My shrinking world

With gas prices at an all time high and airlines freaking out over escalating jet fuel costs, I find my world is starting to shrink. I sold my car because I’m lucky enough to live in a city with great transportation. We have buses, trolleys, cable cars, BART and even my feet when time allows. I don’t mind taking a little longer to make my way around the city because, hey, I’m not paying $100 to fill my gas tank.

Today though United announced that it’s cutting flights. 100 of them to be exact. Mostly in their major hubs: Chicago, San Francisco, Denver and L.A. That means fewer flights out of my home base and higher fares. Wow, that really makes me want to travel. With train trips almost as expensive, and long drives unattractive as well, I find that my world is shrinking every day. Soon I’ll be loathe to leave the city at all.

12 thoughts on “My shrinking world”

  1. It’s actually becoming quite a problem. Continental just cut flights as well, and about 3000 jobs to go with ’em. Since I live in Los Angeles, where public transportation sucks, I am forced to drive. And since I am in the travel industry, the rising costs are having a bludgeoning effect.

  2. I bought a scooter to use here in my public transportation poor city. At 125 mpg, it’s perfect for short hops to the store, doctors office, etc. We used to fill our gas tank in the family minivan once a week. Since we got the scooter, we only need to fill ‘er up once every three weeks. The scooter is paying for itself. And I’ve only put $4 worth of fuel in the scooter for over 200 miles of puttering around.

    That said, I’m not sure how effective a little scooter would be in San Francisco with all the hills.

  3. That said, I’m not sure how effective a little scooter would be in San Francisco with all the hills.

    Robert… Actually, San Francisco is the Scooter/Motorcycle capital of the nation–more two-wheeled vehicles per capita than any major city. I myself was a motorcyclist here for a decade.

  4. PT – I’ve seriously considered train travel. It’s more relaxing and you can have privacy, but it takes so much time. I also think that as airfares go up, Amtrak will follow and raise their prices as well. It’s the American way.

    Diva Jood – I feel you. I’m lucky not to live in a car-centric area. Still I lose a lot of time waiting for the bus/trolley/BART, so I guess it’s all a wash in the end.

    Robert – I’d love to have a scooter. I was thinking on my walk home yesterday maybe it’s time to invest in a Segway. This is a city of hills after all. :-) I think Kvatch is going to buy a new bike first though.

  5. Air India has just announced that it will ground ‘overweight’ air crew. “On Wednesday the Delhi High Court said in a judgment that there was “no unreasonableness or arbitrariness” in the airline’s decision”
    The airline uses a “scientific” system to determine its standards, but they aren’t revealing what it is…

  6. You know Cartledge they’ve been doing this under the radar in the U.S. since the 1950’s. Of course the airlines won’t say publicly what the weight limit is. I wonder what they count as “scientific”.

  7. I used to wonder why they always showed the weather at the airport when no one lives there (presumably).
    I have come to understand that now.
    So, for all the money I wasted on college, I learned why the weather report is given from the airport.
    Anyway, the amount of lift of an airfoil is determined by the density of the air.
    That is, a plane can carry more weight under certain conditions than others.
    Thing is, that amount is constantly changing, even in flight.

    Maybe I should figure out a way to say that more indirectly while charging a few hundred dollars for it.
    I might have to put on different shoes though…
    Go me!

  8. No PT, you did good. Sounded like a real, live consultant. I feel like I should be expecting a bill.

    Still as a girl terrified to fly, this just about put me under my bed. It changes? Even in flight?! Aaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!

  9. I’m off all summer and I will be home with the exception of a drive I’m taking to Cape Cod. I decided to drive because it is the cheapest way. $41.00 to fill my tank today and that’s a Toyota! I’m completely off planes for the time being.

  10. Liz – I definitely think you made the right call. If I hadn’t bought my vacation tickets months ago, I would be cancelling my plans. As it is, I’m not sure when after that I will be able to afford to fly again. Still, it’s kind of fun to rediscover your own back yard. That’s what I’ll be spending my Summer doing.

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