A Day in the Life: Driving to the subway


As noted elsewhere [1], [2], I am becoming engaged in the “one tonne-challenge.” Not withstanding my commitment, I will continue to eat pumpernickel.

I drive to the subway each day. It is 7 km from my home. I average 12.5 litres/100 km fuel consumption. This means I burn 0.875 litres each way or 1.75 litres return. The price of gas has been quite volatile lately. News [3] of $2.00/litre were circulating earlier in the week, but I have not seen anything higher than 105.9/litre. However, my sophisticated, German-engineered driving machine consumes only the best: premium which runs around 114.9/litre.

So, this means it costs me $2.00 in fuel each day. The running costs add another $0.70 to my trek for a total of $2.70 ( $0.08 depreciation and $0.02 for maintenance costs) . If I were to include other ownership costs such as financing and insurance that would add another $5.00 / day. However, as I assume that I will own a car regardless I will not factor in these costs. If I were trying to justify having a car in the first place then I would.

Cash fare through my local transit is $2.25 each way or $4.50 return. A monthly pass is $78.00 which works out to approximately $3.50 per day. It seems the economic break-even point is about $1.60/litre. When that inflection point is reached, I’ll have to gauge what premium I’m willing to pay for other factors: winter is coming and I don’t relish standing at a bus stop in -20C weather.


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