A car

I don't feel like wasting words today, so I'll get straight to the point: life is exceedingly limited if you don't have a car.

These are excuses I've used in the past to justify my not having a car:

  • Public transport is convenient enough
  • I don't need big grocery shopping if there's small shops nearby that have what I need (this excuse kind of ceased to work after I moved to the UK)
  • I don't want to deal with foreign language paperwork needed for a car purchase (whilst I was in Japan)
  • Money
  • Lifestyle

The last is perhaps not exactly an excuse, but more of a consequence. People with cars go to different places than people without cars. There's some overlap between places, but in the end you're severely limiting your options if you don't have a car.

Here's what you can't do (or can only do less comfortably) without a car:

  • Going to a superstore outside of town for big grocery shopping.
  • Buying large things for your home at a DIY (online ordering just isn't a very good alternative if you're not at home to receive the delivery).
  • Picking people up from the airport or leave your car at the airport for a weekend trip.
  • Doing day trips to faraway places or places that don't have good public transport connections.
  • Not getting annoyed at people on public transport.

It is possible to live without a car. But you'll limit the places available to you. You can still go anywhere, and even if you pay for public transport and/or taxis, you 'll probably end up being cheaper off than by owning a car. Money is not the issue, time spent in/outside of your comfort zone is. This is why a car, still, even in car-unfriendly countries, is freedom.

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