Cheapest car insurance in the UK

Do you feel you're paying too much for car insurance? Find out how you can find the cheapest car insurance that's right for you.

The cost of car insurance can vary from person to person. It depends on a number of factors like your age, driving record, make and model of your car, and whether you opt for basic cover or comprehensive cover. However, there are ways to find discounts and features that can lower your premium and still provide the coverage you need.

What’s the cheapest type of policy?

While there are several different kinds of insurance policies that offer different levels of cover, usually the cheapest type is liability insurance or third party car insurance.

This is the minimum level of cover you are legally required to have to drive on UK roads. Third party car insurance covers the cost of compensating the damage that you may cause to someone else’s vehicle. This kind of policy will not cover any expenses incurred to repair the damage to your own car.

When does it makes sense to buy the cheapest car insurance?

The obvious reason to buy the cheapest car insurance is when it’s the only policy you can afford. However, often it makes sense because of your particular circumstances. If your car is relatively old and not highly valuable, comprehensive insurance which is usually more expensive, may not make as much sense as simple third party cover. It might also make sense when you only need the insurance for a limited period of time.

What affects the cost of car insurance?

There are a number of factors that make car insurance more expensive for one person than another. These can include:

  • Age
  • Car make and model
  • Address
  • Average yearly mileage
  • Driving history

How can I lower my car insurance rates?

There are many ways to lower your insurance premiums including:

  • Only pay for the cover you need. Resist adding optional extras unless you’ve decided you need them. Consider dropping comprehensive cover on an older car.
  • Trade in for a cheaper car. The next time you’re shopping for a new or new-to-you car, look for lower insurance rates on safer cars or cheaper cars.
  • Try a higher excess. Consider raising your excess, which is the amount you have to pay when making a claim before you get reimbursed. A higher excess means lower premiums.
  • Nominate your drivers. You should see lower premiums by insuring your policy in the oldest or safest driver’s name and nominating drivers with higher risk.
  • Be a safe driver. Take a defensive driving course to get a safe driver discount and some new skills, and keep your claims history and tickets to a minimum.
  • Park in a safe location. Cars kept in locked garages are cheaper to insure than those parked on the street. Consider installing antitheft or security features for lower premiums.
  • Shop around to compare price. Switch car insurance instead of renewing, especially if you’ve been through any big life changes like getting married or moving. You can also use comparison quotes to ask for a price match from your current insurer.
  • Beware paying in instalments. If the annual cost of your car insurance is too much to pay all at once, many insurers will let you pay your premium in instalments throughout the year. While it may save you from paying a lump sum, it typically costs more overall.
  • Reduce your mileage. You could get a low mileage discount if you reduce the miles you drive. Carpool or take public transport if you can, or plan your errands for one trip per day instead of taking lots of little trips.

How to get cheap car insurance for young drivers

One of the unfortunate realities of car insurance is that younger drivers tend to pay more for car insurance than older drivers. That’s because statistically, younger drivers are more likely to be involved in an accident, and insurers see them to be a higher risk.

That said, there are ways to get a good deal on car insurance as a young driver. These include:

  • Choose your car wisely. High-powered, luxury and expensive vehicles cost more to cover, so stay away from them if you want to save money on insurance. A cheaper car will not only save you money at the point of purchase, but will continue costing you less for its entire life.
  • Build a safe driving record. If your record is better, you might get cheaper car insurance. Consider not claiming for minor accidents if you can cover the costs yourself, as a no claims history can keep future premiums down.
  • Take a driving course. Taking a defensive driving course can help convince insurers that you’re responsible on the roads.
  • Beware paying in instalments. If the annual cost of your car insurance is too much to pay all at once, many insurers will let you pay your premium in instalments throughout the year. While it may save you from paying a lump sum, it typically costs more overall.

Frequently asked questions

The offers compared on this page are chosen from a range of products we can track; we don't cover every product on the market...yet. Unless we've indicated otherwise, products are shown in no particular order or ranking. The terms "best", "top", "cheap" (and variations), aren't product ratings, although we always explain what's great about a product when we highlight it; this is subject to our terms of use. When making a big financial decision, it's wise to consider getting independent financial advice, and always consider your own financial circumstances when comparing products so you get what's right for you.
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