Irish Driving Tales from the Dark side- The Diary of a Driving Instructor.

16310625312 37e1cda5f8 Irish Driving Tales from the Dark side  The Diary of a Driving Instructor.
Source: Flickr

An alternative title for this article could be “Don’t Think buying a new car will solve all your ills because it won’t!
Fast rewind to a balmy summer’s day in 1997 and our intrepid Instructor is seen to approach his chosen Automobile supplier cheque book at the ready.
A really exciting time, buying a new car for cash for the first (and probably last) time in his life, so you would think. Think again, the storm clouds are brewing (Actually I think they may coagulate)

It’s worth while pointing out at this stage that the car had been ordered some time before and a set of OEM Alloy wheels were to be fitted. Enter showroom with big smile on face, to be met with an equally expansive smile from the Service Manager, who was an old friend and Motoring adviser from many years previously. I am sure the Salesman would have preferred to have dealt with me himself but in this world it’s who you know not what you know, if you get my drift. Back in those days, before the glistening new stainless steel and glass Emporiums that we are used to today when we visit main dealers, it was a bit rough and ready and no cappuccino on tap. Still, all was calm, friendly, and full of expectation. At this stage no hint of what was to come

Your car is ready Sir; the usual pleasantries of being ushered to the waiting Beast (and it did turn out to be just that!) and a silence while we were allowed time to gasp and smile and generally feel good about ourselves. The car did look magnificent with its metallic blue paint, gleaming alloy wheels and electric front windows and other niceties.
This was a Wednesday, in the month of August, and the sun was shining, the birds singing (no rain for a change) and all was well as we completed the formalities and prepared for our new experience. It was indeed a great thrill but I was not to last! A few hours later with just 70 miles on the clock all the electrics went and out the window went my hopes, to be replaced with a foreboding that, as it turned out was wholly justified.

The first problem with the car would not have been so bad had it not been for the fact that my two Daughters and I were booked on the Irish Car ferry to the UK on the following Sunday at 8.00am. My heart sank as I realised that there were only two days or less to get the car roadworthy. In the event of the vehicle not being ready in time, a replacement car and the necessary Insurance cover would have to be ready by close of play on the Friday and this was now 2.00pm Wednesday. Not good!

Back at the showroom, with smiles long since forgotten, campers were unhappy to say the least. I forget which car we drove home and was preparing for the worst, which did actually happen. The fault could not be diagnosed and we reluctantly accepted another replacement car, slightly bigger, to take us on our adventure. We were all extremely disappointed not to be able to show off our new machine to relatives and friends but as it turned out, the larger car was a great benefit on the return journey with all the extra accumulations that a 2000 mile trip does to a small family car.

Two weeks later, safely home from an exhausting round of Family, Friends and Motorway overdose, we looked forward to retrieving our real car; as I am sure, it too, was looking forward to its new owner (or was it?)
It transpired that two or three Auto Electrical Engineers had failed to locate the problem and with the hours ticking away fast to the arrival of the owner, some emergency action was required if a lynching (or worse) was to be avoided. Said Service Manager took the Bull by the Horns and proceeded very quickly, but quite by chance, to discover the malfunction. A simple short circuit on the steering column when the steering wheel was at the fully locked position.

Problem solved—- Happy Campers again …not for long sadly! Never having had such a debilitating situation, (at least in the motoring sense!) with any new car before, over the previous twenty seven years, I felt confident that the worst was over .It was only just beginning and it would be come a lot worse over the next twelve months and beyond.
Clearly my plans for the future which included guaranteed, trouble free motoring, had taken a severe knockdown or as Jim Edwards would say a “Friday night smackdown”. Jim, as some of you will know is a master Internet Marketing Guru and Author although he doesn’t like the term. I will put his URL in the resource box at the end, for those of you who are interested in a real life success story. I have Jim to thank for helping me to get down and dirty with my word processor and who knows maybe one day I will be able to afford to walk into a Car showroom again and buy the damn place and then maybe, just maybe, I will get some service.

