Learn How I Save $500 A Month

February 4, 2013 | By | 8 Replies More

White Mercedez

It’s been a year since I owned a car. The vehicle in the pic above wasn’t mine, but it was the same color. I only had $1826 to pay off on my car loan. I sold it for $2500 and made a few bucks.

It would’ve taken me seven months to pay off the remaining balance if I kept the car. Making the monthly payment wasn’t a problem at all. After all, I’m still working full time.

I live in a city where public transportation isn’t as frequent as in San Francisco, Chicago, or New York, but I manage to get around.

So, why would I get rid of my car a year in advance of starting a RTW trip?

I made the commitment to take a RTW trip. I just have to set a start date which I’m working on.

In 1519, Spanish conquistador Hernán Cortés and his army landed in Mexico to begin their conquest of the Aztec Empire. Legend has it that he burn the ships they came in on. Cortés wanted his men to understand that their only option was to win or die. The Spanish army whom was outnumbered fought with determination and eventually conquered the Aztecs in 1521.

I burned my ship. I got rid of my car. Taking the bus and walking everyday reminds myself of the goal I’m working towards.

My monthly car expenses were $250 for the loan, $100 insurance, and $150 for gas. Plus, there’s maintenance costs.

Now that I don’t own a car, I have an extra $500 a month in my pocket which helps pay off credit card debt faster and save money for traveling.

If I need a car, I just rent one. I like that I get to test drive different cars. I use Priceline or Hotwire to find deals. I’ve rented cars for less than $30 a day.

My credit card has a rental car damage protection so I’m covered if it gets totaled. Sometimes I get liability insurance to cover passengers.

I’ve gone green. I’m doing my part to reduce carbon emissions. I also lost 20 lbs in over the past 10 months since I walk more.

Living without a car is not bad at all. I actually enjoy it because its one less thing to think about. Most importantly, I’m saving more money faster.

  • What measures are you willing to take to make your dreams come true?


Category: Planning

Comments (8)

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  1. amy says:

    Getting rid of the car is a great way to save money and it’s something I wish we could have done when saving for our trip. Unfortunately, while I can easily get the train and tube around London, Andrew has to cover a longer distance to work so he needs a car. Now Andrew does cycle to and from work a few days a week to save in fuel costs, which helps. It’s exciting to see that you’re working on a leaving date by the way!
    amy recently posted…Savings Accounts Comparison: Making the Most of our Travel MoneyMy Profile

  2. Andrew says:

    I sold my car yesterday, we’re leaving for New Zealand in just over a week, I would have found it pretty difficult to not have my car at all over the last few years but I have managed to cycle to/from work quite often managing to save me £6 per day (it all adds up!). If you’re forced to use other methods of transport you will, it’s just making that initial change I guess. Good luck saving for your trip.

    • That’s great news! I wish you both the best. If there is a will, there is a way. When I first sold my car it felt awkward. My coworkers noticed me walking to the office from the bus stop in the mornings and asked if everything was okay with me. It raises a little suspicion, but I told them I became a minimalist. :)

  3. I’ve been without a car for a few years and you can really live dirt cheap when you go that route. Insurance costs are so high, and you save a lot by not buying gas too.
    Scott – Quirky Travel Guy recently posted…My 12 favorite sights from the world’s largest aquariumMy Profile

  4. Agness says:

    Sometimes getting rid of a car and using local transport can save you a lot of money. We are in China right now and we go to work by bike, it’s so cheap and much healthier :)
    Agness recently posted…5 Reasons Why Oslo Did NOT Live Up To My ExpectationsMy Profile

    • Riding a bike is healthier and I try to ride as often possible. The city I live in has a high rate of accidents with motorcycles and bikes so I only ride short distances. It’s a great way to go green.

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