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Where is car insurance cheapest (and most expensive)?

Find out how your premium measures up

Where is car insurance cheapest (and most expensive)?

Drivers in London pay almost 50% more than the national average for car insurance, according to new data from comparethemarket.com.

Car insurance in the capital costs a staggering £1,102 annually, which is £366 higher than the UK average, the survey found.

It may not all be doom and gloom for motorists in the city, however, as new government reforms have seen a the costs of car insurance across the UK begin to fall.

Here, we reveal the cheapest and most expensive areas for car insurance and how to ensure to keep the cost of your car insurance down.

Most expensive areas for car insurance

The UK’s capital, London, took the top spot as the most expensive region for car insurance.

Drivers in the city pay 50% more than the national average of £736, the latest Premium Drivers report from comparethemarket.com has found.

Motorists in the North West, which includes Bolton, Liverpool and Manchester, live in the second most expensive area.

The average premium in the region is around £839.79, which works out to be 14% higher than the national average – although still significantly less than the bills facing Londoners.

The table shows the top five most expensive regions in the UK for car insurance.

Rank Area Average Premium
1 Greater London £1,102.86
2 North West £839.79
3 West Midlands £823.60
4 Yorkshire and The Humber £768.28
5 Northern Ireland £750.03

Cheapest areas for car insurance

The South West, which includes Bristol, Devon and Somerset, is the cheapest place for car insurance.  Drivers in the region pay £557.39 a year, which is nearly a quarter less than the national average and almost half what Londoners pay for car insurance. 

Motorists in Scotland have the second cheapest car insurance premiums on average, paying £581.24 annually – 21% less than the national average.

The table shows the top five cheapest areas in the UK for car insurance.

Rank Area Average premium
1 South West £557.39
2 Scotland £581.24
3 Wales £637.34
4 South East £653.86
5 North East £673.32

Compare your car insurance premium

The map below shows the average car insurance premium for each part of the UK.

Hover over each area to reveal the average cost of car insurance and see how your premium compares.

Why does the cost of car insurance vary?

The cost of car insurance is priced based on risk profiles for the driver and the area they live in, which is why pricing varies significantly.

For example, the cost of car insurance is likely to be cheaper for drivers based in rural areas, where the risk of having an accident is lower.

If you live in a town or city, your car insurance premium is likely to be more expensive because the chances of being involved in an accident or having your car targeted by criminals is higher.

Despite the disparity in prices, however, drivers across the UK have reason to rejoice, as recent government reforms brought down the cost of car insurance overall.

The average premium fell £100 between December 2018 and February 2019, following the passing of the Civil Liability Act, which changes the way whiplash claims are calculated.

Although the changes are not expected to be implemented until April 2020, insurers almost immediately passed the cost benefit onto drivers.

How to get cheap car insurance

Whether you’re looking for your very first policy or wanting to renew, there are a number of ways to get the car insurance cover you need at a competitive price.

But don’t just go for the cheapest policy. Be sure to read the terms and conditions first to ensure that you’re buying the right level of cover.

Purchasing a policy that doesn’t give you enough cover will end up costing you a lot more if you have to make a claim and find out you’re not actually covered for the damage.

The time of year that you buy car insurance can also have a big impact on the price you pay.

Research shows that February is the cheapest month for car insurance, while December is the most expensive.

To help you find the best insurer, we’ve combined expert analysis of more than 30 standard car insurance policies along with feedback from thousands of policyholders to produce independent car insurance reviews.

You can also find more useful tips in our car insurance advice guide and the short video below.

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