Start by choosing the right car
Getting off to the right start is important, and choosing the right car for your needs is essential. The good news is that there is plenty of choice; stylish, practical, reliable and fun to drive cars that also make perfect sense for your wallet. You may only hold a provisional licence, but it's wise to think ahead. Choose one that’s perfect to learn to drive in (offering great visibility, feather-light clutches and effortless manoeuvrability) and the same car can also be your first run-around when you pass your test and receive your full licence.
Listed below are a selection of new cars that offer a high level of safety features, including autonomous emergency braking (AEB) plus cost-saving fuel economy, low CO2 emissions (resulting in lower road tax) and cheaper insurance too. All these new cars boast impressive 5 Star Euro NCAP ratings (for crash safety) as standard.
- Ford Fiesta
- Nissan Micra
- Volkswagen Polo
- Ford Puma
- Renault Clio
- Toyota Yaris
Understanding insurance group ratings will also help you to appreciate how your premium is calculated. This may help to keep your costs low in the future.
What level of insurance could you get as a learner driver?
Deciding which level of cover you need to learn to drive can be tricky. After all, there are other perfectly acceptable options such as Third party, or Third party fire and theft that may well be economical in the short term and may suit your personal circumstances.
For the long term, however, try to take out the best level of cover that suits your needs. This is one of the reasons that we only offer comprehensive insurance for young drivers – it’s the most complete way to insure a car and its occupants. Should an accident occur while learning to drive, you'll be covered.
What type of insurance could you get?
It's always good to learn great habits that will keep you safe on the road, avoiding accidents that could lead to expensive insurance claims. With this in mind, if you’re a young driver we’d recommend black box insurance.
Purpose-built for provisional licence holders and young drivers aged 17-24 black box insurance (otherwise known as telematics insurance) works by fitting a smart device into your car. Similar to the technology found in your mobile phone, the smart device is equipped with a motion sensor and GPS system that monitors the way you drive. It looks at three main parameters:
By logging into your online dashboard and app, you can check your driving score every week and receive tips and feedback that will not only help to lower how much you pay when you come to renew (subject to you driving safely, of course) but you'll also earn bonus rewards on a pre-paid card to spend at your favourite outlets.
With SMART WHEELS young driver insurance you can:
Get feedback and tips
Use the online dashboard and app to check your driving score regularly. The feedback can help you improve your score and earn you safe driving rewards.
Earn cashback rewards
Not only does black box insurance reward good habits, earning you bonus rewards on a pre-paid card, it may also encourage you to transfer the lessons you learned as a provisional licence holder to your new world of driving when you pass your test.
Insurance if you’re learning in someone else’s car
If you’re learning to drive in someone else’s vehicle, such as your parent’s car then it’s a simple task to be added to their insurance policy as a named driver (find out how to drive someone else's car legally). Should you have an accident, this will affect their No Claim Bonus, and could result in them paying more for their insurance when they renew their policy. So while this method is completely acceptable, it may not suit your needs in the long term.
Learning to drive in your own car
If you’re learning to drive in your own car, consider buying full comprehensive cover. Should you be involved in an accident, regardless of whose fault it is, you can replace or repair your vehicle and carry on with your driving lessons.
Third party, fire and theft may appear a more economical option in the short term, but if you have an accident that was your fault, under third party, fire and theft you're covered for damage to the other person’s car, and not your own. Over the long term, being ‘fully comp’ may well offer greater benefits. So, make sure you know all the facts before you choose which type of insurance to buy.
To reduce your car insurance costs
- Don't add modifications to your car
- Set as high an excess as you’re able to afford
- If you’re aged 17-24 consider black box insurance
- Do less annual mileage and look at your usage
Getting an insurance quote is easy. You’ll need details about your car (including make, model and if possible the car’s registration number) and some details about you and your driving history. That’s it. You're all set.