How to reduce new-driver car insurance costs

For new drivers, your first car insurance policy can be an expensive one.

This puts new motorists in a difficult position when learning to drive as they are often the ones with the least financial support behind them – unless they have the bank of mum and dad to rely on.

To help we have compiled this guide which explains why newer drivers face higher insurance costs and offers ways for new drivers to try and reduce their car insurance costs.

Why is car insurance for new drivers expensive?

Insurance works by calculating the possibility of risk – therefore, new and newly qualified drivers are simply a bigger risk.

There is the higher probability of a relatively inexperienced driver being involved in an accident, so it’s no surprise that the average premium (the amount of money you actually pay to an insurance company for coverage) of drivers aged between 18 and 20 years is £972, according to data from the Association of British Insurers (ABI).

However, it is possible to find ways of reducing the cost of car insurance of new drivers.

Five ways to lower your car insurance

The fact is car insurance prices for new drivers are expensive and until you become a more experienced motorist you won’t really benefit from a significantly cheaper premium.

However, following these tips will go some way towards bringing the cost down, and while might not see a huge decrease in price it will certainly give you the best chance of benefiting from the highest policy reductions possible.

1. Pay a higher excess

When you are getting a quote for car insurance, you will be asked to decide a level of excess – this is the voluntary amount you are happy to pay towards a repair in the event of a claim.

If you set it at £50, your overall premium will be higher than if you have a voluntary excess of £200. Just make sure you can afford to pay out £200 if you need to.

2. Take out Black Box Car Insurance

With Black Box Car Insurance you can prove to your insurer that you deserve to get cheaper car insurance even for a new driver.

What is Black Box Insurance?

It’s a way of helping young and new drivers to save money on their car insurance by rewarding safe and responsible driving.

The black box is installed in the car and used to monitor driver behaviour – quite simply, the safer you drive the cheaper your car insurance could be at renewal time.

It might not make your first car insurance policy cheaper but could apply a discount second time around.

3. Adding an older named driver to your first car insurance policy

Instead of parents adding a child to their insurance, the opposite could result in reducing the cost of insurance for new drivers.

If a new driver adds a parent to their first car insurance policy, the price of the policy could come down. That’s because the insurance provider will see an older and more experienced driver sharing the vehicle, and using it for some of the time, and may offer a cheaper price.

Again however, it’s important that the older driver does use or intend to use the car to avoid invalidating the insurance at a later date.

4. Choose a cheaper car

The make and model of car you drive can make a difference to the price of insurance – especially for young and new drivers. While new drivers will understandably want to get behind the wheel of the best possible car they can afford, that comes at a price.

Drive a powerful car with fast acceleration, and you’ll not only pay more for it in the first place, your car insurance policy will cost more too. Opting for a more modest car is a way of getting cheaper car insurance for drivers. Cars are ranked by insurers in groups ranging from 1 to 50, with those in group 1 being the cheapest to ensure and those in 50 the most expensive. 

5. Ensure your car is safe and secure

Insurance providers like to know that the vehicle being insured is likely to be as secure as possible to avoid the risk of theft. This concerns security inside the vehicle, and where it is stored when not being driven.

If your car is fitted with an alarm, immobiliser or another security device, this may help in reducing the cost of insurance for new drivers. Much like car insurance groups, Thatcham Research has categorised alarms – the higher the rating of the security system in your vehicle, the more money you could save on your car insurance.

When the car is being driven, where is it left? You’ll be asked for this information when comparing car insurance quotes. If the vehicle will be kept in a garage overnight, or parked on the driveway of your house, that should result in a saving on your insurance policy.

If you can only park the car on the street, you probably won’t see a saving.

Is it a good idea to add yourself to your parent’s insurance?

For parents, adding their son or daughter to their own car insurance policy is an option, although there are two important factors to consider.

Firstly, having a new and inexperienced driver on a policy will increase the price – so mum and dad should be prepared to see their own insurance premium rise.

Secondly, if the new driver is listed as a named driver on someone else’s policy, they can’t be the main driver. Putting children on your insurance with the intent of them using the vehicle as their own and driving it for the majority of the time can be considered ‘fronting’.

Fronting is illegal and is seen as a method of fraud. If you’re suspected of fronting, your car insurance could be declared void as a result.

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