It’s just too exhausting, reliving those heady days, for more than an hour at a time, so the rest of the story and it’s a long one, will follow in the next chapter. In the mean time drive safely and remember learning is a lifetime occupation.

Road Safety Guides – Personal Safety On The Road

Road Safety Guides – Personal Safety On The Road

If you are concerned about your personal safety while out and about on the roads here is a comprehensive, no-nonsense guide from GEM Motoring Assist, the leading UK driver based road safety association.

Think ahead

– where possible travel by day on main, well used roads. Plan your route in advance and check that you have an up-to-date road map in the car so you won’t need to ask for directions

– if you have to travel after dark, tell someone your destination, your route and what time you expect to arrive. If your plans change, let them know

– take your mobile phone – and make sure that the batteries are charged before you set off. Carry change in any case – your phone may be out of range at a crucial time

– ensure your car is serviced regularly. Check petrol, oil, coolant-level and tyres, especially before a long journey. Carry petrol in a safety-approved can

– join a national breakdown organization such as GEM Motoring Assist Breakdown Cover

While driving

– harassment or actual attacks are rare, but they do happen. Forethought can give you more confidence and minimise the risk

– keep the doors locked and the windows closed as much as possible, especially in built up areas and stop-go traffic or when travelling alone

– keep alert so you know where you are

– remember, tiredness kills. Take a break on long journeys

– never pick up hitch hikers

Personal possessions in your car

– keep your doors locked

– NEVER leave valuables, such as handbags or mobile phones on the passenger seat – they
could be ‘snatched’ at traffic lights

– don’t leave valuables in a parked car


– NEVER leave your car unlocked, even on a garage forecourt when you go to pay for petrol. If possible use an immobiliser

– choose a safe place to park. Park in a well lit area where there are people about, especially if you don’t intend to return to your car until after dark

– if you park in a multi-storey car park choose a space close to the exit and ramp and away from pillars. Reverse into position to give you a quick get away. Park close to the attendant if there is one

– make sure you know exactly where you parked so you will not have difficulty finding your car

– if you are a woman by yourself, try not to advertise the fact. Put spare shoes, bags etc. into the boot before leaving the car

– consider what you would do if your bag was stolen – keep your keys, money and mobile phone separately

– ask a friend or colleague to walk you to your car if you feel unsafe about your surroundings

– when you return to your car, have your keys ready and check the back seat (use a torch at night) before you get in. Lock the doors and drive away without delay

Handling Dangerous Situations

– if you can see or become involved in an incident avoid getting involved in an argument with the other parties

– if you are confronted with ‘road rage’ do not get out of the car; keep your windows up and your car locked

– if your car starts to ‘play up’, stop in a busy, well-lit area, preferably near a phone box, if you don’t have a mobile phone. Get help immediately by calling your motoring organisation or garage. If you feel vulnerable and in need of special attention, inform the recovery helpline operator

– NEVER give lifts to strangers. If you see an accident or another driver in difficulty do not stop. Telephone the Police as soon as possible and report what you have seen

– if a car pulls up alongside or behind you and the occupants try to attract your attention it may be a genuine warning. However, keep your doors locked and drive to a busy place such as a service area or garage forecourt before stopping. Even then keep your doors locked until you are confident there is no danger

– if someone in a car is deliberately trying to intimidate you, or if you think a car is following you, keep driving until you reach a busy, public place, such as a Police, Fire or Ambulance station, pub or garage forecourt

– if a car travels alongside you at the same speed, slow down and allow them to pass. If the driver persists, drive to a busy, public place and use a public or mobile phone to call the Police

– if a car pulls in front of you and forces you to stop, leave the engine running. If the driver, or passenger then gets out and approaches you, turn on your hazard lights, reverse as far as you can and sound your horn continuously, no matter what time it is

– if the occupant of a car beside you at traffic lights or a junction tries to attract your attention simply ignore them. Don’t make eye contact.

