Keeping cars running can be an expensive business, so it can be worth looking into alternative methods of transport to help replace them at times. If you only live a short distance from your workplace, consider cycling rather than driving – this can help cut costs as well as help to improve your fitness level.

If you live and work in a city and only drive occasionally, it can be worth looking into joining a pay-as-you-go car club. For a one-off annual fee you then have the opportunity to hire cars by the hour, which can be useful if you need to travel out of the city for a short time, before returning the vehicle to a specially designated pick up and drop off point.

As well as considering the mechanical aspects of your vehicle, it’s also useful to consider how much you’re paying for the paper side of ownership. By taking some time to get your finances in order you can help reduce the costs of running your vehicle and free up a little extra money to spend elsewhere.

When it comes to car finance – which you’ll need if you aren’t able to pay cash-in-hand – be sure to research the deals thoroughly before committing to a plan. Finance plans and insurance deals can be arranged through showrooms, but some deals are likely have a high annual interest rate, so it can be worth looking into car loans as an alternative.

Car insurance can be expensive if you have a large car, so consider switching to a smaller vehicle in order to reduce costs. Your driving manner can also play a part in getting cheap car insurance; if you are a careful driver you have a better chance of accumulating no-claims discount, which can come in handy when it comes to renewing your policy.

It also pays to be honest in your application for car insurance; as giving false details can lead to complications should you need to make a claim – as well as being illegal. Careful drivers can build up a no claims bonus, which is can be useful in helping to reduce their car insurance renewal quotes.

As well as an insurance policy, breakdown cover is another essential for car owners, as this entitles you to roadside assistance should anything happen to your vehicle during your journey. Different levels of cover are available – from basic packages that include roadside assistance, to those that cost a little more but entitle you to assistance should you experience problems before you’ve even got the car off the driveway.

By considering certain aspects of daily use and maintenance, driving carefully and ensuring that you have the correct paperwork in place, you can help yourself to reduce the costs of owning and running a car.

About the author

David is an experienced web author based in the UK