Guide to Surviving College Without a Car

Hey girls! The new year has begun and I wanted to give you a little bit of advice to ensure that you have a happy year... whether you have a car on campus or not!

Many of us have experienced at least one year of not having a car on our college campuses. And for those of you who attend Hampton University in particular, you know we aren’t allowed to have one for the first TWO years! 

I know, it sucks. Although this can be extremely frustrating at times, and you can easily feel trapped on campus, I want you to know that you can still be happy and enjoy yourself without a car of your own. 

Here are 5 tips on How To Survive College WITHOUT a Car:

1. Make friends with both people in your class and with upperclassmen. 

The reason a lot of colleges don’t allow freshmen to have cars is that they believe it will easily distract you and cause you to be off campus more than you are on. The key to a successful college experience is getting to know people! Do not be afraid to make new friends. These friendships will keep you busy and as a result, you will not always be tempted to leave campus just to have fun. However, when you do actually go off campus, it is nice to go with a group of people so that you all can split the price of the Uber/Lyft and that way you don’t have to spend as much as you would if you went alone. As far as upperclassmen, they are wonderful people to be close with because not only can they help guide you through your college journey, but a lot of them have cars and will be more than willing to give you a ride every now and then! We all have experienced the struggle of being “car-less”, so many upperclassmen are super friendly when it comes to giving you a quick ride to Walmart or the mall. 

2. Attend events ON CAMPUS!!! 

Do not feel like you always have to go off campus to have a good time. There are a lot of events that happen on campus not just on the weekends, but throughout the weekdays too! A lot of organizations hosts game nights or other fun events that you and your friends can go to and have a great time at. You just have to make yourself aware of these events and make sure you are on the lookout for them when they are posted in your different group chats or from flyers posted around campus! 

3.  Use the school shuttle services. 

Many schools have a shuttle service of some sort that runs to the popular locations around your school. Take advantage of this!!! The price is often times extremely cheap compared to a driving service, and a lot of other students will be using it - which just gives you another opportunity to meet new people!

4. When you do go shopping, buy large supplies of things you often run out of.

One of the best things I started to do during my second semester of freshman year was buy my toiletries and groceries in big bulks. I wouldn’t go to the store and buy just one stick of deodorant - instead I would buy three or four. This way, when I ran out of it, I would have a replacement right there in my room which would limit the amount of times I would have to go to the store.

5. Remember that gas costs MONEY!!! 

One thing a lot of us forget when we are desperately wishing to have a car on campus is that the more you drive around, the faster you run out of gas. And y’all, let me tell you… filling up your tank every week is not cheap! So take that into consideration. You actually end up saving a lot of money when you don’t have a car. And we can’t forget the maintenance behind cars - it can be super expensive even for a simple oil change! I don’t know about you, but I would much rather spend my money on food, clothes, or simply just save it instead of putting it all into my car!!

 

In conclusion, it is very important to simply enjoy your time in college as much as you can. Don’t feel the need to rush to get a car. Although it is fun and can be more convenient at times, keep in mind the things that come with it. Patience is a virtue. Use this time to soak up everything you can at your school. Your time to have a car will come! I promise.