To a brighter future

To a brighter future

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Planning for Getting There Green - Part 2 (Updated for 2019)

Planning is useful, and we should plan more. 

I promised to give you some tools to make trip planning a habit, to replace the habit of just driving everywhere. Here are three.

Tool # 1: Keep a driving log
    Write down your mileage & fuel purchases.
  • this can be a booklet like the one in the picture (bought at Staples) or just a piece of paper that you promise not to lose. Keep it in the glove compartment, along with a pen or pencil.
  • write down your mileage at the end of each day that you (or someone else) drives that vehicle. Starting mileage and finishing mileage are even better, but at least finishing mileage, please. Remember to put the date :)

  • write down how much fuel you buy, and your mileage when you buy it. And the date.
  • keep a separate log for each vehicle you drive. Label them so they don't get mixed up. 
  • Mobility Geek option If you like, write down every cost associated with each vehicle you drive, and the mileage when each of those costs occurred. Everything from new wiper blades to oil changes to the loonie you paid to put air in the tires. Note: this is optional, but if you're into details you'll love it later on.

Tool # 2:  Make a list

Each week, take a piece of paper (junk mail printed on only one side works well) and draw a line down the middle. Label one half  Shopping list and the other half  Errands. Keep it in the kitchen, or anywhere in the house where a) it's convenient and b) it won't get lost or forgotten.  Don't keep it in the car: you need it to be close at hand.

Make a shopping list. Seriously.
The shopping side is not just for groceries, but anything you need to buy, from any type of store.

The other side is where you list errands that require driving -- or that seem to require driving (hint!).

The division may not make sense yet, but that's why  we have future blog posts.

Tool # 3: Check the weather forecast
Five days good, 10 days better.

You want to get an idea what the weather will be like over the week, not just today. Most sites, such as  AccuWeather , Foreca and  Wunderground, look at least  5 days ahead (that'll do) but go for a 7 to 10 day forecast if you can. It's also helpful if the site offers hour-by-hour predictions for the next 24 hours.

Get used to checking the forecast every day, even twice a day: as part of your wake-up routine, and then later when you're winding down. We're building habits here.

So there they are. Three basic tools that help in  planning for getting there green. They're part of a broader decision-making matrix, but if I 'd said that at the beginning you might have left to watch pointless cat videos on YouTube. Future posts will look at how to use what you write down or look up, but it never gets very complicated. Start recording your mileage, making lists and checking weather forecasts. Class dismissed!

Dave K

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