Both these solutions are alright if you are in the country at the relevant time. They are not convenient for non-residents who seem to have to pay in a different way to nationals and residents – discrimination between European citizens. I have been fighting the authorities (without success or indeed reply) for a couple of years. Why they will not accept an ordinary cheque or credit card (as they will for nationals), I do not know.
I seem to be bashing my head against the proverbial.