Top ten guide to lowering insurance costs

What Car? has been taking a look at ways of lowering insurance premiums for young drivers to help improve road safety with a view to more insurance companies offering discounts to young drivers

What Car? magazine editor John McIlroy said: “We want more insurance companies to recognise the benefits of additional young driver training and reward those who take it with a lower premium. A full 74% of young motorists say they would take extra tuition if it saved them money on their insurance. It will without doubt make the roads much safer for all road users because, above all, it’s experience that makes us all better drivers.”

The What Car? Teens Top 10 Guide to Cutting Insurance Premiums

1.      Increase your excess.  Boosting the amount you pay in the case of an accident can have a direct effect on your premium. A £400 excess increase can bring down your premium by almost the same amount.

Average saving £277

2.      Stick with a lower trim.  Going for the top-of-the-range trim level might well bump you up an insurance group. If a 17-year-old driver upgrades from a Studio to an Edge trim on his Fiesta, his costs could jump by around £400.

Average saving £432

3.      Research the level of cover.  Third party or third party, fire and theft cover is usually cheaper than comprehensive insurance, but the average saving is so small that we would always recommend choosing the best cover you can afford.

Average saving £53 (third party only)

4.      Add a parent.  Convincing a parent to join you on a policy can bring down the costs significantly. Our sample driver reduced his premium by more than £1100 just by adding his 52-year-old accountant mother to his policy.

Average saving £1005

5.      Extra training.  Insurers appear to be undecided on the merits of the most popular driver training: Pass Plus. Some don’t offer any discount for taking the six-hour course, while the average premium reduction for those who do is £456. Check with your insurer before you commit.

Average saving £456 (if offered)

6.      Get a no-claims discount

Many insurance companies will now let you build up a no-claims discount on someone else’s vehicle, so try to convince a parent to let you use their car.

Average saving £253

7.      Leave out the mods

Some insurers might not charge you for adding alloy wheels, but that full bodykit could end up costing you more in higher insurance premiums than its price suggests.

Average saving £305

8.      Stick to a curfew

Restrict your driving hours to between 6am and 11pm. This may not be for everyone, but it could save you cash.

Average saving £492

9.      Stick with a smaller engine

A step up from a basic 1.25-litre Fiesta to a still-modest 1.4 can bump up insurance premiums by more than £250.

Average saving £265

10.  Shop around

Start your search on comparison websites, and then ask companies directly if they can beat the lowest prices you find.

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