America is a truly vast country that encompasses fifty states and is the home to over 4% of the total world population. It is a country of enormous urban sprawls, such as New York and Los Angeles, that have millions of residents and a fast-paced 24/7 lifestyle. However, it is also a country that benefits from areas of spectacular natural beauty and truly awe-inspiring landscapes. America is a land that is filled with citizens who love to drive. From taking a family vacation by road to making driving a source of income, Americans are renowned for their passion for vehicles and getting out onto the open road. In this article, the American love affair with driving is explored in detail, with some key reasons to explain why vehicle culture is so prominent in the country.
Driving as a career choice
It is estimated that there are over 2.3 million adults in America who use driving as their main career choice to earn an income. Jobs range from taxi driving to professional truck drivers and chauffeurs who transport the rich and famous around the country. Driving is a major form of employment in America, and the sheer number of professional drivers is a testament to the popularity of using vehicles as a form of employment. Today in 2023, a growing number of Americans are working for shipping companies by using their own trucks and vans. In this type of employment, shipping work is placed online in the form of a jobs board for loads. Freelance drivers place bids for work that has a suitable delivery route and a load that their vehicle can safely carry. If their bid is successful, they are then tasked with fulfilling the delivery.
As previously mentioned, the diversity and vastness of the American landscape is one of the key reasons why driving is so popular. Most non-Americans will have heard of Route 66, which is a historic road that stretches almost 4000km across America from Chicago to California. This road is renowned for taking in incredibly beautiful scenery and having small quaint motels, shops, and traditional establishments that hint at this country’s history. Many Americans and tourists from all over the world choose to drive this road as part of a lifelong ambition to see an unspoiled American land that is far removed from large-scale malls and urban sprawl.
Road trip traditions
As a final key reason for the American love of driving is the fact that road trips are part of the culture and national identity. A significant proportion of Americans do not own a valid passport (almost 60% of the population do not, according to recent estimates) as there is so much to explore and such diversity in their own country. Road trips are taken to visit other states where the culture and lifestyle can be markedly different from their home state. For example, contrast the hustle of a large urban center like New York with the natural wilderness that is present in the State of Wyoming, and you will begin to understand what a diverse country America is.
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