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If you’re a van driver you’re probably already aware that van insurance can sometimes cost quite a bit more than car insurance. That’s partly because many vans have larger engines than most cars, and they often weigh more than a typical car too – both of which can push a van into a higher, more costly van insurance group.

In addition, a majority of the 4.4 million vans on the UK’s roads today are used as commercial vehicles, which means there’s a good chance they’ll spend more time on the road and clock up more miles than an average car – two other factors that can push van insurance premiums up.

That’s why it’s more important than ever to shop around and compare van insurance when you’re looking for the cheapest van insurance in the UK, rather than simply accepting your existing provider’s renewal quote – which may not be the best deal.

Why choose Quotezone to compare van insurance?

Here at Quotezone.co.uk, we are experts in insurance comparison. By using Quotezone.co.uk’s van insurance comparison service you’ll be able to compare quotes from up to 60 of the best van insurance providers in the UK in a matter of minutes, helping you insure your van at a price that won’t break the bank. You could save up to £590 on your Van Insurance today by comparing with Quotezone.

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Getting Cheap Van Insurance

What level of cover should I opt for when I’m insuring a van?

As with car insurance, van drivers have three levels of insurance coverage to choose from:

  • Third-Party Only (TPO)
  • Third Party, Fire and Theft (TPFT)
  • Fully Comprehensive Van Insurance

Third-party van insurance is the minimum level of cover required under UK law, and as such it’s sometimes slightly cheaper than the other two options. So if the premiums you’re being quoted for fully comprehensive van insurance are particularly high (because you’re a young van driver, for instance, or because you require specialist van insurance), then it might be worth looking into third-party van insurance, which in some cases could reduce your premium a little.

However, it is important to bear in mind that if you’re involved in an accident that was your own fault third-party van insurance will only cover the cost of damage to the other driver’s vehicle, which would mean you’d have to pay to repair or replace your own van yourself.

In addition, the price difference between third-party and fully-comp van insurance can sometimes be close to zero, since many insurance providers do take into account the fact that third-party cover has historically been favoured by drivers with weaker driving records. That’s why it’s a good idea to compare van insurance quotes for all three levels of cover and then opt for the policy that offers the most comprehensive coverage at the most competitive price.

What determines my van insurance premiums?

Quotezone.co.uk has compiled data from over 1 million policies to better understand what influences your van insurance premiums. The risk profile of every policyholder is something that is unique to them, however there are some common factors that insurers use to determine your premiums. You should keep these factors in mind when it comes time to compare van insurance as they will ultimately play a large role in what you pay for your policy.

Your Age

Data shows that young van drivers represent a greater risk to insurers than older drivers. Data collected from the road safety charity Brake, suggests younger drivers under the age of 20 are 33% more likely to be fatally wounded in an accident. This is usually attributed to younger drivers taking more risks whilst on the road whereas older drivers are generally more cautious. It is important to note that these are generalisations however, and there are many young drivers who are responsible and safe drivers.

Unfortunately, most insurance companies are forced to rely on statistical data when assessing the premiums of young drivers. This is due to younger drivers not having a significant number of years behind the wheel, and so it is more difficult to accurately assess a younger driver’s abilities on an individual basis.

Due to data trends suggesting younger drivers are at greater risk of more serious accidents, insurers account for this by increasing the premiums of younger drivers. This is why you are likely to pay more as a young van driver as apposed to an older one.

Older drivers also have more time to build up a substantial No Claims Discount (NCD), especially if they have been driving for over 20 years. This will also naturally provide another advantage for older drivers when it comes to insurance premium prices.

DLVA data also shows that record-high numbers of over 70s are now driving on UK roads. This can also potentially play out to be another advantage for older drivers as they become an ever larger demographic for insurers. Insurers will likely face increased pressure to remain competitive for the older driver market share and so this may lead to even cheaper premiums in the future.

Your Occupation

Your job role can have a significant impact on your premiums as the nature of your role can directly impact your risk profile and mileage.

This is due to the fact that someone who drives to work every day will naturally have a higher mileage count than someone who works remotely. With higher mileage, your risk of being involved in a crash naturally increases due to simple probability. This will be reflected in your premium calculations and any quotes you are given to compare by insurers.

