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Research Backed Hacks To Save on Young Driver Costs 2024


In 2023, the average 18-year-old driver’s car insurance increased to £1207.

It seems like no expense is spared from the cost-of-living crisis. Car insurance premiums saw a colossal 50% increase in 2023*. For a lot of young drivers, this was a case of going from bad to worse. 

Young drivers already face notoriously high car insurance premiums. These costs are somewhat justified by the level of risk that comes with being a young or new driver, but this is the first time so many young drivers have struggled to find car insurance under £1000. 

On top of insurance costs, our own Quotezone.co.uk research revealed that the total cost of learning to drive in 2023 was £2707. So while young drivers are paying more than ever just to get on the roads, finding hacks that can help you save money while driving is essential.

Quotezone’s expert hacks to help you save as a young driver

1. Consider a black box

A lot of young driver insurance policies will offer the option of using telematics, or a black box. Black box insurance uses a device that collects driving data on things like your speed and braking. It helps insurers analyse your risk level, and in exchange, you could save on your young driver insurance costs.

According to our 2023 research, telematics car insurance policies were able to save young drivers an average of £75 annually.

Age group 18-24Without telematicWith telematics
2021 £1,199£938
2023 £1,230 £1,155
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2. Avoid vehicle modifications 

Depending on your taste in cars, this one can be a hard pill to swallow. Even if you are not making modifications yourself, they are something to watch out for if you are buying a car, as they can hike up the cost of your young driver insurance.
Modifications can be anything from a custom exhaust to lowered suspension. But a more inconspicuous one is adding branding to a vehicle. Although this might not seem like it makes the vehicle a higher risk to insure, having something like a company logo on a van can put it at a higher risk of theft. This is because it can indicate expensive equipment or tools kept inside. For this reason, this would also affect the cost of your young van driver insurance.

3. Give an accurate mileage

When taking out insurance, you will be asked to estimate your annual mileage. The more miles you drive, the more you will typically pay on your insurance premium. This leaves the temptation of giving a lower mileage so you can save on your premium. But this is a terrible idea, and could completely void your insurance.

So a good way to save on your young driver insurance is to make an effort to be as accurate and realistic with your prediction as possible. Track yourself. Do the calculations. It will be worth it for the money you save without jeopardising your coverage.

4. Consider a smaller engine

This is an important one if you are getting your first car or have an option of which car you want to be insured on. A vehicle’s engine size, horsepower and turbocharge will impact the power the car drives with. This can be harder to manage as a new driver, and it will likely cause more damage in the event of an accident, so this increases insurance premiums.

To give you some idea of some of the best engine sizes for young drivers, we’ve compiled our list of the cheapest cars to insure for young drivers between 17-24 year olds and their engines from our own Quotezone.co.uk data. 

Cheapest car to insure for young driversAverage estimated insurance premiumSmallest available engine size of 2024 model 
1. Volkswagen Polo£966.041.0 L
2. Renault Clio£998.111.0 L
3. Vauxhall Cora£1008.471.2 L
4. Ford Fiesta £1067.661.0 L
5. Volkswagen Golf£1104.931.0 L
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5. Park somewhere safe overnight 

Where you expect to park your car overnight is another common question you’ll be asked when you’re comparing young drivers’ insurance. Making use of any garages, driveways or carports that are available for overnight parking could mean big savings for a young driver. 

In fact, parking on a driveway rather than on a public road could save you over £140 on average every year. And if you have access to a carport you could save even more, with an average saving of £230 for drivers who use carports.

6. Fuel your car properly 

Misfuelling is a common but expensive mistake that over 150,000 drivers make every year. Simple fueling mistakes like pumping diesel into a petrol car can lead to engine failure, which is just as expensive as it sounds. 

Risking driving without enough fuel in the tank can also cost you. Rule 97 of the Highway Code states that it’s your responsibility to ensure you have enough fuel for your journey before you set off, especially if you are driving on the motorway.
Any careless or dangerous driving caused by low fuel can lead to fines starting at £100 and three points on your licence, which can hike your insurance costs for years to come.  

