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Save money in the saddle in the New Year

By Kalpana Fitzpatrick on Dec 4th, 2015   @BritishCycling

Not only is cycling great for staying fit, or escaping the commuter squash, but it will save you lots of money.

If you’re up for pedalling your way to more pounds in your pocket, try these easy rides to big bike savings.

1. Recycle

If you’re looking for a cheap bike, buying second hand is the best route to take. Take the time to shop around and you’re bound to find a great bike at a reasonable price. To speed up your search try online marketplaces such as eBay and Gumtree, where you’ll find thousands for sale.

2. ‘Look mum, no tax’

Using the government’s tax-free cycle to work scheme, you can knock a sizeable amount off the cost off your new bike. The scheme works by initially providing the opportunity to rent a bike (at a discount), spread your payments over a year and then you may have the option to purchase the bike for a minimal price. Your employer needs to have signed up to the scheme for you to benefit, and if they haven’t you can encourage them to join.

3. Ride now, pay later

If you’ve set your heart on purchasing a brand new bike and the above options either aren’t feasible or don’t appeal, some bike suppliers offer their own repayment plans. In some cases a deposit is required and interest will be charged, so it’s worth factoring in all the costs.

Even if you only cycle once or twice a week, you’ll make a decent saving on petrol or fares and improve your fitness at the same time.

Bear in mind that you will have to factor in the cost of a helmet and accessories. To keep track of all the savings you’ll make from cycling and to gain instant visibility over all of your spending, sign up and use the moneydashboard.com free budget planner.