Q&A with Modo Ambassador Emma Gilchrist
Emma Gilchrist is our newest Modo Ambassador based in Victoria. She’s the Executive Director of the online magazine DeSmog Canada, a journalist on travel, health, fitness and the environment, and blogger at The Vic Life. Get to know Emma in our Ambassador Q&A below!
Q&A with Emma Gilchrist
Your favourite Modo?
There’s a Nissan Versa (see pictured below) located about 90 seconds from my house, which is super handy. But I also really enjoyed taking a Prius C for a drive last week and I’m really excited to try out the electric Kia Soul.
Where do you Modo?
I’m pretty new to using Modo because I can walk or bike almost everywhere, but I’m starting to use it to go shopping for large items like gardening supplies or to take road trips on Vancouver Island. It’s amazing to have that freedom.
What does “Own less, live more” mean to you?
I look at how much it would cost me to own a car and think of all the other things I can afford instead: surf trips, meals in great restaurants and a down payment on my home. As someone who doesn’t need a car more than once a week, I feel so fortunate to be able to use Modo rather than spend thousands of dollars on car repairs and insurance.
When did you go car-free and why?
When I moved to the West Coast from Calgary in 2010, I left car ownership behind. I’d owned a car for four years and I’d kept all of the repair bills. When I added them all up, I discovered I’d paid more than $30,000 on the car in that time ($13,000 to buy it and $17,000 in repairs). I clearly bought a lemon, but I didn’t like the idea of spending even half that much on a vehicle. With the move to a milder climate and a more walkable city, I decided it was time to go car-free. My primary motivator was clearly saving money, but I also care about the environment and I knew that if I had a car, I’d be lazy and drive it more than I need to.