Can’t Afford a Car While in College? Here’s How to Get Around

Everyone knows that college can be expensive. And, sometimes, when you have to make a choice between paying for classes and buying a car, classes are going to win. However, being without a car doesn’t mean you are trapped in your dorm room day in and day out. Instead, you’ll just need to look at alternative methods for getting when the need arises. If you aren’t sure where to begin, here are some tips to get you started.

Just Walk

Walking may be the least expensive mode of transportation available to most college students. It is often enough to get you from one class to the next, as well as to key destinations like the library or cafeteria. If your campus is located in a downtown area, you may even be able to access local businesses and attractions without having to make any major investments to help get you around. However, it isn’t always an ideal choice depending on the weather and the distance. But, if something truly needs to get managed, it can be an excellent fallback option.

Can’t Afford a Car While in College? Here’s How to Get Around

Try a Bike

If your school is centrally located, and you reside in the dorm, then a bicycle might be the ideal choice. Some of the best cruiser bikes are very comfortable to ride and fairly easy to manage should you need to walk (or carry) it to your room.

Riding a bike can help you get to classes more quickly, run errands around town, or simply enjoy some time outdoors. If you are near a park, then it can provide a form of relaxing recreation or a way to get some great exercise.

Public Transit

For towns that have public transit systems, you can practically guarantee that the campus will be at least one of the stops. Options like buses, trains, and subways can help you get to most important locations within the area with relative ease and often with little expense. Most cities offer discounted transit passes to students, so you might be able to get an unlimited pass every month that will ensure you have the option whenever it is required.

For times when public transit can’t get you all the way to your destination, you may be able to either ride or bike from one of the stops. Many buses and trains either allow bikes to be brought on, or have bicycle racks on the front or back ends of the bus. If you do have to use a bike rack, make sure to secure your bike quickly, but well. If it falls off during the ride, you’ll be the one responsible.


If you need an inexpensive option with an actual motor, consider a low CC scooter. In some states, you don’t even have to have a driver’s license if it is a 49 CC scooter or less. Others will require a driver’s license, but no a motorcycle endorsement. Before you purchase a scooter, it is important to check local operating and licensing requirements before riding it.

Otherwise, scooters are fairly inexpensive to run. The amount of gasoline required is generally low, and the number of miles you can get on a tank is respectable. So, if you are on a campus that lacks nearby amenities, a scooter may help give you options that would otherwise be out of reach.

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