There and Back Again: A Parent’s Tale


Part of being a parent is playing chauffeur for your little ones.  That’s a given.  But lately it seems like between my wife and I it’s all we do.  We basically are making a big triangle around Des Moines hitting Waukee, Norwalk and Ankeny throughout the week.  The positive thing about all this driving around is it gives you opportunities to talk with your kids and jam out to your favorite music.  Then there’s the negative part of it.  The gas!  Since school has started we are spending a huge chunk of change on gas for our vehicles.  We couldn’t go on this way.  If we did, Top Ramen might become our nightly meal.

So I looked at the situation.  Then it hit me.  What if my wife and I switched vehicles?  She is doing the majority of the driving in the minivan and my car is going to get way better gas mileage than the minivan.  Plus my kids are now at the ages that a minivan isn’t really necessary.  So I did a quick Google search to see if my theory made sense.  I found a cool Trip Calculator that lets you compare gas costs for different cars along different routes.    The findings were just like I thought.  In the course of a month we were spending just over $100.00 in gas just driving the kids to activities using the minivan.  If we were using the car to drive to those activities it would only cost us $60.00 a month in gas.  That’s a $40.00 savings.   That means if we switch vehicles no Top Ramen for dinner!  Sure I don’t really want to drive the minivan around town, but to me saving money is much cooler than worrying what I look like.

Are you driving the kiddos all over town?  Maybe you could save some money by switching vehicles too.  It’s worth checking into!


Thomas Brogan

Thomas Brogan, a native of Des Moines, was the original founder of Des Moines Parent and is a father to an 8 & 10-year-old. In his free time, he likes to explore nature, try new local restaurants and enjoy life as best as he can. Check out more of Thomas at www.broganlist.com.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.