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New driver insurance

Compare cheap car insurance for new drivers

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Do new drivers need car insurance?

As a new driver, you'll need to sort your car insurance before you hit the road.

This applies as soon as you get your provisional driving licence.

If you're still learning and are doing so with an instructor or driving school, they should have their own insurance in place.

But if you're practicing in another car, you'll need learner driver insurance to drive it. This is the case even if it's not your car.

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.

What type of car insurance does a new driver need?

Before you compare car insurance quotes, you’ll need to think about what sort of cover you want and how you’ll use your car.

If you haven’t passed your test and need insurance to drive your own or someone else’s car, you will need learner driver insurance.

There are three levels of cover to choose from:

  • Third party only
  • Third party, fire and theft
  • Fully comprehensive
  • Third-party only is the minimum level of cover available and only covers other parties 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 theftoffers the same as third-party, but also allows you to make a claim if your car is damaged or stolen. It also covers fire damage.
  • Comprehensive is the top level of cover available for your car. With comprehensive cover, you can claim for damages even if you’re at fault.

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How much is car insurance for new drivers?

The average cost of car insurance for new drivers is £858**.

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 that 1 in 5 new drivers crash within a year of passing their test. Lack of experience and overconfidence can contribute to accidents.

Insurers don’t just look at driving experience though, they’ll look at a whole variety of factors including:

  • Your age as older drivers will pay less
  • Your postcode. If crime rates are higher in your area you may pay more
  • Your occupation as some jobs require you to drive more than others
  • The car you drive, which will be grouped from 1-50 for insurance purposes. Generally, the higher the car insurance group the more expensive insurance will be. Your car’s engine power and value will affect the cost of your insurance as well.

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

**Average cost of a fully comprehensive policy for a new driver, having held a licence for 5 years or less. Based on Confused.com data 01/12/2021 to 01/12/2022.

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 PRICE1
Comprehensive
£858.80
Third-party fire & theft
£1018.80
Third-party
£937.69

1Median purchased annual premium for drivers having held their licence for 5 years or less. Prices based on Confused.com data from 01/12/2021 to 01/12/2022.

How can I get cheaper car insurance as a new driver?

There are some things you can do that could help make your car insurance cheaper:

  • Choose the right car
  • Shop around by comparing prices
  • Add a named driver
  • Pay annually
  • Drive carefully to build up your no-claims bonus
  • Consider a black box policy
  • Be accurate with your anticipated mileage
  • Increase your voluntary excess.

Choose the right car as the make and model of your car can influence the cost of your insurance. Expensive cars with bigger engines and higher repair costs generally cost more to insure. Cars with widely available parts and smaller engines usually cost less to insure.

Shop around Comparing quotes from a range of companies gives you more choice and a wider selection of policies to choose from.

Add a named driver as having an experienced driver on your policy may help reduce your price. 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.

Pay upfront if you can afford to. While opting to pay monthly means you can spread the cost, it can increase your price by up to 15% because insurers will charge you interest for the privilege. (Based on Confused.com data January - September 2021.)

Drive carefully to build up your no-claims bonus. Over time a no-claims bonus is likely to help save you money. Most insurers will offer discounts for drivers who don’t claim.

Consider a black box policy to monitor your driving. Telematics, or black box policies, use an app or box that’s installed in your car to monitor your driving. Your insurance costs are calculated based on how and when you drive. If you drive safely, it can make car insurance more affordable for new drivers.

Be accurate with your anticipated mileage as the more you drive, the higher your road-risk. Higher mileage usually means higher insurance costs, so don’t put down more than you need.

Increase your voluntary excess. The more you agree to pay, the lower your insurance costs are likely to be. However, you must select an amount you’d be able to afford in the event of a claim.

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

Compare cheap new driver car insurance quotes

What car insurance add-ons should new drivers get?

Extras or ‘add-ons’ will all boost the cost of your new driver insurance. This means it's important you only choose the bolt-ons you need.

