Calculating how much you can save by taking public transportation

Debbie Motokane
Debbie Motokane
Gavina Gonsalvez
Gavina Gonsalvez

By Mari-Ela David - bio | email

HONOLULU (KHNL) - How much would you save if you took public transportation versus driving your car? More than $8,000 per year, according to the American Public Transportation Association.

AAA says that figure is a little misleading.

A recent report shows Honolulu drivers can save up to $8,703 per year, just by using public transportation.

But AAA says, realistically, the only way you can save that much is by giving up your car entirely.

"No, I couldn't give but I would if possible, I would catch the bus or use the less expensive gas car," said Debbie Motokane.

Based on the notion that many bus riders also choose to own a car, AAA says a more accurate figure is between $2,212 to $3,318 in transit savings per year.

That's if you drive between 10,000 to 15,000 miles per year in a mid-size car.

"That's a few thousand dollars that you can save. I mean who wouldn't want to save $3,000. You could use it for something else actually," Gavina Gonsalvez, a bus rider.

To get a personalized figure of how much you would save by taking the bus, AAA has released this brochure.

Inside is a worksheet you can use to figure out your total driving costs. There is a price to pay for taking public transportation - a longer commute.

"I don't mind waiting. It's kind of relaxing. I don't have to deal with other cars on the road and everything," said Motokane.

With record-high gas prices, and growing congestion, many commuters say taking public transportation is a no-brainer.

City leaders say Hawaii has the 4th highest per capita ridership in the nation.