Our Frugal Lifestyle

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Passionate about eco-frugality. I used to party hard, clubbing my way from pay-packet to pay-packet. Never getting ahead, just getting by. Then came our much wanted baby with no savings in the bank - only an old car. Changes were made to our lifestyle and we didn't turn back. In the past 6yrs we purchased a flat, found employment, lived below our means, built an emergency fund, purchased a reliable car and saw the financial benefits of our frugal lifestyle. Our only debt is our mortgage. Our aim is to manage our cash flow wisely, pay off our home quickly and eventually work for pleasure, not necessity. Join us on our journey, share insights, tips and tricks to help us and others to get ahead while having a good time.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

The Cost of a Small Economical Car

This week I went in and paid for our yearly car registration. We only have 1 car and it's a small economical Getz. While I waited for my number to be called out I did some quick calculations. It's good to remind yourself how much you car costs on a weekly basis.

I calculated mechanical repairs, car servicing, registration, fuel and car maintenance. I did not count the car purchase price or wear and tear as I was not sure how to add these in the mix. We have no parking fees as The Rambling Expat takes the car to his work where parking is - thankfully - FREE. We drive carefully so never receive fines and batch all our jobs to prevent unnecessary travel. I also ride my push bike to work most days.

I now know our car currently costs $30 a week. Knowing this will help when writing up a much needed new personal budget. Bills have been coming in and many have crept up including rates due to the carbon tax.

Do you know how much your car is costing you? Have tips to share to lower costs.

Stephanie at Frugal Down Under.


  1. Our fuel costs us £30 a week, but we both work on the same street (more or less) and I have free parking. It costs £10.96 a week for tax, insurance, annual service. Sad for the planet but it's much cheaper for us to go to work in the car than pay for two train passes.

  2. My car (an old banger I bought almost exactly a year ago) has cost me around £3000! £750 to buy it, ~£660 to insure it (because it was my first time on my own insurance policy rather than my parents', so no No Claims Discount), £300+ in repairs, £230 in road tax (similar to vehicle licensing I believe), £45 for MOT (safety check) and the rest in fuel!

    Of course it wouldn't cost that every year, but it was a massive chunk of my budget just to get to work every day (I live 7 miles from the nearest town and buses are pretty much non-existant this far out in the sticks!).

  3. I put ~$100 in gas in the car every month and don't have a job. Since I always worked in larger towns and had a 100 mile round trip, mostly, I would be spending $100/week if I were working. Not using paper and pencil, I would estimate my car costs are gas, oil changes, tires, yearly tag fees, insurance, repairs=$50/week. That's outrageous! Gas costs are half of that weekly cost. Driving less is the only solution! My 2000 Chevy Malibue has to last me for a long time! I cannot afford car payments.

  4. We have a six year old Acura. It was a smart choice because it NEVER breaks down! (knock on wood) Insurance is $100 a month and yearly maintenance comes out to $50 a month.
    I keep track of all of our expenses and we spend about $150 on gas each month because it has great gas mileage for a regular car, about 28 miles/gallon. So $250 total. Tolls to get to my husband's job add another $70 or so a month. I walk to work so those are the only expenses! Not bad since the husband works 15 miles away.
    Great post, I hadn't thought to consider our monthly/weekly car expenses before. I was just adding up gas.

  5. I shudder to think what our car costs us, but I do catch a bus whenever possible - with a bus card that I loaded up with prepurchased 'adult fares' just before they increased the fares.


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