Save Money on Car Insurance with Car Tracking

Car tracking using GPS devices such as those supplied by Tigtrack is a topic that we know many people are trying to discover more about, and it is not always simple to do.

What we have noticed, more and more, is just doing a basic search does not always yield the most suitable resources.

But you’re not the only one, not by any means, because we think this is a common experience for many people. That is what compelled us to put this article together for you pertaining to car tracking . You will be in a greater position once you finish reading the following.

Do not purchase a car prior to discovering just how much it is going to cost you to guarantee it. How frustrating it will certainly be if you get the car that you enjoy and discover that it is going to cost more to guarantee it was to spend for the car itself.

Insurance business figure up your month-to-month payments in part based upon the threat you provide as a motorist. To lower this threat element, you can ensure your car or truck is parked away in a garage. Not just does keeping your car in a garage aid avoid theft, however it likewise assists avoid weather condition damage and other damages that could happen.

taxi Save Money on Car Insurance with Car TrackingThere is so much for you to discover about a car tracking solution , and we definitely can help you in this area. What I have found is it really just depends on your goals and needs as it relates to your unique situation. There are always some things that will have more of an influence than others. How each one will play out in your circumstances is largely unknown, but we each have to think about that. The rest of this article will present you with a few more very hot tips about this.

You must choose intelligently just how much protection you desire. You will certainly require standard protection, however you can conserve cash by paying less each month and conserving up some cash in case you enter a mishap and have to spend for maintenance and repairs yourself. If you do this, make certain you constantly have adequate cash readily available to spend for repair works.

Lots of insurance business provide rate decreases for students who do well in school, so discover out if yours does. Great grades reveal the insurance business that you are liable.

If you wish to discover the most affordable car insurance plan readily available, you will certainly need to compare policies from numerous business. Comparing quotes and policies is how you discover which business are providing bargains and which business are overcharging for inferior service. Line up 2 or 3 strong policy selections and compare them side by side.

As long as your car insurance is in accordance with the law, you must not need to buy a more thorough bundle. This is an excellent method to conserve cash. If you are a safe motorist in a reasonably safe location, you can drop particular functions like accident protection and wind up conserving a package of cash.

Do not forget to eliminate motorists from your car insurance strategy. If you include a youngster or other individual as a motorist to your strategy, do not forget to eliminate them when they are not utilizing that automobile. If you do not eliminate them, you are paying more cash than you have to be.

You could be looking all over for the finest car insurance details readily available. Below you will certainly discover the extremely finest car insurance pointers.

How To Save Money On Car Insurance

In order to conserve cash on car insurance, it is important that you known exactly what level of insurance you require. Discover the existing resale value of your car and inspect it versus how much you might conserve over 2 or 3 years by changing to the minimum liability insurance.

Now you can revel in your new-found understanding worrying your existing car insurance choices. Keep all of these pointers in mind, and you will certainly have a simple course to automobile insurance understanding.

Get a brand-new car to conserve cash on car insurance. Inspect out websites such as for lists of the least expensive vehicles for automobile insurance.

While you cannot alter many of those, and couple of individuals would move or get wed to conserve cash on car insurance, you can regulate the type of car you drive, which likewise plays a function. In order to conserve cash on car insurance, it is important that you known exactly what level of insurance you require. The most your insurance business will certainly pay for damage to the car is its existing resale value. Discover the existing resale value of your car and examine it versus how much you might conserve over 2 or 3 years by changing to the minimum liability insurance. Get a brand-new car to conserve cash on car insurance.

You can not spend so much on car insurance if your car is an older car, a sedate car (like a 4-door-sedan or hatchback) or has numbers of miles on it. When this holds true, you can merely purchase liability insurance to please the requirements of your state and not trouble with thorough insurance.

If you wish to find chep car insurance, you could wish to think about picking from the greater deductibles that are provided by your firm. This implies you will certainly have more out of pocket expenditures must you be associated with an auto mishap, however it will certainly reduce your premium significantly.

