“A car is a luxury in China.” I’ve been reading about that a lot lately. What we take for granted in North America, the Chinese are still revelling in the “newness” of having a private car. Because if you’ve taken a peek at China’s history, ownership wasn’t always a popular thing under Mao.
Now though, it’s becoming a regular status symbol. In North America though, a car is also a luxury. I don’t own one, because that’s what it is. If you have legs, and are able to take public transit than why own a car? Except, not everyone thinks that way. If you say you don’t drive in my city, you may as well say that you flew in on a rocket ship. And driving a junker is just one step up. Everyone wants an SUV, a BMW and a, I don’t know, I don’t drive, let’s just say a really nice car.
Let’s break the cost down to see why China has it right, not North America when it comes to cars. Prices are per month.
(Editors note: Prices may be off the top of my head, and coming from my imagination, and may be subject to changes from city to city).
Car: Between 10-30 000 (average). Ok, so this isn’t a monthly cost, let’s say, payment of $300 a month.
Gas: $200 (varies greatly)
Parking: In my city, it’s insane. Between $20-30 a day without a parking spot. Let’s just say, $200.
Speeding tickets: $100 (Unless you’re one of the guys I date, than increase to $250).
So monthly costs: WHAT!!!!!!! Over a grand? I must have made a mistake there somewhere. With that amount of money I could do Mexico and back for a month. That could get me a plane ticket to pretty much anywhere in the world, or pay for a few months of beach living in a warmer climate. I could make a long list of all the things that I could but with this money.
There will be no way I’m giving up travel anytime soon so I can buy a car. It’s a nice though, but trading in getting there a few minutes early, or not having anyone fall asleep on your shoulder is simply not worth it.
I can’t wait to see what the Chinese take on this matter is : )