Cutting Car Costs: Making Sure You Can Afford Your First Vehicle!

Passing your driving test is one of the most incredible feelings, after months (or sometimes years!) of practice and hard work you finally get to reap the rewards. Being able to drive gives you such independence, no longer do you need to rely on friends or family for lifts, fork out on taxis or Ubers or wait around on unreliable public transport.

With a license and your own car, you can go where you want, when you want. However it’s not easy for new drivers, and passing your test is just the start. Being able to purchase a car, get it insured, taxed and fuelled can all be a lengthy and expensive process. If you’re in the process of doing your driving lessons or are planning on doing some soon, read this!

Save While You Learn

Learning to drive is expensive. You have to pay for lessons, your theory test and your driving test (multiple times, if you don’t pass on your first go). When you add up these costs it can come to an eye-watering amount, however, the good thing is that they’re spread over many months.

While you’re learning to drive, it’s a good idea to start putting money away for once you’ve passed. That way you have money set aside for the cost of a vehicle, insurance, road tax and repairs instead of being handed your license and then wondering how you’re going to afford everything. With some cash put aside it can help to buffer the large expenses you will need to shell out to get yourself on the road.

Run Quotes Through Comparison Sites

Having an idea of how much you’re likely to be charged for insurance and other costs can be helpful. As a new driver, you will be hit with some awful rates, but these can vary dramatically depending on the age, size, and model of the car amongst other things. Have a look at different cars and run lots of quotes through comparison sites so you have some idea what you will be up against when you pass. In some cases, it can be better to spend more on a car since newer cars can be less expensive on insurance.

Consider Finance and Leasing Options

If you’ve found that insurance on all of the cars you can afford is going to be too high, there is another option. If you use finance or lease a vehicle, you can pay a monthly amount and have access to a far better car than you could afford to buy upfront. Whether it’s a Volkswagen, Ford or Audi lease, a newer car will likely cost you less in insurance and plus you don’t usually pay repair costs too. With leasing you won’t own the car, with certain finance plans you will once you’ve made the final payment. But be sure to check the terms and conditions.

The upfront costs of obtaining a vehicle, insuring it, paying the right road taxes can be significant. However, it’s a little easier after this, just be sure to factor in the cost of things like fuel and minor repairs.


Photo Credit: Phil Desforges

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