Published: 22/09/2021

Don’t accept the first insurance quote

Don’t simply accept the first quote from an insurer – there’s lots of legal ways you can use to reduce the cost of your premium.

  1. Pay annually it's cheaper
  2. Have a good credit rating
  3. Choose the right job title
  4. Don't just auto-renew
  5. Third-party vs comprehensive (less cover isn't always cheaper)
  6. Consider multi-car insurance (even add house insurance)
  7. Name your drivers
  8. Modifications to your car usually cost more
  9. Amend excess payments
  10. Do you need add-ons?
  11. Consider a cheaper to insure car
  12. Use a broker
  13. Avoid 'ghost brokers'
  14. Could a black box cut costs?
  15. 15 Be a better driver!

Find cheap cover on price comparison sites

These are a good place to search as you can get multiple quotes quickly., Go Compare, MoneySuperMarket and Compare the Market are the main comparison sites.

Which ones should I use and in which order?

The comparison sites panels of insurers vary, and in some cases, the prices across the same insurer, so you should check and compare as many as possible in any order.

It’s a pain but it's effectively the equivalent of doing five or six quotes rather than one, getting quotes from scores of insurers. In the days when you had to to contact each insurer separately, it’s time well spent.

Some comparison sites have reward schemes to incentivise repeat customers, although loyalty isn't much of a benefit.

click here for the best car insurers according to Which?

Is my credit rating affected by price comparison sites?

It may you apply for a policy paid by monthly instalments - but it’s no different if you'd gone to the insurer directly.

Some insurers will run 'soft' searches on your credit record to verify your identity. You will see these on on your credit file, but they aren’t visible to other companies so won't affect your rating. 

Can I trust price comparison site prices?

Prices shown on a comparison site are genuine, live quotes from insurers. However, check out the following:

  • After getting the initial quote, you'll have an opportunity to “optimise” your cover by purchasing add-ons. Competing policies that include some of these features as standard could be cheaper.
  • Sometimes insurers feature versions of their policies on comparison sites that have slightly less cover as standard than those available directly. They may be cheaper and stand out more on the comparison site, but you should be careful it includes the cover you're after.
  • A “bargain” can often be explained, on inspection, by large excesses. A 'voluntary' excess can often be adjusted when running the quote. Many insurers also include a 'compulsory' excess.

Check the policy details again when you're on the insurer's website, to be sure the comparison site described details correctly.

Check any assumptions

When you’re on the insurer's site, you'll be asked to agree to a number of 'assumptions'. This is information assumed to be correct about you that you haven't provided via the comparison site.

Check carefully. If any of it is inaccurate, your quote could be incorrect and policy not valid if you accept.

Check car insurers that aren't on comparison sites

Some insurers don't feature on any comparison sites.

Here are some of those insurers.

Aviva policies can't be found on comparison sites. Its sister brand Quote Me Happy, is. 

Direct Line insurance is only available direct, offering a total loss hire car as standard.  Churchill and Privilege are part of the Direct Line Group. Both sell policies on comparison sites.

NFU Mutual doesn't sell online at all. You'll need to call one of its broker centres for a quote. They offer a lifetime guarantee on repairs and purport to have a 'no quibble' approach to claims.

Use cashback sites to get even cheaper cover

Cashback sites are another variety of comparison sites. Sites - such as Quidco and TopCashback - pay you a cash reward when you go through from them to buy goods or financial products. 

Whilst worth checking out, they don't necessarily offer you the best value deals, even with cashback!

A £250 insurance policy with £50 cashback is far from a bargain if you can get the same cover elsewhere for £150.

Haggle for cheap car insurance

Insurers still reserve the best deals for new customers and loyal customers don’t always get the best price so it can pay to haggle with your provider when the time comes to renew your policy.