Cars are relatively inexpensive in the UK and you can easily pick up a good runner for around £500. It may be a few years old but to start off with it’s definately the way to go.
If you live in London central, you will not need a car. We suggest signing up for a Zipcar account and using a Zipcar when you need one. You pay per hour and you simply use an app to locate cars near your location.
You will need to exchange your SA drivers’ licence for a UK one within the first 12 months. If your SA licence expired, you will need to do a driving test in the UK before you can get a licence. It is quite easy to exchange your licence and we suggest doing it sooner rather than later as it could affect your insurance premium. Apply online and they will send you the forms. Simply fill them in, send them along with a £43 fee and your SA licence to the designated address. www.gov.uk/exchange-foreign-driving-licence
Buying a Car
Buying a car is quite an interesting experience. Every car needs to pass MOT each year, if your car does not pass you need to fix all the concerns, or it will be scrapped. If the car does not pass MOT, you cannot insure it and it is illegal to drive without insurance. You will be pulled over and your car will be confiscated. We would suggest purchasing a car that has either just passed MOT or has a few months left on its MOT.
Best sites for purchasing cheap second hand cars are:
The cars here may seem cheap, that is because they are! However, it is not uncommon for your insurance to be more than the car is worth. If you buy a £450 car you could easily pay the same amount in annual insurance. This will become less once you have a UK driving record. Keep that in mind when shopping for cars. A lot of people buy cheap cars with long MOTs and drive them for a year. Once their insurance premiums decrease, they purchase a newer car.
Keep in mind that you will also pay annual tax on your car. Here is a useful link. www.gov.uk/vehicle-tax-rate-tables
I am an ex-teacher turned part time CV writer, online educator, and blogger who moved to Ireland with my husband three years ago. We brought along 4 pets and too many books to count. After a year in Ireland we made the move to London. We love exploring new places and taking long hikes around Surrey where we live. All of which I exploit on my blog that mostly serves to amuse my mother and my best friends.