Cars are expensive to operate, and with the added cost of not only the vehicle, but also insurance, road tax, and MOTs and service, all of these add up quickly. But luckily there are steps you can take to reduce your driving costs and save some money.
RAC – MOT ASSIST
Did you know that breakdown company RAC offers a service that can fetch up to $ 750 in repairs to send your next MOT?
There are certain eligibility requirements – your vehicle must be serviced in a RAC-approved garage within the last 7 days. Your car must be less than 10 years old with less than 100,000 miles on the clock.
The idea is to take your car to a RAC-approved garage for a service and health check before your MOT. If the garage finds the solution repairs you need to complete to get past your MOT, these can be closed for free by the plan. Lighting, steering and suspension and windscreen wipers are included. These little things add up quickly – and although easy to fix, are often the cause of MOT failure!
Cashback on Fuel
Consider getting a cashback credit card. There is a full range of credit card types, so this one is the best one for you.
American Express Platinum Cashback Daily Credit Card offers 5% cashback on your purchases up to 100 for the first six months, after which you earn 0.5% cashback on any expenses up to £ 5000, after which you earn 1% cashback on purchases. This is a great card if you can pay it back every month – but be aware that not every retailer will accept Amex (due to higher processing fees). However, if you only have this for your fuel expenses, it is the best way to get a refund at regular cost!
Instead of cashback, you can look to earn loyalty points to spend on fuel. The Tesco Club card credit card earns points every time you shop or fill up at Tesco and offers 0% interest on purchases for the first 20 months. You can use the points you earn to reduce the size of your petrol or grocery bill or keep them towards the days. This can be a great card, especially if you shop locally and regularly at Tesco and fill up your car there.
Remember to always pay your credit card in full every month, otherwise any cashback offers will be denied by interest charges. The easiest way to remember to pay in full each month is by setting up direct debit.
Eco-driving, also known as hyper-milling, involves driving a vehicle with specific techniques to reduce fuel consumption and increase your miles per gallon (MPG) figure. Here’s how to do it:
Do not skip the service
Regular maintenance and service of your vehicle improves its efficiency, hence fuel consumption.
Check your tires properly
Less or more elevated tires will negatively affect your fuel economy, while tires reduced by 15psi can use up to 6% more fuel. Tire pressures vary depending on the load you are carrying, and if you are traveling with a large load, you will want your tires to be under more pressure. You can find the right tire pressures for your car in the manual.
Accelerate slowly and drive in maximum gear while keeping within the speed range. Shift quickly through gears, but 2000 rpm.
Reducing Horse Breaking
That’s how much fuel you waste. If you are safe at intersections and red lights, try to anticipate what is going to happen on the road and slow down the car by easing the accelerator. Acceleration after using less fuel than starting fresh.
Use cruise control carefully
Cruise control only helps fuel economy when driving on a flat surface like motorways. Using it at other times can actually adversely affect your fuel economy.
Control the use of climate control
Use heating and air conditioning functions sparingly as they run out of your fuel, so leave them on only when needed.
Lighten your load
The heavier the vehicle the more fuel it uses, so do not drive with unwanted items. On average, every 50 kg will increase your fuel consumption by 2%.
Remove roof wires and boxes if not in use, as they create a lot of wind resistance and your vehicle will use more fuel through the traction effect. Driving your window open or down with a sunroof can cause a similar reaction and burn with more fuel.
Insurance is one of the biggest annual motor expenses, so it is worth hunting for the best deals, there are plenty of car insurance comparison tools you can use. When you receive your automatic renewal quote, give it a try, or compare other offers available at that time to make sure you get the best offer.
If you think this will help you get a cheaper deal, investing in black box insurance may be worth it.
Never set up your insurance for automation! Companies will often take it directly from your bank account and raise the price without much notice. The same goes for breakdown services – shop every year for the best deal.
Adjust costs by a policy
If your circumstances have changed, do not update your current policy but look into it. For example, many of us now work from home instead of going to the office every day. If this is you – it will last until the end of your insurance policy – change the terms. Instead of ‘business, social and domestic’ you can change your policy to just ‘social and domestic’. Similarly, you can see if reducing your annual mileage will also reduce costs.
Leaving the way to find a cheap petrol station is the wrong economy. Instead, find out about the stations in your local area and where you go on regular routes. Keep a mental note of prices as you drive and watch price drops so you know the cheapest option when your tank is low.
The RAC specified 42 mpg (miles per gallon), and driving 10,000 miles per year would cost an additional $ 100.82 per year for a 10p increase in diesel prices!
Other Chat Now apps like Google Maps and Ways will show you the quickest way to reach your goal.
Before you leave, also check the route of transport. Both Google Maps and Ways will be updated with estimates of how long actual traffic will last. Stop-start driving is bad for fuel consumption and economy, so see if you have any alternatives to avoid large-scale traffic.
Start early or travel late
Summer weekends and bank holidays are a disgrace to endless traffic jams. If this is possible, try to set the hour early in the day to avoid bad traffic – or drive in the evening. This is also a great tip for those traveling with families – there is nothing worse than being stuck in a traffic jam in a hot, stuffy car with annoying kids! Traveling very early or after means you will not face heat like in the middle of the day (and may be lucky enough to travel even at bedtime!).
Share a Ride
If you ever use your car, push it completely. Instead, sign up for a car share club.
Car stock services and car clubs are becoming increasingly popular in urban areas. They are perfect for people who only need to use one car at a time and do not want to bear all the extra costs that come with a car. If you book a car for an hour or more, pick it up from the place closest to you (often the street park closest to your house) and return it to the same place! You do not have the current costs of running a car – but you do get the convenience of one when you need it.
BLABLA Car and Enterprise Car Club are great sites to find a variety of options, including renting your own car or carpooling in the same direction.
Prices vary, but start at 30p per minute, or £ 5 per hour.
Share your own car
If you do not want to completely disassemble your car, consider riding stock instead. Locally, come forward to separate school parents with other parents each week or share your daily commute with a colleague.
You can sign up on sites like Lift Share to see others like you go. Or, if you do not have a car, you can do a lift gate with someone!
Affordable and Easy Parking
Numerous apps are now available to help you find cheap and easy parking spaces, especially in big cities which will save you wealth.
Appyway finds parking spaces (including disabled, electric and motorcycles) and shows you the charges and restrictions. It shows UK level petrol prices and locations to help you find the cheapest fuel near you.
Parkapedia has more than 70 million parking spaces in 15,000 cities around the world. It provides you with directions to the parking lot, showing the opening hours, prices and available payment methods. This allows you to easily add filters to your search such as street parking, free or credit card payments.
An easy alternative is to stop at the edge of the city, where places are cheaper and you can go inside. (This is also the best exercise!).
Rent car park space
If you usually have to park in the same area, look around to rent car parking spaces. It can save an absolute fortune on parking fees! Just park offers an easy way to book a car park space all at once or continuously.