AM Online

Six in 10 motorists worry about hidden garage costs

As many as six in 10 motorists (59%) claim to worry about hidden costs when booking their car into a garage for an MoT, service or repair.

Research carried out by RAC Garage Compare found almost a quarter (24%) of those who admit to being fearful, describe themselves as being ‘very concerned’ of unexpected ‘extra’ charges.

For  more than one in 10 (12%) they say their bills end up being more expensive than the garage said it would be.

More than half of the motorists (51%) surveyed rate local garages as being ‘good’ in terms of the fairness of their pricing whereas only 5% class them as being ‘bad’ and one in three (28%) believing them to be ‘ok’.

Nearly a third (31%) of those surveyed felt it would be very useful to be able to compare upfront garage prices for MoTs, services and general repairs before booking.

An RAC Garage Compare spokesman said: “Despite most motorists being reasonably satisfied with the cost of their bills one in 10 (11%) claim not to trust local garages at all while a wary 41% say they do ‘a little’ which doesn’t really seem like an overwhelming vote of confidence.

“Even though we now live in a society which is obsessed with comparing prices for almost everything we buy, this behaviour has not become commonplace when booking a car in for an MoT, service or repair. This is partly because it had previously been a case of having to phone around to get prices and partly because there wasn’t an online service simplifying the process.”

The RAC Garage Compare research also found:

· 90% would find it useful to be able to look-up what's included in the different types of service for their cars

· 88% of motorists would find it beneficial to compare prices

· 80% would like to check out online reviews of garages

· 65% would benefit from being able to book their car in online

Click here for aftersales best practice and procurement insight

If you are not a registered user your comment will go to AM for approval before publishing. To avoid this requirement please register or login.

Login to comment


  • Ray - 18/11/2015 11:06

    The savvy can challenge an MOT, every year (since 2012) I get told that "You NEED new discs and pads" (2009 car) front and rear because they are slightly pitted at pads are running low. When I then challenge "...but has it failed the MOT?" surprise surprise, "No" Obviously at some point they will NEED doing but I've had the car 4 years (my ownership) and done 70,000 miles since the first time I was told I needed the work done. All 3 garages I've used (franchised and other) have sold it to me first off as an MOT failure on this point (without saying it) and then when I challenge if it has failed for this point I get told "No". I understand that garages make their money on servicing, but I dread to think the number of people getting stung for costs that aren't actually required for an MOT pass and are getting perfectly useable half worn parts replaced.