COVID-19 and Your Car: What You Need to Know
Whether you normally use your car for exciting road trips around the country or simply drive it to work and back, the current COVID-19 pandemic might mean that you are using it a lot less than normal, if at all. If you are a non-essential worker who is able to work from home or eligible for furlough during the coronavirus lockdown in the UK, then you might be wondering what to do with your car that is parked up and not needed for the time being. We’ve put together a guide to everything you need to know about COVID-19 and your car.
If your car’s MOT was due after 31st March, you now don’t need to have this done until October. However, if you’re still driving during the lockdown, are able to afford an MOT and can keep social distancing measures in place while you drop it off at the garage, it’s a good idea to get it done anyway, since there could be any number of problems with your car that you’re unaware of that will only get worse if you leave it any longer before getting the MOT done. Even if you are going to take advantage of your MOT extension, you’ll need to make sure that your car is in roadworthy condition as you can still get pulled over for issues like faulty brake lights or bald tyres.
Another option for you while you’re not driving your car on lockdown is to declare it SORN. This means that you will no longer need to pay tax on your car while you are in lockdown, but you will need to ensure that it is parked off-road, such as in a garage or on your drive. You will also not be able to drive the car at all once you have declared it off-road, so it’s not the best option if you’re still using it to go to the supermarket every couple of weeks.
You will need to keep your car insured during the lockdown, unless you decide to SORN the vehicle. However, it’s important to bear in mind that this leaves you completely unprotected if your car is damaged or stolen.
If you pay for your car insurance monthly, you may be able to negotiate with your insurer if you are struggling to make payments due to a loss of income caused by COVID-19, so get in touch with them as soon as possible to make arrangements. If you are a key worker and do not normally use your car for work because you have a ‘social only’ policy, you can now use it for commuting during the pandemic at no extra cost.
You can also save money on your renewal if it’s due by shopping around for quotes using platforms such as CompareNI.com who provide exclusive deals and comparative quotes. Simply enter the details about your vehicle and you can compare car insurance quotes and find the one that suits your budget best.