Is it Worth it to Drive to School?


Wilber S. Paiz

Taft's student parking lot

Studies on data from car usage and gas consumption, as well as national resources of automobile research, reveals that driving a car to school might not be the wisest choice you could make.

It’s almost like deja vu, you see one of your peers in an expensive, luxurious car and you wonder if you could be the same, believe me, I’ve seen it happen quite frequently. So you go out of your way and save some money, maybe borrow some, and buy one, easy right? You feel accomplished, you feel comfortable and say “Hey, I made the right choice, driving is great”, but then, slowly yet surely, that old car, the only one you could afford, is progressing towards annoyance, towards suffering, for your wallet that is. But hey, it’s only money right, you can’t possibly be wasting that much, or are you?

According to Jack Morris, a student at Taft High School that is a car driver, the costs for insurance for his Cadillac goes up to around 1200 dollars annually, systematically, that is way too much for a student to pay, that’s not all since his car is old he has many problems. For example, he would have to pay a total of 3200 dollars annually to cover for repairs, including brakes, air compressors, breaks, oil leaks, and so on. Including the cost of gas, he pays up about 5000 dollars annually on his car.

Surely there must be an advantage of driving? Yes, of course, if you live far away from school, don’t really care about the money, and would rather have commodity and “freedom” while driving, then you will probably want to drive to school. And that’s okay, many people buy cars for that same reason.

Wilber S. Paiz

What’s bad about driving is the damage done by its fossil fuel emissions into the atmosphere, which harms us all to some degree. For example, according to The Union of Concerned Scientists, the use of fossil fuels in transportation contributes almost 30 percent of all US global warming emissions, and we have come to use cars often, even if unnecessary.

We must all search for alternatives to this issue, bicycles, for example, are not only cost-effective as it is a low one-payment purchase (with small costs for repairs later on if necessary), but it’s definitely better for the environment, and yourself, since is a great form of exercise, which many people lack in their daily routine.

If bicycles are not speed-effective (which I highly doubt, since you can avoid traffic), then public transportation might be a better option, as the average student comes to pay no more than 4 dollars per travel, both to and from school. As their capacity is great, they can transport various individuals for the cost of one trip.

In conclusion, vehicles are only “worth” driving if you can commit to their expenditures, as well as if you don’t live close by, and can’t arrive on time on public transport or bicycles.