Car insurance for new drivers

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Car insurance for new drivers – what you need to know

As a new driver, you'll need to sort your car insurance before you hit the road. If you’re caught driving without insurance you can get 6 points on your licence, along with a fine. As a new driver, getting 6 points in your first 24 months since passing your test is enough to get your licence revoked.

The minimum level of insurance available is third-party only, this only covers other party’s against damage or injury. It doesn’t cover damage to your own car or any injuries you might suffer following an accident.

Third-party, fire and theft offers the same as above but does allow you to make a claim if your car is damaged or stolen. It also covers fire damage.

Fully comprehensive cover is the top level of cover available for your car. With comprehensive cover, you can claim for damages even if you’re at fault.

Car insurance costs for new drivers

The average cost of car insurance for new drivers is £2,896*. It’s no surprise that prices tend to be higher for those with little driving experience. This is because insurers base prices on risk.

Unfortunately, statistics show new drivers are more likely to have an accident because, among other things, they’re less experienced and can be over-confident after passing their test.

Insurers don’t just look at driving experience though, they’ll also look at things like your age, postcode, occupation and the car you drive.

Getting a quote is the easiest way to find out how much your first policy is going to cost you.

*Average cost of top 5 policy prices for comprehensive insurance with licence held for less than a year. From Oct 2020 to Jan 2021.

What type of insurance is cheapest for new drivers?

It’s a common misconception that comprehensive car insurance is the most expensive option. Our research shows that new drivers actually paid less for comprehensive insurance compared with those who selected third party cover.

Type of cover Average price**
Comprehensive £2,059.90
Third party fire & theft £2,506.24
Third party £4,517.29

**New drivers data calculated using the average cost of top 5 insurance policies for people who’ve held their license for a year. From Oct 2020 - Jan 2021.

What you need to compare quotes

Getting a quote is easy and takes just a few minutes. We’ll need the following details from you to get an accurate price:

  • You - things like your name, age, address, and your occupation.
  • Your car - the make, model, year and any modifications it has.
  • Your cover – the level of cover you want and your annual mileage. Remember, it’s worth getting a quote for comprehensive cover as it can be cheaper than third-party and offers more cover.

Car insurance add ons

Extras or ‘add ons’ can hike up the price of your policy, so make sure you only choose the cover you need. Optional extras include things like:

  • Windscreen cover pays for repair or replacement of your windscreen if it’s damaged in an accident.
  • Motor legal protection helps you to recover certain uninsured losses that aren’t covered as standard by your car insurance policy, if you’re involved in a road accident that wasn’t your fault.
  • Personal accident cover offers extra cover against injury and/or death caused by an accident. It’s also sometimes known as personal accident cover.
  • Courtesy cars can keep you on the road while your car gets repaired after an accident.
  • Breakdown cover offers assistance if your car has mechanical failure. It can help you get back on the road as soon as possible. Find out more about car insurance extras.

What our expert says:

“As a new driver, getting your first insurance policy can be expensive. But there are ways to keep your costs down. You could try a black box insurance policy, start off with a smaller or less powerful car or even just compare quotes to find a cheaper deal.”
Alex Kindred car insurance product manager signature
Alex Kindred, Car insurance Product Manager

Need more help?

Which cars are the cheapest to insure for new drivers?

Generally, the lower car insurance group your car is in, the cheaper your insurance will be.

The Skoda Yeti, Dacia duster and Mazda CX-5 are among the cheapest cars to insure in 2021.

If you haven’t bought your car yet, take a look at our guide for the full list of cheapest cars to insure.

When does car insurance go down for new drivers?

Our research shows that prices begin to decrease the longer you hold your licence. That’s because the more driving experience you have, the less risk you are for an insurer.

Years licence held Average cost1
0 £2896.29
£2059.90
2 £1713.87
3 £1424.09

There are a few things you can do that could help you pay less for your car insurance:

1. Add a named driver. Having an experienced driver on your policy may help reduce your price. You should always list the person who drives the car most often as the main driver, and any occasional drivers as additional. Otherwise this is seen as 'fronting' which is illegal.

2. Build up your no-claims bonus. Building up your no-claims bonus can help save you money as most insurers offer a discount the more years you are claim free. 

3. Consider a black box policy. Telematics, or black box policies are aimed at inexperienced drivers. They can help make policies more affordable.

See our guide for more tips on how to save money on your car insurance.

(1) Data calculated using the average cost of top 5 insurance policies for comprehensive cover. From Oct 2020 - Jan 2021.

What is NCB?

A no-claims bonus (NCB) is a count of the number of years where you’ve not made a claim on your car insurance policy.

As a new driver, you won’t yet have any NCB, but you can start building one from the start of your first policy.

Insurers only accept each full year of insurance without a claim, so if you cancel a policy part way through the year, you won’t earn a bonus for that period. Proof of a no-claims bonus is usually only valid for two years, so if you take a break from driving and don’t use your bonus on a policy within two years, you’ll go back to 0 next time you take out a policy.

The discount offered by insurers can be significant in reducing the price of your insurance.