DON’T OVERPAY ON BREAK­DOWN COVER

South Wales Echo - - Cashing In -

PETROL prices are up, car in­sur­ance prices are up, break­down costs are up – but don’t let it get you down.

There are many ways to slash the cost of mo­tor­ing.

Let me show you five easy ways to put the brakes on your ve­hic­u­lar costs. BACK-UP in case your car fails is im­por­tant, es­pe­cially if you rely on it for work or the kids.

A year of cover at au­toaid­break­down.co.uk costs £48 – not much more than ba­sic poli­cies with the big firms – and it in­cludes home start and on­ward travel and in­cludes cover for you and your spouse (in­clud­ing civil part­ners) at no ex­tra cost. Call-out times are said to be roughly sim­i­lar too.

If you pre­fer a big firm, the golden rule when it comes to re­newal is to hag­gle. It re­ally works.

If you want a ba­sic AA or RAC pol­icy, new cus­tomers buy­ing through cash­back sites top­cash­back.co.uk or Quidco.com can re­duce the price to £20 a year (it changes daily).

FIND THE CHEAPEST FUEL

USE petrol­prices.com. Cre­ate a free ac­count, en­ter your post­code and select how far you’re will­ing to travel to a fore­court (5, 10 or 25 miles) – the dif­fer­ence be­tween best and worst can be huge.

For ex­am­ple, in Birm­ing­ham it ranges from 114.7per litre to 137.9 per litre for un­leaded petrol within a five mile ra­dius – a dif­fer­ence of al­most 20%. Even just cut­ting the cost by 5% saves some­one who puts £50 in their tank a week £130 a year. Check su­per­mar­kets for of­fers too.

DRIVE EF­FI­CIENTLY AND SAVE

HOW you drive is the big­gest sin­gle fac­tor af­fect­ing your fuel costs, and in ex­treme cases peo­ple find they can save 30% when they change their driv­ing habits.

over-revving. than feels nat­u­ral.

po­si­tion, so you can keep mov­ing rather than stop­ping and start­ing.

in­stead of hit­ting the brakes.

hear sharp ac­cel­er­a­tion and screech­ing brakes, you’re do­ing it wrong.

FREE HAL­FORDS WIN­TER CAR CHECK

HAL­FORDS.COM is of­fer­ing a free ‘£15’ win­ter car check, which in­cludes checks to your bat­tery, bulbs, wiper blades, oil and screen wash lev­els. There’s no need to book in ad­vance, though you can do so on­line if you want, and the check should take about 15 min­utes. There is no obli­ga­tion to buy any­thing, but be pre­pared that staff might try to up­sell to you. The win­ter car check is on un­til spring.

TWO OR MORE CARS AT HOME? CHECK MULTI-CAR

NEVER auto re­new car in­sur­ance. Check you’ve the right cover us­ing the right com­par­i­son sites – see mon­eysaving­ex­pert.com/ carin­sur­ance

Add in di­rect­line.com and aviva.co.uk which com­par­i­son sites don’t in­clude. If you’ve got a multi-car pol­icy, check stand­alone in­sur­ers first. If you’ve got stand­alone, check multi-car first.

Many don’t think to look at multi-car be­cause re­newal dates aren’t close. Ad­mi­ral. com, lv.com and Aviva let you set up a pol­icy at your first car’s re­newal, while the other car(s) stay with their ex­ist­ing in­surer un­til their re­newal.

Mus­cle­Squad cast iron ket­tle­bell, Sports Di­rect.

Domyos Pi­lates peanut ball, De­cathlon.

■ Martin Lewis is the founder of Mon­eySaving­Ex­pert.com. Get his free Money Tips at money saving­ex­pert.com/ lat­est­tip

Women’s health foam roller, Ar­gos. Was £19.99, now £14.99. SAVE: £5

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