Posted on May 6, 2011 at 8:48 PM
PHOENIX - Two months ago, Nicole Underwood had an epiphany.
“When gas prices hit $3.50 I was like, that’s it!” she said.
She realized that at $3.50, gas stations were charging the same for one gallon of gas as it costs for an all day pass on the Light Rail.
So, she ditched the car and started taking mass transit everywhere.
“It really wasn’t that hard to do,” she smiled.
Work at the Red Cross, different charity events, social engagements, etc., with the exception of the occasional carpool, she went everywhere only by Light Rail.
“Sometimes I had to talk friends into go to hip or trendy restaurants that just happened to be near the Light Rail tracks,” she said.
The average American family now spends close to 9 percent of their household income on gas. And sure, there are financial implications, but Nicole took her foot off the gas pedal to save more than just the money in her wallet. She is saving the environment and helping the local economy.
“I would rather give my money to mass transit, the local economy, than big oil,” she said.
The transition to mass transit wasn’t that rough. Because of the traffic, the commute time is about the same. And, because she doesn’t have to watch the road anymore, she can catch up on her reading.
"Its fun. I can talk to people. I am not stuck in that box alone going from point A to point B,” she said.