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Save the world, or just save 20 bucks a week?

July 20, 2009
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I’m looking to start commuting by bike pretty soon here.  Within the next month I’d say. Initially I’m going to be taking the bus for a good portion of the way (read: most of it) but that’s because my route to work is almost 18 miles.

I’ve determined that I can pick up the bus about 1.5 miles from my house, so I’ll ride to the bus stop.  The bus finally will drop me at the depot, which gives me another ~3 mile ride into work.  I normally spend $30 a week in gas just commuting and an unlimited weekly bus pass is $9.  So, I’ll save $20 per week right there.

An alternative to the depot is getting dropped at the “park and ride” lot, which would extend that 3 miles to closer to 5.  My plan is to slowly use the bus for less and less of the journey.  I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to totally eliminate it though as there is a section of the commute that is 8 lane highway (well, really 4 lane but it’s an interchange with another 4 lane highway and is ludicrously dangerous – I see wrecks there weekly) and can only be avoided by adding about 5 more miles to the already 18 mile commute.  While I’m not averse to riding the distance, I just don’t have that kind of time unless I want to leave my house at 5:30am.  Ben Franklin would do it, but not I.  Not yet at least.

Why commute by bike?  For me it’s mostly about saving money and getting in better shape.  I don’t really have any altruistic motives of saving the planet or anything like that, though I enjoy doing my part.

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