Compare car insurance quotes for students

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Being a student can affect your car insurance and it’s likely you’ll pay more than the average. The good news is that there are all sorts of ways to cut the cost of premiums without cutting back on cover – here’s how.

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  • What is student car insurance?
  • How to get cheaper car insurance for students

Jump to section

  • What is student car insurance?
  • How to get cheaper car insurance for students

What is student car insurance?

Student car insurance is designed specifically for drivers at college or university. Policies are usually tailored to suit student lifestyles which could include splitting time between your term time and home address.

Why is student car insurance in the UK more expensive?

Insurance is all about risk – the greater the risk of an accident and claim, the more you can expect to pay. For students, risk factors are high for a number of reasons, including:

  • Age – students are typically young drivers and statistics show under 25s are generally involved in more accidents.
  • Location – term time addresses and campuses are usually in busy areas prone to heavy traffic which can increase the risk of an accident happening.
  • Unsecured overnight parking– lack of off-street parking can mean there’s a greater chance of your car being vandalised or stolen.

Even if you’re a mature student, you’ll still be grouped in the overall student category so you could still see your insurance prices increase.

What does student car insurance cover?

Student car insurance covers the same risks as standard car insurance and you’ll be able to choose from one of three levels of cover:

  • Third party only – the UK’s minimum legal requirement of insurance you must hold for your vehicle. It only covers you for damage or injury to another person or their property if you cause an accident. However, you and your own vehicle will not be covered, and you will not be able to claim with your insurance. Damaged cause by theft or fire is also not covered by a Third party only policy.
  • Third party, fire and theft– in addition to third party only cover, insurers will indemnify you if your car is stolen or damaged by fire.
  • Comprehensive – provides everything included under third party, fire and theft and will also indemnify you if your car is damaged or destroyed in an accident.

Some insurers may also include extra features like personal possessions cover, legal expenses and a courtesy car for added peace of mind. If they aren’t included as standard, you may be able to add them on as optional extras for a cost.

How to get cheaper car insurance for students

As a student, it can feel like the odds are stacked against you thanks to age and perceived risks. However, there are simple and practical ways to keep student car insurance premiums down, including:

  • Paying for your policy in one go – if you’re cash strapped, instalments might seem like a good idea, but it also means you’ll pay interest. Paying for your policy in one lump sum can save you money in the long run.
  • Investing in car security – if you don’t have secure parking, you may wish to consider buying an immobiliser or upgrading your car’s alarm system which can help deter opportunistic thieves.
  • Increasing your voluntary excess – this lowers your overall premium but remember that it still needs to be affordable, as you’ll need to pay it for a claim to go ahead.
  • Avoiding modifications – unique cars cost more to fix or replace so if you’ve altered your car in any way, you could end up paying a higher premium (although typical exceptions include upgrades to car security and alterations to aid disability).
  • Adding a named driver – adding a more experienced driver to your policy can lower the cost. Don’t be tempted to say someone else is the main driver instead of you just to get cheaper cover though; doing that is called fronting and it’s against the law.
  • Choosing telematics car insurance – also known as black box insurance, these policies base premiums on your driving. A device fitted inside your car monitors the way you drive and sends the data back to your insurer. If you drive consistently well, you could see premiums fall faster compared to other policies.

Building up your no claims bonus (NCB) – this is a discount off your premium (and is also known as a no claims discount (NCD). The money off is expressed as a percentage with that amount increasing every year you hold a policy and drive without making a claim. For instance, after 12 months of claim free driving as a policyholder you could get a 30% discount off your next premium. The percentage discount is set by the insurer with some going up to 70% off after earning five or more years’ worth of NCB.

How does my car affect my student driver insurance?

As a general rule, expensive and powerful cars cost more to insure simply because they’re pricier to fix. If you’re getting a car before heading off to uni, consider choosing a car with a smaller engine and lower price tag.

To help you narrow down your options, take a look at a car’s insurance group (there are 50 in total). The lower the insurance group number, the cheaper your student car insurance is likely to be. Popular first-time driver cars in low insurance groups include the Ford Fiesta, VW Up and VW Polo, Kia Picanto, and the Fiat 500.

Compare cheap car insurance for students

Whether you’re a student or not, comparing quotes is one of the quickest and simplest ways to find car insurance at a price that suits you.

At mustard.co.uk, you can compare quotes from some of the UK’s leading insurers, and with our Cheapest Price Guarantee*, you can be confident about getting peace of mind and value for money. You can start your quote online right now or speak to an expert on 0330 022 8387.

Student car insurance FAQs

What is student car insurance?

Student car insurance is cover that has been designed especially for student drivers. This means the policy has been tailored to suit students’ lifestyles whilst also being budget-friendly. Some policies may also include other incentives to benefit students.

Student car insurance covers the same risks as standard car cover but will be tailored to meet your needs while you’re home or at uni. 

It’s a legal requirement to have a minimum of third party car insurance in place before you drive in the UK, and this still applies to students who take their cars to university. Just like other types of car insurance, you’ll be able to choose from one of three levels of cover

  • Third-party only insurance – compensates other people for injury or damage to their property that you’ve caused. Third-party only policies don’t cover the cost of damage to your own car. So if you have an accident, you’ll need to pay for repairs yourself.
  • Third-party, fire and theft insurance – provides third-party only cover and also compensates you if your car is damaged by fire or is stolen. 
  • Comprehensive insurance – includes third-party, fire and theft cover and also pays to repair or replace your car if it’s damaged in an accident – even if the accident was considered your fault. 

Some insurers may even include extra features like personal possessions cover and a courtesy car for added peace of mind. If they aren’t included as standard, you’ll be able to add them on as optional extras for a small cost.

How to get cheaper car insurance for students

Car insurance is almost always going to cost more if you’re a young driver. That said, there are ways to help keep costs down, including:

  • Paying for your policy in one go – if you can, pay for your policy upfront for the year. It’s a lot of money but installments will cost you more in the long-run as they’ll include interest fees.  
  • Increasing your voluntary excess – having a higher voluntary excess can lower your overall premium, but remember that it still needs to be affordable because you’ll have to pay it for a claim to go ahead.  
  • Boosting security – if you don’t have the luxury of a garage or private driveway, increasing your car’s security (for example with an immobiliser) could result in a discount from your insurer.  
  • Avoiding modifications – adding features to your car or changing any of its factory settings makes it potentially more expensive to fix – and arguably more desirable to thieves. All this can lead to higher premiums.  
  • Trying a telematics policy – also known as Black Box insurance, these policies base premiums on your driving. A device fitted inside your car will monitor the way you drive, sending the data back to your insurer. If you drive consistently well, you could see premiums fall faster compared to other policies.
  • Adding a named driver – adding a more experienced driver to your policy can lower the cost. Don’t be tempted to say someone else is the main driver instead of you, just to get cheaper cover. Doing that is called fronting and it’s against the law. 
  • Pick a small car – It may seem obvious but a modest model of car with a small engine will help to keep your costs down. As well as being reliable and practical, they’re in lower insurance groups which means cheaper student car insurance. For good examples of these, you can find our recommended list of reliable cars for new drivers.

Does car insurance come with student discounts?

Being a student can have its benefits when it comes to car insurance. It’s unlikely you’ll be offered a discount just because you’re a student but comparing quotes does mean you’ll be able to get the best value policy for your needs and budget.

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