Owning a Car Vs Using Rideshare

It is not a secret that buying, owning, and maintaining a car costs a significant amount of money. Especially now, when gas prices are high and continue to increase. What if you could avoid paying as much as you do right now? Even while still getting to where you need to go?

Many city dwellers can. In fact, many people from Chicago are already dumping their vehicles and becoming reliant on rideshare. Current research has shown that it is in fact cheaper to use services such as Uber and Lyft in cities including Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, among others.

However, some people are hesitant to use these services due to all of the negative news stories reporting violent crimes involving drivers of such services. However, some services such as Uber are introducing safety features to help riders feel more comfortable reaching someone in case of emergency. It also helps hold drivers accountable by creating a stronger sense of authority, of being watched.

There are many benefits to using these rideshare services in bigger cities. In bigger cities drivers tend to have to pay to park their vehicles in addition to other typical costs such as gas, repairs, affordable auto insurance, etc.

On the other hand, some reports say that the cost of using rideshare will not be cheaper than owning a car until 10 years from now. But, it just depends what is best for the individual budget. In fact, news sites have even developed calculators to see if ridesharing is beneficial to your budget. Another detail that the calculator includes is the cost of time. A detail often overlooked by the monetary costs of things, but a detail equally, if not more valuable to people.

Additionally, there are options to “pool” with other rideshare users to eliminate even more costs. This option is not always the best depending on the intentions of your trip, but can be especially helpful for the commute to work, for example.

The increase in regular rideshare users creates another problem, unfortunately. The amount of cars picking up passengers has disrupted the flow of traffic in certain regions of the city, especially in Chicago. They have even increased fines of traffic violations.

The tickets and gas prices also seem to be turning away some drivers as they pay out of pocket for each item, in addition to possible rideshare insurance. But, drivers who discover that there is a growth in the city population using their services may attract attention to drivers hoping to make more money.

This then creates an issue for rideshare companies who are already struggling to pay their workers. Companies such as Uber who are providing benefits to European drivers, the costs will not go down anytime soon for them.

Overall, it may benefit the individual to utilize rideshare instead of owning a personal vehicle. But, there are many factors to take into account before switching over, both personally and the industry in whole. Rideshare is undoubtedly a hot topic at this time and does not appear to be dying down anytime soon.

Seniors And Loss Of Driver’s License

One of the biggest hits to a senior’s psyche is the loss of a driver’s license. This is because having a driver’s license and car gives us a sense of freedom, freedom to come and go as we please. Even if we don’t go anywhere, knowing we can is enough. Imagine if you lost your driver’s license? How would you deal with that? That’s how a senior feels too, only it’s worse because they know they may never get it back. This thought can lead to depression, anger, and a devastating blow to self-confidence, self-worth, and identity.

When hiring a caregiver make sure they know that when they drive the client’s car that the loss of the driver’s license isn’t as big of a deal as it would be if they felt stuck, unable to get out or go anywhere. After a while elderly folks become comfortable, happy, even animated in their conversations, enjoying being driven around or being “chauffeured” as they like to say.

An acquaintance of mine in Camarillo who collaborated with me to write this article has a tragic story. Years ago his grandmother pulled out of community pool parking lot – pulled right in front a dump truck, she died instantly. The dump truck driver was so distraught he came to the funeral to apologize. The family forgave him, as he cried saying how sorry he was that it happened, even though everyone knew it was not his fault.

A friend of his took the keys away from their father because while they were driving around together the father stopped in the middle of the freeway to point to something on a mountain, forgetting he was driving on the freeway, and almost killed them both, and another sibling. The father was devastated he lost use of the car, they probably saved his life and he lived another 10-years to see his grandchildren finish college.

We know of so many stories like these, but sometimes the DMV or court won’t take away the license until there is a horrible accident or too many moving violations. There are far too many stories of seniors accidentally hitting the gas instead of the brake and running into a building, tree ditch, pole or pedestrian.

Due to liability issues, it’s important to find caregivers who can drive clients in the client’s car for insurance purposes. This tends to work out well for all concerned. And, always remember to treat this sensitive issue very carefully and with understanding.

Summer Roadtrip Safety Essentials For Your Trunk

When you’re heading out on the road for a road trip this summer, it’s important to make sure you are prepared for the summer temperatures and also for any possible emergencies. Here’s a quick list of essential items you should have in your trunk before you leave.

Flashlights

Yes, it’s summer, but it still gets dark at night. Flashlights are an essential item to have in your trunk whether you are on a roadtrip or not. Nowadays, the best flashlights use LED’s, which are smaller and brighter, perfect for keeping in your trunk for any roadway emergencies. Also consider getting a solar powered or hand crank powered flashlight. Solar powered is great for summer as there are more light hours during the day in order to charge the light up. Hand crank power is great should you get stuck at night and have no batteries for your lights.

Food/Water

Your first essential item is food and water. Buy some jugs of water, rather than small water bottles. A jug will be easier to store in your trunk and also be easier to use should you need to pour water on a fire or use water for your car. You can also drink out of the jug if needed or fill up your smaller water bottles with it. For food, instead of snack foods that might get crushed, grab some cases of protein bars when they are on sale. Protein bars will be individually wrapped and even if they get crushed, will still be edible. Protein bars will also be able to take the heat, unless you go for chocolate covered bars.

Emergency and Repair Supplies

For if you get stuck on the road and break down, having essential emergency and repair supplies will come in handy. Make sure you have things like a jack, jumper cables, spare tire, shovel, flares, first aid kit, fire extinguisher, blanket, tarp, road flares, duct tape and knife.

Electronics Essentials

Having a cell phone can be a life saver in many situations, but if the charge runs out and your car battery dies, it’s not of much use. Make sure to keep a power bank handy. There are even solar powered power banks available. Also make sure to have a regular battery powered radio. A solar or battery powered fan would also come in handy should your air conditioning go out at some point.