A guide to getting van insurance for drivers under 21
For many drivers under 21 years old, getting van insurance can be a big headache.
Finding an insurer who’ll cover you can be tricky enough. Then once you’ve found one, coping with the high premiums can be harder still.
Fortunately, developments in technology have led to the rise of telematics insurance policies, which could come to your aid and help you get out on the road.
Understanding van insurance for the under 21s
As a young van driver aged under 21, your frustration at facing unaffordable premiums is entirely understandable. It’s not nice to feel that you’re being judged based on aspects of your profile like your age or the industry that you work in, rather than how you drive.
Until recently, insurers were limited in their ability to get around this problem.
Of course, over time if you drove carefully, avoided accidents and increased your no claims discount, then you’d see your premiums fall. But without a driving history to base their assessments on, insurance companies were largely dependent on building up a picture of you based on statistical data.
Unfortunately, statistically speaking, young drivers are involved in more accidents than older drivers who have more experience. So it’s unsurprising that this fact – coupled with the reality that young drivers haven’t yet had the chance to build up their no claims discounts – has led to higher average premiums for van drivers under the age of 21.
Fortunately, in recent years GPS technology has matured to a point when it’s feasible for insurance companies to look more closely at how you drive as an individual, meaning that the struggle for a fairer form of cover for drivers under 21 may nearly be over.
This form of cover is known as ‘telematics’ or ‘black box insurance’.
Here you can read some key facts about black box van insurance and what it means for young drivers in particular. Or click here to find out about Direct Line for Business’ van insurance for young van drivers.
Black box insurance is the only form of cover we offer to drivers aged between 18 and 21. (Unfortunately, at present we are unable to offer cover to 17-year-old van drivers.)
If I’m under 21, can I get cheap van insurance?
One driver’s definition of ‘cheap van insurance’ will differ from another’s, but it’s certainly the case that GPS-based technology has made van insurance for the under 21s more affordable in recent years.
By simply installing a small, out-of-the-way device in your van, you may be able to obtain the insurance you need to get you on the road.
The best way to find out is to call us on 0345 301 2882 and get a quote.
What’s the best way to bring down my premiums?
Telematics can help, but GPS technology does not provide a silver bullet to bring down premiums for all drivers under 21. All insurers still have to look at a range of variables when deciding your premiums.
Some of these – such as driving carefully to build up a no claims discount over several years – will take time to make a difference to your premiums.
Some, such as your industry or where you live, may unfortunately be largely out of your control.
But there are others that can help to bring down your premiums right away.
One of these is the vehicle you drive. If you haven’t bought a van yet, consider your purchase carefully, and take a look at the information about van insurance groups we’ve put together here.
There may also be modifications you can make to the security to your van; although there is no guarantee any insurance savings will outweigh the outlay. Only Thatcham-approved devices are recommended and it is essential to run any modifications past your insurer first – as some may even raise the cost of your premiums.
As a young driver looking to bring down your premiums, it’s especially advisable to do everything you can to avoid making your insurance more expensive than it has to be, so make sure you consult your insurer about any modifications before you take out a policy.
Where can I find out more about telematics?
Van expert Peter Lee’s guide to telematics contains lots of useful information about this developing form of cover. There are also some key facts about black box van insurance in this article.
Direct Line for Business’ van insurance for young drivers is available to drivers between 18 and 21.