Cheap trains, drains and automobiles

Some folks drive a lot for various reasons be it business or personal, here a few tip to help cut the cost of travel.

Free tank of fuel via extreme couponing trick:
If you’re planning a big spend at any one of 50+ retailers (including House of Fraser, Homebase and PC World), buy the gift card in Morrisons and you get 1p/litre off fuel per £10 spend. So £100 gets 10p off and £1,000ish gets a free tank. The real trick isn’t to use them as gifts, but that if you’re planning a big purchase in that store anyway, first pop into Morrisons and buy the gift card. Then a few days later, once it’s active, go and use it to buy your planned purchase, giving you a potentially whopping petrol discount. There’s a full list of retailers and more info at

Turn your heating down, but not off if you’re going away:
If it gets cold, no heating risks burst pipes. So much so that some insurers won’t cover you for damage if your home’s unoccupied for more than five days and you turned the heating off. The rule of thumb is keep it to a minimum 14 degrees.

Buying two tickets for one train journey can save you £100s:
Split ticketing makes about as much sense as Chewbacca, but it works. It’s where you buy tickets for a journey’s constituent parts separately to slash the price. It’s allowed by the conditions of carriage – the only rule is that the train must call at the stations you buy tickets for. For example, a single from Manchester to Cornwall costs £158, but the train stops at Cheltenham Spa. Buy a £52 ticket from Manchester to Cheltenham Spa, then a £58 one from there to Cornwall and the total’s £110. That’s the same train, the same time – possibly even the same seat. To help find if you can do this for your journey, use my free TicketySplit tool at As Justine tweeted me: “Genius – tickety split has just saved me £50, no effort, exact same journey.”

Cheap boiler cover – you don’t need to stick with your energy firm:
Boiler cover is a free market, yet energy firms like you to think you need to stick with them. You don’t. While British Gas charges £12/month, you may be able to get similar cover for as little as £6. My quick tips: a) Renters usually don’t need it, as their landlord’s likely responsible. Check. b) Ensure you know what cover you need. Choose between boiler-only, the cheaper option that covers your boiler and its controls, or central heating cover, which includes full central heating cover on top (including radiators, pipes, etc). c) To find the cheapest, compare prices via and add in if you’ve time.

Get a year’s breakdown cover for £17.
If your car has had trouble during the winter season, it can be costly to pay it back in the Spring. Thankfully, if you know what you’re doing you can get super cheap cover. There are four things you need to know: – If you’re renewing, haggle. 84% of AA and 76% of RAC customer who tried reported success. – If you’re new then for basic cover use a cashback site. A standard RAC policy is £28 online and an AA policy £35, but sites like and give around £10-£15 back so the effective cost to you is £18ish. This usually works, though do note the cashback isn’t 100% guaranteed. – If you have Tesco clubcard points you can swap them in for RAC cover, so £16 of vouchers gives you basic breakdown. – For full service, is a pay and reclaim polcy for £42/year, which covers you and your spouse for home start, breakdown and onward travel. A local delivery firm is sent out, and you pay then send in receipts to get the cost back.

Do you know where your stopcock is?:
No nudge nudge wink wink needed. Everyone should know where their stopcock – mains water tap – is. Frozen pipe bursts create an average £4,000 of damage, made worse if you can’t find the off switch as your home floods. So be prepared. Under the kitchen sink’s a very common place. To locate yours, Thames Water has a helpful video at

Can you find sub-£1/litre petrol?:
Petrol prices are now under £1/litre in some places, but the range is huge. Use to find your cheapest, nearest forecourt. The difference even within one post code is 10%. It’s an easy check to fill up on savings.

Martin Lewis.