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Compare car insurance quotes in the UK 2024

Want cheap car insurance? Compare quotes from over 160 providers
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By comparing car insurance quotes, we can help you not only find the right level of cover, but potentially save you some money as well. All you need to do is click ‘get a quote’ and provide a few details, including your registration number, annual mileage and usage.

By avoiding auto-renewal and comparing car insurance quotes, you can potentially find yourself cheaper cover. You should also build up your no-claims bonus and consider specific policies that might suit your driving profile, such as telematics or low-mileage insurance.

There are a range of data points that affect the cost of your cover, including personal details such as your age, address and driving history; information about your vehicle, such as its car insurance group; and external factors, like the cost of paint and the price of second-hand cars.

At a time when cover is almost 30 per cent more expensive than last year, getting a cheap car insurance quote – or, at the very least, the best deal for your profile – is an absolute necessity. 

Fortunately, we can help you do just that. By comparing car insurance quotes, you can see how more than 160 car insurance providers stack up against one another, and find the right cover for your needs.

If you’re not ready to get a quote just yet, however, read our extensive guide below for more help. We’ll let you know what to look for when comparing car insurance, how you can make your premium cheaper, and what exactly drives the cost of your cover.

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It doesn’t take long to compare car insurance quotes – and it’s even quicker if you make sure you have everything you need ahead of time:
 

1. Find the details of your car: at the very least you’ll need to have your registration number (ie, your number plate). It’s a good idea to have the make and model, its age, and a list of any modifications you’ve made. You’ll also need your personal details, and those of any named drivers, including medical conditions.

 

2. Collate your driving history and car usage: this not only includes your driving licence number, but things like how long you’ve had it and what type of licence it is. You’ll also need information about your car usage, such as how many miles you drive in a year, and where you park at night.

 

3. Compare car insurance: once you have put in the relevant information, you can compare car insurance premiums. Make sure to not only consider price, but the level of cover you need, and any additional extras you may want to add on.

Why compare car insurance with us?

With Independent Advisor, you can get a car insurance quote from a source you can trust.

Save money

By comparing car insurance, you can potentially find a better renewal quote than the one given to you by your existing provider. 

Tailored quotes in minutes

It only takes a few minutes to get a tailored car insurance quote once you start putting in your details. 

Compare quotes with confidence

Our guides equip you with everything you need to know about comparing car insurance, so that by the time you pick your provider, you’ll have full confidence that you’re making the right decision.

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What type of car insurance do I need?

There are three levels of car insurance in the UK: 

The following table shows what each covers:

Third party Third party, fire and theft Fully comprehensive
Injuries to other people
Damage to other people’s cars
Damage to other people’s property
Theft
Your car being damaged/destroyed by fire
Vandalism
Repairing damage to your car
Your medical expenses
Damage due to flooding

In theory, a third party policy should be the cheapest car insurance as it only offers the minimum level of cover, but in reality, fully comprehensive cover is often the best value for money, while also offering the most cover.

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Expert Advice – James Daley, Managing Director of Fairer Finance

“It’s also important to pay attention to the fees and excesses associated with the policies, as these are both creeping up. You never know when your circumstances are going to change, but many policies will charge you upwards of £50 for making a change or cancelling your policy.”

How much does car insurance cost?

According to the most recent data from the Association of British Insurers (ABI), the average premium for private comprehensive motor insurance stood at £561 in Q3 2023, up 29 per cent year-on-year and up from £511 in Q2. That’s the highest figure since the ABI started collecting these averages back in 2012.  

However, the cost of car insurance can vary considerably based on your specific circumstances; young drivers tend to pay much more than older drivers, for example, due to their lack of driving experience. So any average figures should be taken with a pinch of salt.

How much money can I save when I compare car insurance quotes?

There are about 200 car insurance companies in the UK, each offering a range of policies. Therefore it’s important to shop around, not only to get the right cover for your needs, but to do so at the best price available. 

How much you can save will depend on your driving profile and how much you are quoted by your existing provider in the first place.

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With the latest ABI data showing a 29 per cent jump in the average car insurance premium year-on-year, you might be wondering why the price of car insurance has become so expensive

 

The main problem is inflation, and the related rise in energy costs, pushing prices up for insurers.

 

For example, the price of paint has risen 16 per cent in the past 12 months, the cost of spare parts is up 11 per cent and labour costs have jumped 15 per cent. Costs related to energy, meanwhile, have surged 46 per cent.

 

All of this pushes up the price a provider pays when you make a car insurance claim. So much so that providers handed out a record £2.54 billion in motor claims in Q3 2023. The provider then passes some of these costs onto customers, often regardless of your personal driving history.

 

On top of that, there’s also the insurance premium tax, which makes up 12 per cent of every premium. The ABI is currently lobbying for the tax – which now averages nearly £100 a year across car and home insurance policies – to be reduced to manage the jump in other costs.

