All vehicles that are over 3 years old require an annual Ministry of Transport (MOT) test. MOT tests have to be performed by officially approved test centres, which include most large garages. The test is not supposed to cost more than £40 and lasts about half an hour. Your car will pass the test if it is deemed ‘roadworthy’. If your car fails its MOT test, you will have to pay for the necessary improvements in order to get the car to pass a follow-up test.
There are a number of motoring organisations in the UK which offer 24-hour breakdown service to their members. Breakdown service is also available to non-members, but it can be very expensive, so you are advised to become a member as a form of insurance for yourself.
The main organisations include:
- Automobile Association (www.theaa.com)
- Royal Automobile Club (www.rac.co.uk)
- Britannia Rescue (www.britanniarescue.com)
- Green Flag National Breakdown (www.greenflag.co.uk)
- Mondial Assistance (www.mondial-assistance-group.com)
As ever, you are advised to shop around as each organisation provides different services. For example, some cover the car (for any driver) while others cover the driver (for any car). Most of the organisations also offer sweeteners to new members, such as free MOT tests.