5 ways to cut the cost of motoring

Jasmine Birtles

Use these 5 great tips for a real economy drive that does not take the joy out of the driving seat. Money expert Jasmine Birtles gives the best on the road tips that will help you save money.

 

SAVE ON PETROL—AND AVOID TRAFFIC TOO

Always check on PetrolPrices.com before you go out to fillup. This website compares11,000 petrol stations to findthe cheapest one in your area. Simply type in your postcode or town, and it does the rest for you.

Or if you’re into apps, download Waze—which enables you to join forces with other people in your community to avoid congestion and save money on petrol. Local drivers share traffic information so you don’t waste time and money in jams. They also report on local pump prices so you can avoid paying through the nose.

FILL YOUR EMPTY SEATS 

If you’re driving somewhere,you could get some moneyback by giving someone else a lift. The car-sharing site BlaBlaCar.com connects youwith paying passengers who want to travel where you’re going. Offering them a ridetakes only a couple of seconds on the site or the mobile app, and by taking two passengers you can save no less than 88%of your fuel costs on long-distance journeys.

Alternatively, you could even ditch your car altogether and become a regular passenger through BlaBlaCar instead.

DRIVE SMARTLY

The Energy Saving Trust estimates that the average UK driver could save between £300 and £350 of petrol costs a year just by being cleverer with their driving. Basic tips include going no faster than 70mph, closing your windows when travelling at more than 60mph to reduce aerodynamic drag, unloading unnecessary items from your boot and switching off your engine when stationary for more than a minute. Check your tyre pressure regularly too, as that can affect your driving efficiency.

PARK FOR LESS

By logging onto JustPark.com or Parklet.co.uk, you can park in people’s driveways for much less than you’d pay for commercial spaces. For example, a week’s public parking near Heathrow Airport costs between £70 and £120. Renting a private space through ParkatmyHouse can be as little as £20. Alternatively you can rent out your own space YourParkingSpace.co.uk.

GET MONEY BACK ONYOUR PARKING TICKETS

If you’ve had a ticket and you don’t think it’s fair, then appeal. You have a good chance of getting your money refunded. Figures from the Traffic Penalty Tribunal show that more than 60% of appeals result in a win for the motorists.

Not only that, but according to PATROL (Parking and Traffic Regulations Outside London), if any of the information in the Penalty Charge Notice—such asthe size of the fine or the reason for the ticket—is wrong or incomplete, the ticket is invalid.

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