Quotezone.co.uk has found that the occupations with the lowest insurance premiums are typically members of the emergency services. This includes paramedics, firefighters, police officers, and those who generally need to comply with a high standard of driving under pressure.

With this in mind it is perhaps not surprising that insurers view those in these occupations as less risky drivers and so more unlikely to make a claim.

However, it is important to note that you do not need to be a member of the emergency services to benefit from cheaper insurance prices. Our service can connect you with a panel of expert insurers from across the UK to significantly increase your chances of finding the cheapest van insurance regardless of your occupation.

Your Location

The location in which you park and normally operate your van can all have a major impact on the likelihood of your van being stolen, broken into or involved in an accident. For this reason, it is an important factor that insurers will take into account when calculating your premiums.

Crime rates tend to be higher in larger cities such as London, Birmingham and Manchester. As a result this can push up your premiums, particularly if you park your van on the road when not in use.

The advice of insurance experts is to ensure that you keep your van parked on a driveway where possible and to securely lock your vehicle when not in use. Our data has also revealed that avoiding modifications such as additional signage and branding can also help reduce the risk of break-in or theft thus reducing your premiums.

Living in rural areas can also reduce your premiums as these regions typically experience lower levels of crime relating to vehicle theft and break-ins.

You can check the risk of vehicle theft in your area using the following tool.

Your Driving Record

This should also not come as a surprise but insurers will closely evaluate your previous driving history to check for previous convictions whilst behind the wheel. This is due to the fact that drivers with a track record of risky driving as well as penalty points and fines will naturally be a greater risk to insure.

Greg Wilson, founder of Quotezone.co.uk and insurance expert states the following, “While the complexity of insurance premium calculations makes it impossible to put a pounds-and-pence figure on it, on average, three penalty points could result in a 5% jump in a driver’s insurance premium, while six penalty points could see the cost of their insurance rise by an eye-watering 25%.”

The best way to reduce your premiums is to ensure you avoid accumulating penalty points and driving convictions and to always observe the road rules. Being a safe and responsible driver will put you in the best position with potential insurers as well as keeping yourself and other drivers safe.

Your Claims History

If you have a history of previous claims then this will naturally increase your future van insurance premiums as insurers will view you as a greater risk. Having a No Claims Discount (NCD) will open the door to cheaper insurance premiums particularly if you have accumulated this over a significant period of time such as 20 years. Our policy data reveals that over three million UK drivers could be benefiting from significant discounts on their premiums due to a No Claims Discount.

In some cases having a well-established No Claims history could save you up to 60% or 70% on your premiums.

How can I get a no claims discount?

The best way of ensuring you remain claims-free throughout your life behind the wheel is to always drive as safely and sensibly as possible.

This is perhaps not surprising to many, but ensuring that you always take care when you are behind the wheel and do not take unnecessary risks is the best way of reducing your chances of being involved in an accident. Parking your car securely at night and in a location that is hard to access for thieves can also reduce your chances of needing to make a claim.

Your Medical History

This may surprise some but your medical history is also a factor when taking out a UK van insurance policy. This is due to some medical conditions increasing your chances of being involved in an accident and so insurers will naturally reflect this in your premiums.

Conditions such as Alzheimer’s, Alcoholism, glaucoma and age-related diseases can all impact your ability to drive. If you are concerned over any medical conditions that could potentially impact your ability to drive you should always consult your medical specialist for further advice and diagnosis.

Our experts have identified the following 10 conditions which need to be declared to the DVLA which may surprise many drivers.

  • Sleep apnoea
  • Heart conditions
  • Diabetes
  • Eye conditions
  • Previous stroke
  • Seizures and episodes of epilepsy
  • Vertigo
  • Syncope
  • Miscellaneous operations
  • Prescription medications

*You should always report any medical diagnosis to your insurer and the DVLA as not declaring this could void your insurance in the event of an accident.

As drivers age their medical history is likely to have a bigger impact on their insurance premiums as age-related conditions will naturally need to be factored into premium calculations. Other common conditions such as hay fever, which is estimated to afflict nearly 16 million Brits, can also run the risk of impacting your premiums. This is due to many people being unaware of the potency of prescription medication issued to alleviate hay fever symptoms. It is highly recommended that you always check your medication before driving, as you run the risk of a drug driving conviction should you be stopped behind the wheel.

