Car insurance is crucial for UK car drivers irrespective of age, gender, and driving proficiency. Insurance providers in the UK offer various types of car coverage to cover the drivers falling in different categories at reasonable cost. Before you buy the car insurance coverage, it is important to know everything about car coverage in UK to enjoy the appropriate cover at an affordable cost.
Why you need car insurance?
Car insurance is for the financial safety of the vehicle and the driver. As per the laws, every driver must have valid car coverage before they sit behind the wheel! Insurance offers cover against any damage or injury caused while driving the vehicle that is insured. The policy covers one or more drivers who are named in the policy.
How is the premium decided?
The premium you pay for the policy solely depends on the kind of cover you opt for! The comprehensive cover would be costly whereas third party only cover can be availed at very low premium. As per the motoring laws, third party only cover is the minimum cover one may have in order to drive a car in the UK. You can reduce the premium outgo by minimizing the cover, however this would increase your risk. Hence, if you want to save on premium, do it by selecting the appropriate coverage that offers discount due to various other reasons and not because of compromised coverage.
Who all are eligible?
Just as driving has rules, car insurance has its own rules too. Though the eligibility criteria may differ a bit from company to company, some common rules followed are mentioned here.
- Driver should be a permanent resident of the UK and must have a valid EU driving license. Minimum age to get the policy is 17 years.
- There should be not more than 3 disqualification, penalties, or convictions for the named drivers found in 5 years.
- The accident claims may not be more than 5 times in 3 years.
- The vehicle to be insured must be registered under the name of the driver, his/her spouse, or civil partner at the residential address.
Apart from the above rules, there are some rules about the make and use of the vehicle that the insurance providers may follow. The premium would change according to the change in risk involved.
Types of Cover
There are many types of insurance based on the age, gender, and duration of the policy. However, the three common covers provided by the UK car insurance providers are –
- Third Party Cover – As stated earlier, this is the minimum cover one may have to drive a car in the UK. It doesn’t cover for repairs and damages to the car. This cover would pay for any damage or injury caused to third parties (the passengers or others involved in the accident) due to the accident. The driver won’t get anything if the car is stolen or damaged in the accident. The risk covered is lowest and hence the premium is also very low.
- Third Party, Fire and Theft – This is modified version of third party cover. The costs here are covered if the car is stolen or set to fire. The premium may be somewhat higher than the earlier one.
- Comprehensive Cover – This is the highest cover that would cover everything starting from repairs to conveyance. The comprehensive cover would also offer pickup and drop of the vehicle. Some insurance providers would offer alternate vehicle till the insured vehicle is repaired. Getting a comprehensive cover means covering entire risk. The premium may be a little higher, however, it is worth paying with the kind of cover it offers.
Car insurance providers offer varied policies based on the above three covers. Some common insurance policies that can fetch you more discounts are given below –
- Young Driver Insurance – This coverage is specially meant for young drivers falling in the age group 17 to 24. They are new drivers and hence the premium is comparatively higher. This type of coverage is also called Black Box Insurance, where the GPS technology is used to monitor the driving pattern of the driver. Those following good driving practices may get discounts on renewal. Don’t pay more than you have to for car cover. RAC Car Insurance- drive well, stay safe, pay less, they cover the cost of a breakdown cover too.
- Temporary Car Insurance – One can have it for 1 to 28 days for temporary borrowed cars or vans. Good policy to have for borrowed cars or for guest drivers.
- Test Drive Insurance – Same as temporary car insurance. It is offered for 1 to 28 days to cover your test drives while selecting a new car.
- Female Driver Car Insurance – Female drivers are found safe and hence the premium for this insurance is lower.
- Senior Driver Car Insurance – Meant for senior drivers, who are more into safe driving practices. The premium is lower compared to the standard policy.
- Multicar Insurance – For those having multiple cars, this is the best thing to have in standard premium.
- Classic Car Insurance – Classic cars are meant for collection. They are not used for speeding. Hence the premium for these cars is low.
There are many categories of car insurance. No Claim Discounts are also offered for safe drivers. Don’t compromise on the type of cover, it is better to have safe driving practices for good premium discounts as mentioned above.