How to choose the right car for a university student

How to choose the right car for a university student

What most children need when they head off to university is a car, particularly if your child is studying away from home or when their class schedule doesn’t work well with your time. With a vehicle, your child will be able to attend late class or group meetings without you playing chauffeur.

That said, choosing a car for a first-time driver needs careful consideration, and below are tips to help you choose the right car that your child will absolutely love.

Create a budget

When you plan on buying a vehicle it is vital to start by creating a budget. A budget will help you decide which car you can afford and what meets your basic needs. Your child might be eager to get something quite flashy and not very cost effective but keep in mind that you need to stick to your budget. You need to find a vehicle which you can afford and won’t leave you stressed about finances at the end of each month. There are many affordable cars for sale, so make sure you choose the best one for your budget.

Old vs New

Many people feel that brand new vehicles are the only vehicles which you can get in good condition. However, you can find a used car that is affordable and in good condition. There are many car dealerships that offer second-hand cars for sale in South Africa.

A second-hand is a better option for a young driver. You need to keep in mind that this is their first vehicle, so it’s only natural that their first car is more humble compared to what they one day aspire to drive. Buying your child a quality second-hand car as their first motor vehicle means they’ll appreciate buying themselves a more luxurious, brand new car later in life. For now, your main goal is finding your child the perfect vehicle for an affordable price.

Look around

Before deciding on a vehicle, take a look around, especially on the internet, to see if you can find a special deal in the Eastern Cape or any other province. You can look on the internet and in magazines for the latest car news. In the early days of your car search try and keep your options open for a better offer.

Get finance

Once you have decided on a budget you will need to find a lender who can offer you car finance. Many South African’s struggle to buy a vehicle without getting financed. In order for you to get pre-approved make sure you have a good credit score, your monthly debts are paid on time and you have checked your affordability.

Vehicle type

With all these vehicles being manufactured yearly, there is a wide range of vehicles available for you to choose from. When you choose a car you need to consider many aspects. You’ll need to consider the distance your child will be driving. If their campus is 30 minutes away from home then a small vehicle is perfect and will do a good enough job. However, if they will be travelling long distances and are off gravel roads then you would need to find a bigger vehicle which is suitable for those road conditions.

What is a good car?

When choosing a vehicle for a student you need to consider a couple of things. You’ll need to think about maintenance and who will be paying for those costs. It’s important to have a conversation with your child about how they plan on supporting you with the costs. Regardless of whose paying it would be best to find a vehicle that is low on petrol.

A car that is low on fuel will help you and your child since you won’t be paying that much on fuel. Find a car that is in a good state and is easy to maintain. There is no point in buying a car model that has a reputation for being a hassle or having expensive parts. A car like that will be an inconvenience should the vehicle need repairs. More importantly, don’t forget to get car insurance. Insurance will put you at ease knowing you’re covered should anything happen.

Vehicle features

Choosing the best safety features is a priority. With so many accidents happening on the roads every day, it’s important that you look for the right safety features. Make sure you read about motoring news to find out which safety features are best for a driver especially a young one. Vehicles have improved their safety vehicles, so consider the following:

  • Shatter-resistant glass
  • Anti-lock braking system
  • Stability control
  • Lights
  • Forward-collision warning system
  • Seatbelts
  • Airbags
  • Blindspot warning
  • Tyre pressure monitor

Test drive the vehicle

Make sure you and your child test drive the car. Even though they will be driving the car, it’s important that you and the experienced driver take it for a drive too. You can also check whether there is anything your child might have overlooked. Make sure you do an inspection of the car before you buy it, to ensure you’re buying a good vehicle.

Authored by: mjones

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