When first arrived to LA to work at UCLA 10 years ago, I decided to live on Westwood so I didn’t have to buy a car… Some people think it’s not possible to live like this, but believe me, it is. Yes, the rent is more expensive here than if I was living elsewhere, but I save money on gas and car insurance, and most importantly I avoid stress from being stuck on traffic. I came from Madrid (Spain) where public transportation is very good, and where people are used to walk basically everywhere. So this is what I am used to do and what I do here! I walk as much as I can, which is nice because you enjoy the scenery, the trees, the houses, the sun of LA, while you exercise at the same time! It is true that sometimes it can make you feel lonely because frequently you can walk for miles not crossing anyone on your way… But you get used to it. I do use once in a while Zipcar when I need to do big groceries (I loooove Zipcar!), and of course take the bus when I need to go further than a 30 minute walk, or even rent a car for a weekend if I want to go for a trip, but not so often. People may think that walking to places takes too much time, but it may in fact take you only those extra minutes you are sitting on the couch watching TV, or doing nothing. Now that I am pregnant, I am happy not having a car because it forces me to keep walking, which is very good for the baby, and for me! I would recommend people to try. Don’t drive to a restaurant that is only six blocks away: a walk back may help you digest the food!

-Catalina