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Our comparison service is quick and easy to use: just enter your details and see if you could find a cheaper car insurance deal for your new vehicle or beat your current insurance provider’s renewal quote.

CORONAVIRUS UPDATE

We understand that due to current travel restrictions, you’re probably spending less time on the road. As a result of this, the Government has announced a series of changes to the way things like MOTs, driving tests and other arrangements will be handled. You may also find there could be changes to your car insurance and breakdown cover.

To help put your mind at ease, we’ve put together the latest information to give you the advice and guidance you’ll need during these confusing times.

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How can I get cheap car insurance?

One of the easiest ways to find cheap car insurance is to compare quotes with us. We’ll show you great deals from a variety of the UK’s most trusted insurance providers. You can compare policies based on price, cover level, or annual or monthly payment.

But there are plenty of things you could do to help you save money:

  1. Choose your car wisely. See the cheapest cars to insure.
  2. Increase your voluntary excess. Find out more about car insurance excess.
  3. Limit your mileage. Read about the effects of annual mileage on car insurance.
  4. Build up a no claims discount. Read no claims discount explained.
  5. Consider a telematics policy – also known as black box insurance.

For more ideas, check out our top tips for cheap car insurance.

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What type of car insurance do I need?

The type of insurance you need depends on the level of cover you want. There are three levels of cover.

Third party only covers you for injury or damage you cause to other people.

This is the minimum level of cover you need to legally drive on UK roads. Third party insurance only covers the cost of compensating other people for injury or damage you cause. It doesn’t provide you with any financial help for injury or repairs to your vehicle.

Find out more about third party only insurance.

Third party, fire and theft provides cover if your car is stolen or damaged by fire.

Covers the cost of damage or injury to third parties, but could also compensate you if your car is damaged due to fire or theft, or if it’s stolen. It won’t cover you for the costs of damage to your own car in an accident.

Get more detail about third party, fire and theft insurance.

Fully comprehensive insurance offers drivers the most complete cover.

Includes all the cover of a third party fire and theft policy, but could also protect you as a driver and may pay out for damage to your car. It could also include compensation for medical treatment, legal expenses and accidental damage.

See more on what’s included in comprehensive car insurance.

It’s worth knowing that comprehensive insurance isn’t always the most expensive type of car insurance, even though it offers the most cover.

Depending on your circumstances, you might want to look into:

Frequently asked questions

What has changed in light of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic?

The situation continues to develop and is likely to continue that way for the foreseeable future. Some of these changes may affect your car insurance. The most recent government advice is to stay in your home unless you have an essential reason to go outside. If you do need to drive at this time, you will still need insurance.

Why do you need car insurance?

You need car insurance as it can provide you with cover if you’re involved in a car accident. It’s also a legal requirement if you own or drive a car, unless you declare the vehicle off-road (SORN) and keep it on private property.

If you’re caught without car insurance, you could be fined a minimum of £300 and given six penalty points. If you end up in court, you might be given an unlimited fine and disqualified from driving.

Why is car insurance for new drivers more expensive?

If you’re new to driving, you’ll find your insurance is more expensive than for people with more driving experience. The reason for this is that new drivers are considered more of a risk by insurance providers. This is partly because of inexperience, but mainly because most new drivers are young drivers – and a quarter of young drivers will be involved in an accident in the first two years of being on the road.

There are ways you can reduce the cost of your insurance – telematics policies can be cheaper, for example.

What does car insurance cover?

If your car is involved in an accident, car insurance could provide cover for:

  • injuries to you or other people
  • damage to your car
  • damage to another vehicle
  • property damage
  • car insurance could also cover you if your car is damaged by fire, attempted theft or if it’s stolen.

Not all car insurance policies offer the same cover, so always read the small print and make sure you’re happy with any exclusions or limitations.

Is it better to pay car insurance annually or monthly?

Whether it’s better to pay for your premium annually or each month will depend on your circumstances.

Paying an annual lump sum is usually cheaper than paying monthly. A monthly payment plan could mean you pay more as you might be charged interest on the instalments.

Do I need a credit check to buy car insurance?

The insurance provider will carry out a credit check if you want to pay for your car insurance monthly. Providers will also look at your credit score (a 'soft search') when you compare insurance quotes, but this is just to check your details and won’t affect your score.

