Car logbook

I looked into the viability of taking the train to Toronto rather than flying.

It would cost about $650, $300 one-way, about double the typical $250 to $400 round-trip flight; and the trip takes 2 days of travel one-way.

It looks like renting a car for a week (for a trip to Calgary, say) would cost about $250. I could rent a car for 5 weeks/year for the cost of registration. (costs much more if you pick up from the airport, for some reason.)

Let’s review the TCO I have to work with.

Say I spend $6,000 in depreciation every 5 years = $1200/year. Registration is about $1400/year. I spend about $60 in gas every month, so another $750/y. And then maintenance; so far, I’ve easily spent over $2000 in 2 years, but Google says average maintenance for a mazda3 is about $500/y. Parking is $1080/year.

1200+1400+750+500 = 4930 / year.

I could take 125x $40 round-trip taxi rides a year, i.e. twice a year, and still break even. And this doesn’t factor in less quantifiable factors that I mention above. Also, I could potentially rent my parking spot.

otoh, that’s “only” 400/mo. only 20% of my non-house disposable income.

Let’s note some use cases for my car and potential alternatives.

  • Getting to work promptly during normal weather

  • Grocery shopping
    – need insulated bag for frozen stuff and big cart. Otherwise should be fine.

  • Going to Greenbryre for social.
    – 30 minute bike ride, 10 km taxi = $20 each way. Bus nearby.

  • Dropping off recycling at SARCAN

  • Going to visit Blackstrap

  • Going to visit Calgary

I don’t think ebike is a reasonable alternative. Don’t really feel safe biking in a lot of areas of town.

Taxi rates are fixed in Saskatoon:


Uhaul rents for $20 + 0.7/km - a trip to Larry’s house would cost $100.

USask has discontinued their Flex Parking option that they briefly had, but if you get a UPass you can get 25 entries at the parking lot.

Try biking to bus stop? Review instructional video

I hold my phone out at night so the bus driver can see me

I’ve added the 45 and 46 as an option going to nelson & lowe

Tire was loose - clunking sound. had to re-torque. Hopefully no long-term damage to studs

was raining hard, needed to use car, would have had to pay for taxi. how many days does it rain in saskatoon? Looks like 20% of days usually have >1 mm of rain.

got soaked anyway just walking in to work despite umbrella, having spare clothes at work was a lifesaver.

Car used May 5th - picked up PSU from memory express. Bus would have taken quite long, but doable. Could have waited until Tuesday and ordered one in.

my normal 44/43/45/46 bus stop doesn’t have a cover, but if I take my bike I can wait at Preston Crossing, which does have a stop.

I really like SGI car insurance. Seems to be well handled.

I prepaid for 1 year of insurance, but since the bus+bike is working out so well, I’m considering not using my car at all, or at least switching to month-to-month. I called to ask whether it was possible to cancel and get a refund. Said it was,

To protect from any issues while it’s stored, seems there are some options to get the car covered under SGI home insurance.

Taken the bus to work with bike on the rack for the last 5 days. Rained briefly one day but I was able to take cover at the Preston bus shelter.

Today I biked home. Humidex 29 C. Pretty straight shot, quite manageable, ~half an hour. Wouldn’t want to bike to work this way, I’m a little toasty.

Bussed in and cycled home on the hottest day of the year. Got pretty hot on the way home - should have pre-chilled a bottle of water.

The fixed schedule of the bus is really working for me.