Thursday, October 20, 2011

Nice car, what about the house?

In Estonia everybody loves cars. You can see a lot of nice cars driving around, which is amazing considering how poor Estonia is. In addition to the small salaries, it is also very expensive to drive cars here. Parking always costs money and gas is about $6.50 a gallon (1.25 euros a liter). Also tires, changing oil and fixing a broken car all cost more here. Part of that is the 20% VAT tax they have, but part is because Estonia is a small market far away from the middle of Europe. I am very happy to pay 7 euros a month for my city bus pass. How do others pay for their cars? By living in small Soviet apartments. This picture above is of two nice SUVs in front of our building. In the US if someone had the money to buy a nice new Mercedes SUV, they would also have the money to buy a house and a garage. Here, people can't afford both so they go with the car. I still haven't figured out why though. I kind of like never having to worry about a break down, a wreck, or having my car get stolen or broken into.

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