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How much time are you saving on your commute?

Discussion in 'Toyota Prius Plug-in' started by lexlaw69, Mar 24, 2012.

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  1. lexlaw69

    lexlaw69 Junior Member

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    I'm in so cal and i'm getting my first prius - and its a plug in! How much time are you saving on your commute now that you are allowed back in the hov?

    Mine is from OC (Costa Mesa) to downtown LA.

    How about people from other regions with HOV access?
  2. Eoin

    Eoin Active Member

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    The HOV lane on the Long Island Expressway often saves me 30 minutes a day on my 1 hour each way commute.
  3. H2OSkier

    H2OSkier Member

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    I drive from Simi Valley to El Segundo and I will save ~ 30 min a day round trip. Now there are days when the car pool lane just doesn't help that much.
  4. JimboPalmer

    JimboPalmer Nadir of Wrongness

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    I do not drive on any freeways in my normal 'commute', but there is not one mile of HOV lane in Mississippi if I did. Given that there are no HOV lanes in MS, there is no legislation allowing single use of them.

    But if Single use rules 'trick' folks into buying fuel efficient vehicles, I am all for them
  5. lexlaw69

    lexlaw69 Junior Member

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    I am only buying so that I can get in the HOV lane. So as an incentive it is a good one because it is the ONLY reason.
  6. CharlesH

    CharlesH CA HOV Decal #00005

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    My 2002 Prius is still running just fine. If the yellow HOV stickers hadn't expired and the green ones become available for the PiP, I would have stayed with the 2002.
  7. Sidkane

    Sidkane New Member

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    I'm new to the forum and in the same boat. It doesn't seem the EV range on the PIP justifies a sticker compared to true EV, but not complaining.
  8. calbear

    calbear Member

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    Stickers have been saving me about 45-60 minutes per day from a previously 120-150 minute round-trip commute. In other words, 30-50% shorter commute. SO worth it!
    1 person likes this.
  9. Ichiro

    Ichiro Member

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    The justification is that the PIP meets the "AT PZEV" requirements...so it's based on emissions not MPG.
  10. rogerv

    rogerv Senior Member

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    Purely from a financial standpoint, buying a $32K or $39K plus car to save time on your commute for roughly two and a half years would be a very expensive proposition. But considering the fuel savings over your previous vehicle, it most likely gets a little better. Add in the lower maintenance costs, and less money being sent to oil producers outside the US, and you have further justification. Finally, and admittedly more important to some people than others, you are helping the environment. So the bottom line is, the incentive does work, whether it is your main reason or an added bonus. Different strokes........;)
    2 people like this.
  11. Corwyn

    Corwyn Energy Curmudgeon

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    $7000 / (30 minutes per day * 200 days per year * 2.5 years) = $28 / hour.

    So if your time is worth more than $28 per hour, it pays for itself in time alone.
    1 person likes this.
  12. rogerv

    rogerv Senior Member

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    OK, I get your point, but if you're using the $7K from the difference in the two prices I mentioned, I was referring to the base and advanced model of the PiP. So it is really a lot more money involved in the initial outlay to buy a car that is eligible for HOV lane use.
    OTOH, if your time is worth $28 an hour, who is paying you while you are commuting, so that you can pay for your $7000, or whatever-it-costs car? Good math exercise, however!:D
  13. Skoorbmax

    Skoorbmax Senior Member

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    I am shocked more people aren't buying cars like this given how much time can be saved. I have no HOV lanes in my city but if I did, some of you are seeing a 1 hour trip go down to 30, time is invaluable, I'd pay through the nose for a car that let me use one of these streamlined lanes. Right now I won't buy a PiP, they are too pricey for what you get, but if it was saving that kind of time, absolute no-brainer.
  14. gwmort

    gwmort Active Member

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    "One says to me, "I wonder that you do not lay up money; you love to travel; you might take the cars and go to Fitchburg today and see the country." But I am wiser than that. I have learned that the swiftest traveller is he that goes afoot. I say to my friend, Suppose we try who will get there first. The distance is thirty miles; the fare ninety cents. That is almost a day's wages. I remember when wages were sixty cents a day for laborers on this very road. Well, I start now on foot, and get there before night; I have travelled at that rate by the week together. You will in the meanwhile have earned your fare, and arrive there some time to-morrow, or possibly this evening, if you are lucky enough to get a job in season. Instead of going to Fitchburg, you will be working here the greater part of the day. And so, if the railroad reached round the world, I think that I should keep ahead of you; and as for seeing the country and getting experience of that kind, I should have to cut your acquaintance altogether."