7. No idling 

If you’re buying insurance for the first time you’ll be learning a lot of new terms like excess, comprehensive, and third-party. Idling is simply when you leave your engine running unnecessarily while stationary on a public road.
This might seem minor, but it goes against Section 42 of the Road Traffic Act. This means you risk a £20 penalty notice that will double if not paid in full within 28 days. According to our Quotezone.co.uk research, almost 11% of drivers fail to turn off their engines while waiting.** 

8. Never overload your vehicle

Each vehicle will have a maximum weight it is designed to carry. Overloading your car past its capacity is a punishable offence, with a fine of up to £300 and three penalty points. As a young driver, this is something you might do innocently because you aren’t aware of your car’s capacity, but that doesn’t save you from the costs. 

You can check your car’s maximum weight capacity in the vehicle’s owner manual, or it will often be displayed on a plate or sticker inside the vehicle. So if you’re packing your car to move to uni, it’s essential to stay below this weight and keep all items below the seat line so you don’t impair your vision when driving. This could result in another £50 fixed penalty, not to mention the safety implications for you and your passengers. 

9. Don’t splash pedestrians

Another easy fine to avoid is driving ‘with reasonable consideration for other persons using the road’. This makes splashing pedestrians illegal under section three of the Road Traffic Act, 1988 and punishable with a £100 fine and three penalty points on your licence. In more severe cases, violating this Road Traffic Act can lead to fines that reach as much as £5,000.

10. Bring your sunglasses

Just like prescription glasses, driving without sunglasses is considered when determining if your eyewear is inappropriate and could be detrimental to other road users, or leave you unable to detect dangers.
Young drivers could be hit with a £100 on-the-spot fine and up to three penalty points for driving without due care or attention. So always make sure to use appropriate eyewear for your needs and the driving conditions of the day. 

Navigating the UK young driver experience in 2024

When am I no longer a young driver?

The earliest you can start driving on a full licence in the UK is age 17. From here the term ‘young driver’ is mostly subjective. But when it comes to your insurance costs our Quotezone.co.uk research shows just how long insurers can consider you to be a ‘young driver’, and price your car insurance premiums accordingly. 

The average insurance premiums of an 18 year old have risen to £1207 in 2023, but trends from previous years show that young driver premiums are still reflected in averages for drivers as old as 21 years of age.
It is likely that these higher premiums that we associate with young drivers will decrease as you build your no-claims discount. But it’s unclear exactly when you will loose your young driver status. 

Year 18 Years Old 21 Years Old
2021 £1,105 £1,109
2022 £1,125 £1,066
2023£1,207 £1,195
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Can I still save if I am a young driver with penalty points?

When you start driving alone after passing your test, you will have to act as your own authority on road regulations like speed limits. Failing at this leads to serious consequences, least of all costing you money. 

Penalty points on a licence may not only result in a steep fine but typically bumps up your insurance costs too. You might expect your premium to rise by 5% for three points and 25% for six points, assuming you’re starting from a clean licence. This means as a young driver with an average insurance cost of £1207, your insurance can jump to over £1267 with three points, and over £1508 with six.

However, if you do have penalty points you could still save and get cheaper insurance by opting for a telematics policy, or black box insurance. This could save young drivers an average of £75 annually, so could count for higher savings over time as a young driver

Which car insurance is the cheapest for young drivers?

Often young drivers are being added onto parent’s or family members’ insurance policies. But with car insurance premiums increasing a massive 50% in 2023, a lot of people have been priced out of some car insurance options.

One alternative in the past has been to opt for third party only policies for younger drivers as these have typically been cheaper. But Quotezone.co.uk has revealed that third-party insurance, a go-to for young drivers, is now 73% more expensive than fully comprehensive car insurance for the average driver.

So even young drivers aged 21 or younger could save an average of 11% by opting for a fully comprehensive policy. The best way to find the best young driver car insurance is to shop around and get personalised quotes that can give accurate costs for your circumstances. 

Quotezone.co.uk can help if you’re looking for learner driver or young driver insurance. We help you quickly compare insurance policies from over 100 trusted UK insurance companies so you can choose an insurance policy that meets your needs and budget. 



**Survey – Quotezone.co.uk’s findings are based on a randomised survey of 1,000 respondents across the UK, which represents a margin of error of approximately 5% at a 95% confidence level.

Data tables – The data uses a random sample of over 40,000 car insurance policies throughout 2022/23 across the UK, within the 17-24 age group.

This article is intended as generic information only and is not intended to apply to anybody’s specific circumstances, demands or needs. The views expressed are not intended to provide any financial service or to give any recommendation or advice. Products and services are only mentioned for illustrative rather than promotional purposes.

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