See more on car insurance and credit checks

How do I estimate my mileage?

You can estimate your mileage by working out how many miles you drive every day or week, then adding them up to work out your annual use. Alternatively, check your MOT certificate or car service record, which will show how many miles you’ve driven. You can use this as a basis to calculate your future mileage.

The number of miles you drive per year can affect your car insurance premium. This is because the more you drive, the more of a risk the provider considers you to be. It’s important to be as accurate as you can when you estimate your mileage for your car insurance. If you guess and underestimate your mileage, it could invalidate your policy. If you overestimate you could end up paying more than you need to.

See more on annual mileage and car insurance

How do I work out my car’s value?

When you compare car insurance with us and enter your registration number, where possible we’ll give you a valuation figure based on the car’s market value at the time – the amount you’d receive if your car was written off. Alternatively, you can use a free online tool to find out your car’s current value or look at used-car listings to see the prices of similar models of a similar age, condition and mileage.

See more on how car values affect premiums

What affects the price of car insurance?

Factors that impact car insurance include:

How long is my quote valid for?

It depends on the insurance provider. When you compare with us, you can save your searches, but you won’t necessarily get the price that you saved when you come back to buy your policy. Some insurance quotes last as long as 60 days, but some can change at any point.

Will I be charged if I cancel my policy?

If you cancel within the 14-day cooling-off period, you might have to pay an admin fee but you’ll get a refund minus the days the policy was active for. If you cancel later on, you may have to pay cancellation fees and admin fees. You may or may not get a refund, depending on the circumstances and whether you pay for your policy annually or monthly.

Find out everything you need to know about cancelling car insurance

How do I claim on my car insurance?

You don’t have to make a claim if you have an accident, or for something else covered by your policy, but you must always let your insurance provider know if you’ve had an accident - whether you claim or not. If you don’t tell them, you could invalidate your policy.

If you decide to make a claim:

  1. Check your policyholder documents for details of how to claim and any time limits on claims.
  2. Contact your insurance provider directly. They may have a dedicated claims line. You’ll probably be asked to complete a claims form.
  3. Get a crime reference number from the police if your car has been stolen or vandalised. Your policy may need you to do this within a set timeframe. You’ll need to give this to your insurance provider.
  4. Gather the information you need to give your insurance provider.
  • If you’ve been involved in an accident, this includes the details of the other driver(s) and any witnesses, including the driver’s insurance details and registration number. You’ll need to get all these details at the scene.
  • If your car has been vandalised, photos may be useful.

Find out more about the claim process

When might a claim be rejected?

There’s a few reasons why an insurance provider might not pay out. It might be that:

  • the policyholder isn’t covered for what they’re trying to claim for
  • there’s a dispute about who’s at fault in an accident
  • the provider might believe you’ve invalidated your car insurance – perhaps by giving inaccurate information or not telling them about something they should know.

If your claim is turned down and you don’t think it’s justified,  you can take action. Find out what to do if your car insurance provider won’t pay out.

I had to make a claim last year. Will my insurance go up?

It’s almost certain that it will – in fact, your premium may go up even if you have an accident and don’t make a claim, because the insurance provider might consider there’s more of a risk of you being in another accident. If you’ve protected your no claims discount that shouldn’t be affected, but your basic premium is still likely to go up.

See more on how an accident can affect your car insurance premium.

What does car insurance excess mean?

The excess is the amount the policyholder has to pay towards a claim on their insurance. There are two elements to car insurance excess:

  • Compulsory excess – this is set by the insurance provider. You might have to pay an additional compulsory excess if you drive a high-performance car or if you’re a young driver.
  • Voluntary excess – this is the amount you agree to pay in addition to the compulsory excess. Agreeing a bigger voluntary excess can reduce the cost of your insurance, but you’ll need to make sure you can afford to pay it if you make a claim.

See more on car insurance excess

How does telematics work?

Telematics or ‘black box’ insurance uses technology to monitor the way you drive and transmits the data to your insurance provider. If you drive safely, it could lead to cheaper car insurance. Telematics works either through a GPS device – the black box – fitted in your car or a smartphone app. These record things like how you corner, brake, your speed and the time of day and how far you drive.