    -Henry Thoreau
  15. hill

    hill High Fiber Member

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    your opinion is such, due to the value that you put on your own time . . . . the more valuable your time . . . . the more valuable one puts on saving time . . . . and when your time is extreamly valuable, the $32K or $39K plus car is not such a big hit in the wallet.

    .
  16. calbear

    calbear Member

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    Let's see now... the base PiP after incentives and taxes is about $30k. HOV access will save me about 212 hours per year (did a little math based on experience) or about 580 through 1/1/2015. Now time is somewhat priceless, but if you used rates such as $25 or $50 per hour, you'd be "getting" in one year between $5300 and $10,600 in time value. And for the whole duration, between $14,500 and $29,000!! If you feel your time is worth more, then all the better!

    So assuming you need to have a car anyway, then paying $30k for $29k in value (and still having a car worth about say $20k in 2.5 years, is a great deal!! You've fundamentally "made money," and that's not including any fuel savings.
  17. rogerv

    rogerv Senior Member

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    OK, guys, I will concede that your time is valuable. Or that you would rather be doing something productive with your time, whatever. But unless someone is paying you for the time that you save getting to whatever it is you do, or you are a self-employed professional raking in $50 per hour from the moment you get to your office, then there is really no financial gain here. If there were, many more people would be leaving very early in the morning to avoid the rush hour in the first place. And you could buy a much cheaper car to drive in the regular lanes at the early hour you would be leaving, thereby saving a ton of money in the long run.
    However, we make decisions based on a lot of factors, differing widely among us.
    Finally, in my own experience driving the dreaded 405 in the carpool lane over several years, the time saved is not always consistent. On some days it you make time for a mile or two, and then sit in heavy traffic watching the cars in the regular lanes catch up and pass you. Two prime examples are the southbound 405 through The Valley approaching the Sepulveda Pass in the mornings, and the northbound 405 through Orange County and the Westside in Los Angeles in the afternoon/evening rush.
  18. hill

    hill High Fiber Member

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    Regardless of stickers, we bought our car for its efficiency. I'm fortunate enough to be able to set my own hours, so (although I hate getting up early) I force myself out of bed at 3:40am so I can be done commuting in the morning by 4:35am. And I'm off the freeway on the way home by 1:45pm. But ... I got stickers anyway ... 'just in case' ... 'cuz ya never know. Once gas hits $7 a gallon, I might just make me some extra $$$ ;)

    .
  19. calbear

    calbear Member

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    Yes, each commute is different. I have actually carefully tracked mine and know with certainty that I gain back at least 45 minutes of time every day, and sometimes up to 1h:30m.

    True that you would need someone to pay you for the time to make it truly a cash-equivalent, but you could also think about it in terms of how much is it worth to you. Would you like to spend more time sleeping instead of driving very early? Would you like to spend more time with your family than with fellow commuters? Do you just prefer the feeling of moving when driving, versus the constant start/stop of traffic (I'll sometimes drive well out of my way for an open road compared to a parking lot...)

    So it is most certainly the literal definition of "Your mileage may vary." And I know I am very happy to spend the money to save about 45-60 minutes each day.

    Frankly, to that end, I am so surprised the DMV doesn't charge more for the stickers... At say $250, they could make $10MM in revenue. Who buying one of these cars and getting the benefits wouldn't pay $250 for the stickers??
  20. Ichiro

    Ichiro Member

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    I'm not sure how much I end up saving per day, but equally important is that it gives me more flexibility in my start/stop times.

    Previously, I'll keep working until 7pm just to avoid gridlock especially when I can see an accident on sigalert.com. Or I'll take off earlier in the day to work at home for the same reason. I feel like with HOV access I'm less reluctant to drive during rush hour.

    I rideshare on occasion for the same reason, flexibility to leave at a reasonable hour from home or work without worrying about gridlock as much.
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