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Van Insurance for Young Drivers

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Van insurance for younger drivers

If you’re a young driver and you’re looking for cheap van insurance you could have a surprisingly difficult search on your hands – but there are steps you can take to increase your chances of finding a suitable policy at a reasonable price.

As with cars, drivers in the UK are legally allowed to drive a wide range of vans (specifically, Category B vans) from the age of 17 – provided they’ve passed their driving test and taken out a suitable insurance policy, of course.

For younger van drivers it’s that pesky matter of insurance that can often be a bit of a sticking point, though, because premiums for young drivers are often much, much higher than an older, more experienced motorist would pay.

There are two reasons for that: insurance claims data and road accident data, both of which confirm that younger drivers are much more likely to be involved in a road traffic accident than an older motorist.

In fact, research by Brake, the road safety charity, has revealed that 23% of drivers aged 17 to 24 will be involved in a road traffic accident within two years of passing their driving test.

Needless to say that elevated risk almost always translates into higher insurance premiums for young van drivers, which is why it’s so important that these motorists use an unbiased insurance comparison service like Quotezone.co.uk when they’re ready to take out insurance.

Not only can Quotezone.co.uk help young van drivers find cheaper insurance by comparing quotes from a wider range of providers, but it can also ensure they don’t waste their time dealing with insurance companies that might be completely unwilling to insure them.

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A guide to van insurance for young drivers

Insurance for young van drivers is essentially the same as ordinary, cheap-as-chips van insurance… except that it’s rarely cheap.

There are a number of steps you can take that might increase your likelihood of finding cheaper van insurance, though, such as:

  • Adding an experienced driver to your policy as a ‘named driver’ – While it’s a crime (known as ‘fronting’) to list someone else as the main driver on an insurance policy if you are in fact the main driver, it’s perfectly acceptable to add an older, more experienced driver as a secondary ‘named driver’, and doing so can sometimes help to lower your premiums because it suggests you won’t be behind the wheel yourself quite so much.
  • Agreeing to a higher excess – If you add a higher voluntary excess to your young driver van insurance policy you can sometimes benefit from cheaper premiums, since you’ll be agreeing to cover more of the cost yourself if you ever have to make a claim.
  • Parking in a garage or on a private driveway – Vans are more likely to be targeted by thieves if they’re parked on the side of the road, particularly if they have signage or branding that might lead a thief to believe there might be valuable tools inside. In addition, vans that are parked on the roadside have a higher risk of being damaged by a passing vehicle, which means younger van drivers could benefit from lower premiums if they’re able to park in a garage or on a driveway.
Will the level of cover I opt for affect my van insurance premium too?

Yes, it can do – but not always in the way you’d expect.

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

  • Third Party 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. However you should take note that this is the bare minimum level of coverage, so you will not be covered for damage to your own vehicle in the event of an accident.
  • Third Party, Fire and Theft Insurance – This offers you all the protection that you can expect from a third party only policy. You will also have additional cover against fire and theft to your van.
  • Fully Comprehensive – This is the most comprehensive form of van cover, it will offer you all the coverage of a third party, fire and theft plus coverage for your own van as a result of an at fault accident.

In theory Third Party Van Insurance should be the cheapest, because it offers policyholders the least comprehensive cover. However, many higher-risk drivers opt for third party cover in order to reduce their premiums, a fact that insurance providers often take into account when calculating the premiums for each level of cover. The result is that fully comprehensive van insurance can sometimes prove to be as cost effective as (or sometimes even cheaper than) third party cover.

That’s why we recommend that young van drivers use Quotezone.co.uk to compare quotes for all three levels of cover, and then opt for the van insurance policy that offers the most comprehensive cover at the most competitive price.

Can young van drivers reduce their insurance costs by earning a No Claims Discount?

Yes, as with car insurance policies, the main driver on a van insurance policy will usually earn a No Claims Discount (NCD) that increases a little with each consecutive year they’ve been insured without making a claim.

Building up a No Claims Discount (or No Claims Bonus, as it’s also known) is one of the most effective ways to reduce the cost of your van insurance if you’re a younger driver, but it’s important to bear in mind that it usually does only apply to the main driver – if you’re included on someone else’s van insurance policy as a named driver you usually won’t earn an NCD.

What are the factors that Impact my van insurance cost?

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 individual policy holder is something that is unique to them, however there are some common factors that insurers use to determine your premiums:

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 where 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.

Your Occupation

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

For example remote roles and office jobs will involve considerably less driving than a mobile mechanic. This means your vehicle will not accumulate as much mileage and so the chance of an accident is reduced.

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.

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 in.

To get a better idea of how safe your area is and if you may be living in a location that could increase your premiums, check out our free tool.

Your Driving Record

It should 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.

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 an 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 advise 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 impacted 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.