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Do you need a car for your practice in London?

As I have mentioned before I tend to cycle everywhere for work and pleasure.

I have a car that is only used for weekly food shopping that can easily be done through the net. My 10 year old car has only done 23,000 miles.

I am thinking about getting rid of the car and be carless. It will save me the hassle of servicing, mot and tax. At the same time I am not comfortable about this.  This would be a real moving out of my comfort zone experience for me.

Are you without a car in practice? How is that working for you? Any comments for me to make a decision would be appreciated.



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23rd May 2012 09:22

My out of date experience  would suggest you do not need a car.

It is twenty odd years ago, but public transport in London has improved massively since then.

I managed for 4 yrs without using a car for work (although I did own one). You just need to pay the odd cab fare if you have client records to collect.

If I lived in London now I probably would not bother with a car.

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23rd May 2012 10:04

To save hassle of servicing, MOT and tax

It is good if you can service your own car, but like you say, it is a lot of hassle.

Why not pop your car into the local garage and let them service it for you? They will also be able to arrange the MOT for you.

As regards the tax, you can now get that online so you won't have to go to the post office.




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23rd May 2012 11:02

I have 4 cars ....

so go ahead and we can share a carbon footprint !

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23rd May 2012 11:27

My husband's not an accountant but he does have to travel around several sites in London and manages perfectly well without a car.  The time taken to drive some routes, particularly if deliveries are going on or there are roadworks is often greater than a tube or bus journey.  Go for it!

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23rd May 2012 12:44

Suck it & See

1, Give your car keys to a trusted (local) friend or relative, tell them only to give them back in dire emergency (or use a taxi if it's really urgent)

2.  join one of the car clubs (zipcar, streetcar, whichever has a vehicle closest to you). Joiinng fee is £75ish

3. Get a PAYG oyster card with auto top up

4. Get a pedometer

Then see what happens over a couple of months. You sound like the analytical type, so totting up the potential savings on the car vs actual expenditure and impact on travelling time/calories used at the end of experiment will be interesting and will help you make the decision

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23rd May 2012 11:35


 Just do it. And if it doesn't work out buy another car.


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23rd May 2012 12:10

I am in London and I don't need a car

I have visited three clients in the past few years. One is about three miles away and I walk to stay fit. One is in central London and I get a train. Another is in Beckenham and I get a tram. Most of my interaction with clients is via email or phone. If my clients want to visit they can. I don't usually visit clients because of the travel time involved and because I usually have more information on my desktop computer. One of the above needed me to visit to make correcting entries in her accounts software. Another is a big client and I usually have a meeting with all five directors.

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23rd May 2012 13:25

The only reason I have the car at the office most days is because I have a school run either morning or afternoon (or both!). Come September when the younger two go to high school the car park permit is going and I shall be walking. However the car won't be going as I have elderly parents who sometimes need me to get over to them very quickly.

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