Why is the cost of getting behind the wheel so expensive for young drivers?
It's a known fact that driving for 17-20 year olds can leave you in a deep hole of financial insecurity. A 2014 National Travel Survey said the number of young people holding a full driving licence has fallen. In 1995, 43% of 17-20 year olds held a driving licence, now it has fallen to 31%. The number of young males holding a driving licence was 51% it has now dropped to 30%. The number of young females holding a driving licence was 36% but has now dropped to 31%.
The main reason driving is becoming ultimately unaffordable is student loans and rising housing costs, which leave little in the pocket to afford driving lessons and a car including all of the costs which go with owning a car. The national minimum wage is rising (in the UK) but though it has risen, this doesn't make us better off as the cost of driving is also rising. In 1995, a 5 year old Ford Fiesta would cost £3250, where as today it would cost £5510, this results in a rise of 70% according to motoring guide Glass's.
The average 17 year old can now pay up to the hefty price of £1,997 a year for insurance. Nowadays the cost of insurance is more expensive than the car itself, to avoid high insurance costs and to lower your premiums, follow my advice below if you wish:
Buy a small car.
The less powerful your car is the less expensive it will be to run. You should take into account it's value, engine size, power to weight ratio and availability of parts. This will determine which insurance group your car goes into and so how much it will cost to insure it.
Secure your vehicle.
Fitting your car with a tracker, an alarm or immobiliser can ensure your car is less likely to be stolen or tampered with, and so reduces the chance of you having to make a claim for theft. If you park off-road, in a locked garage or on the driveway, it can reduce your premium, so keep your car in a safe place especially at night.
Add an older driver to your policy.
Adding a 'safe' older adult to your policy such as you parents or other relatives can cut costs on your insurance. Just make sure the person who drives the most in the car is listed at the main driver otherwise it can result in a £300 fine and points on your licence.
Fit your car with a 'Black Box'.
It may not be the most glamorous of things to have and I'm sure every young driver detests them, however if you have a black box, it can help drive down premiums. It measures speed, cornering, acceleration and braking as well as your location and time of day you are driving. If you are classed as a safe driver, you should be rewarded with a lower premium. If you drive unsafely and take risks however, your premium will rise so be cautious.
Just drive safely in general.
If you are a young driver with points on your licence or a recent insurance claim to your name, it can add up to 10% onto you insurance costs, so avoid speeding or other convictions.
I hope this advice is helpful to you, if you have anymore questions don't hesitate to comment below :)