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Discussion Starter #1
Currently we own a regular gas car in addition to our Bolt . .. but I've been considering what it would take to become a single car family with just the Bolt and ditch the ICE. Road trips is one potential hang up . .. but thinking things through (and avoiding the calculus and random availability of Charging Stations en route), it makes sense to just rent a car for the times we need to take extended road vacations that extend beyond 250 miles. A weekly car rental at $200 (or more if you want a higher end car) three for four times a year is cheaper than owning a second car and lets you right size the vehicle for a specific trip.

This equation won't work for everyone, but it would seem to be a viable solution if we wanted to go all (only) electric in our garage.
 

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Agreed. If you really don't want to own a second car, renting seems to be the way to go.
 

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I've actually heard it's potentially cheaper to take an ICE on extended road trips as well over an EV anddd if you'll be renting it, it just works out all around better
 

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Yeah, plus with renting, you don't put extra wear and tear (and miles) on your primary car (Bolt or something else), so that's another plus.

The times I've rented a car recently (and not on vacation somewhere), even if I had say a mid-sized gas SUV (Equinox or something) in the driveway, it would not have been big enough for my needs anyways. I've had to go minivan the last few times. Can't beat the carrying capacity or storage (even though you have to surrender the man card for a few days).
 

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Fiat did (still does???) provide 12 rental days/yr with a 500e lease.
Some of the prices I've seen seem to suggest you can lease a 500e for three years less than the cost of renting!! :laugh: They are seriously giving those things away.
 

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Some of the prices I've seen seem to suggest you can lease a 500e for three years less than the cost of renting!! :laugh: They are seriously giving those things away.
Smart move if you ask me, if there's anything a new brand needs when it has the backing of FCA is visibility. Taking the loss now for much bigger gains down the road once they get people hooked. Hook, reel and sinker ;)
 

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Aside from road trips, if you ditch the other car, would the Bolt's range cover the daily distance for your family?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
After three months of ownership, I can say it would easily cover the daily and weekend drives, with fun trips to both the mountains and the coast (Portland is just "an hour away" in either direction).

The only thing holding me up at the moment is the occasional need for two cars in the family. At the moment, the ICE gets used maybe only once or twice a week, while the Bolt is driven everyday.

The need for the occasional 2nd car is an expensive luxury.
 

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This is a really good point regarding renting for longer trips. I think that these strategies will increase in the future as millennials seem to feel less tied to ownership of cars than previous generations.

I wish it would work for us as I'd love to get rid of our minivan and just rent one for roadtrips. Unfortunately, since we have 3 kids we still need a bigger car anytime we want to carpool. We use the Bolt at all other times and are really putting some miles on it.
 

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... millennials seem to feel less tied to ownership of cars than previous generations.
Till they own a house, have kids, and have to pick up 20 bags of mulch, or a swingset or dishwasher, etc... then looking for a ride-share isn't a novelty- it's a PITA.
 

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Till they own a house, have kids, and have to pick up 20 bags of mulch, or a swingset or dishwasher, etc... then looking for a ride-share isn't a novelty- it's a PITA.
That's assuming they actually do any of that stuff. Gotta get them out of the basement on on their own first!:laugh:
 

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Till they own a house, have kids, and have to pick up 20 bags of mulch, or a swingset or dishwasher, etc... then looking for a ride-share isn't a novelty- it's a PITA.
I have fit 14 bags of mulch in my Bolt. ;)
Plus have fit a surprising number of shrubs and other plants in other trips.
Did have to pay for a tree delivery, but that also would not have fit in our old SUV.
 

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It is easy to avoid range anxiety, if you have an infrastructure to support long drives. Here is a rare situation along the east coast that allowed a pretty normal family vacation.

https://goo.gl/N3Tt5U
I took nearly the identical route, except beginning in NJ and ending at the Outer Banks in NC. It was a piece of cake thanks to the numerous DCFC stations throughout Delaware, and due to the fact that there is practically zero elevation change along the route (coming from Syracuse, this is not the case, I'm sure). One leg (Laurel, DE to OBX) was 218 miles because of several non-functioning chargers around the Norfolk area, but it was no problem in the Bolt because of the flatness and lower speed limits (65-ish mph) on most of that route.

Going to visit my family in Ohio is another story, however. It was nearly impossible but hopefully not anymore with two Electrify America stations being constructed along I-80 in PA.
 

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I won't say renting isn't the way to go, but you need to be realistic about it. I've done this twice in the last 6 months.

First, can you get the car you need when you need it? If it's a planned vacation the answer is probably yes, but if it's shorter notice like a death in the family you may have few options.

Some rental places aren't open when you need them to be. I had a full day's rental charged to me because I returned the car on a Sunday when the agency wasn't open. Ouch!

Changes in plans can be very expensive. If a two way rental becomes a one way, be prepared to pay through the nose.

In my humble opinion, many rental places are not completely honest. You must to be very careful. Check your paperwork very carefully before accepting the rental. Don't believe anything they say on the phone. My paperwork came as a (literally) illegible PDF and paid 3 times what I thought I was going to because of that.

I got a Volt to keep the Bolt company. Expensive, yes, but we were due to replace my wife's 20yr old clunker and I'm very relived we did. To **** with Enterprise.
 

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I have friends - I can borrow one of their cars for a weekend (and leave them my car in exchange). I've done it before when I needed a pickup truck, never needed it to replace my EV.
 
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Doesn't a minivan signal success in certain types of manly activities?
The whole notion that a minivan is somehow "uncool" or "unmanly" is just silly because 99% of the time it's being cross shopped against an SUV or Crossover "Soccer Mom Special".

The reality is that minivans were cool until the car companies convinced people that they weren't and that they should buy a more expensive (and higher profit) "cool" SUV instead.

We had minivans for 20 years but after our kids were grown we couldn't justify the gas mileage hit so my wife downgraded to a Forrester. If someone (besides Chrysler) made a PHEV Minivan we'd so be there.
 
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