To assist your bank balance on car insurance, begin with a car that is less costly to insure. Purchasing a stylish car with a huge V-8 engine can press your yearly insurance premium to double exactly what it would be for a smaller sized, less fancy car with a 4 cylinder engine that conserves gas at the exact same time.

While you cannot alter many of those, and couple of individuals would move or get wed to conserve cash on car insurance, you can regulate the type of car you drive, which likewise plays a duty. Pick vehicles with lots of security choices and anti theft systems in location.

Some business provide price cuts for those who do not log mileage in excess of 7500 miles annually. If you can reduce your overall mileage then you can conserve a substantial quantity of cash on your insurance.

To save cash on car insurance, think about setting a greater deductible of exactly what you would pay of pocket, in case of a mishap. The insurance business costs policies based upon exactly what they anticipate to pay if you make a claim and minimizing that quantity, means reduce premiums for you.

This article is just the basic foundation of what is out there to learn. The thing about it is that the typical person is way too consumed and lacks time to know all there is about a car tracking solution . But you can gain the maximum advantage with more in-depth knowledge. Many people see the mountains of info on the web and they get intimidated in a short time.

Protect against Vehicle Collisions: Pay Attention

The thing that many individuals never take into consideration is getting into a car accident. Every day, all over the modern world, there is some sort of car accident occurring. People really don’t stress too much about it until it happens to someone they know or it happens to them. Somebody could possibly be killed or critically injured turning a car accident into a tragedy. It could be a lot more tragic if those killed are teenagers. You can discover how to avoid collisions by driving defensively. What number of drivers make the careful effort to drive safely? Most people almost certainly usually do not since many are driving while thinking of other things.

Individuals are driving here and there running errands and struggling to get children to where they must be. There are so many people on the highway today with one hand on the wheel when talking on a cell phone. Is it any wonder, with all of the multi-tasking going on in the culture, and the busyness of peoples lives, that car accidents have already been happening so often. If most drivers would make a choice to end up being a defensive driver, the number of accidents would most certainly decrease greatly. The number one tip to driving defensively is to be aware of the road in front of you. If you are driving, give up on the multi-tasking, and keep your eyes on what is happening in front of you.

If you’re driving during the course of rush hour or in the center of town, be sure that you are focused on what’s around you. If you insist on speaking on the phone while you drive get those wireless headsets so you’ll have both hands on the wheel. And don’t read a book or newspaper if you are driving in heavy traffic. Unless it is any time women are putting on makeup as they are driving. It could be intriguing to know the number of accidents are caused by people doing these very things. If people did not do any of that stuff while driving, you can only picture how much lower the accident rate would be.

Another way to be a safe driver should be to observe all traffic rules. When you are going the speed limit, there is certainly a less likely possibility you will get into an accident. Many of the severe car accidents are caused by people driving too fast. Nonetheless, you wonder if anybody actually drives inside the speed limit.

GT Channel Brings To You the Latest in Racing Videos

Since the day the internet allowed people to publish their videos online, there has been a sort of revolution. Video creators and video submission companies have been jostling for space and attention. People have published funny, interesting as well as bizarre videos. There has been one for everyone…

Moving aside from this common genre of videos, are the adventure and action sport videos, which have slowly carved a niche among their rapidly growing group of enthusiasts. In the car racing scenario there has been exciting and brisk competition for creating new, attractive and challenging versions of racing videos. Not only have Racing videos evolved and diversified in the past years, they have also been successful in developing a strong fan following and inspiring ardent users to create and share their racing videos online.

Providing a strong medium to this passionate group of racing video creators is- GT Channel – one of the most happening destinations for enthusiasts of racing videos. GT Channel started operations in 2006 and has progressed rapidly, to be recognized as a comprehensive source on car racing and racing videos. GT Channel has been focused in its efforts to provide professionally created videos, submitted by its numerous users, in a community-based environment.

