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New driver insurance

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[1] Correct as of March 2024.

Do new drivers need car insurance?

Yes, new drivers need insurance. Everyone driving a car on a UK public road is legally required to have car insurance. If you’re caught driving without insurance, you’ll be in serious trouble with the police.

New driver insurance isn’t a separate type of policy, but it’s cover for those who have recently passed their driving test. Because they lack experience on the road, new drivers are perceived higher risk by insurance providers. This means their insurance can be more expensive. That’s why it’s important you compare quotes to find cheap insurance for new drivers.

What type of new driver insurance do I need?

If you’re looking for new driver car insurance, there are three options to consider:

  • Third party - this is the minimum level of insurance needed to legally drive on public roads. It covers the cost of compensating others for any damage or injury you cause to them or their vehicle. It doesn’t cover the cost of any damage to your own car.
  • Third party, fire and theft - this covers the cost of damage or injury to third parties, as well as your car being stolen or damaged by fire.
  • Comprehensive - this includes third party, fire and theft, plus any other damage to you or your own vehicle. Even though it’s the highest level of cover, it’s not always the most expensive. That’s because it’s more widely offered and tends to be taken out by the safest drivers.

How much is car insurance for new drivers?

How much you pay for your car insurance will depend on a number of factors, including where you live and what kind of car you drive. Usually, insurance for new drivers is more expensive than for experienced drivers.

According to our data, drivers under 25 pay up to £2,116 a year for their car insurance[2]. This compares with up to £924 for drivers across all age groups[3].

How much is car insurance for a new driver per month?

If you were to break down the cost of new driver insurance per month, our data reveals that drivers under 25 pay up to £171 per month for their car insurance [4].

It may seem unfair that first time drivers have to pay so much more, but insurance providers consider inexperienced drivers a bigger risk.

[2] 51% of young drivers between 17-24 years old could achieve a quote of up to £2115.69 for their car insurance based on Compare the Market data in March 2024.

[3] 51% of our customers were quoted less than £923.46 for their comprehensive car insurance in March 2024.

[4] 51% of our young drivers between 17-24 years old were quoted less than £176.31 per month in March 2024 for their comprehensive car insurance based on the monthly cost when paying for the policy in one annual payment, excluding any interest charged on instalment payments.

Why is car insurance so expensive for new drivers?

Insurance quotes for new drivers can be more expensive partly because they lack experience, but also because they tend to be young drivers – between the ages of 17 and 24. 

Insurance providers consider young drivers more of a risk. This is borne out by statistics: government figures show that in 2021, a fifth of those killed or seriously injured in car accidents were in collisions involving a young driver.

Another thing that could bump up your premiums is the fact that, because this is your first policy, you haven’t had chance to build your no claims bonus.

For every year you drive without making a claim, you’ll receive a discount on your car insurance. Although you don’t yet qualify for this, there are other ways you can save on your first-time car insurance.

How to get cheap car insurance for new drivers

There are a few things you can do to try and find cheap insurance for new drivers:

  • Compare quotes – compare new driver car insurance quotes from different insurance providers to search for a cheaper deal.
  • Buy a smaller car – your insurance will be cheaper if you choose a standard car with a smaller engine.
  • Consider a black box policy – a plug-in device, app, or small black box tracks your speed, acceleration, braking, and location. Your insurance provider then adjusts your premiums depending on how you drive. Safer drivers could get a cheaper premium.
  • Share a car with a parent – adding a more experienced driver as a named driver could save you money. Just make sure you avoid fronting.
  • Avoid modifications – don’t add unnecessary modifications, such as alloy wheels or spoilers, to your car. Even the smallest mods can bump up your premium.
  • Increase your security – if you fit an immobiliser or alarm, your insurance provider may give you cheaper cover as your car’s less likely to be stolen.
  • Reduce your annual mileage – if you spend less time on the road, your insurance provider will see you as less of a risk and may offer you a cheaper premium.
  • Pay annually – if you can afford to pay for your car insurance up front, it’s usually cheaper than paying in monthly instalments.
  • Pay a higher excess – if you’re willing to pay more towards a claim, you’re likely to get a cheaper premium. But be sure you can afford the excess if you do need to make a claim.
  • Pass an advanced driving course – by proving you’re a safer driver with a Pass Plus or similar course, insurance providers may reward you with a cheaper premium.

