January 18, 2018

Is It Cheaper to Fly Or Drive?

Blog: Flying vs. Driving from Syracuse to NYC   Let’s say you live in Syracuse and have to go to NYC for an overnight trip. You have two options flying or driving. A round trip plane ticket from Syracuse to NYC was $106.60. This price is from using JetBlue, which was the cheapest airline and buying coach seats with no stops. In the City you will need to buy a cab to JFK airport and the city. The cab rate plus tolls and a tip would run about $70 one-way or $140 round trip. This brings the total to $246.6. To figure out how much it costs to drive I used the going price of gas in Syracuse, which is $2.55. The road trip is 254.2 miles one way, and I used the average 2015 car model’s miles per gallon at 24.8. Dividing the 254.2 miles by 24.8 mpg to find the amount of gallons used which are 10.25. Taking the 10.25 gallons used and multiplying the price of gas, $2.55, to get a total cost of $26.14 one way. Double the one-way cost of $26.14 to get a round trip total of $52.28 to drive to NYC and back. Remember that prices for you could be different depending on your cars mpg and the price of gas in your area and the shifting of airline prices. This is just for the trip however, in NYC you will need to park your car overnight. Let’s say you need 24 hours of parking that would cost an additional $45 approximately. This brings the total to $97.28 It is $149.32 cheaper to drive then fly, but this assumes that your time is worth nothing. It takes 2 hours and 36 minutes round trip to fly, plus the hour early you have to […]
January 11, 2018

Australia Trip 2017: Day 41

So it’s the end of September and I am pretty much freaking out about money for my trip. Not only do I have to fly across the world by myself but I need to be able to afford this trip without setting myself too far back financially. As of now I have been able to save$1,400 out of my $2,500 goal. That money is strictly going to my ticket which was about $1,500. I have two more pay checks before the big trip which are basically going to go to regular bills and paying bills while I’m gone. I really need to come up with a way to make more money and FAST. I started looking at my monthly expenses and tried to eliminate some of my bills. The first thing I saw was my loans which I can’t change because I am already paying the minimum on them. The next was my gym membership which is at $30 a month. Now it’s not that expensive but I won’t really even be using it for the next two months with all the travel I will be doing. I called and asked if I could freeze the account for two months. This saves me $40 and I don’t have to pay the initiation fee when I reactivate it in December. The other bills I have are bills I can’t really do much about like cable, internet, gas and electric, and my Birchbox account (yes for the $10 a month I am not going to cancel my Birchbox account). I am still doing private lessons for volleyball and I will get paid this weekend another $110. So I have another $150 to add to my account. That still leaves me $950 short towards my goal. I have to come up with another […]
January 11, 2018

When Does a Hybrid Begin to Save You Money?

Like many young professionals, I recently found myself in the market for a new Toyota Camry. While deciding which model to choose I was hit with quite the moral dilemma, do I take into account my carbon footprint and buy a hybrid or do I try to put some money away for my fraternity reunion in Panama City next spring and purchase the less expensive gas version. To make matters worst I had recently seen Al Gore’s new movie An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power and was made painfully aware of our societies ever deteriorating environmental situation. However, ice-cold beachfront Corona’s in Panama City was enough to force even the strongest willed environmentalist to swallow their pride and go with the gas version. To make a long story short, I decided to do a cash benefit analysis to decide which model I would purchase. While doing this analysis, I had to take into account several variables:   The first phase of my cost benefit analysis involved the difference in price between the two models. There was a substantial difference in price between the regular Toyota Camry and the Toyota Camry Hybrid. To provide you with the specifics a 2018 Toyota Camry starts at $24,000, while the 2018 Camry Hybrid comes off the lot at $27,800. Given this substantial difference in price I was initially tempted to go with the regular Toyota Camry. However, there were still several other variables I had to take into account, those being the price of gas, mileage and number of miles I planned on driving the car for.   The second phase of my cost benefit analysis involved how many miles I planned on driving the car for. Putting myself in the shoes of the average suburban American who often commutes 50 miles to work […]
November 6, 2017

The Key to Paying Off Your Student Loans in Five Years or Less

Coming out of college and entering the real world can be a very scary time. Not only do you have to find a job but you also have to find a job that will cover all your expenses for rent, groceries, nights out on the town and most importantly your student loans. Student loans on average take up about 30% of your monthly salary. The companies don’t even really give you too much of a grace period before they are breathing down your necks wanting that first payment. And depending on how much you had to take, your entire paycheck could be equivalent to the amount you have to pay back. Although it all looks doom and gloom, there are many ways to get ahead of your loans and to pay it off before your five-year reunion. Look at the big picture: Do you have more than one loan? If so, which loan is the smallest? You want to go after this one first and pay it off as quickly as possible. Can you consolidate any of your loans into one loan? Can you get a lower interest rate? Once you see where all the moving parts are it will be easier for you to create an overall goal… Create a goal and stick to it: Make a goal for each loan you have. This goal must be realistic; you don’t want to bite off more than you can chew. Make a plan that fits your lifestyle and leaves you not eating ramen on a weekly basis. Set a time line of when you want each loan or loan to be paid off by. You want to pay it off in 6 months? Okay how much does that come to on a monthly basis… Set an amount: Each loan will […]
November 6, 2017

Give Your Best Every Time

We say- each and every day, all days start on their own. My father being an avid golfer used to tell me “Son, you are only as good as the day you tee it up. Past performances are nice, but what have you got for me today.”  My brothers and I used to think that was a bit harsh, yet it had a solid element of truth to it. Godin adds: “After you’ve done your best work, and its still not enough… after you’ve written the best memo/blog post/novel/screenplay you can possibly imagine writing… after you’ve contributed your pithiest insight or gone on your best blind date…and it still hasn’t worked…You really have no choice,  but to do it again. To do your best work again, as impossible and unfair as that seems. It compounds over time. Best work followed by best work followed by more best work, is far more useful and generous, than merely doing your best work once and insisting we understand you.” Now understand, that you might not be at your best, each and every day (that’s impossible). To TRY, is what’s most important. And that is also, how improvement happens. A beginning jogger starts out running 10 minute miles and quickly improves to 9.5 then 9,8,7. At some point she levels off, and can’t always beat the previous days efforts. Just some days are better, and some are worse than others. The key though– is to always TRY to give it your best.