 

Because of all this, now, more than ever, it is a good idea to use a price comparison website in order to find the cheapest car insurance you are eligible for.

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Expert Advice – James Daley, Managing Director of Fairer Finance

“Although the price hikes are the final straw for many households – who have been struggling with the cost of living crisis for well over a year – it’s hard to accuse the insurance industry of profiteering. Most of them are struggling to break even – and many large insurers have pulled out of the UK car insurance market altogether because they couldn’t make any money.”

What affects the cost of my car insurance quote?

Car value: One of the factors used to calculate your car insurance premium is the value of your car, as this will inform how expensive it is to repair in the event of a claim.

Car type: All cars fall into an insurance group from one to 50 – the more powerful and luxurious your car, the higher the group it will be in and the more you’ll pay. 

Excess: The ‘excess’ on a car insurance policy is the amount the policyholder pays in the event of a claim – then the insurer pays the rest. For example, if you make a claim for £1,000 worth of damage and the excess on your policy is £250, the insurer will pay £750.

There are two elements to car insurance excess: the compulsory excess set by the insurer, and the voluntary excess you choose to pay. A higher excess will reduce the cost of your premium; however, always make sure you can afford to pay your excess in the event of a claim.

(Independent Advisor)

Mileage: You’ll need to state your estimated annual mileage when you buy car insurance. This figure will be on your MOT certificate. Low mileage means fewer chances of an accident, and, in turn, lower premiums.

Multi-car discounts: Most car insurers offer discounts if you insure more than one vehicle with them. Don’t assume these policies will be cheaper though – compare car insurance quotes for multi-car policies with single car policies.

No-claims bonus: Building up a no-claims bonus will help to reduce your car insurance premium. If you decide to switch providers, this can often be carried across to a new policy. 

Address: Where you live will also affect your car insurance premium – if you live in a high crime area, you’ll pay more. 

Parking: Where you park your car during the day/night matters too. You’ll attract lower premiums if you can keep your car in a garage or in a private car park, than if you leave it parked on a public road.

Relationship: While it’s illegal for providers to offer cheaper car insurance premiums based solely on gender, it’s still acceptable for insurers to base premiums on marital status – with those married or cohabiting seen as lower risk than single people.

Age: Depending on how you drive, insurance premiums generally fall with age. Young drivers pay more due to their lack of driving experience and because, statistically, they are more likely to have an accident.

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Under-25s have seen their premiums jump by nearly 67 per cent for the 12 months to August 2023, compared to a rise of 56 per cent for the over-50s. (Source: Consumer Intelligence)

How can I get a cheap car insurance quote?

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Parents can lower a child’s premium by becoming a named driver on their insurance (Adobe)

While the price of car insurance may be rising, there are some ways you can try and get the best car insurance deals available:

Pay up front: If you can afford it, it’s best to pay your premium up front each year. Your insurer may offer the option to pay monthly, but this will cost extra as, in effect, you are borrowing money for the whole premium and paying it back with interest. 

Don’t leave buying car insurance until the last minute: Your current insurer will send you a renewal quote about a month before your policy is due to end, but the best day to buy car insurance is 15 to 29 days before your renewal is due. The closer you get to your renewal date, the more your premium will cost.

Don’t ‘auto-renew’: Don’t immediately accept the auto-renewal quote from your existing provider. Instead, shop around for cover or call to negotiate a cheaper price with your current insurer.

Build your no claims bonus: Every year you don’t make a car insurance claim, you will be building up a no claims bonus that can reduce the price of your premium. Over time, this discount could range anywhere from 30 to 60 per cent.

Pay for repairs if you can: If you cause minor damage (for instance, dent a wing or damage your bumper), pay for repairs yourself. There’s little point making a claim where the value is less than the excess on your policy and you can keep your no claims bonus intact.

Add an older driver: Young drivers can reduce their car insurance premiums by adding an older driver (for example, a parent) as a named driver. But it’s important to be honest about who the ‘main driver’ is – lying to get cheaper premiums is known as ‘fronting’ and is illegal.

Be selective with your optional extras: Make sure you only purchase the optional extras you really need. Otherwise you may end up over-insuring yourself, and paying for policies you won’t use.

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In 2022, nearly 34 per cent of stand-alone breakdown cover policies had a claim made on them, compared to just 12 per cent of add-on policies. (Source: Financial Conduct Authority)

Make the right modifications: Insurers don’t like modifications, such as go-faster stripes and tinted windows – these changes to your car will mean higher premiums – but installing security devices, such as an immobiliser, tracker or dashcam, can reduce your premium.

Consider ‘black box insurance’: With a telematics car insurance policy, your insurer will fit a black box or telematics device in your car that will monitor your driving habits and feed this information back to your insurer. Drive well and you’ll get cheaper cover.

