Here are a few of the transport-related things our clients often forget when drawing up a budget:
Unexpected fuel price hikes
Whether you own a car, take a taxi to work, or make use of a bus, unexpected fuel price hikes will affect your bottom line. Fares and ticket prices increase, and if you don’t factor in a margin of error in your fuel budget, filling up your car can suddenly become a big headache. When VAT was increased earlier this year, it affected industries across the board and fuel prices skyrocketed. Consumers who were not ready to absorb that increase were at risk of using debt facilities to pay for a day-to-day expense, which is one of the things we warn against.
SANRAL toll fees are another aspect of transport budgeting that should be considered if you own a private vehicle. If your daily commute takes you along a tolled route, you have to bear in mind that these tariffs may also be increased without warning. Always leave a little wiggle room in your budget to accommodate these increases.
Picture this. You take your car in for its annual service, expecting a bill of around R2000 for the standard service and consumables. When you arrive at the dealership to pick up your car, the technician informs you that you have to replace the rear brake system completely at a cost of almost R6000. If you don’t have some auto-related savings tucked away, this is bound to catch you completely off-guard. And if you choose not to do the repair you will be taking to the road in a vehicle that is unsafe for you and your family.
The best way to keep ahead of expenses like these is to put away a set amount every month especially for auto services and repairs. Whether you do it as a part of your overall savings, or put it aside in a separate interest-bearing account, there will come a day when you will be happy that you did.
These are a few of the things you need to consider when budgeting for your transport needs. Keep an eye on the blog in coming weeks and months as we share more helpful advice on paving the way to a financially prosperous future.