I currently bus to work daily, but I wanted to figure out exactly how much that costs me (in both time and money) as compared to driving. Luckily, I have driven to work a few times recently, so I pulled the metrics on my car to figure out just how much that costs, giving me a nice basis of comparison.
If I bus to work, it takes me 55 minutes door-to-door each way: 10 minute walk to the bus from my home, 40 minute bus ride, and 5 minute walk from the bus to my office. As a University employee, my bus pass is free, so it doesn’t cost me anything out-of-pocket, only the time. During that 40 minutes, though, I can read and write, which is a fair advantage – it’s true, however, that if I were at home (say), I could use that time for anything, including writing if I chose.
If I drive, it takes me 31 minutes door-to-door each way: about 3 minutes walking and 28 minutes driving. Really, the only thing I can do while driving is possibly listen to an audio book (or short story), so my options for using the time are more limited, but it still bears mentioning. In terms of gas costs, the trek is 12.6 miles, and, in my current vehicle, that translates to approximately $1.02 each way (at 31.3 MPG). A parking pass at the office is an additional $55.00 a month, meaning that driving would cost me $55.00 * 12 / 52 / 4.5 + 2 * $1.02 = $4.86 / day
Lining that up, we have:
|Time Spent Walking||30 minutes/day (117 hours/year)||6 minutes/day (23.4 hours/year)|
|Time Spent In-Transit||80 minutes/day (312 hours/year)||56 minutes/day (218.4 hours/year)|
Supposing I don’t catch up on the exercise, I’m basically spending 48 minutes hours to save $4.86 per day. If instead, I decide that my health is important and catch up on the exercise (by, say, taking a 24 minute walk every work day, or just comparing the transit times) that comes out to 24 minutes spent to save $4.86 per day.
When I think about it at the daily level, it doesn’t seem like that much, but over the course of the year, the dollars definitely add up, while the hours… …Certainly seem a lot like they’ve been fueling my blog, at least…