Four unstoppable tips to save big on your car insurance

The price of car insurance will increase further by up to +2% in 2022 according to insurers. Since 2012, the average annual amount of the premium has also increased to 418,437 euros. Good news: some good practices can reduce the insurance premium.

It is mandatory. Auto insurance is essential if you drive a car. But being protected is expensive. Year after year, the price of premiums increases. The reasons remain the same: increasing accident rates, increased medical costs and compensation for victims, more complex vehicles to repair, more equipment, explains the Automobile Club Association. Auto insurance today represents approximately 10% of a motorist’s annual budget. In 2020, the average amount of an auto insurance contract was 437 euros excluding taxes, compared to 418 euros in 2012 according to figures from France Assureurs. We explain how to reduce the bill.

1 – Play the competition

Insurers have their own pricing criteria and business strategies. Prices therefore vary greatly from one insurer to another depending on your age, car model or place of residence. Similarly, as a study by UFC-Que Choisir pointed out, customer loyalty is rarely rewarded in car insurance. Two factors that argue for looking elsewhere… According to the broker MeilleurAssurance, consumers who have compared their contract have realized an average saving of 340 euros equivalent warranties!

Since 2015, the Hamon law has also allowed you to cancel your car insurance at any time when your contract is over a year old. Your new insurer takes care of the termination itself. Enough to make the competition play more easily and more frequently.

2 – Reduce the risk level of your vehicle

All car models are not equivalent in the eyes of insurers. A reasonable choice significantly reduces the cost of insurance. What to avoid:

  • A powerful vehiclewhich achieves spectacular accelerations: it is statistically the cause of more numerous and more serious accidents.
  • A brand new carfull of electronics and high-end options: repairs will be more expensive in the event of an accident.
  • An easy car to steal: Motorists’ associations publish blacklists every year which are interesting to consult.

To reduce the insurance premium for a model specially exposed to theft (The Toyota Priusthe luxury SUV DS 7 Crossback and the sportswoman Renault Megane RS are the 3 most stolen vehicles in 2021, according to the latest rankings by Auto More), you can claim an anti-theft device with which the car is equipped. Better: you can park it in a garage, if possible a closed box. The premium will be lowered by most insurers.

The Toyota Prius is the most stolen car

3 – Reduce the risk level of your driving

Preserve your bonus. The reduction-increase coefficient, better known as the bonus-malus, has a considerable impact on the price of your insurance. The same insurance at 600 euros per year will cost 300 euros with a bonus of 0.50 and up to 2100 euros with the maximum penalty, ie 3.5. Each year without an at-fault accident multiplies your coefficient by 0.95. In 13 years, you reach the maximum coefficient of 0.50. On the other hand, each accident multiplies your coefficient by 1.25 (for a fully responsible accident) or by 1.125 (for a partially responsible accident).

The basic rule – and this is indeed the purpose of the bonus-malus – is therefore to avoid responsible accidents by adopting a driving respectful of the Highway Code and other users. This is particularly true for young drivers, who will have great difficulty securing a correct rate with a coefficient greater than 1.

Abstaining from declaring all responsible minor claims also preserves the bonus. If you crease your bumper when taking the car out of the garage, your insurer may pay you financial compensation, provided that you have taken out an all-risk policy. But this will also result in the application of a penalty, and therefore in a significant increase in your next bonus. Not sure it’s worth it for a small scratch.

Finally, be aware that the penalty applies to the insured vehicle regardless of the driver at the time of the accident. It is therefore advisable to lend your car only to a trusted person. Moreover, insurers often provide reductions in the event of exclusivity: if the insured agrees that the car will only be driven by himself and his spouse, the premium is lower.

Auto insurance per kilometer hardly seducing

If you are a small rider, between 7,000 and 12,000 kilometers per year, insurance per kilometer can save you between 12 and 40% on your annual premium, assures Amina Walter, deputy general manager of the comparator It’s the pay as you drive (Pay what you drive, editor’s note) Anglo-Saxon. With this system, you pay a fixed premium and an amount of between 0.010 and 0.040 euro cents per kilometer travelled. You declare your annual mileage to an approved mechanic or using a box installed in your vehicle. Newcomers (Leocare, Flitter) also offer to simply send a photo of their odometer.

pay as you drive Where how you drive (depending on the behavior of the driver)… These practices are not imposed in France either, despite growing interest. 65% of French people say they are ready to call on an insurer for this type of insurance. This expectation is even stronger among 25-34 year olds: 73% of them favor on-demand insurance but few take the plunge, in particular because insurers offer few such contracts.

4 – Choose a weaker but less expensive coverage

Adapt the guarantees to your needs. Apart from the civil liability guarantee, the only compulsory one, auto insurance contracts offer numerous guarantees. The idea when you choose your insurance: take out only those you will need.

Car Insurance : save up to 340 € thanks our online comparator

For example, if you only make short trips around town, you may not really need assistance. If you take one, make sure it covers you from the first kilometer. Assistance that would only intervene beyond 50 kilometers from your home would be totally useless. Likewise, if you drive lightly, you probably won’t need a replacement vehicle when your car is immobilized in the garage.

Also find out what exactly the warranties cover. Example with the driver’s guarantee, one of the least known. It is she who takes care of your medical and hospital expenses in the event of injury in an accident, responsible or not. Some contracts are much more generous than others in terms of guarantees (they compensate you in the event of permanent or temporary incapacity, cover your loss of income or even your funeral expenses) and in terms of guarantee ceilings (up to ‘ one million euros for certain insurances). If you already have high-coverage life accident insurance, you may not need to have a very protective driver’s warranty.

Change your guarantees according to the age of the vehicle. Some guarantees are ideal for a new car, but are justified much less 2 years and 30,000 kilometers later. Up to 2 years, your car will be better protected by all-risk insurance, the only one covering the damage you cause to the vehicle yourself. Do not hesitate, if the vehicle has value, to choose a reimbursement option new value.

As soon as the car is no longer listed on the Argus, generally after 7-8 years, third-party insurance is sufficient. It mainly protects third parties from accidents you may cause, although it also includes, most of the time, a driver’s guarantee and a defense (which helps you turn against the person responsible for an accident). This type of insurance does not cover damage caused to the vehicle, unless caused by a third party.

Between the all-risks and the third party, there is a wide variety of intermediate contracts, generally referred to as extended third party or third party plus. In addition to civil liability, these policies generally cover glass breakage, theft and fire. Warranties that can be interesting for a used vehicle that still has a little value.

Play on franchise level. The deductible is the amount that remains your responsibility after a claim. It evolves from simple to double according to the contracts. Whether it is a flat or proportional amount, the higher it is, the more your insurance premium decreases. You can save more than 20% by choosing a high deductible. Be careful, however, not to choose an amount that you would not be able to pay. From 500 euros, you lose the benefit of paying less for your insurance at the first accident.

Car insurance: save money

What you risk driving without insurance

800,000 drivers were driving without insurance in 2020, according to the latest – stable – figures from the National Interministerial Road Safety Observatory. Lack of insurance is punished with a fine that can go up to 7500 euros, together with additional penalties (cancellation of the licence, confiscation of the vehicle, etc.). In the event of an accident, the uninsured person responsible must reimburse the Compulsory Damage Insurance Guarantee Fund for all the sums incurred by the latter to compensate the victims of the accident.

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