By Ross Williams
Alpha Contracts Leasing Ltd
RECENTLY, the team at Alpha Contracts undertook our Industry Training module to ensure we are as up to date with legislation and information as we can be. We were face to face with a real trainer (thanks Andy!) and not sat in front of a video presentation.
As well as a plentiful supply of Haribo sweets and several slides telling us what was and is happening in our world there were some valuable nuggets of information. So read on:
It was confirmed for us that HM Government don't know what they are doing when it comes to the vehicle taxation system and we cannot expect an update to the company car tax schedules until April at the earliest. Good luck with forward planning in the real world then.
There was one very scary topic of conversation, the imminent introduction of ULEZ up and down the country. An ULEZ is an Ultra Low Emission Zone and is an attempt by, initially London, to clean up their air quality. London will be followed by several other large cities. Locally, Birmingham are introducing one in 2020.
But back to London, the ULEZ comes into effect on 8 April 2019, just three months away from you reading this article. The zone matches the Congestion Zone with which you may well be familiar. But whilst the Congestion Zone charges only apply from Monday to Friday 7am to 6pm, the ULEZ charges will apply every day, all day. The charge starts at £12.50 per day, they are in addition to the Congestion Zone charges and will add a significant amount to your operating costs.
You can check to see if the charge will apply to your car or van by visiting the www.tfl.gov.uk website and looking for the ULEZ tab. Enter your registration number and the site will confirm whether or not you will be charged. Someone with a regular delivery in the zone could easily see their costs going up by several hundred pounds per month if they are operating an older vehicle - some cars with '15' plates are chargeable. (Mine is, where did I put my Senior Railcard?) For commercial vehicles a Euro 6 engine isn't a guarantee of being charge-free either with the tightening up of the standards.
If you are unsure then give the team at Alpha Contracts a call and we'll help you check. Of course this could be the ideal time to discuss with the sales team your next vehicle. If you go into London frequently it may even be beneficial to change your vehicle early and save yourself some money! Call the team on 01604 756620.
Safe motoring and a Happy New Year to you all.