Keeping the cost of driving down

Keeping the cost of driving down

When it comes to driving, one of the best ways to save money is to avoid using your car altogether! Many of the car journeys made in the UK could be made using another type of transport: see the Driver Knowledge Centre for information about other ways to make a journey.

If you have to use a car, you can save fuel by driving smoothly, without harsh acceleration or braking, and by using engine braking. Using less fuel is better for the environment too: see more about this on the Driving and the environment.

Looking after your car will also help to save money. Regular maintenance will keep the car working efficiently and will help you spot any problems early, so you can get them fixed before they become big problems.

One of the biggest annual costs of running a car is insurance. The cost of insurance varies widely but you can help to keep it low by

  • avoiding driving convictions
  • earning a ‘no-claims’ bonus for each year you don’t make an insurance claim
  • choosing a higher ‘excess’: this is the amount of any claim that you’ll pay; the insurer will pay the rest
  • keeping your car in a garage overnight.

If you’re planning to buy a new car, check the fuel consumption, CO2 emissions and tax bands of the model you’re thinking about buying: use the CO2 and vehicle tax tool on GOV.UK.

There’s also a tool for checking van fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.

The lower the CO2 emissions and the fuel consumption, the cheaper your vehicle will be to run.

If you’re thinking about buying an electric car or van, you might be able to get a grant to help with the cost. See the Driving and the environment page for more information.