Home Arts and Life Cars, for better or worse? The millennial perspective

Cars, for better or worse? The millennial perspective

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Having a car is a rite of passage for teens and young adults in the millennial generation. We turned 16, we earned our driver’s licenses, we drove our parents’ cars — but what if we didn’t?

More and more young adults are finding that they don’t want the responsibility and burden of owning a car, according to Tony Dutzik and Jeff Inglis of the Frontier Group.

Some don’t want to further harm the environment. Others don’t want to pay for a vehicle and maintenance. For Kate Dalley, 26, a master’s student in the business program, the reason she doesn’t drive is simple. 

Why Drive?: With so many options for to get around, students no longer drive cars like they used to. Tamiracle Williams | The Crow's Nest
Why Drive?: With so many options for to get around, students no longer drive cars like they used to. Tamiracle Williams | The Crow’s Nest

“Since I am so close to work, I started riding my bike to work and quickly realized it is actually faster to ride than drive and find parking,” said Dalley.

Living in downtown St. Petersburg means many people don’t want or need to use cars. Luckily, there are numerous options for residents and visitors to get around.

They include the Downtown Looper trolley for local transportation, PSTA buses, rental bikes, electric taxis and more.

Brandon Potoczek, 24, is a senior studying interdisciplinary studies. He said that he’s happy to limit the use of his car to benefit the environment.

“I feel good cutting down on my carbon footprint,” said Potoczek. “I have been driving automatic and 5-speeds since I was 15. Living in St. Petersburg and being able to walk everywhere has afforded me the luxury of not needing a car.”

Ride-sharing apps like Lyft and Uber make commuting without a car easier. For the price of a minimum fare plus mileage, carless students can summon a driver to pick them up.

According to Lyft, the company completed 163 million trips in 2016. By comparison, Uber announced last year that it completes 40 million trips a month. Using Lyft and Uber often can get costly, though, especially at night when the service is most popular.

Students looking to get around for free can turn to public transport. USF St. Petersburg students may use PSTA buses and the Downtown Looper trolleys as much as they want with a valid student ID.

Having options other than driving means that millennials can save money and put it towards other essentials.

Past generations have relied on cars to get around, but thanks to technological advancements millennials have more options. The possibilities for transport are pretty much endless.

For further information on how to use a USF student ID for free bus and trolley fare, visit http://www.usfsp.edu/blog/2014/10/03/free-ride-usfsp-partners-with-psta/

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