Does My Age Affect My Car Insurance?
Caeva O'Callaghan | January 10th, 2023
Many risk factors affect car insurance. But does your year of birth really matter that much?
Yes, it does. How old you are will affect how much you pay for your car insurance. Age is a factor insurance companies use to determine the level of risk when you drive.
The good news is, young or old, we can help you find a fantastic deal on your car insurance. Just pick up the phone and give us a call to get your quote.
In this article, we’ll cover questions like:
- Do young drivers pay more for car insurance?
- I’m an older driver – will this affect my ability to get cover?
- How does my age impact my car insurance premium?
The bottom line is, as discriminatory as it may seem, how much you’ll pay for your car insurance will depend in a small part on your age. It’s simply a contributory factor to the risks associated with driving a car.
Why your age matters
When you enter your personal information to get a quote on your car insurance, any insurance provider will ask your age. This is not only for marketing purposes: age is actually one of the primary rating factors for car insurance.
As uncomfortable as it may seem, insurance companies rate these factors according to hard facts and statistics. Actuaries delve into the numbers associated with traffic incident reports across the country to determine a risk factor. These include the type of incident – such as a crash, knock or type of conviction such as drunk driving – as well as how bad the damage was.
According to statistics, young drivers under the age of 25 are likely to pay more for their car insurance because of their propensity to crash. Additionally, statistics from the Road Safety Authority show most drivers killed in road traffic accidents in 2017 were between the ages of 16 and 25.
Young drivers’ lack of driving experience, together with risk-taking behaviour, puts them at heightened risk for crashes. One in five drivers has an accident in the first year of driving, and it is widely believed that one needs to drive 100K to become an experienced driver.
However, it only gets better for a certain amount of time. Once you reach a certain age, experience suddenly becomes a turn-off for insurers. Claims get a lot less likely to succeed from about 75 years of age, and the situation deteriorates further as drivers reach 80 or more.
Age and discrimination
Many options are available for younger drivers. Specialist insurance products on offer include rewards for safer driving thanks to a tracker installed in the car, or the ability to go on their parents’ policy. However, no such options are available to older drivers.
It gets increasingly hard to defend the “statistics” excuse as you delve into the numbers. Here at QuoteMe, we ran the numbers. One of our clients, aged 61, had a premium which was €606.54. When we increased her age to 71, the premium rose to €687.51. We then increased her age to 81 and the premium increased to €833.94. Nothing else changed – just her year of birth. All other details remained the same.
We did a bit more research, and discovered that by the time our client had reached her 80’s, only three insurance companies would quote. They were Aviva, Liberty and Axa. All others declined to quote: every single one.
At this point you might be thinking, there must be some statistics which show older drivers are more dangerous. Actually, this is not the case. A major study published in the US in 2007 showed that older drivers, representing 15% of all licensed drivers, cause 7% percent of all accidents. Younger drivers, representing 13% of all licensed drivers, cause 43% of all accidents.
So what’s going on?
Unfortunately, it’s difficult to tell. Older drivers simply do not pose as much risk as younger drivers. They are more likely to self-regulate, less likely to show off when a friend is in the passenger seat, and less likely to use a mobile phone while driving. But insurance premiums do not reflect this. We think this is wrong.
How to save money
No matter your age, there are some workarounds if you find out your age is affecting how much you pay for your car insurance. We can help – pick up the phone and give us a call, and we’ll guide you through the process.
If you’re a younger driver, here’s some tips:
- Get your full license as soon as possible.
- Get named driver experience: while most insurers will insist on a full year of this, some providers offer discounts to young drivers who have six months’ experience on their parent’s policy.
- Choose a smaller car: the bigger the engine and the more expensive it is, the more you’ll pay.
If you’re an older driver, there are a few things you can do:
- Look for policies with Aviva, Liberty and Axa.
- Investigate “black box” policy – where a device is installed in your car to monitor your driving. The safer you are, the more your premiums lower.
- Downsize your large, expensive car to a smaller and cheaper model.
Here at QuoteMe, we believe the insurance industry is discriminatory towards older people and that this is wrong. We’re happy to help any older driver who needs help finding the perfect insurance policy and secure their independence for years to come.
If you are looking for car insurance, talk to us today!
If you are searching the market for car insurance feel free to pick up the phone and talk to our insurance experts anytime from Mon-Fri between 8.30am and 5.30pm on 0818 224433 or 042 9359051. Our trained Insurance experts know all the angles when it comes to finding the right car insurance for our customers.
If you require an immediate car insurance quote, our quote engine checks the Irish insurance market for the right cover for your specific needs.