It is important to note that in order to get a full list of medical conditions required to be disclosed to your insurer, we always recommend contacting your insurer directly.

You can also check here if you have a condition which needs to be declared to the DVLA.

Policy Add-Ons

Many insurers offer additional add-ons for you to incorporate into your policy if you choose. This means that you can opt for additional cover such as breakdown cover for an additional cost to your premiums. Many van drivers opt for these add-ons as it provides convenience however it will naturally cost more when it comes time to pay your premiums. With this said it is important to state that it may indeed work out cheaper overall opting for a policy add-on than a separate policy altogether.

What Else Can Impact My Premiums?

The list above is not exhaustive however it should provide you with a good knowledge of what sort of factors will influence your insurance premiums. If you are interested in finding out what practical steps you can take to get your insurance premiums down read on to see our top data-driven tips on how to save.

Your FAQs
 Why is van insurance more expensive than car insurance?

Getting cheap van insurance in the UK can be more challenging than finding cheap car insurance. There are several reasons for this. For instance, many vans have larger engine sizes than your typical car, and vehicles with bigger engines usually fall into higher insurance groups. Since your van insurance group plays a role in your insurance premium calculation, this means that vans often cost more to insure.

In addition, the vast majority of vans on the road in the UK are used for commercial purposes, which means there’s a good chance that they’ll spend more time on the road and clock up more miles than a family car that’s only used for ‘social, domestic and pleasure’.

Will my van insurance be cheaper if I’m using the van for private use?

Yes, insuring a van for private use is usually cheaper than business van insurance, because when your van’s class of use is ‘social, domestic and pleasure’ you’re likely to spend less time on the road and clock up fewer miles than a van that is being driven all day long for business purposes.

However, it’s important to bear in mind that if you do opt for the ‘social, domestic and pleasure’ van insurance class of use you won’t be able to use your van for any type of commercial or business use – doing so could risk invalidating your policy, even if you only use it for commercial purposes very occasionally.

Which van insurer will offer me the cheapest van insurance guaranteed?

Since each van insurer will use a slightly different insurance premium calculation when they’re calculating your premium, and those calculations will apply different weightings to some of the risk factors that will be used to determine whether you’re a more risky or less risky van driver, it isn’t possible to pinpoint which will insurer will offer you the cheapest UK van insurance guaranteed.

That’s why we always recommend that drivers shop around by comparing van insurance quotes from a wide range of van insurers, which should increase their odds of discovering the providers that are more likely to offer them the best van insurance quotes for their particular risk profile.

Does it cost more to insure a van that has been modified?

Yes, insuring a modified van usually costs more than insuring a van that hasn’t been modified, either because the vehicle modification increases the risk of the van being involved in an accident or because they increase the risk of theft.

For instance, engine upgrades, performance enhancements or tinted windows could increase the chance of the driver being involved in a road traffic accident, while adding signage to your Transit van or Renault Trafic could increase the risk of the vehicle being targeted by thieves because it could lead them to believe there might be valuable tools inside.

In addition, some aesthetic modifications, such as specialist paintwork, can result in a higher insurance claim if the vehicle is ever involved in an accident. New data from Quotezone.co.uk reveals that many van owners are not aware that aesthetic modifications, such as additional signage and branding, can potentially void your van insurance.

Finally, commercial modifications such as the installation of roof bars or a tail lift, could increase the cost of your modified van insurance by adding enough weight to the van to push it into one of the higher van insurance groups.

What our experts say:
Many new van owners might not know signage can be viewed as a modification, so it’s worth checking how their insurer views any branding on the vehicle to ensure they’re correctly declaring everything they’re required to declare – Greg Wilson, Founder of Quotezone.co.uk.

Will opting for black box van insurance mean I’m offered very cheap van insurance?

Some providers are beginning to offer black box van insurance, which could potentially reduce the premium for younger van drivers – provided they are safe drivers that obey the rules of the road, never speed and always comply with any curfews or other restrictions the policy imposes, of course.

That doesn’t mean that you’ll be offered very cheap van insurance when you opt for this type of telematics policy, but it should mean your premium is a little cheaper.

Most commercial van drivers still tend to favour standard van insurance policies over black box policies, though, possibly because of the curfews, restrictions and limitations that some telematics insurance policies impose.

