If you own a car, you’ll know just how expensive it can be to keep it running. Many people assume the only fees to pay are the upfront cost of the vehicle, insurance, and any applicable tax, but this isn’t the case. Firstly, you need to pay for gas to keep the car moving. With oil prices fluctuating regularly and seemingly increasing year on year, it’s getting more and more expensive to fill up a car, with annual fees exceeding well over $1,000 on average.
On top of this, you need to pay for annual servicing and repairs which can cost hundreds – if not thousands – of dollars depending on your car. Add in toll roads, potential fines, car washing, and parking fees, it’s clear to see how travel costs can spiral and quickly begin to rack up.
Whilst you have no control over how much oil costs and when your car will require maintenance work, there are some ways you can reduce your travel costs.
1. Use public transport where possible
First and foremost, you should look to public transport. If you live in an area with good transport infrastructure that is fairly priced, making use of it could save you a lot of money (and potentially even time, too). The first benefit of using public transport is that you don’t need to worry about finding a parking spot and paying for it. From car parks in Portsmouth to parking blocks in New York City, parking your car comes at an expense, and one that is often inflated. Using public transport eliminates the need to pay, saving you money in that respect.
In addition, you can avoid paying for tolls and congestion charges that might be in place, saving you further money. On top of this, you might find yourself travelling in a bus lane, on a tram line, or on a train, meaning you don’t need to battle with rush-hour traffic, therefore saving you time as well as money!
2. Carpool with colleagues and friends
Not everyone has the option to use public transport, be it because the fees are too high, it isn’t efficient, or it isn’t compatible with certain working hours. In this instance, you can still save money by carpooling. This means if you live close to colleagues or friends who are heading in the same direction as you, you can share a ride together and alternate on a daily or weekly basis.
By doing this, you’re paying for less fuel and putting less miles on your car, reducing the need for serious maintenance. On top of this, it’s far more eco-friendly to carpool than it is for two neighbors to drive separately to the same location.
3. Invest in an eco-efficient vehicle
Speaking of being eco-friendly, you can greatly reduce your travel costs by purchasing an eco-efficient vehicle. It might sound counterintuitive to spend money in order to save money, but it works. Older cars guzzle more fuel, tend to have a lower miles-to-the-gallon ratio, and often require more maintenance to keep them road worthy.
In contrast, buying a new model, such as a hybrid or electric car, will reduce your fuel costs and be far more efficient to run on the whole. What’s more, there are some good lease deals out there that allow you to get a brand new car every few years for a reasonable monthly price. Brand new cars don’t require an MOT or service for two years, saving you money in that regard. Whilst you won’t own the vehicle, you can certainly reap the rewards of leasing through not having to worry about depreciation and losing money when it comes to selling up.
These are just three of the ways you can reduce travel costs. If possible, consider walking or cycling to work to completely eliminate travel stresses and costs. Hopefully you’re able to save some money using these tips!