Troy, Michigan -- According to research recently conducted by the American Automobile Association (AAA), the average cost of owning and operating a passenger vehicle has risen to 52.2 cents per mile. This equals $7,830 per year based on 15,000 miles of driving.
The AAA study, titled Your Driving Costs, calculated the average price of all expenses associated with owning and operating vehicles over five years and 75,000 miles of driving. To better reflect the costs associated with a wider range of vehicle choices, it calculated the costs based on averages for five top-selling passenger cars in each of three vehicle size categories.
In addition to vehicle depreciation and an average vehicle insurance coverage of $926 per year, the study found gas to be a major factor pushing up driving costs. From the end of 2004 to the end of 2005, the nationwide average fuel price increased to $2.405 per gallon; a 15.8 percent jump that raised the average driver's fuel costs from 8.2 to 8.5 cents per mile.
As driving costs continue to rise, more and more commuters are looking for alternate modes of transportation to and from work. Many are deciding to leave their personal vehicles at home in exchange for the savings and convenience of a seat on a commuter vanpool.
VPSI, Inc., the nation's largest vanpool services provider, offers several styles of vanpool vehicles accommodating seven to 15 passengers. VPSI provides the vehicles, insurance and pays for all maintenance and repairs. Since passengers split their fuel costs between as many as 15 people, instead of paying $3.00 per gallon of gasoline, commuters who vanpool can contribute as little as 20 cents per gallon.