Perhaps you’ve just assumed that you actually need a car, or that having one on campus is truly the best choice for you. Before you make your final decision, there are three key factors you should consider: cost, reliability, and alternatives.
(And that’s assuming you’ve paid cash for your car and nothing ever goes wrong!)
If you don’t have enough cash to get a decent car, you may end up paying just as much when you add up all of the repair bills you’ll be seeing. And unlike when you’re at home sweet home, you don’t have your mom or dad there to take you to and from the shop, or let you borrow their vehicle for the day. Never mind the great deal you got at your neighbor’s garage. You’re on your own, now, and you don’t even know which mechanic you can trust. And there are plenty out there that just love to rip off gullible college students (or so it may seem).
Then consider your trips home for the holidays. How many miles will you be driving? What if something happens when you’re half way there? Cost and convenience are certainly things to consider, but your safety can be at stake, as well.
Depending on your school of choice and the area it’s in, you may have quite a few more options besides bumming rides off your roommate that really doesn’t smell too sweet. From commuter trains to buses, taxi cabs, and even bicycles, you can get pretty creative when you need to get from Point A to Point B. In some areas, renting a car might be an option, but some places are pretty difficult unless you’re over 24. And for those trips home for the weekends, it might actually be fun to get to know other students who are from your home town.
Not having a vehicle might just end up being the best financial and social choice that you can make during your college years.