Earlier last month, we talked about the advantages of car rentals and why you should consider it over buying or using your own vehicle. With the ever-rising congestion on our roads, it is now even more important to discuss or rethink owning a car in the Philippines.

Owning a car in the Philippines is not just about paying a downpayment and the monthly amortization. It’s way more than that.

Fuel Costs

Probably the most obvious cost you failed to factor in your car purchase is the cost of fuel. It’s constantly changing in an upward manner. As of this article’s publication – gasoline is priced at ₱52.79 per liter and diesel is priced at ₱44.14 per liter. A ₱1,000 tank of diesel will net you roughly 22 liters of fuel. If the vehicle you bought operates at 10 km per liter, your thousand peso tank would probably last you three weeks going from Marikina to Ortigas… without heavy traffic. Since we’re talking about owning a car in the Philippines here, we need to factor in the current road congestion problem. And that would probably half your mileage. Therefore, your ₱1,000-peso fuel tank will last you 1.5 weeks.

You can check out updated fuel prices here.

Vehicle Maintenance and Repairs.

To keep your investment’s value and usability intact, you need to have it casa-checked at least every 5,000 kilometers or every six months. The regular PMS schedule will involve oil change, brake pad replacements, wheel alignment and/or rotation, coolant and other fluid change. The exact cost for this will vary on the type and brand of vehicle you own. The more expensive your vehicle is, the more expensive the maintenance costs will be.

Auto Insurance

Owning a car in the Philippines involves a lot of risks. From aggressive and careless drivers to uneven road conditions – your car is almost always at risk of getting damaged. An insurance policy is your best bet in ensuring that body repairs and such won’t add to your already ballooning car ownership cost. The annual insurance premium varies depending on your vehicle’s type and displacement. But expect to shell out more or less ₱17,000 yearly for insurance coverage.

Parking Fees

You should never disregard the costs involved in parking your vehicle. Your vehicle is parked 80% of the time. After a two-hour drive to work, your vehicle is parked for 8-10 hours before you drive it back home. Parking will cost you from ₱150 – ₱250 daily. That’s a ₱3,000 – ₱5,000 monthly cost!

Miscellaneous – Registration, Car Wash

Although LTO registration is a minimal cost of roughly ₱3,000 annually, it’s a must. So bear that in mind. Also, if you want your car looking good, you need to treat it to car washes to keep its paint fresh and its interior smelling even fresher. The car wash treatment will cost you around ₱200 each session.

Consider Renting

After reading all that, try gauging if you’re still up to the task of keeping up with all the costs involved in owning a car here in the Philippines. With the advent of ride-sharing, ride-hailing; as well as the emergence of rental services, maybe you should first consider renting the use of vehicles before committing to a long-term investment of your hard-earned cash?

Try iRent Mo – an app that lets you rent anything from vehicles to electronics. It will be released this October, 2019!

The Real Cost of Owning a Car in the Philippines