Because cars are the norm for most Americans, we tend to forget the cost of transportation when we consider our cost of living. Even for a person who owns their vehicle, every trip costs money.
The families of some older adults are seeking alternatives to their loved ones owning a vehicle as vision, hearing and other problems impact their ability to drive.
How Much Does Transportation Cost?
In 2016, AAA estimated the annual cost to own and drive a car ranged from $6,579 for a small sedan to $10,492 for a large sedan. That figure includes:
- Fuel (estimated at $2.13 a gallon)
- License, Registration, Taxes
- Finance Charges (5-year loan)
That figure doesn’t take into account unexpected costs, such as
- Accidents that aren’t your fault
- Rental car if your vehicle needs extensive repairs
- Repair of luxury electronics
- Parking tickets and traffic violations
- Parking permits or fees
It also doesn’t include the time spent washing the car, doing an oil change, scraping snow off the car and driveway in the winter, or the cost of the garage.
Alternatives to Owning a Car
There are, of course, alternatives to owning a car. In a city with really good public transportation, the bus or train may be options. Of course, as any commuter discovers, getting to your destination always takes longer than it would if you drove.
In a small town, residents can walk or bike to most destinations. You won’t, however, be able to carry your groceries home on a bike.
Some people depend on friends or family to drive them, but that can get old fast. Most of us don’t want to constantly be asking someone else to take time out of their day.
Transportation at a Senior Living Community
One of the perks of living in a retirement or senior living community is that most transportation is provided. At The Esquiline, we provide regular trips for shopping, as well as outings to local attractions.
We offer daily Mass, weekly Protestant services and morning prayer in the garden. Also available is our Pastoral Care team, which offers Taizé prayer, retreats and speakers. The Esquiline is the only retirement living community located on the grounds of a national Catholic shrine.
Doctors, podiatrists, massage therapists and medical specialists frequently visit on campus to provide customized services to patients who are residents. Residents can visit the nurse at our Wellness Resource Center with questions and health problems so there’s no need to leave The Esquiline.
Residents can request trips to local doctor appointments or one-on-one local trips for any reason for a small fee. For example, if your parent wants to visit you in Belleville, Fairview Heights, and O’Fallon, and you can’t pick them up, all they have to do is request a ride.
As people grow older, travel, especially in the Midwest where weather can be dangerous, becomes a problem. Safety must be balanced with convenience. The Esquiline gives residents all the advantages of driving without the potential danger.
We provide residents a continuum of care—from independent living to assisted living to skilled nursing. If you’d like to learn more about all the amenities we provide residents, call 618-394-6400 or 800-533-6279 or contact us online.