Keeping a car on the road can be an enormous expense and will significantly eat into a monthly budget. In addition to the cost of the automobile to cover, a motorist must also factor in the car insurance, fuel, road tax and maintenance costs, which can all add up and create financial challenges, even for those on a healthy salary. So, what are some smart financial tips for motorists that can make it more affordable to drive? There are a handful of tips that should help and when combined together this could have a big impact on your finances when it comes to motoring.
One of the most obvious steps to take to reduce driving costs is simply to drive less. People jump in the car even if it is just a short trip where you could easily walk, so if you start questioning whether or not driving is essential before each trip, then you could make big savings on fuel and even reduce your insurance if you can reduce your annual mileage. Not only this, but walking or cycling are healthy options, while also reducing your environmental impact; so there are many benefits to minimising the amount of time spent behind the wheel.
Switch To An Electric/Hybrid Car
Following this, another smart move is to switch to an electric or hybrid car. Fuel is a major cost to consider so you will make enormous long-term savings by switching to an electric or hybrid, as well as road tax, which will be free for zero-emission vehicles. Many motorists are now making the switch to electric cars ahead of the 2035 ban on the sale of petrol and diesel as there are many excellent models to choose from. Battery range is also increasing along with the number of charging stations, so range anxiety is no longer an issue.
Lease Instead Of Purchase
There are a number of options when it comes to car ownership and ultimately it will come down to your circumstances, but you might find that a lease deal is the most cost-effective option. This is because leasing allows you to avoid depreciation, which can see a motorist lose thousands of pounds if they decide to sell a car a few years after buying it. This is not an issue with leasing as you simply return the keys and can arrange a lease on a newer car (which might also be cheaper to run). Not only this, but you can often have insurance and maintenance included in the agreement to make it easier to manage, and the deposit is typically lower than on other finance products.
Ship Your Car If Moving Abroad
If you are moving abroad then you might wonder what your best option is in terms of motoring. If you are moving to somewhere like Canada, you might find that it is helpful to read a Canada car import guide from a company such as Autoshippers, as it might be best to ship your vehicle over –especially if it is a car that you are attached to. This may seem like a complex and expensive process, but it might work out to be cost-effective and it will save you the stress of having to sell the car and then buy a new one when you arrive in Canada.
Find Ways To Reduce Insurance
Insurance is one of the major costs to cover each month, but one which is obviously a legal requirement. Fortunately, there are ways to reduce the amount that you have to pay, which are worth looking into if you are currently paying more than most. A few ways to do this include:
- Comparing car insurance quotes
- Reducing mileage
- Shopping around
- Increase your excess
- Pay annually
- Black box insurance
- Improve car security
- Switch to a car that is cheaper to insure
Have Additional Protection In Place
It may seem counterintuitive to spend more on optional protection, but you might find that this saves you a small fortune and will also give you peace of mind when you are behind the wheel. This protection should be in the form of an extended warranty if the original manufacturer’s warranty has expired, and GAP insurance that will cover the shortfall between an insurance payout and the amount originally paid in the event of a write-off (comprehensive insurance policies only pay the current market value).
These are all excellent ways to save money on your driving costs, and when combined together could have a big impact on your finances. Keeping a car on the road can be incredibly expensive, but there are always ways to make savings and make motoring more affordable.