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Young drivers can decrease insurance premiums

Under-25s have higher accident rates and more expensive accidents than other age groups – but that doesn’t have to make insurance too expensive for them

Statistics show that drivers under the age of 25 have both higher accident rates and more expensive accidents than other age groups.  No wonder, then, that their cost of car insurance is more expensive than for older people. But there are ways to address the issue.

“Insurance companies generally deem young people as high risk, owing to their lack of extensive driving experience, and therefore higher risk of accidents,” says Barend Smit, marketing director of MotorHappy, a supplier of motor management solutions and car insurance options. “However, there are ways that young people can decrease their premiums.” 

Some of the advice is common sense. For example, start thinking of car insurance even before you invest in a car, choosing a car with a smaller engine and a good safety rating. High-powered cars are considered more dangerous among younger drivers because they can achieve higher speeds. Features like passenger and backseat airbags and anti-lock brakes help to lower premiums. 

“Like anyone, young drivers should shop around to find the best cover for them, at the best price with the best terms,” says Smit. “Fully understand the policy before committing. For example, a higher excess might mean lower premiums, which can help in the short term. But if you are involved in an accident, can you afford to pay the excess amount? 

“This sounds obvious, but driving cautiously and within the speed limit will decrease your chance of an accident; this will in turn have a positive effect on premiums. The better your claims history is, the better your chances are of reducing premiums. Going on a defensive driving course can also help lower premiums, because the course gives you better driving skills.” 

If your car has small bumps and scratches, which you can afford to repair on your own, it might make more sense to do that than to claim through insurance. The more you claim, the higher your premium will become. 

Finally, ensuring your car’s safety is important for lower insurance payments. Keep the vehicle in a garage or somewhere safe at night if possible, and install a tracking device. Most insurance companies require such devices by default.

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