#2: Milwaukee, WI
Milwaukee takes second place partially because there are no toll roads in the state of Wisconsin. With low car insurance premiums and inexpensive garage parking in the city, Cheeseheads have fewer auto expenses to worry about.
- Two-hour garage parking averages just $6.28
- Car insurance is low at $1,260
- No tolls in Wisconsin
#3: San Antonio, TX
While many things may be bigger in Texas, the cost of owning a car in San Antonio is much smaller compared to other cities on our list. Car insurance averages below $1,500 a year and Texans typically pay around $1.86 for a gallon of gas. For those visiting or working downtown, two-hour garage parking is about $6.64. On the downside, San Antonio drivers are prone to high auto loan debt, which takes up 46% of the median income.
- Car insurance just $1,431
- Gas is low in Texas at $1.86
- Inexpensive to park at just $6.64 for two hours
#4: Cincinnati, OH
We’re back to Ohio with Cincinnati ranking as another low-cost area for drivers. Parking in the city is the lowest in the nation at just $5.43 for two-hour garage parking. Annual car insurance premiums are just over $1,110, and debt from auto loans only accounts for 30% of income.
- Least expensive parking on our list at just $5.43
- Car insurance around $1,119
- Auto loan debt lower at 30% DTI
#5: Nashville, TN
You won’t find any toll roads while driving through Tennessee, including the Country Music Capital of the World. Nashville’s downtown parking is quite affordable, averaging around $10 for two-hour garage parking. Tennessee also boasts low gas prices at just $1.913 per gallon.
- No tolls in Tennessee
- Gas low in the state at $1.913
- Moderate parking $10.03
#6: Buffalo, NY
Buffalo residents carry lower auto loan debt compared to most other city dwellers in the U.S. Plus, the toll road between Buffalo and Niagara averages just $0.04 per mile. Finally, Buffalo’s annual car insurance premiums fall just at the national average of about $1,500.
- Low auto loan debt at 27%
- Car insurance averages $1,500
- Inexpensive tolls
#7: Raleigh, NC
Raleigh holds the claim of the lowest car insurance premium on our entire list of cities, at well under $1,000 a year. Plus, auto loan debt takes up just 30% of the median income, while North Carolina gas prices are quite low at $1.961 per gallon.However, area tolls are above average at $0.19 per mile.
- Lowest car insurance on our list at $941.78
- Inexpensive gas in NC $1.96
- Debt on the lower end at 30% DTI
#8: Minneapolis, MN
With scenic lakes to look at while driving, Minneapolis is also quite affordable for car owners. Car loans only account for 23% of the city’s median income, and commuters have below-average garage parking as well. Even car insurance is low at just $1,400 a year. However, tolls in and out of Minneapolis are quite high at $0.46 per mile.
- Auto loan debt is 23% of median income
- Parking low at $7.36
- Car insurance is below average at $1,417
#9: Cleveland, OH
The third Ohio city on our list, Cleveland’s car insurance is among the lowest in the nation at just $1,056. Garage parking is extremely affordable at just $7.04 for two hours, and we know that Ohio is home to low gas prices. Cleveland ranks lower than its other Ohio counterparts, however, because auto loan debt is higher at 33% of the city’s median income.
- Low car insurance premiums averaging $1056
- Two-hour garage parking is about $7.04
- Gas in Ohio is only $2.08
#10: Portland, OR
Back on the West Coast, Portland rounds out our most affordable cities for car owners, partly because of Oregon’s lack of tolls (with the exception of a few bridges). Drivers also enjoy lower auto loans compared to income levels, and two-hour parking in a garage only sets them back about $8. However, gas prices in Oregon are high, exceeding $2.65.
- No tolls in Oregon
- Lower auto loan debt at 23% of income
- Parking is below average at $8.07