If you’re a newly qualified or young driver, finding affordable car insurance can be challenging. Insurance companies usually charge higher premiums for drivers between 17 and 25 years old compared to more experienced drivers.
- Young Driver Insurance
- Choosing the Right Young Driver Car Insurance Policy
- Why is Young Driver Insurance so Expensive?
- How is Young Driver Insurance Calculated?
- Buying Young Drive Insurance
- Top 10 Tips for Saving Money on Young Driver Insurance
- Frequently asked questions
This is primarily because younger drivers are considered a higher risk on the roads and are more likely to file an insurance claim. However, there’s a silver lining. By following the advice in our young driver insurance guide, you can potentially reduce your insurance costs.
This guide explains what young driver insurance involves, including the different types of insurance policies you might consider and the factors that influence how your insurance premium is calculated. Plus, we’ve added our top 10 tips to help you save money on your car insurance.
Young Driver Insurance
Have you recently passed your driving test and are eager to hit the road? Before you start your driving adventures, there’s a crucial step you need to take care of: getting car insurance. Whether you’re planning short trips to the local shop or longer journeys, being insured is a legal requirement for all drivers.
The good news is that arranging car insurance is more straightforward than ever, especially if you know what to look out for. For those aged between 17 and 25, you’ll be exploring options for young driver insurance, a specific category tailored to new and younger drivers.
If you’re older than 25, your focus will be on standard car insurance policies. However, no matter your age, you can still benefit from the useful tips in our young driver insurance guide.
Our guide not only explains the essentials of young driver insurance but also delves into various policy types, such as comprehensive, third-party, and third-party fire and theft.
We also cover crucial factors that impact insurance costs, like the type of car you drive, where you live, and your driving history. Additionally, we provide practical advice on how to potentially lower your premiums, from considering a black box policy to taking advanced driving courses.
These strategies can help both young and more experienced drivers save money and find the best insurance deal for their needs.
Choosing the Right Young Driver Car Insurance Policy
When selecting car insurance, it’s essential to understand the different levels of coverage available to make an informed choice that suits your needs and budget.
Types of Policies
There are three primary levels of cover:
Third Party: This is the most basic level of cover. It handles the costs for repairs or injuries to third parties affected by accidents that you cause. However, it doesn’t cover damages to your own car.
Third Party, Fire and Theft: This policy includes everything in the Third Party cover, plus protection against theft or damage from fire and vandalism to your own car.
Comprehensive: This is the highest level of cover. It includes everything in the Third Party, Fire and Theft policy, plus coverage for damages to your own car in accidents, regardless of who is at fault.
While you might assume that third-party cover, being the minimum level of insurance, would be the cheapest, this isn’t always the case. In fact, insurers often charge more for third-party policies.
This trend emerged when insurers noticed a higher frequency of claims from drivers with third-party policies, marking it as a higher-risk option.
Here’s a comparison of the average costs for each policy type:
|Third Party Only
|Third Party, Fire and Theft
*average quoted premiums
Making Your Choice
Ultimately, the choice of which type of insurance cover to opt for is yours. However, it’s generally advisable to consider a Comprehensive policy. Despite potentially being more affordable than you’d expect, it also offers the peace of mind of knowing you’re covered in almost any situation, from accidents to theft.
When choosing your policy, also consider factors like your driving experience, the car’s value, and how often you drive, as these can influence the best type of cover for your specific circumstances.
Why is Young Driver Insurance so Expensive?
Young driver insurance is notably expensive due to several risk factors associated with new and young drivers. Let’s delve into the reasons and look at how insurance costs vary with age.
Reasons for High Premiums for Young Drivers
Lack of Experience: Young drivers, typically those under 25, have less experience on the road. This inexperience contributes to a higher likelihood of being involved in accidents.
High-Risk Category: Statistically, young drivers are more prone to accidents, leading insurers to categorise them as ‘high risk’. This risk factor significantly drives up the cost of insurance.
No Claims Bonus: Young drivers often haven’t had the opportunity to build up a No Claims Bonus (NCB), which can substantially lower insurance premiums over time.
