Error parsing XSLT file: \xslt\FacebookOpenGraph.xslt Mike Waters' blog: 6 December 2012 - It's a tough time to be a motorist
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Mike Waters' blog: 6 December 2012 - It's a tough time to be a motorist

Date: 06 December 2011

Mike Waters is senior insight & consultancy manager at Arval, the leading vehicle leasing and fleet management company.

It is no secret that these are financially difficult times for almost everyone. What makes things worse is that the cost of some things continues to escalate while pay packets and pensions don't. New figures highlight that this is very much the case for the modern motorist as driving continues to hit individuals and companies in the pocket.

Drivers now face annual costs of more than £6,000, or around £129 per week, to own and run their vehicles.This is a significant and increasing cost with drivers paying thousands of pounds more than they did five years ago.

The figures also show that as part of this increase in costs, fuel prices have risen significantly over the past year. On that basis, it was particularly welcome that in his Autumn statement last week the Chancellor announced something of a repreive. A 3p planned fuel duty hike in January will be deferred until August 2012 and the inflationary increase that was planned for 1 August 2012, will be cancelled altogether.

So some good news but for most of us this announcement provides only small respite from spiralling costs. With the average cost of driving now at 55.74 pence per mile, it has never been more important to have an efficient vehicle and drive it in the most cost effective way.

All of this means that whether you are an individual driver or a business, managing costs isn't a desirable it's a necessity. The only option is to make sure that you minimise vehicle related expense and the best way to do this is to cover all bases.

A combination of selecting the right vehicles, maintaining them properly, planning journeys and driving them in the most efficient way is essential if drivers and businesses are to keep escalating costs at bay.