Having kids can be expensive; nobody said it was going to be cheap (or easy). Even if you are a budget crunching parent, there are some costs you can’t cut corners on.
Can you buy used sports equipment? Yes. Gently used clothes? Of course. 10 boxes of discounted cereal? Fill up the cart. Saving money on getting your kid to school? Yes and no.
Here are some costs associated with getting your child to school each day:
Isn’t the School Bus Free?
Technically, having your child take the school bus is free, unless you live in a district where you are charged. As a taxpayer, you are paying for some of the costs of keeping school buses in operation. So, if you’re paying, why don’t you use the bus?
While you may opt to put your child on the bus rather than drive him or her to school during morning gridlock, you may want to reconsider. Even though the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), views school buses as one of the safest vehicles on the road, your child’s safety could be at risk; no thanks to inexperienced drivers and lack of safety features on buses.
Depending on the age of your child, how far you live from school, and your comfort level, some of these transportation options may work:
Walking to School
If you live close to school, as in the same neighborhood or a couple of blocks away, you may not even have a school bus as an option. The great thing about walking to school is that it’s good exercise and free (minus the cost of a good pair of walking shoes).
Before you release your child on to the streets, you have to use your parental instincts; you will know if it’s a good idea or not.
Is your child old enough (like around ten years old)? Does he or she have walking buddies? Does he or she know all the rules of safety, such as using crosswalks and not talking to strangers?
Like walking, riding a bicycle to school is an excellent way to enjoy the fresh air and get some exercise. Unlike walking, it is not free. Kids bicycles can cost anywhere from under $100 to a couple hundred; maybe less if you have a nice hand-me-down.
You will also have to factor in the cost of a helmet and a good bicycle lock. Similar to letting your child walk to school, you will know when or if your child is ready to ride his or her bicycle to school.
Driving Your Child to School
You might need to get up early and hurry to get ready for the day. You may have to remind your child to grab his lunch or school project ten times before you get in the car. You might have to listen to annoying music on the radio.
You may end up spending $10 at a drive-thru for coffee and donuts, and you may be out a couple of dollars in gas each day, and more than that (when you child grows up and the needs are increasing), the time comes when you have to hire essay writer for the most complicated tasks, but no price can be put on the time you spend with your child and knowing he or she is safe.