Insurance Costs by Age
The following table, based on data from the RAC, illustrates the relationship between the age of policyholders, their average insurance premium, and the average claim amount:
|Age of policyholder
As shown, the age group 18-25 tends to make larger claims than those over 25, justifying the higher premiums for younger drivers. However, as drivers age and hopefully accumulate a No Claims Bonus, premiums tend to decrease.
Other Factors Affecting Insurance Premiums
Age isn’t the sole factor insurers consider when calculating premiums. In the following section, we explore other elements that influence insurance costs, such as the type of vehicle, driving history, location, and how the car is used.
Understanding these factors can help young drivers make informed decisions and potentially reduce their insurance costs.
How is Young Driver Insurance Calculated?
Understanding how insurers calculate premiums for young drivers can help in finding more affordable options. Here’s a breakdown of the key factors considered.
Age is a significant factor in insurance calculations. Young drivers, typically aged 17-25, are considered “high risk” due to their lack of experience and absence of a No Claims Bonus (NCB).
This group is statistically more prone to accidents and claims, leading to higher premiums. Experienced drivers with a clean record, however, may see lower premiums over time.
Your occupation can influence your insurance cost. Jobs requiring extensive travel, like sales roles, might increase the risk of accidents. Those transporting valuable equipment could face higher premiums due to potential large claims.
In contrast, work-from-home professionals or those with short commutes might benefit from lower rates. Unemployed individuals typically face higher premiums, whereas homemakers might see reduced costs.
Location plays a crucial role. Insurers consider the claim frequency, uninsured drivers, fraudulent claims, and theft/vandalism rates in your area. Urban areas with higher traffic and accident rates generally attract higher premiums than quieter, rural locations.
For students, the primary location of the car (university residence or family home) determines the premium. If the car is not in use, registering it as off-road with a Statutory Off Road Notification (SORN) is an option.
4. Your Car
The car’s attributes significantly affect insurance costs:
- Value: More expensive cars usually cost more to insure.
- Performance: High-performance cars can lead to increased premiums.
- Modifications: Certain modifications can raise insurance costs.
- Usage: High annual mileage can increase the likelihood of accidents, thus raising premiums.
Insurers categorise cars into groups ranging from 1 to 50, with group 1 being the cheapest to insure.
Insurers favour vehicles with robust security measures. Parking in a garage or on a driveway, or having advanced alarm systems, can lead to lower premiums.
6. Driving History
Your driving history affects premiums. Previous claims, accidents, or driving offences can increase insurance costs. However, a clean history and a growing NCB can lead to more favourable rates.
7. Policy Type
The policy type you choose also impacts cost. While it might seem intuitive that lower coverage levels would be cheaper, often a comprehensive cover can be more cost-effective.
The excess is the amount you agree to pay in a claim. Opting for a higher voluntary excess can lower your premium, as it indicates you’re willing to shoulder more risk.
Conversely, a lower excess means higher premiums, as the insurer bears a greater cost in the event of a claim.
Understanding these factors can help young drivers make informed decisions when choosing their car insurance, potentially leading to significant savings.
Buying Young Driver Insurance
Navigating the world of young driver insurance can often feel like a daunting task. With a multitude of insurers competing for your business, choosing the right policy can seem like an uphill battle.
Whether you’re a first-time insurance buyer or have been through the process before, there are several key factors to consider.
Use Comparison Sites
The most efficient approach to find an affordable young driver insurance policy is through comparison sites. These platforms streamline the search process, sparing you the hassle of contacting insurers individually.
By inputting your details, these sites generate a range of quotes, allowing you to easily compare prices and coverage.
Top Comparison Websites
Several comparison websites stand out for their reliability and ease of use:
It’s beneficial to use multiple comparison sites to obtain a broad spectrum of quotes. However, be aware that not all insurers appear on these platforms.
Companies like Aviva, Direct Line, and Admiral may offer more competitive rates if you approach them directly.
