle, and I love being able to get as far off the beaten path as possible with the Jeep before parking and going even further by foot. I live in south Tampa, so everything is close at hand for me. Door to door, work is only 5 miles away and it actually takes the same amount of time whether I ride my bicycle or drive. Currently I have only one bicycle, a Trek 1.2 (I think) road bike. Originally I bought it because I wanted to get into riding and have only owned mountain bikes in my past. My goal was to get something that I could commute on, but still be able to complete a couple of triathlons on to see if it's a sport that I like. So far I haven't done a single tri, but I will. I know that it probably isn't the best bike in the world for what I use it for, however it fits me perfectly. I am very active as I work out 5-7 days a week, most of the time twice a day as I run in the mornings and lift in the afternoons. Pretty much anything that keeps me outdoors is something that I enjoy. I grew up in southeast Texas camping and riding horses so it's just a part of who I am.

I look forward to this new chapter in life and thanks for all the support that I know this community will give me.

John
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Old 04-07-12, 10:13 AM
  #518  
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Welcome John, Sounds like you're going to make a seamless transition to being car-lite. Best of luck and please post about your experiences, observations etc...
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Old 04-07-12, 04:09 PM
  #519  
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Originally Posted by jfondren3 View Post
Ok, so I wanted to go ahead and do an introduction in this forum as I have posted in another thread here but mostly I've jusst been lurking. I have made the decision that for myself, I'm going to work towards becoming car lite finally. I am married and my wife goes to school full time and will graduate next year with a BS in Nursing. I am in the Air Force, and really have no clue as to whether I'm going to stay in or get out or what I really want to do in life other than live and explore. I am only working on making myself car lite right now because my wife does not have an interest in it at all, yet.

As for myself, I have a 2006 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon and a 2000 BMW R1100RT motorcycle. I love them both because of their abilities and the adventures that I have with them. I have been commuting mainly on the motorcycle unless I have a lot of gear to bring to work which requires me to use the Jeep. I don't plan on getting rid of either of my vehicles because I will still use them in the future for certain trips. I do love touring by motorcycle, and I love being able to get as far off the beaten path as possible with the Jeep before parking and going even further by foot. I live in south Tampa, so everything is close at hand for me. Door to door, work is only 5 miles away and it actually takes the same amount of time whether I ride my bicycle or drive. Currently I have only one bicycle, a Trek 1.2 (I think) road bike. Originally I bought it because I wanted to get into riding and have only owned mountain bikes in my past. My goal was to get something that I could commute on, but still be able to complete a couple of triathlons on to see if it's a sport that I like. So far I haven't done a single tri, but I will. I know that it probably isn't the best bike in the world for what I use it for, however it fits me perfectly. I am very active as I work out 5-7 days a week, most of the time twice a day as I run in the mornings and lift in the afternoons. Pretty much anything that keeps me outdoors is something that I enjoy. I grew up in southeast Texas camping and riding horses so it's just a part of who I am.

I look forward to this new chapter in life and thanks for all the support that I know this community will give me.

John
OK, if you like off-road driving and motorcycle touring, I think you're going to LOVE mountain biking and bicycle touring.

Something about using your own muscle power, instead of relying on a machine, makes an adventure even more adventurous.
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Old 04-27-12, 11:23 PM
  #520  
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Well, it's time for a re-introduction I suppose, this time as a car-free member as of today.

I sold my truck (has been parked in the same spot for a year) last Saturday and today I brought my remaining car to the junkyard. I have to say I've purchased this car 11 years ago and have been a car enthusiast for a long time but I really got tired of how much cars took away from me. I'm leaving on my first tour in a few days and I'm also moving to another location (yet to be known lol). I'm not planning on buying another car when I settle back down. So happy !!!

Thanks a lot for all the inspiration.
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Old 04-28-12, 07:09 PM
  #521  
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Originally Posted by JeanSeb View Post
Well, it's time for a re-introduction I suppose, this time as a car-free member as of today.

I sold my truck (has been parked in the same spot for a year) last Saturday and today I brought my remaining car to the junkyard. I have to say I've purchased this car 11 years ago and have been a car enthusiast for a long time but I really got tired of how much cars took away from me. I'm leaving on my first tour in a few days and I'm also moving to another location (yet to be known lol). I'm not planning on buying another car when I settle back down. So happy !!!

Thanks a lot for all the inspiration.
Best of luck JS. I hope you keep in touch thriugh your tour and relocation.
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Old 04-29-12, 02:44 PM
  #522  
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Originally Posted by Roody View Post
Best of luck JS. I hope you keep in touch thriugh your tour and relocation.
Thank you Roody ! And yes I will... maybe not that much during the tour but after I'll be back.

Have a good summer !
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Old 05-13-12, 04:09 AM
  #523  
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After years of being car light. I am now car free. It feels good.
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Old 05-18-12, 07:17 AM
  #524  
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Well,it's been a lil while since I posted in this thread back in October,LOL!

I have indeed become much more car-lite,as the spinal injuries have allowed (meaning when they'd flair up,I must drive) or the times I've had to make trip to the old house (a 2 hour drive ). I've ridden everything from joy rides around town on the folder or CX bike,to riding to the local park's few singletrack trails on the mtn bike,as well as minor recycling,grocery runs,errands,etc. I always knew I'd enjoy doing it by bike,but it's cool to finally have the living arrangement-opportunity to do it,I'm loving it. Having scrounged,horse-traded,and CL ads'd my way into the rebuilding of an ol TREK I've had for a dozen years into a previously owned Xtracycle (it'd never been out of the box or assembled),I expect that even more will get done without the dinomobiles. Once I look into/score a pair of Wideloaders,I'll start hauling all those bags of pop cans we save and recycle as well


Still needs some tweaks for fit (seems like I remember the cockpit being more...stretched out a decade ago on this,LOL!),but I forsee much haulage and less driving than I had already severely cut back on. Pic of the first test ride...
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Old 05-23-12, 06:03 PM
  #525  
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Due to unexpected surgery in October 2011, spinal cord tumor, I had to declare Chapter 7 bankruptcy and my Ford Focus was reposessed in December and I sold my 1998 Klein bike in March to keep up with my medical bills. So I was forced to become car and bike free! I am recovering pretty good and hope to have another car and bike by year end and driving both! You need to have disability insurance in case get injured off the job!! FYI Gary

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