We look forward to original video content from our users, and strive to provide free and accessible videos online, for the maximum benefit of our users. The open flow of information on the internet allows us to bring together a wide network of viewers, creators, and advertisers in a sponsorship marketplace for online videos. GT Channel will help you with all the tools and techniques you will need to distribute your work online and earn money. The more people download, email or post your videos on their website, the more money you earn. You also have the ability to add or remove your videos from GT Channel, at any time.

If you are looking for the best collection of exciting racing videos developed by top producers and passionate users all over the world, switch to GT Channel – a haven for car racing fans world wide. We feature top car and racing videos from Hot Version, Best Motoring, and SUPER GT! You’ll get to see stock cars, touge racing, tuned cars, circuit and drifting battles. Users can also avail of the wonderful opportunity to upload their racing videos and share them with the online community. The video production division of the company has also earned the worldwide rights to license and distribute Kodansha/2&4 Motoring’s popular car video magazine for DVD/Video, TV and clips, to the growing consumer market, through traditional and digital distribution services on

College Student Credit Cards – How to Choose the Best One

There are so many credit cards being offered to college students these days that it may be difficult to choose the right college student credit card.
It is important to choose carefully to make sure that you have the best deal and rates available.

The interest rate that a college credit card charges is extremely important to take into account. The fact is that when you make a purchase on a college credit card you are, in effect, borrowing money from the credit card issuer. You must pay a monthly interest rate on this loan unless you pay your balance off in full every month. So, you want to have a college credit card with the lowest annual percentage rate and the longest 0% interest introductory period. The majority of college credit cards will be very similar in these two regards so the next point to consider is the rewards that you receive for using the credit card.

For most students, their college credit cards are the first ‘proper’ credit cards that they will have had and they will not be familiar with the types of rewards that are the best. The three main reward types that are most useful for students are:

* Frequent flyer miles
* Cash back
* Free gas

Frequent flyer miles are the best rewards to have with a college credit card for students who are attending a college a long distance from home. As you use your college credit card you accumulate frequent flyer miles that you can exchange for flights back home – or wherever you want to go. Unlike airline reward schemes, frequent flyer miles can be used on any participating airline, worldwide.

Cash back on a college credit card is actually a points system. As you spend money these points accumulate against your college credit card and they can be exchanged for cash, gift certificates or special discounts at popular outlets and stores. The amount of cash back that a college credit card awards may seem small but every little helps and you will soon be racking it up.

Free gas when you use your college credit card is the best option for students who have their own car. Gas prices are getting higher and some college credit cards offer rewards to help with the rising cost of motoring with rebates against gas station purchases. These free gas college credit cards also offer discounts and points towards other motoring related items so it is worth comparing the different schemes available.

Keep Safe On Holiday, Learn 112 Not 999

15812511922 5d15e79f7b Keep Safe On Holiday, Learn 112 Not 999
Source: Flickr

GEM Motoring Assist (GEM), which is concerned for the safety of all road users, says that even mundane basics like knowing the single European emergency call number of 112 goes unheeded by UK drivers travelling abroad.

“The European Emergency Number Association established 112 as the EU wide emergency number more than a decade a go,” said David Williams, Chief Executive of GEM, “But it is far from common knowledge among UK citizens who think 999 will work everywhere.

“More than 100 million Europeans travel between EU countries every year and they cannot be expected to know or remember the emergency number of every member state. That is why learning 112 is so important. Using it could save at least 5,000 lives around Europe every year.”

To help confident driving when on holiday or business abroad GEM has produced a handy glove-box-sized guide called Your Introduction to Driving in Europe that is available free of charge as part of GEM’s road safety charity work.

Apart from general guidance and preparing your vehicle before you travel it deals with what to do if things go wrong and gives a simple country by country guide to rules and regulations that apply in different nations. In Germany for instance it is an offence to make rude signs to other road users and an offence to run out of fuel on a motorway. However carrying a petrol can in a vehicle in Greece is forbidden. In Spain and Switzerland if you wear glasses for driving you must carry a spare pair in the car. In Norway there is zero tolerance for drinking and driving and on hilly roads vehicles travelling down hill have priority.

