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10 Top Tips for cheap and reliable car insurance

Don’t get stuck on auto-pilot when renewing your car insurance

It can be tempting to cruise along with your current car insurance policy for convenience's sake, or to scan straight for the cheapest deal. However, this risks ending up with an insurance policy that may not be tailored to your needs, leave you out of pocket, and should the worst happen not adequately cover you if you need to make a claim.

With the average cost of car insurance leaping by up to 67% over the past year, we have pulled together some top tips to find an affordable insurance policy that also offers a proper airbag for your finances.

  1. Don’t auto-pilot into auto-renewal

Letting your policy auto-renew without researching your best options is a convenient path to take, but this is where you can end up paying much more than you need to or getting caught out down the road. Although insurers can no longer charge existing customers more than new customers, there might still be a cheaper option out there than your current policy.

Our first tip is not to go into auto-pilot and let it auto-renew without a little research first to check whether there’s another more affordable policy better suited for your needs. You can do this at any time so that when it comes to auto-renewal you are prepared to happily let this sail through or stop the auto-renewal and switch to another insurer. Although this can be done at any time, see our tip below on the best time to research a new policy, and remember to check any cancellation fees.

  • 2. Shop around, compare offers

This brings us to tip 2. Taking the time to shop around different providers and offers is invaluable. Check out Money Saving Expert's super helpful tool where you can easily compare policies and make a more informed choice for your needs.
We’d recommend checking at least three websites to compare your options. Make sure you’re comparing quotes that offer the same coverage and extras etc., so you don’t get caught short down the road with a cheaper policy that doesn’t offer the coverage you need! See our helpful resources below listing several price comparison websites you can explore.

  • 3. Timing is everything

Although you can take the time to research insurance policies any time, there is a sweet spot! The cheapest time to buy tends to be 23 days before you need the insurance coverage to start. This is the ideal time - after most insurers have set their prices, but before leaving it too late and insurers think you’re potentially at higher risk in doing things last minute! The later you leave it the higher the price, so start your research 30 days before you need your new policy in place, to give you plenty of time to shop around for the right policy for you, and purchase 23 days before you need it to start.

4. Driving Licence Number

Put your driving license number in when calculating your policy. This is a super quick and easy way to bring the cost down a little!

5. Job Title

Be careful when selecting your job title. It’s important not to lie, but to consider the different options that could describe the work you do. You might find that choosing a different job title (that still accurately reflects your work) might bring the cost of your policy down.

Money Saving Expert has a helpful job picker tool where you can find the right job title for you.

6. Location, location, location

It sounds strange, but where you are registered to vote might affect your policy. Insurance companies have a fraud system, and if you’re not registered to vote at the address you submit for your policy, the system might think it’s a fraudulent enquiry and either quote you a higher price or may not even provide a quote at all!

So it’s good to check your other admin is up to date before shopping around for insurance quotes, especially checking if you’re registered to vote at the right address.

7. Get your no-claims bonus right

A no-claims bonus is a discount you can get on your insurance policy corresponding to how many of the past 5 years you have not made a claim.

So it’s important to get this right, as a higher no-claims bonus can have a significant impact on the policy cost, with drivers having 5 years without any claims seeing premiums reduced by as much as 65%!

8. Multi-car policies

Are there more vehicles in your household? It can be cheaper to get one multi-car policy to cover all the vehicles at your address, so make sure to check out this option when shopping around for different quotes.

9. Customer reviews and feedback

Whilst it’s great to save money on cheaper car insurance, you also want to make sure it’s reliable. Take some time to look at other customers’ reviews and their experience with this policy and any claims they have had to make.

10. Check your policy!

Once you’ve settled on a policy that feels right for you, give it a thorough check one more time before buying. Make sure all your details are correct and your policy has the extras you need, and no add-ons you don’t need.

You can check our helpful resources page here for support in checking through your policy if you feel you could do with an extra pair of eyes. You can also find information on our blog page on insurance and living with a mental health condition.

Helpful Resources