Imagine yourself post-practical test. As your (ex-)driving instructor accelerates off into the horizon, you clasp your pass certificate to your chest and take a moment to savour your achievement. It might have been a bumpy ride, but now a fully-licensed driver stands in your shoes. Someone competent enough to parallel park; a human with clutch control to rival anyone’s. You can make your own way around town now.
Well, almost… The hard work’s over, but the shopping has only just begun! Your pink licence opens a whole new world of spending (where you should), saving (where you can) and paperwork (where you must).
What to do after passing your driving test?
Here’s a handy checklist of things to get sorted before you hit the road — and our favourite ways to save on the essentials.
1) The Fun Part: Get yourself a set of wheels — choose carefully and enjoy the ride for years to come 🚘
2) The Painful Part: Your first insurance policy — the first is the worst, but it gets better with your No Claims Discount and our comparison tips! 📝
3) The Sensible Part: Breakdown cover — nobody wants to be stranded by the road, and definitely not at the start of your driving experience! 🆘
4) The Ongoing Part: Keeping your car in top condition — do it properly and enjoy a healthy motor with no nasty surprises down the line 👨🔧
5) The Optional Part: Nice-to-have extras to help you and your car stay safe day-to-day 💪
6) The Smart Part: Save some cash with the money-saving tips below! 🤑
Get your dream car with low-rate financing
A set of wheels is top of your list — and the choice can seem a little overwhelming. You, my friend, need to take a look at BuyaCar. Not only do they offer an exceptional range of cars to suit every budget, but they’re also the easiest and most trusted way to buy a used car online. It’s not just us saying that: they boast thousands of happy customers and an ‘Excellent’ rating on Trustpilot.
Browse over 50,000 cars on their website, apply for low-rate finance, and your car is delivered to your door with a 14-day money-back guarantee.
Don’t let insurance put a dent in your savings
Before you build up no-claims discounts and maybe hit an age milestone (it’ll usually drop when you’re over 25), car insurance could be your biggest payout on this list. And since your first policy will probably be your most expensive, you need to make sure you’re getting the most for your money and not paying over the odds.
Using comparison sites is one of the best ways to find cheap car insurance. Now that you’ve passed your test, why not compare over 110 insurers in minutes via Confused.com?
Super Save up to £253* on your car insurance with MoneySuperMarket — they are 100% independent and on your side!
*51% of consumers could save up to £253.08 on their annual car insurance premiums. Consumer Intelligence, July 2021
Cut out the middleman and go direct with Marmalade. They’ve got a range of policies to cover your every need—including black box car insurance that will reward you for safe driving when it comes to renewal.
ingenie’s black box insurance provides regular driving feedback along with the chance to save upfront, earn discounts 3 times a year, and save at renewal, just by driving well.
ingenie’s learner insurance is a flexible learner policy that allows learners to practice in someone else’s car for 1-6 months (with the option to top up if they need more time) while protecting the car owner’s No Claims Discount.
There’s something for everyone — see how much you could save.
RAC — breakdown cover you can count on
Breakdown cover seems like a luxury — until you’re sitting on the hard shoulder, miles from anywhere, without a mechanic’s tools, skills and know-how…
RAC fix 4 out of 5 issues at the roadside (saving you a trip to the garage) and charge zero hidden costs. They also offer a few different breakdown cover packages, so you only pay for what you’re likely to need.
Get a quote now to see what you can save on an RAC policy to make sure you don’t get caught out through winter (and beyond).
MOT and Car Repairs without leaving your sofa
Next up in our one-stop-shop: the ongoing expense of car maintenance. MOTs, services and repairs are all part and parcel of your new car ownership responsibilities. And while they can seem costly, keeping on top of things will save you money in the long run.
Time for a tyre change?
Fixter’s in-house experts make sure any quotes you receive are relevant and fairly priced, so no nasty surprises!
They collect, fix and deliver. Whenever. Wherever.
As though that wasn’t enough, we’ve got extra savings to share with you too!
Some things aren’t essential. But we’ve picked out a thoughtful selection of car accessories that aim to keep you and your car safe. We know you’ve got plenty to buy already, so you could always stick them on your birthday or Christmas wish list!
There are thousands of phone mounts out there, but this magnetic one from YOSH is exceptional. It keeps your phone in place vertically or horizontally—so you have options if you’re using a digital map app. Your order contains two phone magnets, so you can give your partner, parent or friend one to attach to their device too.
Dashcams have become increasingly popular—and for good reason. Invaluable in the face of an accident, there’s no more ‘he-said, she-said’: you’ll have clear evidence showing what really happened. The VIOFO A119 V3 protects collision video from being overwritten, has a low profile design and great night vision—so you can rely on its footage even in the dark.
Party season or no party season, a heavy night of drinking can affect your ability to drive the next morning. No drink-drive calculation is totally accurate, so check you’re safe to go with the AlcoSense Excel: a breathalyser that claims precision measurements and a super-clear interface. Its 4.5-star rating, averaged from hundreds of impressed customers, speaks for itself.
Take the stress out of driving with the Garmin Drive 51LMT-S, which links to an app on your phone for live traffic updates. Not only does it alert you to sharp bends and speed limit changes, it also features on- and off-street parking availability and prices, and has a lifetime of free map updates.
Keyless fobs can be exploited by thieves, who can boost their signal to get into your car. This Ironstripe Car Key Signal Blocker set includes a secure box to keep and home and a pouch for your fobs when you’re out and about.
Know a keen motorist? We’ve got your Christmas presents covered with our Gift Guide for Car Owners.
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