If you have just obtained your driving license and are eager to get on the road, consider a few things before packing all your friends and going on a road trip.
Car insurance is mandatory in Great Britain, and if you have just started driving, you will require young drivers’ car insurance. Unfortunately, these are notorious for coming with incredibly high car insurance premiums and can be pretty daunting for a young driver.
But there is hope; with a little time and resources spent, you can still get relatively cheap car insurance.
This guide provides you with six helpful tips on how less experienced drivers can still manage to pay lower premiums and get cheaper car insurance despite insurance policies putting you as a new driver under extra scrutiny.
1. Do Your Research
Don’t just get car insurance quotes from one or two insurance providers; make sure you put in some time to find the best-rated insurance provider and get a fully comprehensive quote from all of them.
Keeping your research up to date will also help you determine if cheaper options are available when your insurance is about to renew. Timing is everything in this case, as you also do not want to stress about a last-minute deal shortly before your insurance policy is running out.
2. Are You The Only Driver?
New drivers often fall victim to higher insurance premiums because they are the only ones driving the car. But there is a significant difference in whether you are the main driver of your vehicle or whether you have other drivers older than you, such as your parents set as additional drivers.
A more experienced driver will lower insurance costs as their experience will be considered a positive influence and therefore lower their premiums on your young driver insurance.
Additionally, if you are not the only driver looking to get insurance, an insurer might quote you a cheaper premium if you are asking for multi-car discounts. In general, car insurance rates very much depend on the number of insurance policies you are looking for.
3. Be Safe
While you cannot change your driving history, you certainly can influence your future as a young driver, and the best way to do so is by being a careful driver now. On top of that, taking advanced driving and road safety courses will increase your driving skills but also appeal to insurance companies.
Another way to be safe is by taking care of your car’s whereabouts, especially at night. If you have your car parked in a secure and lockable area or garage, this will decrease the likelihood of theft and positively impact your premium.
4. Adapt Your Vehicle
The type of car you are driving also has a significant impact on what your insurance company might charge you. In some cases, it might be worth changing your vehicle before paying an unnecessary expensive car insurance premium.
On top of that, there are several ways to adapt your car to lower your car insurance costs:
Add anti-theft devices
Speaking of theft risks, you might want to look into installing anti-theft devices such as an alarm system, a steering wheel lock or even a tracker. This will assist in obtaining cheaper car insurance.
Consider black box insurance
One of the major reasons why young drivers have such high insurance premiums is because insurance companies might not trust them and their driving skills enough. As you are not an experienced driver, they also have no experience with you as an insurance taker and don’t know how likely you will be making claims because of accidents.
A way to combat these trust issues is by getting black box car insurance, also known as telematics insurance, and installing a device which monitors and records your driving habits so that insurance companies can access and analyse them. If they see you are a conservative and safe driver who doesn’t speed, your premium will not be as high.
And, at the end of an insurance year throughout which you have been driving safely, you will be most likely receiving a no claims bonus!
No unnecessary modifications
That said, rather refrain from a modified car by adding subwoofers or pimped-up wheels.
It might make your car look more attractive to you, but it will also make it more attractive to get stolen, or broken into. On top of that, any additions to your car that are deemed unnecessary, specifically when it comes to wheels or the aerodynamics of your vehicle, might change the way your car handles and therefore influence your driving.
Insurances consider modified and pimped-up cars a higher risk and, therefore, will potentially charge you higher premiums.
5. Consider Your Excess
With every claim, there is an amount that you will have to pay yourself when it comes to repairing or replacing your vehicle.
This amount can be set by yourself if you are willing to pay more (voluntary excess) or which is set as a minimum amount you will have to pay by the insurance (compulsory excess). The higher your excess, the lower will be the premiums you have to pay throughout the year.
6. Is Permanent Insurance Necessary?
As a new driver, you might only consider standard car insurance. However, there are plenty of third-party insurance options as well as flexible options out there to choose from, instead of paying consistently for insurance that you don’t even need all the time.
You might be a low-mileage driver (less than 10,000 miles a year) and only use a car ever so often. In this case, it can work out way cheaper to obtain a pay-as-you-go insurance policy, which tracks your mileage and also how well you drive, similar to a black box.
Another option if you know that you will only be driving a car for a certain period is to get completely temporary car insurance. This way, you can obtain insurance for a specific time frame, spanning from an hour to a month or longer, quick, easy and online via portals such as GoShorty. This option also comes as temporary learner driver insurance.
Young drivers are always at risk of being charged high premiums, and understandably so. Insurances consider risks, and not having the necessary experience can be a high-risk factor and, therefore, less attractive for companies to take on.
However, there are a lot of tips and tricks to keep your car insurance cost comparatively low. After all, there are many more factors that insurers are considering than whether you are a younger driver or not.
New drivers need to consider investing some time and energy into making their driving habits along with their vehicle a lesser risk to take on for insurers so that both parties can make some cost savings in the long run.
Looking into alternatives such as temporary insurance options can be a cheaper way to go and save young drivers a lot of hassle and will make sure they are only covered when they need to be instead of spending money for something they won’t need daily.