4 Reasons Why it Pays to Drive Less
Driving is the first option many of us think of when it comes to getting from home to work. Many people enjoy the other things that come with car ownership, though, like buying accessories or painting the vehicle.
Despite this, there are actually quite a few reasons why your life could improve if you substitute other methods of transportation into it. Cars driven less than 25 miles a day won’t need repairs as often. You won’t have to pay expensive gas prices, and insurance costs will also go down.
If you decide to ride a bike or walk somewhere, you’re getting a lot more exercise than if you were behind the wheel. Driving is a valuable tool in life, but it doesn’t need to be the only one. Balancing all the different ways to get somewhere will be very rewarding in the long run. Let’s discuss those options and figure out which one is best for your lifestyle.
#1 – You Will Get Exercise
Driving a car is a very stagnant activity. We waste a lot of time sitting in the middle of traffic going to work and coming home. Before you know it, you’ve moved one block in 15 minutes during rush hour. Now imagine how much better it would be if you decided to walk, jog, or bicycle to your destination as long as it’s within a reasonable distance.
This is not realistic for every trip. If you need to go 30 miles, a car is the better option. We want to focus on those times when you need some groceries at the store down the road. Maybe think about trying a different way to get to the local restaurant for lunch. You’ll love getting some exercise while also traveling to where you need to be.
This saves time going to the gym later in the day. Many people struggle to figure out when they are going to get physical activity incorporated into their lives when they are always at work or running errands. Get exercise during your commutes so you can complete two tasks at once.
You’ll get to see the beauty of nature, too. Seeing something from the car window is not the same as smelling the flowers, sweating a little, and having sunshine on your face. These exercises fulfill many different important aspects of living a healthy lifestyle.
#2 – You Avoid Car Expenses
Driving is one of the most expensive things we do in life. Buying a car is just the first in a long line of purchases we make for our vehicles. The main one is putting gas in. With fuel prices hitting remaining high right now, it wouldn’t hurt to keep driving to a minimum.
Many people have even asked their employers for a hybrid model for their work schedule so they don’t have to pay to fill up as much from driving to the office. If you only drive when you absolutely need to, you’ll see how much money you save at the pump.
The less you drive, the fewer times you’ll have to go to the maintenance shop for a flat tire or a broken window. No matter how careful you are on the road, there are always unforeseen problems that occur. When this happens, the impact on your bank account can be catastrophic.
Insurance premiums can really be difficult for some families to pay. When you drive less, you become a lower-risk insurance customer. In some states, your insurance company will give you a discount on your rates if they see you have cut back on your driving. This is something many people who started working remotely during the pandemic found out.
Why do insurance rates go down with less driving, though? It’s simply a matter of safety. You are in some amount of danger every time you go on the highway. There is road rage to deal with. There are sometimes drunk drivers on the road. When you put yourself amongst these other people, you are at risk of getting into an accident no matter how hard you try to drive safely.
Staying off the road is the only way to guarantee that you won’t get into an accident. You just might find you’ll also be less stressed when you don’t have to battle traffic or poorly-maintained roads every day of your life.
#3 – Your Mental Health Might Get Better
Driving is one of the most stressful activities we do in life. As was already talked about, the act of getting behind the wheel so often is dangerous. Knowing you could have something bad happen to you while driving in busy traffic can lead to road rage, stress, and exhaustion.
If you cut out all of the hours you are behind in your car during the week, you might find that your mental health and overall mood improve. You will have time to do other things instead of driving. Some people skip breakfast in the morning because they have to save time for commuting.
Telecommuting instead means you can spend time with your family and get a bite to eat. We don’t realize how time-consuming driving is until the alternatives are thought out. Having some relaxation and me-time instead of driving is one of the best ways to make the driving experience better when it does happen.
#4 – You’ll Enjoy Driving More
Sometimes when we do something too much, it often takes the fun out of it. Driving is supposed to be liberating. It should be a feeling of freedom rather than entrapment. When we drive for hours every day, it becomes a chore.
When we drive once in a while, it becomes a nice way to spice up our day. We can connect with the reasons we originally found driving enjoyable.
Getting that childlike sense of wonder every time you turn on the engine is amazing. Adding in the physical and mental health benefits to the equation makes it clear that everyone should try to cut back on driving if they can. Your mood and your wallet will thank you.
Shawn Laib writes and researches for the insurance comparison site, Insurantly.com. He wants to help people understand the health and insurance benefits of driving less often.