Shop around, and use the right browser extensions: Price comparison websites often offer vouchers or free gifts when you buy car insurance and these deals change all the time. You may also be able to get cashback on top by using TopCashback or Quidco, or a discount from your home insurer.

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What optional extras can I add on to my car insurance policy?

If you feel like you need a bit of extra cover outside of what is offered by your policy, you can look into an insurer’s optional extras.

Optional extras Description
Breakdown cover Provides you with roadside assistance if your car breaks down. Levels of cover will vary between insurers and can include anything from vehicle recovery to onward travel cover.
Car keys cover This covers the costs of replacing and reprogramming lost or stolen car keys.
Courtesy car Courtesy car insurance will see your insurer provide you with a car to drive if your car is being repaired following an accident.
Driving abroad Provides cover for driving your car in countries outside of the UK.
Electric car insurance Some insurers sell specialist electric car insurance. These policies cover things like damage to the car’s battery and cover for portable charging cables.
Legal expenses Offers financial protection against legal fees if you’re involved in an accident that’s not your fault. This may include personal injury, excess recovery and loss of earnings.
Misfuelling cover This covers the cost of draining and cleaning your tank, or the cost of repairs, if you put the wrong fuel in your car.
No-claims discount protection An optional cover which protects your no-claims discount (NCD) from one (or more) ‘at fault’ claim each year.
Personal belongings Provides cover for lost, stolen or damaged personal belongings left in the car.
Windscreen cover Covers damages to your car’s windscreen, including repairing chips and cracks as well as full replacements.
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Expert Advice – James Daley, Managing Director of Fairer Finance

“If things like key cover and windscreen cover are not included in your policy, they could be worth adding on, depending on what kind of car you’ve got. The cost of replacing some car keys can be well over £500. If you know you can’t survive without a car, then you may want to get a policy that offers a courtesy car no matter what has happened to your car. Personally, I don’t think motor legal expenses insurance offers a lot of value – so that’s probably one you can skip.”

Specialist car insurance policies

Although car insurance tends to be split into third party, third party, fire and theft, and fully comprehensive, there are a number of other specialist policies you may need to take out at one time or another. These can include:

  • Learner driver insurance: If you’re learning to drive, you can take out specialist learner driver cover to allow you to practise in someone else’s vehicle
  • Telematics insurance: By having an electronic device installed in your car through a black box or telematics insurance policy, you can save yourself money in the long run by proving you’re a safe, trustworthy driver
  • Temporary car insurance: If you need to drive someone’s car for a short amount of time, you can take out temporary car insurance rather than unnecessarily apply for a full, 12-month policy
  • Classic car insurance: Although the age of a classic car can vary from insurer to insurer, there are benefits to taking out a specialist classic car insurance policy for your vintage vehicle
  • Business car insurance: If you use your car for business purposes, such as driving around to various places to work or meet clients, you will need to get business car insurance to be properly covered. This comes in three categories: Class 1, 2 and 3
  • Low-mileage car insurance: If you drive under the average UK annual mileage, say if you’re retired or have started working from home, you could get cheaper car insurance by taking out a low-mileage policy
  • Named driver insurance: As the main driver, you could make your car insurance cheaper by adding a more experienced named driver to your policy. Alternatively, becoming a named driver may save you money if you don’t drive very often, and only semi-frequently need to use a loved one’s car

Our car insurance reviews

To help you make a decision when comparing car insurance quotes, we’ve reviewed some of the UK’s biggest providers. We dig into what they offer, how they compare to their competitors, and what customers think of their customer service.

In the table below you’ll find a link to each review, as well as the Trustpilot score for each provider, and the Defaqto and Fairer Finance star ratings for their standard or mid-tier comprehensive policies (or main policy option where applicable).

Provider Trustpilot score Defaqto scores Fairer Finance scores
1st Central car insurance review 4.4 stars 1st Central: ★★★★★ 1st Central: ★★★★
AA car insurance review 4.3 stars Comprehensive: ★★★★★

Comprehensive: ★★★★

Admiral car insurance review 4.4 stars Admiral: ★★★★★ Admiral: ★★★
Aviva car insurance review 4.0 stars Comprehensive: ★★★★★ Comprehensive: ★★★★
Axa car insurance review 4.3 stars Car insurance: ★★★ Car insurance: ★★
Carole Nash car insurance review 4.3 stars Car insurance: ★★★ Car insurance: ★★★
Churchill car insurance review 4.1 stars Comprehensive: ★★★★★ Comprehensive: ★★★★
Direct Line car insurance review 3.7 stars Comprehensive: ★★★★★ Comprehensive: ★★★★
Flow car insurance review 4.6 stars Flow Annual car insurance: ★★★★★ Flow Annual car insurance: ★★★★
Hastings Direct car insurance review 4.1 stars Direct: ★★★★★ Direct: ★★★
LV car insurance review 4.5 stars Comprehensive: ★★★★★ Comprehensive: ★★★
Marmalade car insurance review 4.3 stars Black Box Insurance: ★★★★★ (★★★ as a telematics policy) Black Box Insurance: ★★★★
People’s Choice car insurance review 1.4 stars Comprehensive: ★★★★★ Comprehensive: ★★★
RAC car insurance review 3.9 stars Standard car insurance: ★★★ Standard car insurance: ★★
Tesco Bank car insurance review 4.2 stars Silver: ★★★★★ Silver: ★★★
Yoga car insurance review 4.5 stars Comprehensive: ★★★★★ Comprehensive: ★★★★

