Motor Insurance

Free and Discounted Halfords MOTs!

Halfords offers free and discounted MOTs as worrying number of motorists prepare to drive without one.

Drivers are being warned to keep their MOTs up to date after a worrying number of people said they would drive without one if they couldn't afford the test.

Halfords is giving away 10,000 MOTs to struggling families in working poverty after it found four in 10 (38%) drivers were concerned about, or definitely wouldn't be able to afford their next MOT. Another 17% said they were not sure if they would be able to afford it or not. Among these, 45% said if they can't afford an MOT they would continue driving their vehicle regardless.

Most worryingly, 17% of drivers said they had driven their car without a valid MOT in the last 12 months, and a further one fifth of people questioned (21%) said they knew someone else who has. If the Halfords poll of 2,312 people was representative of the whole country, that would equate to millions of motorists on the road without the necessary checks on their vehicle.

Not only is it against the law for vehicles more than three years old to be without a valid MOT, it leaves drivers more at risk of breakdown and accident, and is likely to invalidate their car insurance.

If a driver wants to renew their car insurance they must provide proof of a valid MOT. Of those who said they were unsure if they could afford their MOT this year, 16% said they would keep driving without a valid test until it came to renew their insurance again. Another 9% said they would simply keep driving until they were caught. One in five (19%) plan to use their car less.

Halfords has teamed up with Family Action to give away 10,000 MOTs to families in working poverty - those who have jobs but their income is not enough to make ends meet - and who rely on their vehicle. Family Action, which provides practical, emotional and financial support, will be giving the MOTs directly to families in need.

Halfords also offers £10 off MOTs to anyone who signs up to its free Motoring Club. Subscribers also receive a £5 off voucher and a free 10-point car check.

Chris Lunn, head of category at Halfords Autocentres, said: “Those who are struggling to make ends meet are most likely to not be able to afford their MOT - but for this group, it could lead to a dangerous cycle of poverty. Amongst them, more than nine in 10 say that not having a car would make their job impossible or significantly harder.

“Not having an MOT puts them at risk of losing their car, and therefore their job, making their financial situation far worse. That’s why we’re trying to help by offering free MOTs to families who rely on their car but are struggling financially, and discounted MOTs for all Britons to help keep motoring affordable.”

Why having a valid MOT matters, by Erin Yurday, CEO and co-founder of NimbleFins

"This is a worrying response from the British public and one that could cost them greatly in the long-run.

"Without an MOT, not only would a driver's vehicle be missing vital safety checks, it is likely they won't be covered by their car or van insurance. If they are in an accident - which is more likely when driving a potentially less-safe car - they will be liable to pay for repairs themselves, which could actually mean having the vehicle written off. And if the accident is with another vehicle and their fault they will also be liable for the damage of the other vehicle.

"It's so important to book an MOT every year to make sure a vehicle is road-worthy. Don't forget, a police officer can pull you over for things like faulty lights, and they can then spot things like tyres without enough tread. This could see you be given a vehicle defect rectification notice which is a 14 day deadline to get something fixed, and provide proof, to police."

My MOT has expired, can I drive anywhere?

If your MOT certificate is out of date it is illegal to drive on roads unless the vehicle is under three-years-old. The only other exemption is if you are driving to an MOT test centre for a pre-arranged appointment. You cannot drive there on the off-chance they have a slot available, it must be booked in advance.

Erin Yurday

Erin Yurday is the Founder and Editor of NimbleFins. Prior to NimbleFins, she worked as an investment professional and as the finance expert in Stanford University's Graduate School of Business case writing team. Read more on LinkedIn.


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