Are electric vans cheaper to insure?
Across the UK, electric vehicle registrations have risen dramatically with 2021 seeing a 40% jump in ULEVs (Ultra low emissions vehicle) registrations. Generally, electric vans aren’t currently cheaper to insure than conventional vans due to a variety of reasons.
  • Repairs: Electric vans currently have more expensive repair costs and replacement parts
  • Specialisation: Electric vans require more specialised servicing than their conventional counter parts
  • More valuable: Electric vans are simply at present more expensive than conventional vans and so cost more to insure.

Despite the generally higher costs of insuring electric vehicles in the UK at present, petrol and diesel car registrations fell 41% and 66% respectively in the same year. This trend is also indictive of a larger shift toward reduced emission motoring, and there is every reason to see this impacting the choices of van drivers in future also.  With this trend toward reduced emissions set to continue, as well as larger numbers of electric vehicles being produced every year, it is completely reasonable to assume these vehicles will only become more affordable in future. As electric vans become more common and affordable to motorists in the near future, so to will cheaper electric van insurance policies. 

How can I find cheaper van insurance?

Firstly, don’t automatically accept your insurance provider’s renewal quote without using an insurance comparison website like Quotezone.co.uk to compare quotes from a range of insurance companies, because you’ll often be able to find a much cheaper van insurance quote than your renewal price.

In addition, the following steps could also help to reduce the cost of insuring your van:

  • Making use of off-road parking: Vans that are parked off-road when they’re not in use have a lower risk of being damaged by a passing vehicle or targeted by thieves, so if you’re able to park your van in a garage or on a driveway this could result in cheaper insurance quotes. Quotezone.co.uk has found that drivers who park on driveways rather than on the road can save over £140 on average every year.
  • Installing an alarm or engine immobiliser: If your van didn’t come with a manufacturer-installed alarm or engine immobiliser then installing these security features could lower the cost of your insurance.
  • Avoiding other vehicle modifications: Apart from an immobiliser or alarm, most other van modifications run the risk of pushing up the cost of insuring a van. This can also include additional signage and branding as our data reveals this increases the risk of theft. If you already have modifications on your van then do not worry, Quotezone.co.uk can help you compare quotes from insurers who specialise in modified van insurance.
  • Paying for the full year upfront: If you opt for a monthly payment plan you’ll usually pay more overall for your insurance.
  • Agreeing to a higher excess: Agreeing to a higher voluntary excess could result in a slightly lower premium when insuring a van… although it’s important to bear in mind that this does mean you’ll have to cover a larger portion of the cost yourself if you ever have to claim on your insurance.
Should I use van insurance brokers to compare van insurance policies?

In much the same way that you shouldn’t accept your existing provider’s renewal quote without shopping around first, if you do decide to meet with a van insurance broker it would be a wise idea to compare the quotes they are able to provide with those you’d find by using a van insurance comparison service like Quotezone.co.uk.

Of course, if you need specialist van insurance (if you carry hazardous materials, for instance) a van insurance broker might be able to help you find the van insurer that’s perfectly placed to offer you the most suitable cover, but for a standard van the best plan could be to use Quotezone.co.uk to compare quotes from a wider range of providers.

Can I get cheap van insurance with no deposit?

Unfortunately, it is largely a myth that you can take out van insurance with no deposit payment. This is because you will most likely end up making an initial payment or ‘deposit’ payment within the first few days of a policy via direct debit, even if your provider doesn’t insist on an initial payment upfront. You can compare van insurance providers so you can find an insurer who will break down their premium into 12 equal payments each year.

How to do a van insurance comparison.

With Quotezone, completing a van insurance comparison for cheaper insurance is easy. Simply complete a basic details form and our clever comparison system will list out a large panel of insurers sorted by price. That way you can quickly find cheaper van insurance options on the UK market fast!

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Written by Greg Wilson

Page last reviewed on 26th October 2023 by Greg Wilson

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*51% of consumers could save £590.37 on their Van Insurance. The saving was calculated by comparing the cheapest price found with the average of the next four cheapest prices quoted by insurance providers on Seopa Ltd’s insurance comparison website. This is based on representative cost savings from August 2023. The savings you could achieve are dependent on your individual circumstances.