Author Topic: My first mustachian decision after college-help needed  (Read 1187 times)


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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My first mustachian decision after college-help needed
« on: April 14, 2018, 10:32:25 PM »

I would love some inputs.
I just finished graduate school and will be moving from Madison,WI to Natick,MA. Having lived a fairly hedonistic lifestyle I've acquired the following possessions during my student days:

2 suitcases sized 26 x 20 x 14 inches filled with clothes.
2 28 gallon totes with kitchenware, extra bedding, etc.
1 28 gallon tote of books
1 giant defy 4 road bike, tv(32 inches) and an Xbox. (shamefully unmustachian)
1 ironing board.
All my possessions together are worth about 800$ in total.

I am still in a dilemma about buying a car and if I do it will be a Honda Fit or a Prius.

I could do that in Madison or in Boston.

Will it be better to :

1. Rent a SUV(costs about 110$ a day*2 days+insurance+fuel) and drive across states?
2. Buy a personal car and try to squeeze in as much as possible and drive across states.
3. Use Amtrak(100$ in tickets plus 200$ with extra luggage) plus a lot of uncertainty about going from Framingham train station to my new place in Natick.
4. Fly to Boston and take some stuff along and dispose and reacquire my possessions.

I prefer not selling these stuff and keeping them because everything is in perfect condition and these are all that I need for the next few years.
I am trying to do a cost-benefit analysis and save every penny and any inputs will be helpful.


  • Walrus Stache
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Re: My first mustachian decision after college-help needed
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2018, 11:30:38 PM »
#2 is clearly the worst of all possible options. There are valid reasons to purchase a car, but making a ~20 hour drive is not one of them.

#3-4 sound like the just produce a lot of extra uncertainty but would costs more than option #1.

The main reason you might want to avoid #1 is if, since you don't currently own a car, you're not confident making a multi-day excursion along I-90.

Otherwise triage what you can (I have a couple of big cardboard boxes of books that have followed me from one coast to the other and back again, so I'm sympathetic there. Ironing boards and TVs on the other hand are a lot more fungible, and do take up a LOT of space relative to their replacement cost) and see if you can get down to the point where you can fit into a fullsized car or stationwagon. If not, rent a slightly bigger vehicle.


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Re: My first mustachian decision after college-help needed
« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2018, 08:37:20 AM »
When you get to Mass, do you need a car while living there?  If so, just buy a car where you are and use it to travel there and use while you're there.  If you're considering a car just for the ride there, I definitely would not do that.  If you plan on living in Mass without a car, I would considering selling a lot of what you have and repurchasing when you get to Mass.  Used TVs, bikes, ironing boards, etc can be sold on craigslist for a comparable price to what you can re-buy them again for when you get to Mass.  In that case, lighten your travel load to just the necessities like clothes and maybe the most important kitchen utensils.  Hop on a Greyhound one way to Mass and that will most likely be the cheapest. Unless you want to hop a train, and I'm not talking about riding on the inside.  But that can be a dangerous way to travel and it's hard to jump trains and not get caught. 

But if you do plan on using a car in Mass, by all means, buy where you are.  Not sure what sales tax is like there, but it's pretty high in Mass. I currently live in Mass now right near the boarder of NH. Everyone goes to NH for tax free goods, but unfortunately, Mass will still get you on the sales tax when you bring it back to register it.  So maybe compare taxes and other fees as well.  Don't get too complicated with it though.  If I were you, I'd part with the stuff you can sell on craigslist, take what you need, and re-purchase those items when you get here.


  • Magnum Stache
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Re: My first mustachian decision after college-help needed
« Reply #3 on: April 15, 2018, 10:49:09 PM »
Many many years ago I finished graduate school and needed to move from California to Canada. I already owned a car (can't really get around LA without a car), so I loaded up my hatchback and drove for two days with a friend. I bought a bike rack -- amazingly, my bike survived the two day freeway trip hanging off the back of my car.

I would choose one of the driving options. If you know you need your belongings, then it's easier to just bring them with you, particularly if you're moving to a new city with which you are unfamiliar. Much easier than trying to drag around three suitcases, lost at the airport, trying to find the Amtrak or long distance bus or public transportation to get to your new rental apartment, and then trying to drag three suitcases or whatever from the subway station to your new apartment...especially if one of your suitcases is packed with books.

Personally, I would rent and drive (but I'm comfortable with driving long distances), then buy a car only if needed at the new location. It's actually quite a lot of fun to road trip with a friend (if you have a friend who has always wanted to visit Natick, MA). With your cellphone and GPS, driving is quite doable. When I did my multi-day drive, I had a flip phone, so I printed out a bunch of Google Maps and mapped out our trip on paper.

However, you should consider the cost of buying a car in WI vs MA. Sometimes cars are a lot cheaper in some states than in others. Though I'm thinking if you're Mustachian, you'll probably buy a used car anyway, in which case, it's better to buy in MA since you should be able to find a good deal in MA. Never mind, I take back what I said. I would not even consider buying a car in WI.

My vote is for the rent and drive option.