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Why is UK car insurance expensive and how can I make it cheaper?

Recently, the price of UK car insurance has gone up a lot.

Especially for UK newcomers who can’t always find insurance designed with their driving experience in mind. Luckily, our cover is built for people who’ve moved here. 

But how do UK insurers work out how much you should be paying for your policy? Why has car insurance gone up across the country? And how can you get cheaper car insurance? Let’s take a look…

What makes my car insurance more expensive? 

Insurers look at lots of risk factors to work out the cost of your car insurance. These include:

Personal factors

‍Things like where you live, what car you drive and how often you drive all determine how expensive your cover will be.

For example, if you live in a high-traffic area, drive a car that’s statistically less safe, or take a lot of long journeys, you’ll probably be charged more for your cover. 

How long you’ve been driving

In the UK, you’ll often get charged more if you haven’t been driving for a long time. So, a driver who has just passed their test can expect to pay more than a driver who passed their test ten years ago. 

Your claim-free driving experience

If you’ve been driving for a number of years without making a claim on your insurance, you’ll get a claim-free driving discount. The more recently you’ve made a claim and the more claims you’ve made, the more expensive your car insurance will be.

While many UK insurance companies only look at your UK claim-free driving, we look at ALL your claim-free driving experience from ANY country. That means you can save up to 45% on your cover. Find out more here. 

Wider factors

Insurance companies across the UK, including us, have been facing increasing costs which have had a knock-on effect on premiums. These include:

  • High inflation rates 
  • More fraud cases
  • More claims than in previous years
  • Garage delays and increasing repair costs

And, in 2022, the Financial Conduct Authority (a government body that monitors the insurance industry) introduced new laws to make sure loyal customers weren’t being charged far more than new customers when renewing.

This is a positive change and one we support wholeheartedly! But it has meant lots of insurance companies can no longer offer unsustainable, bargain prices to new customers.

How can I make my UK car insurance price lower?  

Drive a sensible car

When choosing your car, go for something on the smaller side with a less powerful engine, like a Volkswagen Polo. These cars cost less to insure because they’re safer to drive and don’t get stolen as often. 

Are electric cars cheaper to insure? Right now, they can be more expensive to insure than petrol or diesel cars for a number of reasons, including:

  • Electric car technology is newer, meaning it’s harder to find mechanics specialised in fixing them. 
  • Electric car parts are less common, meaning it’s more difficult to replace them.   
  • Electric cars come with extras that you might need to cover, like charging cables, wall boxes, and batteries.

But electric car insurance prices will change as electric cars get more and more common.

And remember, your car is just one of many factors affecting the price of your cover.

Find out more about how different car makes and models affect your car insurance here.

Watch out for hidden extras

Some insurance policies charge you for extra features. Before buying a policy, make sure you understand what’s included and that you’re only paying for the cover you need.

At Marshmallow, we offer multiple plans with varying amounts of features and varying degrees of flexibility so you can pick a plan and price to suit you. 

Top up your Voluntary Excess

Some insurers will let you increase the excess they set—the Compulsory Excess—with a voluntary amount that you agree to pay on top if you make a claim—the voluntary Excess. 

If you choose to pay a higher Voluntary Excess, you can make the overall price of your premium cheaper. 

Let your insurer track your driving

Often, the most effective way to lower your insurance costs is to allow your insurer to track your driving using GPS. This is usually in the form of a ‘black box', or via an app. 

How does Marshmallow help with the cost of UK car insurance?

We can save you up to 45% on your cover

How? We base your price on ALL your past driving experience from ANY country. We also look at your claim-free driving experience from wherever you drove before!

We offer optional extras and different levels of coverage

Meaning you only have to pay for the protection you need. 

We help you manage your costs

You can pay for your cover monthly, rather than in one go. And you can pick the exact date your payment comes out each month, meaning you can work around your payday or spread out your bills better.

Looking for UK car insurance? Get a quote with us today to see how much we can save you!