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Car insurance for 17-year-olds

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[1] Correct as of June 2024.

How much is car insurance for a 17-year-old?

How much you pay for your car insurance can depend on a range of factors, including what kind of car you drive, how much you drive and where you live.

Although 17-year-olds, who have just passed their driving test, can expect to pay a higher premium for their car insurance, insurance providers will give you a quote based on your personal circumstances.

What is the average car insurance cost for a 17-year-old?

Car insurance for younger drivers doesn’t come cheap, so it can pay to shop around – 51% of young drivers could get a premium of up to £1,861[2] when they compare with us.

[2] 51% of young drivers between 17-24 years old could achieve a quote of up to £1860.62 for their car insurance based on Compare the Market data in June 2024.

Why is car insurance more expensive for 17-year-olds?

Insurance is based on risk levels, and statistically younger drivers – aged between 17 and 24 – are at a much higher risk of crashing than older age groups.

One in five drivers crash within a year of passing their test. More sobering still, globally, road traffic accidents are the leading cause of death among people aged 15-29.

Why are younger drivers more likely to crash?

Due to a combination of youth and inexperience, younger drivers are at much higher risk of having an accident.

The statistics make for depressing reading – according to government figures, young male drivers are four times more likely to be killed or seriously injured than drivers over 25. They also account for 80% of young driver fatalities.

Studies suggest that the brain’s pre-frontal cortex – the part that oversees impulsive behaviour and ability to foresee consequences – doesn’t fully develop until we reach our mid-twenties.

There can be other risk factors too. Younger drivers could be:

  • Over-confident, and as result, prone to dangerous driving behaviours like speeding, tailgating and reckless overtaking
  • Poor at assessing hazards (due to lack of driving experience)
  • More likely to be influenced by their peers and engage in high-risk, thrill-seeking behaviour, including driving under the influence
  • More likely to drive at night, when it’s harder to see hazards, such as animals

What types of insurance are available to 17-year-olds?

There are three types of cover available to young drivers, with each offering different levels of protection. It’s worth taking time to consider which is most suitable for you and comparing a range of policies, as the most basic cover isn’t always the cheapest. 

  • Third party  is the minimum level of cover you need to drive legally. It covers you for any damage you cause to other people or their property. It won’t cover you if you’re injured or your car is damaged.
  • Third-party fire and theft  offers the same protection as third party, but also covers you if your car is stolen or damaged by fire.
  • Comprehensive car insurance gives you all the benefits listed above, but also protects you as a driver. It can also pay out for any damage to your car.

How can I get cheaper car insurance for 17-year-olds? 

While  young driver car insurance isn’t always cheap, there are ways to help bring down the cost of your premium.

Looking for cheap car insurance for 17-year-olds? Here’s a few dos and don’ts.

DO:

  • Add an older, more experienced driver to your policy – if they plan to use the car too. This could reduce the risk for the insurance provider and help lower your premium.
  • Take an advanced driving course – if you’ve passed your test in the past year, a Pass Plus course could help you gain confidence and learn extra skills. Some insurance providers may also reward you with a discount.
  • Choose your car wisely – the more powerful and expensive your car, the higher your premium is likely to be. Check out the cheapest cars to insure.
  • Consider a black box policy – with telematics insurance your speed, acceleration, braking and cornering are monitored by an app on your phone or a small device installed in your car. Prove that you drive safely and your premium could be reduced.

DON’T:

  • Modify your car – cars with a new stereo system or alloy wheels are more attractive to thieves, making them more likely to be stolen. Some insurance providers refuse to insure modified cars, and those that do will likely charge higher premiums.
  • Park off the street – if you can, keep your car on a private driveway. If you leave it on the street, insurance providers consider it more likely to get damaged or stolen, so may raise your premium.
  • Lie to your insurance provider – it could invalidate your policy. Never list a more experienced person as the main driver if that isn’t the case – this is known as fronting and is illegal.
  • Increase your excess too much – excess is the amount you’ll pay towards the cost of an insurance claim. Agreeing to pay a higher voluntary excess can reduce the cost of your insurance, but you’ll need to be able to afford to pay it if there’s a claim. 

What are the cheapest cars to insure for 17-year-olds?

If you’re looking for a cheap car to insure, check out compact models in the low car insurance groups, such as the Volkswagen Up!, Citroen C1, Fiat 500 and Hyundai i10.

Cars in the lower insurance groups tend to be less expensive to buy and repair, have smaller engines, plus good safety and security features. That makes them less of a risk to insurance providers, which could mean cheaper premiums for you.

Can you get temporary car insurance for 17-year-olds?

Temporary car insurance could be an option for some 17-year-olds who don’t want or need to commit to a full policy of their own just yet. It could be useful if you need to borrow a car temporarily, or you want to get insured on your parent’s car during the holidays.

You can also get temporary learner driver insurance to cover you practising in a friend or family member’s car before you get your full licence.

With short-term cover, you can typically choose exactly how long you want to insure the car for, from just a few hours up to several weeks, meaning you only pay for what you need. If you do end up needing to make a claim, it won’t affect the vehicle’s owner no-claims bonus. 

Our partner, Tempcover, offers temporary learner driver cover for 17-year-olds who hold a UK provisional licence and temporary car insurance for young drivers who have held a full licence for over six months.

Get a Tempcover quote

Compare cheap car insurance for 17-year-olds

Is it possible to find cheaper car insurance at 17 and 18? We’ve put together a guide to help you find ways to reduce your premium, even if you’re just starting out.

To make sure you’re not paying over the odds for your car insurance, it pays to shop around. We independently compare quotes from 58 car insurance providers[3] so you can see a range of personalised quotes in a matter of minutes.

We’ll show you policies based on price, policy cover level, add-ons and annual or monthly payment terms – helping you compare policies based on your needs.

Compare car insurance quotes now and see if you can save.

[3] Correct as of June 2024.

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Frequently asked questions

What other costs are involved in getting my first car?

As well as making sure your car is continuously insured (it’s the law), you’ll need to factor in other costs when you buy your first car, including:

  • Running costs, whether that’s for petrol, diesel or electricity
  • Road tax
  • Regular servicing and maintenance
  • MOT costs
  • Parking fees
  • If you live in London or another dedicated clean air zone, any applicable congestion and ULEZ/CAZ charges.

You can get an idea of how much a year of driving could cost you by using our young drivers tool.

How can my parents help me get cheaper car insurance?

By adding your parents – who’ve likely been driving far longer than you have – to your policy, you’re reducing your time spent at the wheel, lowering the perceived risk by your insurance provider.

If you’re 17 or 18, insurance providers see you as higher risk because you don’t have much driving experience. However, never add a parent as the main driver if this isn’t the case. This is known as car insurance fronting and it’s illegal.

Do driving courses reduce the cost of insurance for 17-year-olds?

Some car insurance providers will offer you a discount if you have a qualification such as Pass Plus, or one of the other forms of advanced driving courses. Learning to be a safer driver is its own reward, but it’s worth checking with your provider first to see if completing the course could also lower your premiums.

The main reason car insurance for 17-year-olds is so expensive is because you’re seen as much more likely to be in an accident and make a claim. Passing an advanced driving course proves you’re a safer driver.

Is it cheaper to spread the cost of car insurance?

No, if you can afford to pay annually in one lump sum, you’ll normally find you save money on your car insurance.

There are pros and cons to either paying your car insurance annually or monthly. Monthly payments spread the cost of your car insurance, which can be useful, but you’ll usually end up paying more overall as the insurance provider will charge interest.

Page last reviewed on 11 JULY 2024
by Julie Daniels