Clean Transport

Published on February 18th, 2013 | by Chelsea


Public Transport Riders Save Big Money As Gas Prices Increase

February 18th, 2013 by  

Charge up those metro passes because the savings from riding public transport can equal big bucks during this time of gas price increases.

The American Public Transport Association (APTA) calculates savings at $826 a month for taking mass transit versus owning and driving a car.

APTA has listed the top 20 cities with the highest public transit ridership and used the average cost for a monthly unreserved parking space in a downtown business district with the average cost of driving formula. APTA based the formula on the cost of gas, maintenance, tires, insurance, license registration, depreciation, and finance charges. To calculate gas costs, the formula used the 23.1 miles per gallon of a mid-size auto at $3.604 per gallon based on the price of gas on February 12, 2013. The metro pass price was passed on the average monthly cost for an unlimited pass.

The biggest monthly saving goes to New York transit riders, with a savings of $1,225 a month. Riding public transport in San Francisco and Boston also saves more than $1,000 a month.

More and more Americans are jumping on mass transit because of the savings of time and money. If buses and trains aren’t your thing, a recent study has indicated that walkers and cyclists enjoy their commutes significantly more than drivers, so there are any number of reasons to ditch the car.

Source: American Public Transportation Association

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About the Author

is a former newspaper reporter who has spent the past few years teaching English in Poland, Finland and Japan. When she wasn't teaching or writing, Chelsea was traveling Europe and Asia, sampling spicy street food along the way.

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  • dynamo.joe

    I don’t have anything in particular against buses, but you have to admit it is wildly unfeasible for many americans.

    I just figured out how long it would take me to get to work. I came up with 2hrs if I travel the initial 1/4 mile and final 3 miles by bicycle. Or I could just drive for 25 minutes.

    Parking, as it is most businesses is free.

    The 3hr/day loss in my free time negates any reasonable increase in my spendable income, even given the advent of book readers, smart phones, etc.

    • you’re in SE Colorado, right? not surprised.

      but huge portions of the US population do live in large cities with good transit options. can even be good in small towns. depends on specifics of the town and your location.

      and, of course, the usefulness (or not) of time on transit depends on the individual and how much they can (and would like) to do on a tablet or smartphone.

      • dynamo.joe

        I’d call it south central Colorado, but that’s a nit.

        The usefulness of public transportation is so dependent on population density. Cities, primarily in the west, that grew up after the advent of the car and suburbanization will always be at a disadvantage compared to places like NY and Boston which developed when everyone had to be within walking distance of work.

  • Joe

    OMG!! Chelsea, please repent of your God less atheism and renounce this evil pact with socialism. lol

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