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Wednesday 18 January 2017

Younger drivers singled out for massive premium hikes

Published 02/07/2015 | 02:30

Hike: Premiums are set to increase for younger drivers
Hike: Premiums are set to increase for younger drivers

YOUNG drivers are being quoted 50pc more for car insurance than a year ago.

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And some motorists with little driving experience are being asked to pay close to double the premium they paid a year ago, a survey of insurers by broker CoverInAClick has found.

Many young drivers who were getting insured for €2,000 last year and now being asked to pay €3,500, the survey shows.

Struggling insurers are loading younger drivers as they are higher risk.

Jonathan Hehir of CoverInAClick.ie said insurers here were making losses and are pulling back from covering young drivers, particularly those with little or no driving experience.

He said the rates being offered to young drivers were up 50pc compared with a year ago. For those with no driving experience, some insurers were pushing up premiums by 90pc.

Drivers who were paying between €2,000 and €2,500 last year are now being asked to pay between €3,500 and €4,000 this year, he said.

This was particularly the case for Irish-based insurers.

"Premiums are facing 'upward only' increases so motorists need to minimise these increases where and when possible," he said.

A recent survey by the State watchdog, the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission, found that most insurers here were unwilling to quote a 20-year-old student with a full licence for less than a year.

Mr Hehir advised young drivers to seek out a broker and check if a British-regulated insurer could offer better value.

"Motorists dealing with brokers that have access to bigger UK or London insurers will fare better when it comes to rates as Irish based insurers continue in their attempts to recover losses," he said.

He said that some large insurers operating here are regulated from the UK.

London-based insurers are not carrying the losses of the Irish insurers, and are offering far better terms, he said.

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