How to Drive Less (And Save More!)

It’s about that time when those “pie in the sky” resolutions start to fade away. Luckily, you can set new intentions whenever you want! If you are looking for a new (and attainable) goal to work towards this year, we’ve got a great one for you. Start driving less. With a myriad of alternative transportation options (hoverboard, anyone?) it’s easier than ever to reduce your car’s mileage. Driving less will save you a ton of money and also alleviate pollution and traffic. It’s a win for both your wallet and the environment! So without further ado, here are some tips on how to drive less this year.

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Get some fresh air. If you live close to where you work, you have the luxury of biking or walking instead of driving. Stop letting excuses like shorter days, tired legs and chillier temperatures prevent you from getting a little exercise every morning. None of these things are deal breakers, and even if you try it once a week or mornings only, that’s still a big improvement from solely relying on your car. Bonus: conquer two goals at once if you resolved to get more fit this year. Your Fitbit will thank you!

Sharing is caring. Chances are you aren’t the only person driving a similar route to work — daily traffic is proof of that. Team up with others in your neighborhood and start a weekly carpool. You won’t have to drive every day, so you’ll save on gas and also sneak in some valuable work or reading time when you aren’t behind the wheel. There are lots of apps that can aid in this endeavor, like Carma and Ride, which match you with nearby commuters. Even tech giants like Uber and Google’s Waze are testing carpooling programs, which could be the driving force needed to make carpooling the norm.

Save money with pay-per-mile car insurance. Now that you are driving less, you could save a ton of money with Metromile. Our pay-per-mile car insurance offering is great for people who drive under 200 miles a week, which happens to be 65% of the U.S.! On average, we are saving our customers $500 a year. Try getting a quick, free quote to see how much you could save.

Give public transit another chance. Maybe you had a bad experience with a bus constantly being late, or assumed public transportation is just too complicated without actually trying it. Cities are working harder than ever to provide reliable and affordable public transportation options, and with transit apps like Quicky and Transit, you’ll be able to accurately gauge bus arrival time, plan routes and more. It’s totally fine to rely on your car when you are running late, but try getting up a few minutes earlier some mornings to catch the bus.

Plan some road trips. We aren’t advocating that you go cold turkey and give up your car entirely. Use some of the money you’re saving and relish in the freedom that owning a car gives you by hitting the open road! Unleash your inner weekend warrior and plan a trip to the mountains for some skiing, or start conjuring plans about where you could drive when the weather gets nicer. Check out our road trip guide for inspiration!

5 Easy Ways to Make Better Financial Choices in 2016

The following is a guest post from Earnest, a technology company that uses cutting-edge data science, smarter design and software automation to rebuild financial services. Earnest understands every applicant’s full financial story to offer the lowest possible rates and radically flexible loan options for living life.

Salad instead of fries. Green tea instead of coffee. Debit instead of credit.

We’re all trying to make healthier decisions so we can live longer and with more ease. Your money is no different — making good financial choices is also part of living a happier, better life.

Like eating, the earlier you start, the longer can you enjoy the rewards. But what you might not know is how a new generation of technology can help.

Nearly all of our everyday financial choices — like saving, spending, borrowing, insuring — have become more efficient in recent years with the help of better, more sophisticated software. For you, that means you can use technology to save time and money through better automation, personalization, and efficiency.

Let’s take a look at some of the ways you can make better financial choices with the help of these new tech-based services.

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Better financial choice #1: Stop paying so much interest on your student loans.

For 40 million Americans, student loans are a fact of life — and there are ways to make living with debt better, such as refinancing into better rates. By refinancing student loans, you can reduce your monthly payments or reconfigure the terms of your loans so it fits better with your monthly budget.

You might try: Earnest offers hyper-personalized loans with its Precision Pricing feature. This feature provides you with an interest rate that matches your exact budget so you’re not overpaying in interest.

Better financial choice #2: Automate all your investing goals, large and small.

Investing is not new but using technology (in lieu of a financial advisor or your own time) to manage your investments is a recent thing. Automated investment services, aka robo-advisors, provide online tools to help you customize sophisticated investment portfolios with the right mix of stocks and bonds, and then keep your investments balanced and performing as they should.

You might try: Betterment lets you create multiple investment goals and customize each one for the right mix of stocks and bonds, and has some of the lowest fees in the industry. It also allows you to connect your outside accounts to get a 360-view of your savings and retirement plan.

Better financial choice #3: Only pay insurance for the miles you drive.

New technology helps you match the number of miles you drive with what you actually pay for insurance — especially useful for people who only drive occasionally. With traditional insurance, you might pay $100 a month, no matter how many miles you log. Now tech-based insurance mean you pay only what you use — slashing that $100 bill down to $37 per month, for example.

You might try: With Metromile, you plug a tracker into your vehicle to log the number of miles you drive — and that is the basis for what you pay. The added benefit of the tracker is you can also log you all the trips you’ve taken and see where you’re parked at all times. (more…)