In Sept of 2005, I wrote
, (sarcastically, of course,) "So, gas is three dollars a gallon in the US. Of course, Europeans have been paying the equivalent of over five dollars a gallon for years, but everything's closer together in Europe, so it really doesn't matter."
Today, gas is over $4 a gallon in the US, and climbing. I read that gas is about $8.67 in France.
Also in Sept, 2005, I wrote
, more seriously, "When today's cars become prohibitively expensive to repair in ten years, what will people of 'lesser means' drive?"
Today I'm hearing more and more stories about people not being able to afford the gas to drive to work and back. Let's say your car gets 30 MPG and you live 30 miles from work. In Sept '05, when gas was $3 a gallon, it cost you about $120 a month to commute to work. Today it would cost you about $160 a month, or $40 more. Are you getting at least $40 per month more than you did in '05?
Now consider a single mom who also drives 30 miles to work, but she drives an old clunker that gets 15 MPG. In '05 it cost her $240 a month, and now it costs her $320 - eighty dollars a month more. Let's just hope her boss gave her a big raise recently to help her cover her transportation costs. (By the way, in Sept '04 it cost her about $86.50 a month for gas.)
So what's the mom to do? Well, she can find a job closer to home. Or she can move her family closer to her work. Or she can trade her old clunker in for a more cost-effective hybrid car that gets 50 MPG.
Or CAN she?