There is no getting away from it, the cost of driving is on the rise. From fluctuating petrol prices to basic repairs and car maintenance. The joy of driving has become a little less joyful and a lot more expensive. So, how can you cut costs and save money?
The brilliant people at moneysavingexpert.com have written a list of 50 ways to save. Here are our top 10.
- The first one is a legal one. And one that not many people know about. Don’t get caught out with a £1,000 fine by simply forgetting to check the expiry date on your photo licence card. It costs £14 to renew online or £17 by post.
- Petrol prices change on a weekly basis. But it’s never cheap to fill up the tank. Did you know the way you drive can actually make your petrol go further? Here’s how:
- Accelerate gradually and don’t over rev.
- Drive in the correct gear – the highest gear possible.
- Slow down naturally without pressing hard on the brakes.
- Don’t fill the tank full. The weight of the fuel itself makes the car use more fuel.
- On the subject of petrol, you can get fuel vouchers with your weekly shop. My mum always raves about her fuel vouchers. And justifiably so. You can’t scoff at 5p or even 12p off a litre of fuel these days! Thanks mum.
- A final point on petrol. Don’t buy premium fuel for standard cars. There is no point. Save that for your sports car.
- Car maintenance. How about learning the basics and avoid hefty garage bills for simple repairs. There are many courses and http://www.moneysavingexpert.com/travel/car-check lists some at item 51.
- Regular MOTs are a legal requirement for car owners. Test fees aren’t the issue, the costs of repairs are. If you’ve learnt some basic car maintenance then do some checks beforehand. And when you do book in, book into a council run MOT centre. They have no vested interest because they only do MOTs, not repairs.
- The article on money saving expert covers a few areas you could save money. Third party cover is legally the lowest level of cover we have to have. You’d think that would mean it was less costly. Wrong! It is always worth checking because sometimes fully comp can actually be a better deal AND it covers you for more. Use comparison sites. And remember, even if off road, cars still need insurance. Don’t be caught out!
- Do you have breakdown cover? Don’t just renew each year without thinking about it. New customers always get the best deals. Ask upon renewal what those deals are. We don’t like to haggle in this country, but it can save you a lot of money.
- Do you really need to use your car every day? Do you live somewhere with a car club? More and more people are using them to save money but you should do your research first. Apparently they are really only suitable for those who use a car infrequently and drive short journeys. Still, if you have a car and only use it occasionally then a car club would cut the maintenance, insurance and fuel costs.
- Again, if you live in an area with good public transport links then it may be cheaper (and more environmentally friendly) to use the bus or the train. Look at your local links and start planning. You’ll even save on parking at the other end!
So there are our top tips for reducing driving costs. It’s not that difficult really and small changes can make a big difference.