Frequently asked questions about car insurance: UK topics

All car insurance is registered on the Motor Insurance Database (MID). You can check if your car is insured by visiting askMID.com. You’ll need to confirm the car is registered, owned, or insured by yourself or your employer, or if you are a broker working for a client. You need some kind of car insurance, unless you officially register your car as off the road with a Statutory Off Road Notification (SORN).

If you’re involved in an accident and want to check if the other vehicle is insured, enter its details in the askMID enquiry service. It costs £10 per search. If you are in an accident caused by an uninsured driver or you are a victim of a ‘hit and run’ and can’t identify the car or driver, you will be able to claim compensation from the Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB).

Cheap car insurance may offer low levels of cover and may also come with a high excess. Check what you’re getting before opting for a cheap policy.

By using comparing quotes, you can find the best car insurance for your needs. There’s a lot of choice, and the best insurer for one driver won’t necessarily be the cheapest option for someone else.

While the ABI has the average private comprehensive car insurance premium up 29 per cent year-on-year to £561, for certain age groups that increase can be much higher.

Data from Consumer Intelligence shows younger people – the demographic already paying the most for their car insurance – are feeling the pain when it comes to the increase in premiums. For example, under-25s have seen their premiums jump nearly 67 per cent on average in the last 12 months.

If you’re a new or younger driver, you are unfortunately going to face much higher premiums than older drivers with more experience. This is because, statistically, drivers aged 17 to 24 have a higher risk of making a claim, and that claim being more expensive.

For example, according to the ABI, although only 7 per cent of UK licence holders fall into that age bracket, 17 to 24 year olds are involved in 24 per cent of all fatal collisions.

emma lunn

Emma Lunn

Money Writer

Emma Lunn is a multi-award winning journalist who specialises in personal finance and consumer issues. 

With more than 18 years’ experience in personal finance, Emma has covered topics including mortgages, first-time buyers, leasehold, banking, debt, budgeting, broadband, energy, pensions and investments. 

Emma’s one of the most prolific freelance personal finance journalists with a back catalogue of work in newspapers such as The Guardian, The Independent, The Daily Telegraph, the Mail on Sunday, and the Mirror. 

As a freelancer she has also completed various in-house contracts at The Guardian, The Independent, Mortgage Solutions, Orange, and Moneywise. She also writes regularly for specialist magazines and websites such as Property Hub, Mortgage Strategy and YourMoney.com. 

She has a real passion for helping people learn about money – especially when many people are struggling to get by in today’s challenging economic climate – and prides herself on simplifying complex subjects.

Connor Campbell

Finance Writer

Connor Campbell is an experienced personal and business finance writer who has been producing online content for almost a decade. 

Connor is the personal finance expert for Independent Advisor, guiding readers through everything they need to know about car insurance and home insurance. From how much it costs to the best insurance providers in the UK, he’s here to help you find the right policy for your needs. 

In his capacity as writer and spokesperson at NerdWallet, Connor explored a number of topics close to his heart, such as the impact of our increasingly cashless society, and the hardships and heroics of British entrepreneurs. His commentary was featured in sites such as The Mirror, the Daily Express and Business Insider

At financial trading firm Spreadex, meanwhile, his market commentary was featured in outlets such as The Guardian, BBC, Reuters and the Evening Standard

Connor is a voracious reader with an MA in English, and is dedicated to making life’s financial decisions a little bit easier by doing away with jargon and needless complexity.

James Daley Fairer Finance square

James Daley

Managing Director at Fairer Finance

James Daley is a consumer campaigner and financial journalist with more than 20 years’ experience. Before launching Fairer Finance in 2014, he worked for consumer group Which?, where he campaigned for a better deal for banking and insurance customers in the wake of the financial crisis.

James is frequently interviewed on national television and radio, and has regularly appeared on shows such as Watchdog, Rip-off Britain, Dispatches and Moneybox.

Prior to this, James spent 10 years as a business and finance newspaper journalist, including time as The Independent’s personal finance editor and cycling columnist.

He’s also a member of the Chartered Insurance Institute’s professional standards committee, and a member of the Association of British Insurers’ Consumer Advisory Group.