On a recent family camping trip I was chatting to my cousin about her “new” car; a white 14 plate Hyundai i10.
For a yet-to-pass-her-test seventeen year old it’s a very exciting time, and she can’t wait to start enjoying her new freedom.
She’s been saving for a while and with a little help from the bank of mum and dad she picked up her car a few weeks ago.
She’s also pretty switched on, and understands that the cost of motoring does not stop once you have bought your car.
She proudly told me that she has money saved for tax, fuel and of course insurance.
At the mention of insurance I made that face that all adult drivers make: a kind of pursed lip, furrowed brow look complete with sucking in of air and shaking head.
I asked her how much the insurance was for her on her new car and she replied “oh, only £1450 for the year”
As she helped pick me up off the floor she added “that’s not much compared to some of the quotes I have had”
Young driver of course, but experienced shopper definitly.
This girl had done her homework, having got no less than ten quotes….. when was the last time a ‘proper grown up’ got 10 quotes for anything!
Apart from shopping around for a good deal, she had a few other insights on the subject of insurance savings.
1) Agree to a mileage cap
When arranging her insurance she asked for a 12,000 mile cap as she knew she wouldn’t be doing more than that in her first year
2) Buying online
She learnt very quickly that buying online rather than over the phone saves up to 10%
3) Request a higher excess
If you are feeling confident about your driving you can request to increase your excess which brings down the overall cost of the insurance
4) Keep it small
This is a bit obvious but many of her friends were looking at 1.4L hot hatches as a first car.
A 1.2L or lower engine size is the sensible route to go if you are looking for manageable insurance in your first couple of on the road.
5) Have a black box or dash cam fitted
She received an additional discount for agreeing to have a black box fitted to her car, saying it was a “no brainer” new drivers should get one fitted every time.
6) Improve your driving skills
Not something she can do currently but as soon as she can she plans to take an advanced driving course which will reduce her yearly insurance cost further.
What impressed me the most was how she’d gone from zero understanding of how car insurance works, to being more knowledgable than most adults!
She’ll still be paying through the nose to get her car on the road, but where there’s a will there’s a way.