Like most Americans you probably have a car. And like most people, you probably spend a ton on transportation costs. Here are some thoughts that might help you save a few bucks when you’re getting from point A to point B.
1) Follow parking rules. – No joke. Some parts of the country are very aggressive in their ticketing policies.
We live in DC. Here if you park in the wrong spot for more than 15 minutes, the friendly neighborhood meter maid will be along for visit. I actually had a big problem with this back in 2003. For some idiotic reason, I didn’t buy a parking permit and after 6 tickets my car got booted. Yes, booted. That’s when put a big clamp on your wheel so you can’t drive the car. The tickets were in various stages of being repayed, but when I saw the boot they got paid fast. So, take it from me – follow parking rules.
2) Shop Around for Insurance: If you get on the phone and start making some calls you’ll probably figure out who has the cheapest insurance in your area. Also don’t forget to ask about discounts for alarms, short commutes, safety features or good driver records.
3) Be careful selecting a mechanic: Auto repair costs can be pricey. Costs can get even higher if your mechanic is recommending unnecessary work. Very often for the layperson its hard to know if the work is unnecessary or if the amount charged for parts and labor is appropriate. Avoid this. Consider asking a friend for a referral and don’t forget to hit the internet to check up any repair shop you’re considering.
4) Follow the Cars Maintenance Plan: Skipping oil changes and tune ups may seem like a way to save money, but it could cost you BIG in the long run. – Take it from me. In college, I had an old Subaru. After failing to change to the oil for two years, the engine seized up and I had to sell the car for scrap. After paying $2,400 to buy the thing, I netted something like $250 for the scrap value. So, seriously maintain your car. It will save you money in the long run.
5) Check Your Insurance Before You Rent: If you’re in the market for a rental car, do some research. Some credit cards and auto insurance policies carry rental coverage. If your credit card or homeowners insurance covers you might not have to buy the rental agencies more expensive policies.
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