Mini jeep driving up increasing piles of coins

The cost of running a car in Ireland is down slightly

Lower motor insurance costs have contributed to the drop.

Every year, the AA does a survey of motoring costs, and this year’s has found the annual cost of running a family car has dropped by €178.

However, despite this slight drop, the overall cost of running a family car for a year still stands at a whopping €10,671 - so car expenses are likely to be one of the biggest outgoings you have.

This is probably not too surprising, when you take into account motor tax, fuel costs, servicing, and insurance, as well as other expenses, like replacing parts over time etc.

But cars are a necessity for many of us, so what can you do about these costs?

Well, the AA says the biggest consumer issue is still insurance costs, and that there are some things you can do to lower these.

The AA’s Director of Consumer Affairs, Conor Faughnan, advises: “If you have a spouse or partner then adding them to your insurance policy, as long as they have a clean driver record, can net you a discount of up to 20% and separately it’s always worth shopping around.

“Even if you receive a renewal quote which seems competitive call your current insurer and others to see if anyone can do better for you.”

You could also look for good deals on fuel, as prices can really vary from place-to-place.

Also, if you do your main grocery shop in Tesco, they offer 5 cent off per litre of petrol if you spend €50 in-store, or 10 cent off per litre if you spend over €100.

In addition, if you can afford to pay your motor tax and insurance in one lump sum, it will be cheaper than paying in instalments. This is because paying by instalment results in additional administration, and your payments are increased to cover the costs of this.

You can visit the AA’s website for more information on the annual survey.