Drivers under the age of 25 are facing spiralling costs, as car insurance premiums surged over the past year, according to new statistics.
Figures published by comparethemarket.com suggest that 17 to 24-year-olds now pay an average of £1,354 per year to insure their vehicle – an 8% rise year-on-year.
A hike in Insurance Premium Tax (IPT) and an adjustment to the way personal injury payouts are calculated were listed as key reasons for the increase.
Young motorists typically have to pay far more for car insurance than other age groups. As the above changes are based on the overall percentage of premiums, young people are likely to be hit the hardest.
But the financial burden of owning a car rose across the age spectrum. The average overall cost of owning a car, including vehicle running costs, was calculated to be £2,379 per year, a 3% rise year-on-year.
If you’re finding your car increasingly expensive, Which? explores how to lower your insurance premium.
- Our car insurance reviews rate more than 30 insurers based on the key aspects of their standard policy and our unique customer satisfaction surveys
How can young motorists reduce their premiums?
Telematics, also known as black box car insurance, can be used by any motorist looking to save money, but is mostly marketed at younger drivers.
This involves fitting a box, which monitors how you drive, to your car. Insurers typically reward safe drivers with cheaper cover. However, if you’re a bad driver, you can lose discounts or even have your policy cancelled.
Some black box insurance policies focus only on how you drive, while others lower your costs by restricting your mileage. Our video guide explains exactly how it works.
2. Take an advanced driving course
Motorists who complete the Driving Standards Agency’s Pass Plus training course are rewarded with lower premiums by many insurers. Pass Plus training covers how to drive at night, on rural roads and motorways among other things. The course typically costs between £100-£200, so it’s worth checking which insurers will offer you a discount before you sign up. With some insurers, whether they offer a discount may depend on when you passed your driving test.
3. Add a named driver to your policy
It’s possible to reduce your premium by adding a more experienced named driver to your policy – for example, if you share the car with your parents or older sibling.
But don’t put someone else down as the main driver if this is not actually the case. This practice is known as ‘fronting’ and is illegal. If your insurer finds out, it may refuse to pay out on a claim and remove your no-claims bonus. It may also take legal action against you for fraud.
4. Consider a cheaper car
The cost of your car insurance is heavily based on the value of your car. If you still find car insurance unaffordable after trying the previously-listed tips, consider buying a cheaper car to bring down the cost of your insurance bill.
Find out more: Car insurance explained – the ins and outs of insuring your vehicle