If you're trying to find cheap car insurance it really does pay to shop around. Because while the cost of accident repairs and personal injury claims is pushing car insurance premiums up, competition for your premium keeps price rises in check.
However, some insurers may trim policy benefits to produce a 'cheap' premium. So make sure you compare like with like, and look closely at the policy benefits rather than price alone.
Policy benefits can offer peace of mind, so it's worth checking whether a policy provides a courtesy car while yours is being repaired, or offers the cover you need for driving in Europe. Help with the recovery of uninsured losses, which could include your out of pocket expenses following an accident, is another useful benefit to look out for. Once you've considered the benefits a policy offers, always check the compulsory excesses before accepting a quote.
While it pays to shop around for cheap car insurance, there are things you can do which could help reduce the cost of your current car insurance premium.
If you're looking for a reduction on your next car insurance premium, then the way you drive can help. Stay within the speed limit – a speeding ticket is likely to increase your premium. And if you reduce the annual mileage on your vehicle, perhaps by cutting back on journeys or using other forms of transport, you are likely to cut your premium as well.
Avoid parking your car on the street at night. Keeping it on a drive is preferable, but use the garage if you have one and lock it at night – the extra security could bring a discount on your premium.
Improving the security of your motor vehicle can also help reduce your car insurance premium. Insurance companies can tell you which security devices will bring a discount. Tracking devices and immobilisers are likely to attract the best discounts.
If you're a young or newly qualified driver, it's worth considering the Driving Standards Agency's Pass Plus initiative. The course helps you improve your driving experience in key areas like driving at night and on motorways, and could get you a discount on your car insurance.
If you're approaching retirement and looking forward to putting the daily commute behind you, there's more good news. Once you retire, tell your insurer about the reduction in your annual mileage, which could reduce your premium.
Or for parents with teenage children who are learning to drive, it's worth encouraging them to buy their own car and insure it themselves. This will help them gain their own no-claims discount and cheaper car insurance in the long run. But if you're thinking about getting your son or daughter insured as an additional driver of your car, then if they have an accident your no-claims bonus will be affected.
Finally, consider how much you'd be prepared to pay out if you have to make a claim. If you can afford to pay another £100 or £200 as a voluntary excess your annual premium costs may come down.
AA Car Insurance