My wife and I recently got rid of our car, and it's great. Took about six months to make the leap, but now it's finalized.
One person's commute is short enough to walk/bike, the other person doesn't commute. We walk and/or bike to most places.
We kept the car parked for six months with "storage insurance" just in case. All I had to do was to reactivate the insurance in case of emergency. Didn't happen. Not once. Not even close. Even with terrible weather, we found ways not to have to drive.
At the beginning we took a bunch of Ubers & Lyfts, and now we never need one. We've learned the routes and ways and travel times and we walk and bicycle to most places.
When required, there's cheap mass transit, and we can take the bike on it for greater range.
Beyond that, there are friends and family willing to give us a ride if we're going to some place in common, there's Uber/Lyft at all hours, and there are many car rentals available.
The other day I was looking at car rentals for future weekend trips, and a subcompact with unlimited miles could be had for $23/day (plus tax). In case of hauling required, UHAUL/Home Depot will rent you a van or pickup for $20 for a few hours (4?).
Compare this vs. the $500+ per month of car ownership (payments, depreciation, insurance, maintenance, parking, etc.)
Before ditching the car our insurance was around $900/year even with below average mileage (large truck can cause large damage to people and property).
Now Visa/Mastercard takes care of collision/comprehensive insurance for the rental car itself (one of the many advantages of a zero-balance credit card.)
We've also kept liability insurance for rentals ("non-owner insurance"), which is $100 per year for us. This is a lot cheaper than getting liability insurance from the rental place ($25/day from midnight to midnight: renting a car for 24h from noon to noon, you'd pay $50 in liability insurance $30 in collision without credit card coverage--a rotten deal.)
We might get rid of non-owner insurance later, if we end up never
renting a car. But it's nice to have backup for now while we get used to a carless life in a car-centric place.
Before making the leap I found the book "How to Live Well Without a Car"... somewhere in the blog? or this forum? Where was it? Oh yes, here: https://earlyretirementextreme.com/how- ... money.html
(see Robyn's comment--thanks so much Robyn!).
Anyway, the author goes into great detail on how to make it work, even in very car-centric places (he was living in St. Louis at the time).
That book (published 2006) is now outdated because back then there was no Uber, taxis were scarce in many American cities, Google Maps was underdeveloped, bus lines had no GPS apps to let you know when they were coming, etc. Also, e-scooters were garbage and e-bikes were probably in prototype phase. Nowadays it's even easier to be car-free. Not that I've needed an Uber/Lyft for months now, but should I need one, I know it's there.
I've been looking at "best value car buying" lately as a kind of intellectual exercise/consumer porn, because my family no longer needs to own a motor vehicle. This is how I started reading this thread. But really, we live better without it. Sometimes we go past traffic jams in our bicycles and we laugh at the mess.
Anyway, definitely no car for me and here's hoping more people can be car-free as well.