The cost of going green.

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tighterse
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The cost of going green.

Postby tighterse » Thu Feb 21, 2013 7:21 pm

I'm off to the hielans next week to visit an old friend. 400 mile round trip mainly involving the dreaded A9 but also the last 30 miles on unclassified roads.If I drive, and I don't plan to, I could do the trip in 4 hours each way at a cost of around £40 - £45 for diesel. But I have a bus pass. Local bus to park and ride, express bus to Glasgow, express bus to Inverness, local bus to Conon Bridge and the last 30 miles by car (no buses in that part of the world). All going well something like 8 hours.

However with NO bus pass and using pre-booking on the express buses the fares would be just over £40.

This compares well with the fuel cost at 60 MPG. But if 60 mpg is improbable and 30 more like it the bus is considerably cheaper - UNTIL YOU ARE TAKING A FAMILY. With 2 adults and 2 children bus travel is prohibitive compared with the cost of motoring. Rail travel is even more expensive and offers fewer destinations. This is forgetting the sheer convenience of using a car for sightseeing and visiting.

I don't offer any solutions. Some will say subsidise bus fares, but we already subsidise railways and pay through the nose for it. How do we force operators to provide regular bus services in remote areas? Should we be asking taxpayers to pump more money into transport services? If this worked how would the loss of taxation income from fuel duty and VAT be made up? - more taxation.

Any suggestions?
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dancingbear84
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Re: The cost of going green.

Postby dancingbear84 » Thu Feb 21, 2013 7:43 pm

I kind of know what you mean here. I live in a semi remote rural location. By semi remote I mean about 2 miles from a main road and 3 miles from a town. I once foolishly considered ditching the car in favour of public transport. It was a farce, my commute is around 17 miles and 35 minutes each way. By public transport I had to
1. Walk to the main road
2. Get a bus 11 miles to a town with a rail link.
3. Get a train 10 miles in the wrong direction
4. Change trains to get a train 2 miles from my destination
5. Get a bus to somewhere a bit closer to my place of work.
6. Walk the remaining distance.

Total journey time 3.5 hours

We have used to train as a family to visit London, and probably would to visit any city to be honest as the kids travel for £1 at the age they are now. By the time you add diesel, wear and tear, congestion charge, parking, agro and stress of city driving it isn't worth it. But my first instinct whenever traveling is the car for long distance.

Locally though there are no real answers, cheap is not practical. Practical is not cheap. Rural living has it's up and downs.
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frv
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Re: The cost of going green.

Postby frv » Thu Feb 21, 2013 9:52 pm

I'm not sure what the answer is. We need better public transport but there are certain situations where it just doesn't work. We are going to London, 5UP end of March and I shall drive 10 miles and then catch train using Friends & Family railcard. However when we go to Devon in July, I will drive as there is no other practical option, subsidy or not.
I've got no chance using public transport on my commute. I've done it twice in heavy snow but it just takes soooooo long!
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dancingbear84
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Re: The cost of going green.

Postby dancingbear84 » Thu Feb 21, 2013 10:49 pm

Gordon in Devon public transport is provided by the villager with the biggest horse and cart who has not had too much cider that he can't tell which end of the horse to fasten to the cart.

In seriousness though they try, but without the populous to support a network it will eventually fail.
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frv
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Re: The cost of going green.

Postby frv » Fri Feb 22, 2013 8:03 am

:lol: nice one Ben :D
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(Retired) '06 Honda FR-V 2.2 i-CTDi - Best/longest tank: 67.92mpg (+51.6%) / 815.5 miles.

Aimeric
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Re: The cost of going green.

Postby Aimeric » Tue Apr 15, 2014 7:23 pm

Driving 400 miles will probably cost you more than £40. It sounds like you're only counting the price of gasoline here.

With my car, for the 5000-so miles I drive per year (yes, I don't drive much :)), when I figure in the costs of road taxes, insurance, car maintenance and depreciation, I come to about 50p per mile. That works out at £200 for a trip such as yours.

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Borked_Turbo
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Re: The cost of going green.

Postby Borked_Turbo » Thu Apr 17, 2014 12:00 pm

I understand completely, I try to use public transport now and then but it is prohibitively expensive compared to using my car which has already been paid for by me+the convenience of being able to stop and go anywhere any time.(a must for carrying children and very old people!)
I live in a very rural area which upgraded from 2 buses a day to 4 which made a huge difference to those without cars being able to get into work and back. and for places like inner cities (London.Glasgow,Edinburgh) travelling to and from the suburbs is so much simpler on a bus.
That being said, buses and trains are shockingly expensive for what they are, typically overcrowded and late, but thats privatisation at work.

Oh and family day out on the cycle tracks of the highlands? lol try taking your family and bikes onto public transport, nope.... back of the estate, job done and still I manage to get my costs below 10p a mile.
meh, im going onto a bit of a rant with no real point so ill stop there.

Anyway
As for the A9 having driven from Inverness to Edinburgh 3 times in the past 2 weeks (well actually the breakers yard in Inverkeithing so just to the bridge but its all A9 honest!), hypermiling almost all the way it hasnt been so bad as It was compared to the winter runs I used to have to do, still some crazy overtaking happening there :)
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MikeMarsUK
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Re: The cost of going green.

Postby MikeMarsUK » Wed Apr 30, 2014 2:45 pm

Driving 400 miles will probably cost you more than £40. It sounds like you're only counting the price of gasoline here.

With my car, for the 5000-so miles I drive per year (yes, I don't drive much :)), when I figure in the costs of road taxes, insurance, car maintenance and depreciation, I come to about 50p per mile. That works out at £200 for a trip such as yours.
I think your per-mile cost is dominated by the effect of being a low-mileage driver, i.e., the annual fixed costs will be killing your per-mile costs.

In my case, expenses over the last year:

* 20k miles in the last year
* £328 for the MOT & long-life service (for 20k miles)
* £45 interim roadworthiness check, handbrake adjustment
* £300 'modified car' specialist insurance (14y ncb) ... I find modified car insurance can actually be cheaper than normal insurance sometimes
* £158 tyres 2xMichelin Energy Saver+
* £43 headlight bulbs + fitting from halfords
* £35 car tax (<120 g/km CO2)
* Depreciation - sod all (it's a 2002 car, currently at 166k miles)
* Average fuel efficiency a little over 70mpg (OK this has dropped quite a bit since my 75mpg days, not sure why)
= £909 + ~£1700 fuel = £2610 or so

13p/mile

Zero breakdowns since I bought it in 2010 @ 107k (excluding the time I accidentally locked myself out of the car, with the keys in the ignition). I pro-actively changed the battery in 2012.
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