Car insurance discounts for dash cam owners
By Callum Tennent
Some car insurance firms are now offering discounts to those who use a dash cam. We've outlined where to turn to save the most money.
It may have taken a while for them to hit the mainstream, but dash cams are now commonplace on UK roads.
It's easy to understand why: they're fairly cheap, easy to use and their benefits are immediately clear. Dash cam footage is now accepted and regularly used by both the police and UK courts – it was only a matter of time before insurers started paying attention, too.
Discounted car insurance us now being offered by several big-name UK insurers. Keep reading to find out the best deals.
Don't miss our best dash cam recommendations, based on the results of our independent dash cam tests.
Axa – 10% off for dash cam users
One of the bigger names in the UK car insurance industry, Axa is offering new and renewing customers a no-questions-asked 10% when you take out a car insurance policy if you use a dash cam.
The Axa website says that the dash cam must be 'permanently fitted' in your car. This means that it must record the road ahead on every journey you take. A professional installation is 'preferred' but if you've done it correctly yourself that shouldn't cause problems. Axa also states that mobile apps that convert your smartphone to a dash cam are not acceptable. You must also be able to send Axa footage on request.
Swiftcover – 12.5% off for new customers with a Nextbase dash cam
Swiftcover ups the ante with a 12.5% discount, however there are similar conditions to be met. The terms of the discount are actually the same as with Axa: the camera needs to record every journey you take, you must be able to provide footage where asked (although Swiftcover says it won't ask for any unless you've been in an accident) and a mobile phone is not an acceptable recording device.
There's two catches though: number one is that the dash cam must be made by Nextbase, and number two is that this deal is for new customers only.
Find out which Nextbase dash cams we recommend.
Adrian Flux – up to 15% off with a dash cam
It's a lesser-known insurer, but Adrian Flux offers the most generous dash cam discount for drivers – up to 15% off. Adrian Flux doesn't disclose just how the degree of discount is calculated, but it's available to both renewing and first-time customers. It also claims that the provision of dash cam footage can help speed up the claims process.
The main condition for this discount is that the dash cam you use has to be one of the models listed on its website. It's quite extensive – see it here.
Sure Thing! - 20% off with a Nextbase dash cam
New kids on the block Sure Thing! may have only entered the insurance market in 2014, but its offer of 20% off for those who use a dash cam is the best on our list.
The only catch, if you can call it that, is that your dash cam must be one made by Nextbase. You can see what we make of all of Nextbase's models with our guide to the best Nextbase dash cams, including which ones to avoid.
How to make sure you capture reliable dash cam footage
Having a dash cam can make you feel a lot safer on the road, but unfortunately it isn't a deterrent for other bad drivers. A dash cam is only as useful and effective as you make it.
To maximise the chances of your insurer accepting your dash cam footage when submitting a claim or arguing your case, be sure to follow these steps:
- Make sure your dash cam is properly fitted. It should be secured in a central position on the windscreen tucked behind (or as close as possible) to the rear-view mirror. Ensure that it's pointing in the right direction and is fully capturing all lanes of the road ahead.
- Always check that your dash cam is on and is receiving power. It sounds obvious, but it doesn't take much to accidentally unplug your dash cam from the vehicle's 12v port. To make matters worse, many dash cams will still power on when disconnected, running on a very limited internal battery. Make sure that when you start it up that it's plugged in and won't die on you 10 minutes into your journey.
- Always save important footage as soon as you can. Almost every dash cam we've tested features loop recording. This is a feature that automatically erases the oldest saved files to make way for newer ones when the memory card fills up. If you don't save important footage to your smartphone or computer soon after it happens then there's a chance it will be overwritten and you'll lose it forever. If you leave it too long you might also forget the time and location of the incident, meaning you'll need to spend an age looking back through dozens of generically-named files.
- Share the footage with your insurer via physical media or filehosting site. If you send the file as an attachment it risks losing fidelity and clarity. Uploading it to a filesharing service, like Dropbox, or sending it to them on a USB memory stick.