Drive Down the Cost of Your Car
It would seem that times have
never been harder for UK motorists and with good reason too. The rising
cost of car insurance, astronomical fuel prices – the price per gallon
having reached the £6 mark – and an increase in VAT have all left some
car owners struggling to run their vehicle.
Despite a promised 1p per
litre fuel duty cut and plans to delay the next planned rise, fuel
prices remain exorbitantly high and the average car insurance policy
continues to rise by 44p per day.
It's unlikely that the
situation is going to improve in the near future, so it's worthwhile
following the simple steps below to drive down the cost of car
Don't stick with the same
insurer: Hands up those who have let their car insurance policy
automatically renew with their current insurer. We've all done it, but
as a nation we waste billions every year by unnecessarily staying with
last year's insurer.
Aim to start getting quotes
for the next year's policy about a month before your old policy expires
so you can compare a range of policies and find the cheapest deal. Why
not use a comparison website to give you a number of competitive quotes
from a variety of insurers.
Shop around for your fuel:
Don't fall into the habit of
filling up at the nearest and most convenient petrol station; you'll
more often than not pay through the nose when you could have saved 3-6p
per litre by looking for the cheapest place to fill up in your local
Once you've found the best
place to get your fuel, make sure you get a full tank of fuel to get
maximum benefit from the saving.
Aim to reduce your speed and
avoid harsh acceleration, instead moving calmly and smoothly up through
the gears and keeping your vehicle in a gear as possible to get maximum
By reading the road ahead you
can slowly ease off the accelerator or gradually speed up, instead of
having to act at the last minute and waste fuel.
Sticking to the 70mph speed
limit on duel carriageways and motorways and you will use between
10-20% less fuel than travelling at 80mph (and risking being given a
fine and 3 points for speeding).
Lift share with a colleague:
Why not consider sharing the
daily commute with a colleague who lives near to you. Take it in turns
to make the drive in and cut your fuel bill in half in the process (not
to mention reducing the wear and tear on your car).
If you have a bike or your
place of work takes part in the bike to work scheme (giving employees
access to reduced price bikes) why not consider using this method of
transport and pedal your way to fitness in the process.
Watch out for under inflated tyres:
It's easy to forget to carry
out simple maintenance checks such as; checking tyre pressures, brake
pad wear, oil levels, etc but you'll pay for it when it comes to your
Under inflated tyres decrease
your fuel economy and wear down quicker, both of which are bad for your
Aim to check them weekly and
refer to your cars instruction manual for correct pressures (also
adjust according to vehicle load).
Downsize your car:
If you're lucky enough to be a
2 car family, then why not consider downsizing one of them to something
smaller and more economical.
Small cars such are much
cheaper to run, and if you get one of the small diesel engines, you
will get a much reduced road tax (and you'll get as much as 50-60MPG).
Cut down the cost of car insurance:
As with any insurance policy,
the price you pay all comes down to a calculation of your risk to the
insurer. Anything you can do to reduce this risk should, in theory,
reduce the price of your premium.
Easy ways to apply this theory
include; reducing your annual mileage (keep it accurate), taking a pass
plus course (if you're a new driver), adding an older additional
driver, changing your job description (some roles are associated with
higher risk but again this needs to be as accurate as possible) and
finally, improving the security of your vehicle (add an alarm or
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"I am not only a pacifist,
but a militant pacifist. I am willing to fight for peace. Nothing will
end war unless the people themselves refuse to go to war." - Albert