It is frustrating to having to spend a lot of money getting to and from work. Here are some ways to save money on your commute.
If you are like many people, you spend a lot of time commuting. This means you must find a way to get to work that is efficient and doesn't consume too much of that money you are going there to earn. This can mean that sometimes driving yourself isn’t the best option or you simply need to make some adjustments to make it a viable option. Here are 6 ways to save money on your commute to help you keep more of what you earn.
6 Ways to Save Money on Your Commute
Ask to change shifts – You may not see how this will save you money right now, but consider the following. Do you work shorter shifts or shifts that begin or end during high traffic times? If so, you may be expending more gas getting to and from work than you need to. If you work shorter shifts, ask if you can work 4 longer shifts each week instead of 5 shorter ones. This saves you an entire day of commuting expenses. If you have to drive during peak traffic hours, try to change your shift to a low traffic time so you can spend less time idling in traffic.
Use a people-powered way to get to work – Riding a bike or walking will not only help you stay fit but also save huge amounts of money on commuting. If you live too far away to walk or bike the whole way, consider walking part of the way and taking a bus the rest of the way. This can add up to hundreds of dollars saved per year!
Start or join a carpool – Do you live near a few of your co-workers or in a rural part of town? Try forming or joining a carpool for those in your area. Forming a carpool takes a bit of work, but it's worth it in the end because you will save a lot of money, and may be able to catch up on some work or sleep when someone else is driving. Check out these tips for forming a carpool for more information on how to get started.
Consider buying a ‘commuter car’ – If you drive a car that is well suited for hauling the family around in, but tends to really eat up gas, consider buying a commuter car. It doesn’t even have to be an expensive or new one either since you will be just driving it to and from work. A 2 door hatchback coupe from the 80’s or 90’s can be bought for less than 1,000 dollars in most areas and can really save you lots of money. When it becomes too costly to repair, junk it for parts and get another one.
Don’t add extras along the way such as coffee or breakfast – We may not consider it part of the cost of commuting, but if you are stopping for coffee or picking up breakfast in the drive-through window each morning, you could be spending a couple hundred dollars a month on these added extras. Make it a point to not do so by making your own coffee in the morning and preparing some make-ahead breakfasts.
Consider the other costs associated with driving such as parking – If you are unsure whether driving to and from work is costing you more than another way to get there, consider other ways your commute costs you money. As mentioned above, you may be adding onto your cost with stops for food and drink, but also consider oil changes and maintenance, as well as paying for parking. If you take a public form of transportation, you could really skip all of that!