8 ways to save on your car insurance

With prices changing all the time, buying and renewing car insurance can be confusing. How do you know you’re getting the best deal? We’ve put together some tips for you.


1 - Don’t leave it to the last minute

Research based on millions of quotes from multiple price comparison websites has shown that buying your car insurance on the renewal date - or leaving it to renew automatically - can cost up to £300 more than buying just a few weeks before.

Insurers say this is all about risk. Customers who don’t renew until the last minute might be less prudent and more rushed in other areas of their life. That makes them a riskier prospect to insure.

A more cynical explanation is that insurers charge higher prices close to your renewal date simply because they can. Insurance premiums are based on supply and demand, going up when you urgently need to renew. So when your car insurance is about to run out, insurers know that you don’t have time to shop around - because you need it to drive legally! - and you’ll have to accept the price they offer you.

Whatever the reason, it’s an easy opportunity to save: remember to renew your insurance a few weeks before it’s due.

2 - Shop around

Always compare and be prepared to switch! Shopping around can save you hundreds on your auto-renewal quote. There’s a guide to using price comparison websites on the Money Advice Service website.

3 - Who’s included?

You may be able to save on your car insurance by adding a second driver. Particularly if you’re a young or new driver, having an older and/or more experienced driver, such as a parent, as an additional named driver can bring down your premium. On the other hand, if you are the older or more experienced driver, adding your child or another named driver to your policy can drive your premium up. So if that’s you, don’t add anyone to your policy who doesn’t really need to be on it!

4 - Check the no-claims bonus

If you’re eligible for a no-claims bonus, don’t forget to check who offers the best discount while you’re shopping around!

5 - Think about how to pay

Paying monthly often costs more. We realise that when you’re living on a tight budget you may not have the funds to pay annually. So keep an eye out for insurers that don’t charge extra for payment by monthly instalment. There are a few!

Increasing the voluntary excess on your policy will usually cut your premiums. But don’t forget this means you’d have to pay more yourself in the event of a claim.

6 - Great driver? Prove it for a discount!

Telematics car insurance involves fitting a black box to your car, and/or downloading an app to your phone. Your premium can then be based on actual data about your speed and other information about your driving.

The black box option has the added bonus of acting as a tracker should your car get stolen.

7 - Haggle

In 2016, thisismoney.co.uk reported that 20% of drivers they’d surveyed had got a better deal on your car insurance by haggling. This is best done in conjunction with tip #2 - shop around. Found a deal that beats your current policy? Go back to your existing insurer and ask if they can do even better.

8 - Keep your car secure

Check for a policy that will reward you for security technology like a car alarm or immobiliser, or for keeping your car in a locked garage. Save money and get peace of mind - it’s a win-win!

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