Black box insurance can be particularly useful for young and inexperienced drivers. It can give insurance providers evidence that you’re a safe driver and could reduce your premiums.

Find out about telematics insurance.

Can my parents help me get cheaper car insurance?

If you share your car with one of your parents, having them on your policy as a ‘named’ or additional driver could reduce your premium. But they mustn’t be on the policy as the main driver if they’re not. This is a type of fraud called fronting and is illegal.

What is a no claims bonus?

A no claims bonus – also called a no claims discount or NCD – builds up every year you have car insurance without making a claim. You can accrue up to five years and sometimes more, depending on the insurance provider. Your NCD can cut the cost of your car insurance when you renew. You can also opt to protect it so that it’s not affected if you do make a claim.

What details do I need to get a quick insurance quote?

To get a car insurance quote, you’ll need to tell us about:

  • Your car – either your registration number or the car’s make, model and age. You’ll definitely need the registration number to buy a policy.
  • How you use your car – for pleasure and commuting, or for business purposes too. We’ll also need to know how many miles a year you drive and where you keep your car at night.
  • No claims discount (NCD) – how many years you have (you’ll need proof from your current insurance provider if you’re switching to a different one).
  • Your driving history – any accidents, insurance claims and driving convictions from the past five years. Be honest, or you could invalidate your car insurance policy.
  • Additional drivers – details of any additional drivers you want to add to the policy.
  • Personal details – you'll also need to provide a few details about yourself – unless you’ve compared with us before, then we’ll do that for you. This will include your name, how old you are, where you live and the type of job you do.
  • Your driving licence number – if you can provide this, it might reduce your price with some insurance providers.
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Upgrades and additional cover

Get covered for everything from a broken windscreen to legal expenses.

  • Breakdown cover: If your car breaks down in the middle of nowhere, breakdown cover can help you carry on with your journey. You can add it to your car insurance policy or buy it separately.
  • Personal accident cover: If you or your partner are killed or seriously injured in a car accident, personal accident cover can provide compensation. It usually comes with comprehensive insurance, but if you don’t have personal accident cover you can buy it separately or add it to your policy.
  • Motor legal protection: If you’re injured in an accident and need to take legal action against another driver, someone takes action against you or you’re involved in a dispute related to a car, motor legal protection can help cover your legal expenses. You can add it as an extra to your policy.
  • Lost keys cover: not only is losing your car keys annoying, it can also be very expensive. If your keys are lost or stolen, lost keys cover can cover the costs of replacing and reprogramming them. When we show you a list of quotes to compare, just click ‘more details’ on each policy to see if key cover is included as standard or whether you need to add it as an extra.
  • No claims discount protection: Your no claims discount can cut the cost of your premium significantly, so you won’t want to lose it if you have to make a claim. Protect it by adding this cover to your insurance.
  • Windscreen cover: Repairing or replacing car windscreens can be expensive, so if this cover isn’t included in your policy you may want to add it on. When we show you a list of quotes to compare, simply click the ‘more details’ button next to each policy to see if windscreen cover is included or whether you need to add it on.

Cover types

  • Telematics insurance: Younger drivers in particular may benefit from black box insurance. Your premium is based on data from a telematics device installed in your car.
  • New drivers cover: Insurance for first-time drivers can be expensive. Compare and find the right deal for you.
  • Over 50s insurance: More experienced drivers enjoy lower premiums. Find out how to cut costs even more.
  • European driving insurance: Relax and enjoy your trip knowing you have the right cover for driving in Europe.
  • Classic car insurance: If your car was manufactured from 1970 onwards, we can help you find the right cover for you.
  • Learner driver insurance: Don’t pay more than you need to – get tips on how to cut the costs of your premium.

Daniel Hutson

From the Motor team

What our expert says...

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Car insurance group checker

There are 50 car insurance groups. Your car is in one of them and, in general, the higher the group, the higher your car insurance premium is likely to be.

If you’re curious about what group your car’s in or you want to check the group before you buy a new car, then our car insurance group checker is here to help. Just input a few details about your car – such as its make, model and year – and we can tell you what group it’s in.

 

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