How to Keep Your Petrol Costs as Low as Possible

Image courtesy of taxrebate.org.uk
Image courtesy of taxrebate.org.uk
Driving can be really expensive, but many people have no choice but to use a car to commute to work each day. There are obviously many costs associated with having a car but the day to day petrol or diesel costs are the ones that most people notice. The costs seems to rise regularly, both due to tax increases as well as the price of oil going up and petrol stations just generally raising prices. There are some things that you can do to help though.

Compare prices
The first thing to consider is comparing prices between your local petrol stations. There may be a significant difference between them that may make it worth visiting one rather than another. If you have to drive too far out of your way to save a small amount then it may not be worth the petrol that you use to drive there but it is certainly worth calculating. You may find that the cheapest place may not always be the cheapest so you will need to keep checking prices and there are websites where you can do this.

Drive efficientlyIf you drive more efficiently then you will use less fuel. This means that rather than accelerating sharply and breaking sharply, then just cruise to slow down and do not brake until you need to. If you drive to quickly or slowly you will use more fuel too so if you can do so safely, then it is better to drive at 50mph. You should also close windows at over 50mph to reduce wind resistance. Even if you put on the air conditioning it is still cheaper to travel this way. It is also worth reducing the weight in your car to keep the amount of fuel needed to move it lower. This means removing unnecessary luggage carriers, roof and bike racks, bikes or items in the boot. Even a small thing can make a big difference if you carry it on your daily work commute every day.

Get a fuel efficient car
When you are buying a new vehicle then it is wise to choose something that is more fuel efficient. Choosing something small is wise, but you should try to see if you can find out what the miles per gallon is so that you can do a proper comparison. You could consider a hybrid or electric car to see if that will save you money. Although you will need to know how the price of electricity compares and see whether if you are charging the car up from home, whether it is going to be cheaper for you.

Look for discounts/loyalty cards
Some petrol stations are associated with supermarkets which will give your loyalty points if you buy form them. Others may have loyalty cards too or you may be able to get discounts from time to time. It is important to find out about these, by looking at the petrol stations as you go by, in order to know which will be the cheapest for you. You may need to apply for a loyalty card to be able to benefit from the discounts.

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Rachel Henderson is a professional freelance writer from the UK. She writes on many subjects but specialises in personal finance. As well as contributing to various blogs and websites she has her own website tracking her own money making process http://www.turnonepoundintoonemillion.com and sells her books through http://www.bowbridgepublishing.com.

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