Find our full 19 top tips for getting cheaper car insurance here.

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What do I need to get an insurance quote for a new driver?

To find your first car insurance policy, just fill in our online form and we’ll show you a list of quotes to choose from. We’ll need a few details about you and your car, including: 

  • Your registration
  • What you use your car for 
  • Where you keep your car 
  • Your annual mileage 
  • Where you live 
  • Your driving history 
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Why compare first-time driver insurance with Compare the Market?

We  independently compare  a wide range of the UK’s insurance providers, to provide new and  young drivers with competitive car insurance deals. 
 
We’ll show you policies based on price, cover level, add-ons and annual or monthly payment terms, helping you compare policies based on your needs. 

We compare prices for 170 car insurance products[1]

Get a quote in just 6 minutes[1]

51% of young drivers could achieve an annual premium of £2,116 [2]

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[1]
Correct as of March 2024.

 [2] 51% of young drivers between 17-24 years old could achieve a quote of up to £2115.69 for their car insurance based on Compare the Market data in March 2024.

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Author image Julie Daniels

What our expert says...

“The make and model of car you drive also has an impact on how much insurance you pay. Each car is assigned an insurance group from 1 to 50, with the cheapest cars to insure falling into the lowest groups. So, if you’re a new driver, it’s worth bearing this in mind when choosing your first car, to help keep your running costs down.”

- Julie Daniels, Motor insurance comparison expert

Frequently asked questions

What other first-time driver insurance options are there?

Here are some extras you can add to your new driver insurance.

  • Breakdown cover – provides roadside assistance if you break down.
  • Courtesy car cover – gives you a replacement vehicle if yours is being repaired
  • Personal accident cover – claim compensation if you or a passenger are hurt in an accident
  • Windscreen cover – covers repairing or replacing a damaged windscreen
  • Key cover – covers replacing your keys/fob if they’re lost, damaged or stolen
  • Legal protection – covers legal costs if someone makes a claim against you, or you’re accused of a motoring offence
  • Misfuelling cover – means you’re protected if you fill up with the wrong fuel.

Depending on the policy, some of these might already be included as standard

How long are you considered a new driver?

Different insurance providers have different views on this. However, a new driver is essentially someone who’s just passed their driving test and has no driving history.

You aren’t classed as a new driver based on your age. For example, you could be looking for cheap car insurance for new drivers over 30.

Once you start building a no-claims bonus, you should start to see your car insurance get cheaper.

What is the best insurance group for young drivers?

If you’re looking for the cheapest, the best insurance group for young drivers is group one.

Cars in insurance group one are generally quoted the cheapest insurance premiums. Cars in group 50 are among the most expensive. However, your premium will still depend on various factors, like your age, claims history etc.

Use our car insurance group checker to find out which group your car belongs.

Do driving courses reduce the cost of insurance for new drivers?

Doing advanced driving courses that you can take after passing your test - for example Pass Plus or IAM RoadSmart – may get you a discount on your insurance. This is because these courses aim to make you a safer driver and passing them is proof of that.

However, a discount on your premium isn’t guaranteed. Each car insurance provider will have their own view.

Can new drivers go on their parents’ insurance?

Yes. If you’re a new driver and can’t afford your own car or insurance, your parents can add you to their policy as a named driver. That means you’re covered to drive their car, with the same protection they have. However, this is likely to increase the cost of their policy.

What’s fronting?

Car insurance fronting is when an experienced driver (often a parent) tries to cut the cost of their child’s insurance by claiming to be a car’s main driver – even though it’s their child doing most of the driving.

If you’re found guilty of fronting, you could face a substantial fine and six points on your licence.

Page last reviewed on 11 APRIL 2024
by Alex Hasty