As the school year begins, the campus will soon be saturated with cars and the resulting traffic. And according to Mary Adams, business manager of the Department of Public Safety for Florida A&M University, last year 6,116 students had commuter decals and 523 students had resident decals.
Adams said students who do not have cars should not have much to worry about, unless they use their cars for travel to and from work.
“It depends on lifestyles, especially if you work,” said Adams. “Those without cars don’t have to worry about the $50 it takes to fill up their gas, thus saving money.”
Robert Dunn, 21, a senior Computer Information Systems student from Michigan, who didn’t have a car his first two years in college said when he got his car he realized he was not missing much. He would prefer not having a car because it is easier to get around on campus and cheaper.
“Not having a car, you don’t have to worry about insurance, gas, and parking at FAMU,” said Dunn. “If you’re late and try to get to class you can’t find a parking spot, but if you don’t have a car and ride the bus, it drops you near.”
Adams said students should consider using alternative ways to get to campus due to the high volume of traffic in Tallahassee and the time lost trying to find parking.
“I think it would help if fewer students would park on campus and park on the outer parts of the university and catch the shuttle, then it would limit tickets and make traffic easier.”
Dunn said people believe cars are more convenient, and they would rather pay for the extra car maintenance fees, insurance, and gas because they believe it is a necessity.
“A lot of people rather pay that car insurance and amenities to have that luxury than not have it,” Dunn said. “It’s easy to be homeless without paying rent, but a lot of people rather have a roof over their head.
Darius Striggles, 20, a junior elementary education student from Fort Lauderdale, currently lives off campus without a car. He said when a person does not have a car they have to depend on their friends who have cars for transportation.
“I don’t like asking people for things and I have to depend on other people,” Striggles said. “It’s kind of hard because you can’t go where you want to go, and when you want to leave you can’t because the person you rode with doesn’t want to leave.”
Striggles said it is an inconvenience if you do not have a car living off campus rather than if you have a car and you live on campus.
“Sometimes I am late to work because I don’t have a car and you don’t want to ask your roommate because they may get annoyed,” Striggles said. “Freshman year I didn’t mind not having a car because I stayed on campus. It wasn’t a big thing because everything I needed was on campus and now living off campus and not having a car is tough and aggravating.”
Striggles also feels that he would be saving money if he had a car.
“If I had my own car and I had a full tank of gas, I don’t have to give somebody money to take me somewhere rather then them having a full tank of gas and paying them anyway just because they helped me out by taking me where I needed to go,” Striggles said. “I would actually be saving money.”
Gas and insurance will always come with the responsibility of having a car, but Dunn said it all comes down to if you have friends who can provide transportation for you.