Providing Accurate Information
When requesting quotes, insurers will require specific information from you, including:
- Registration Plate
- Car Modifications
- Annual Mileage
- Licence Type
- Past Claims, Points or Accidents
- Additional Drivers
Additionally, they may inquire about the intended use of your car (such as for social, commuting, or business purposes) and where the car will be parked during the day and night.
The Importance of Honesty
It’s crucial to be honest with your insurer. Even small discrepancies in your information can have significant consequences.
Before embarking on your search, it’s advisable to research what to look for in a car insurance policy and explore strategies to secure a more favourable deal.
This preparatory step can provide valuable insights, helping you make an informed decision about your young driver insurance.
Top 10 Tips for Saving Money on Young Driver Insurance
Navigating the insurance market as a young driver often involves balancing costs with the need for adequate coverage. Here are ten effective strategies for reducing your young driver insurance premiums.
1. Add Experienced Drivers to Your Policy
Young drivers are typically considered high-risk by insurers. Adding a more experienced, lower-risk named driver to your policy can help reduce this perceived risk and, potentially, your premiums.
Ensure that any additional drivers have a clean driving record. Experiment with different combinations to see how they affect your premium.
2. Adjust Your Job Title
The occupation you list can significantly influence your insurance costs. Play around with different job titles that accurately describe your role.
Subtle changes, such as switching from “journalist” to “editor,” can sometimes lead to lower premiums. Always stay truthful, as misrepresenting your occupation can have serious consequences.
3. Consider a Telematics Policy
A telematics policy or black box insurance can reward good driving habits with lower premiums. These policies monitor factors like braking, speed, and acceleration. Be mindful of any policy-specific conditions, such as curfews.
4. Choose a Higher Excess
Opting for a higher excess can reduce your premium. However, it’s important to balance this with the risk involved, ensuring you can afford the excess in case of a claim.
5. Pay Annually
Paying your insurance annually rather than monthly is often more cost-effective. It saves the insurer from processing frequent payments and may signal that you’re not planning to switch insurers soon.
6. Select the Right Car
Your choice of car significantly impacts your insurance costs. Smaller, less powerful cars typically attract lower premiums. Consider vehicles from lower insurance categories if you’re in the market for a new car.
7. Improve Car Security
Enhancing your car’s security can lower your premiums. Consider installing approved alarms, immobilisers, and tracking systems. The Thatcham research group categorises these security devices, with categories 1 and 2 offering the most significant premium reductions.
8. Shop Around at Renewal
Don’t automatically renew your policy. Often, insurers reserve their best deals for new customers. When your policy is up for renewal, explore other options to ensure you’re getting the best deal.
9. Maintain a Safe Driving Record
Building a No Claims Bonus by driving safely and avoiding accidents or points on your licence can significantly reduce your premiums over time.
10. Explore Multi-Car Policies
If your household has multiple cars, a multi-car policy might be more cost-effective than separate policies. However, it’s important to compare the costs, as this isn’t always the case.
Be cautious about skewing the truth on your insurance application. Misrepresenting details, such as who the main driver is or failing to disclose car modifications, can invalidate your insurance. Always provide accurate and honest information.
Frequently asked questions
Yes, you can be included in your parents’ insurance policy as long as you have either a provisional or a full licence. When you’re added as a named driver, it’s crucial to remember that you should not be the person who uses the car most frequently.
If you are, this is known as fronting, a practice that is considered illegal. It’s important to adhere to these guidelines to ensure that the policy remains valid and legal.
Whether you can drive someone else’s car using your own insurance policy depends on the specific terms of your cover. It’s essential to check your policy documents carefully to understand if this is permitted.
If your insurance does allow it, this could be a useful way to reduce your own car’s mileage. Always ensure that you are fully aware of the conditions and restrictions of your policy before driving another person’s vehicle.
No, black box insurance, or a telematics policy, isn’t a mandatory requirement for young drivers. However, it’s often recommended as a potentially more affordable option.
