Nobody said life would be easy, but then nobody said that it’d be so dang hard either, particularly for young drivers.
If you’re a first-time motorist between the age of 18 and 24, you’ll be aware of what we mean. You’ve passed your test, you crave freedom, adventure and open roads when all of a sudden along comes the insurance man to rain on your parade.
The cost of just learning to drive itself is high enough, and between that, the cost of insurance, tax and a new car, the bills quickly start to add up, meaning that younger drivers can quickly find themselves out of pocket.
So what to do if you’re a young driver itching to get out on the road? Well, you could go and nag your parents to death, or you theoretically could rob a bank, but how about something simpler and much less painful for all involved?
Ford has just announced a brand-new offer for 18-24 year old drivers where they’ll pay for a sizeable chunk of your insurance for two years when you finance a brand-new Ford Fiesta or Ka. Not bad, eh?
Pairing up with insurance provider Marmalade, who specialise in insurance for learners and young drivers, Ford will pay up to £1,450 of your insurance for you, which will make things suddenly a lot more affordable.
So how does it work? Well, once you sign the agreement Marmalade will fit a telematics black box to your car, which monitors speed, acceleration, braking and cornering force.
What this means in simple terms is that the black box device keeps an eye on your driving and builds up a profile of what you’re like behind the wheel. It might seem a little Nineteen Eighty-Four, but it can seriously make things cheaper for you as a driver.
Not only does it significantly lower your premium, if you behave yourself while out on the roads your insurance will actually get cheaper over time as a result of your good driving, so it’s a really great option for cash-strapped young drivers eager to get on the road.
What’s more, you’ll also be able to drive off in a brand-new Ka or Fiesta, rather than having to settle for some old Inbetweeners-style banger just because it’s the cheap option.
In light of Ford’s new offer, we thought we’d come up with some helpful advice for younger drivers looking to lessen their insurances costs and get the best prices possible, so you can have a little extra change to go round.
Shop around for the best deals
When you’re looking around for cheap car insurance quotes, comparison websites are definitely your friend. All you have to do is type in a few key details about yourself and your car and you can have a tailor-made quote on your screen in minutes.
Be warned, though, that this isn’t an exhaustive list as some of the major insurers purposely don’t display their details on such sites in order to get you to come straight to them.
As well as that, insurance companies will sometimes boost up compulsory excess in order to lower the insurance cost and rise to the top of the site’s ranking, which mightn’t be ideal for you.
Comparison sites are all well and good, but sometimes just ringing up and speaking to somebody on the phone can be an even better way to score a good deal.
Insurers will often be able to beat the quotes they offer online as they won’t have to pay the commission fees that the comparison sites charge, and with a little effort you could wangle your way to a seriously killer deal.
Ask your parents for help
Remember when you were a kid watching Art Attack and you always had to ask your parents for help with the scissors or PVA glue? Bet you thought your days of asking for grown-up help were behind you, didn’t you?
Well, bad news if you’re proud of being fiercely independent, but the good news is that your mum and dad can still help you get a reduction on your insurance if they drive your car occasionally.
If you list yourself as the owner and lead policyholder, you can add an additional experienced driver to help cut costs.
As well as that, if your folks have insurance cover for their cars, you could ask them to consider getting a multi-car policy. Not only will you get to drive their cars, it’s good news for your parents as well as larger insurers will often offer discounts for insuring a fleet of family cars.
Get a sensible car
Sorry to be the bearers of bad news if you were holding onto hope that you could graduate to a supercar straight out of the test centre, but as a rule, the faster and flashier your car is, the more your insurance will cost.
Nearly half of your insurance premium is decided on what type of car you’re driving, so as a young driver starting off, you’ll want to buy something that’s low in the insurance groups, with a smaller list price and less powerful engine.
As well as that, avoiding modifications will also go a long way to keeping your costs down. You might think that massive aero kit looks cool, but to an insurance company it just looks like an excuse to squeeze you for all you’re worth.
If you’d like to know more about the best cars for first-time drivers, why not check out our top 11 list, or get in touch with your local Perrys dealership for some advice.
Split the payments
Looking at your insurance cost for the year can seem pretty daunting up front, but the good news is that you don’t have to pay it all at once.
Many insurers allow you to insure your car on a month-by-month basis, or you can also split it into two six-monthly payments so you can work out what the best option for you is.
The bad news is that some insurers can inflate the price by as much as 10 per cent on your quoted price if you opt to pay monthly. If you can spare the cash up front it’s the most cost-effective way to pay for it, but some drivers find it more manageable to insure their cars in other ways.
For more information on Ford’s newest offer, or for any other advice on buying a car, get in touch with your local Perrys dealership today!