We all know cycling is more fun than driving. But you need to know the wallet side, too.
How much does it cost to own a car and drive it? On average... 52.2 cents/mile!
That comes to more than $7k per year for the average *new* vehicle.
"The expenses for a small sedan averaged $6,219 a year, compared to $9,373 for a large sedan. Driving 15,000 miles a year in a minivan costs $8,639 compared to $9,997 for the same distance in an SUV." - detnews.com
Ummm... let's look at a bike and ALL (and I do mean all) the accessories and extras you could possible want/buy. I'm going to be generous. Clearly, you could spend more, but we are only commuting here.
Solid commuter bike - Jamis Coda Comp - $800
Lights/Bags/Racks - $300
Lock - $60
Helmet - $150
Cycling computer - $30
BUS Pass - (Most expensive one I could find from RTD) - $1620
Apparel for all conditions - $500
Extra food from burning all the calories - $1200
But that is for the first year. The next year, you don't have to buy another bike, or accessories or clothing.
That is an easy way to save over $2000 per year (being completely not thrifty with your money).
If you live close to where you work, then the RTD Pass is unnecessary. Perhaps you already have a bike. That means you could save nearly $6000 a year by not owning an automobile. Craziness. Now multiply that by lets say a safe 30 year career... That is somewhere between $60,000 and $180,000 during your working years. That is a lot of extra work for decadence.