Your Introduction to Driving in Europe is available free from GEM. To receive a copy call 01342 825676 or write to GEM Motoring Assist at Station Road, Forest Row, East Sussex, RH18 5EN

Car Insurance – Be assured for a safe drive

15673046720 eb4af70d33 Car Insurance – Be assured for a safe drive
Source: Flickr

Shopping for car insurance is the only way to save on the car insurance. Car Insurance is the perfect solution for your problem on car theft, accidents etc. People are quite dependent on their vehicles and losing a vehicle by an accident or theft will be a financial loss. Moreover it will affect our day to day activities like office, school, doctor’s appointment etc.

Benefits of Car Insurance Policy

Some insurance policies offer number of standard benefits, while other benefits are available as optional covers in return for an extra premium. Some of the more common Car insurance policy benefits are:
• Windscreen
• Driving other cars
• Medical expenses
• Personal effects
• New car benefits
• Lock replacement

Many auto insurance agencies offers you benefits like less premium, 70% discount on first-rate service (if our recommended garages have not repaired your car), free car servicing (if your car has been repaired by one of our recommended garages). They also provide you additional services like breakdown assistance and motoring protection at minimal price. A car insurance agency controls your car insurance policy from beginning to end.

Nowadays it’s easy to buy your auto insurance online. Online auto insurance is the best option if you want to save your money and time.

Additional Car Insurance policy services include

• Motoring protection
This service pays for personal injuries that you have sustained from the accident and also we pay for injuries that others might have sustained. This service also covers for any kind of property loss. This service also handles any legal technicalities.
• Breakdown assistance
This services provides assistance incase your car breakdown and more often than not at a worst possible time. Complete details of these services are available when you get your car insurance quote or renew your policy online.

Motoring Tips – 10 Ways To Reduce The Cost Of Driving

15843890790 4815ece55c Motoring Tips – 10 Ways To Reduce The Cost Of Driving
Source: Flickr

The cost of motoring has risen significantly in recent years, particularly with the rapid rise in petrol prices.
There are however a number of ways in which you can reduce the cost of motoring. Try following our Top 10 Tips below and you could be driving further for less.

1. Get the best deal on petrol prices. The price of petrol can vary by as much as 10p a litre in local areas. is a free service allowing people to search for the cheapest petrol in their area. They review 8,000 prices daily to ensure that their information is as up-to-date as possible.

2. Drive in the highest gear. Driving at high speeds in low gears can result in 45% more fuel being consumed than needed.

3. Keep your tyres pumped up to the correct level. Fuel economy can be improved by up to 5% by keeping your tyres inflated to the correct level. The recommended pressure for your tyres can be found in your vehicle handbook and, in some cases, next to the air device at petrol stations.

4. Don’t drive erratically. Constantly accelerating and braking consumes more fuel than smoother driving. Look ahead to anticipate potential road blockages which will reduce the need for sudden breaking. For peak efficiency don’t push the accelerator down further than one-quarter of the total foot travel.

5. Save money on car insurance. Internet comparison sites, such as, are an excellent way to find the cheapest quote. Car insurance quotes can vary by hundreds of pounds so huge savings can be made.

6. Find cheaper parking. Many people now rent out their driveway or garage to commuters on a long-term basis. is a site where cheaper long-term parking can be found.

7. Don’t overuse the air conditioning or heater. Overheating the car and then having to open the windows is a waste of energy and lowers your fuel economy.

8. Avoid short journeys. Driving short distances is significantly less fuel efficient than longer journeys. For example, every time your car engine is turned on it is equivalent to idling your engine for one minute. Instead set time aside to walk short distances.

9. Share a journey. Sharing a lift into work with one other person slashes your fuel bill by half by allowing you to share the cost of driving. has over 130,000 members and provides a way of finding someone traveling in your direction.

10. Close your windows. Having windows open at high speeds creates significant drag meaning that more fuel is used. Even if closing your windows means the air conditioning is required it is still more fuel efficient.