Typically, this type of policy can be cheaper than other alternatives. But, it’s important to note that if you’re not adhering to safe driving practices, your premiums could increase with a black box policy, as it tracks and evaluates your driving habits.
The No Claims Bonus (NCB) system rewards you for each year you drive without making a claim on your insurance. For every claim-free year, your insurer acknowledges this with a year’s NCB, which can lead to a reduction in your insurance costs when it’s time to renew your policy.
The longer you maintain a record without any claims, the greater the potential discounts on your insurance premiums. This system is designed to encourage and reward safe and responsible driving.
Taking a Pass Plus course could be beneficial, especially since some insurers offer discounts for drivers who have completed this course. It’s a good idea to research and identify insurers that recognise and reward Pass Plus qualifications.
If you find an insurer offering a discount for Pass Plus, it can be worthwhile to undertake the course to avail of these potential savings on your insurance premiums.
In the UK, it is a legal requirement for all cars to be insured, even if you are not using them. However, if you decide that your car will not be used at all for a period of time, you can officially declare it off-road.
To do this, you need to apply for a Statutory Off Road Notification (SORN). This declaration means you are informing the authorities that your car won’t be driven or parked on public roads, and thus it does not require insurance during this period.
Adding modifications to your car, whether they are for enhancing performance or just for aesthetic reasons, can significantly impact your insurance premiums.
These modifications often increase the value of your car and can make it more appealing to thieves. As a result, your vehicle is considered a higher risk to insure, leading to an increase in the cost of your insurance. It’s important to factor this in when considering modifying your car.
Yes, your insurance provider typically sends a reminder about three weeks before your policy is due for renewal. For some, this period might feel a bit rushed, leading to hastily renewing the existing policy without exploring other options.
To avoid this, it’s a good idea to mark the renewal date in your calendar. This way, you can remind yourself to start looking for potentially better insurance deals well in advance of the renewal date.
If you’re seeking a cost-effective insurance deal, it’s usually not advisable to let your policy auto-renew. In most cases, renewing with your current insurer can result in a more expensive policy.
By exploring options with other insurers, you are likely to find more competitive and lower-priced alternatives. It’s beneficial to shop around and compare different offers before your current policy expires.
Paying for your insurance in a single annual payment is generally more cost-effective than paying monthly. When you calculate the total cost of monthly payments over a year, you’ll typically find that it adds up to more than the amount of a one-off annual payment.
If your budget allows, opting for the annual payment can save you money in the long run.
Yes, it’s important to inform your insurer even if you’re involved in an accident and choose not to make a claim. While you might decide to handle the repairs yourself, notifying your insurer is a safer approach.
This is crucial because if you’re involved in another accident later, particularly if it’s related to a poor repair from the first incident, your insurer may refuse to cover the claim. Keeping your insurer informed helps maintain transparency and can prevent complications in future claims.
Yes, the amount of miles you drive in a year has a direct impact on your insurance premiums. The logic here is simple: the more you’re on the road, the higher your mileage, and the greater the risk you pose to the insurer.
Conversely, if you have a lifestyle that involves less driving, like working from home or using your car mainly for leisure, your annual mileage will be lower. This typically translates to a lower risk profile and can lead to lower insurance costs.
It’s important to provide an accurate estimate of your mileage when asked by your insurer. Underestimating your mileage to save on premiums can backfire, potentially invalidating your insurance policy.
The compulsory excess is a fixed amount determined by your insurance provider. It represents the sum you are required to pay if you make a claim. On the other hand, voluntary excess is an amount you choose to set yourself.
By opting for a higher voluntary excess, you agree to pay more in the event of a claim, in addition to the compulsory excess. This decision can often lead to a reduction in your overall insurance premium, as it indicates a willingness to shoulder more of the cost upfront.
Yes, a credit check is necessary if you choose to pay for your car insurance in monthly instalments. This check is conducted by your insurer to ensure that you have the financial stability to make regular payments.
On the other hand, if you opt to pay for your insurance annually, in one lump sum, you will not need to undergo a credit check. This distinction is important to consider when deciding how you’d like to pay for your insurance.