There’s a range of optional extras you could choose from:

  • Breakdown cover offers assistance if your car has mechanical failure on the road and, sometimes, if your car doesn't start at home. It’s especially useful when you’re out and about, as it can help you avoid being stuck at the side of the road. It can also be useful if you're driving an older car that’s more liable to break down
  • .
  • Motor legal protection can help protect you against the legal costs of someone making a claim against you if you’re involved in an accident. It can also help you make a claim if you need to. This could be for things like medical expenses or loss of earnings if you’re injured in a crash.
  • Courtesy car cover provides you with a replacement car while yours is off the road while it’s being repaired or replaced. It can be handy if you reply on your car to get to work or uni.
  • Windscreen cover pays for repair or replacement of your windscreen if it’s damaged in an accident.
  • Personal accident Cover pays out if you suffer a serious injury or die as a result of a car accident. This can be useful if you have loved ones who are financially dependent on you, for example.
  • No claims bonus protection protects your no claims discount if you need to make a claim where you were at fault. It can be handy if you’re trying to build up your NCB to get cheaper car insurance in the future.

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Is black box insurance good for new drivers?

Black box insurance policies can help lower the cost of new driver insurance, depending on how well you drive.

With black box insurance, various aspects of your driving are monitored, either by an app on your phone, or through a telematics device fitted to your car.

Using this information, your insurance company then gives you a personalised quote based on your driving habits.

By driving safely, keeping your mileage down and avoiding night time driving wherever possible, it's possible to cut the cost of insurance for new drivers.

But, if you are speeding, braking harshly and racking up miles overnight, you may end up paying more.

Things you might be monitored on include:

  • Your acceleration
  • Your braking
  • The speed of your cornering
  • Your mileage
  • The time of day you drive

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 experience you get as a new driver the less risk you are for an insurer.

You'll typically still be treated as a new driver until you have around 5 years of driving experience. This can differ from insurer to insurer, though, and some might class you as a new driver until you have 9 years of experience. 

However, your insurance should start to go down the longer you've been behind the wheel.

YEARS LICENCE HELD AVERAGE COST3
0
£2,562
1
£2,041
2
£1,708
3
£1,474

3Data calculated using the average cost of top 5 insurance policies for comprehensive cover. From January – September 2021.

Need more help?

Which cars are the cheapest to insure for new drivers?

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

The Hyundai i10 SE, Honda Jazz EX i-VTEC and Vauxhall Mokka X Active Turbo 140 are among the cheapest cars to insure in 2022.

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

Can I drive other people’s cars on my insurance?

The option to drive other cars (DOC) isn’t always included automatically on your insurance policy. Insurers who do offer DOC will require you to be at least 25 or over when your policy starts. To find out more, take a look at our guide on driving other cars.

Will an advanced driving course help make my insurance cheaper?

Few insurers offer up-front discounts for taking advanced driving courses such as pass plus.

It's still worth letting us know if you have an advanced driving course when you get a quote just in case.

What is NCB?

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

If this is your first insurance policy, 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 square one next time you take out a policy.

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

What is voluntary excess?

Voluntary excess is an amount you agree to pay towards the cost of a claim. The more you agree to pay the lower your premiums are likely to be. The voluntary excess will be in addition to a compulsory excess which will be specified by your policy.

Let’s say you have a voluntary excess of £250 and a compulsory excess of £100, that means you’d pay a total excess of £350. When you get a quote, we clearly show the breakdown of excesses on the policy, so be sure to choose an amount that you can afford to pay if you need to make a claim.

Will I get cheaper new driver car insurance if I'm over 30?

New drivers tend to pay more for insurance whatever your age, because you have very limited driving experience.

However, the good news is you won’t be considered as such a high risk as new drivers in their teens or early twenties, and could pay less than these groups for new driver insurance.

Is it cheaper for young drivers to drive their parent’s car?

Asking your parents to add you as a named driver to their car, could be cheaper than taking out your own policy on another car.

However, it’s important that if you were using the car more than them, this would be ‘fronting’ which is against the law and could invalidate the policy.

Your parents would also need to be aware that if you needed to make a claim on their insurance, they could lose their no claims discount.

What is the best insurance group for young drivers?

Younger and inexperienced drivers should choose a car in the lowest insurance group that is practical for them.

Smaller, cheaper cars with less powerful engines will be significantly cheaper to insure than a pricier, higher performance model.

Insurance for younger drivers is always expensive, but selecting a car in a lower insurance group will make it more affordable.

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What our car insurance expert says

Car insurance for new drivers can be expensive. There are things you can try to save yourself some money though. For starters you could try a black box insurance policy, choose to drive a smaller or less powerful car, or even just compare quotes to find a cheaper deal.

Louise Thomas - Car insurance, personal Finance, mortgage and life insurance expert signature

Louise Thomas

Car insurance expert

After buying car insurance, 96% of Confused.com customers would recommend us (based on 130715 Reviews.co.uk respondents - as of 25/01/23). Read our reviews