What is the best car insurance 2021? | moneyfacts.co.uk

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Michelle Monck

Michelle Monck

Consumer Finance Expert
Published: 20/01/2021

How do we review which car insurance policies get the best rating?

As part of our industry-recognised star ratings system, Moneyfacts looks at all the car insurance products available in the UK marketplace. Our in-house experts carefully analyse and compare the various elements that are offered by each product to understand what benefits these bring to the customer. Car insurance policies are then assigned a star rating that reflects their performance.

Those that offer the most comprehensive range of standout features and benefits are awarded our top rating of five stars.

How does a star rating help me find the best car insurance?

Our independent and impartial star ratings provide consumers with an expert view of the whole market. Customers use our star ratings as an honest and reliable way to identify the products and providers that offer the best benefits.

Featured car insurance providers

  • Moneyfacts Star Rating: 5 Stars

    • With Direct Line Car Insurance, you can choose the cover type and addons that meet your needs.
    • With Direct Line Car insurance there are many perks. With their comprehensive policies providing a guaranteed hire car as standard. They also have other useful extras such as Onward Travel Service which means they’ll arrange for a taxi to take you and all of your passengers, pets and belongings to one destination, or back home if an accident stops you. Anywhere in the UK.
    • Underwritten by U K Insurance Limited.
  • Moneyfacts Star Rating: 5 Stars

    Get 5 star rated Comprehensive Car Insurance from Admiral. Our comprehensive policies include great features and benefits as standard to keep you safe and covered when you’re on the go!

    • Windscreen Repair - Policyholders are eligible for the repair and replacement of windscreens (excess applies).
    • Courtesy Car - Use of a courtesy car whilst your car is being repaired at an Admiral approved garage.
    • European Cover - Up to 90 days cover in Europe so you can enjoy a driving holiday in France without having to arrange extra cover.
    • Stereo Cover - Unlimited cover for standard sound systems.
    • £5,000 Personal Injury Cover - Get £5,000 of personal injury cover for you and your partner.
    • Sat-Nav and Personal Belongings Cover - If your personal belongings or effects are damaged or stolen while in your car, we'll pay up to £150 to help you replace them.
    • 24 Hour Emergency Helpline - Comprehensive and third party, fire & theft customers can call if they have an incident and we're liable for the damage.
    • Bonus Match - Insure a second car with us and, in most cases, we'll match your No Claims Bonus on that vehicle as well.

    Multi car insurance offers the same cover as our standard car insurance policy but allows you to insure multiple cars on one policy – so you’ll have just one renewal date after 12 months. You’ll get a discount for every car added and each earns its own No Claims Bonus.

  • Moneyfacts Star Rating: 5 Stars

    Aviva Car Insurance is there when you need it, and with a Defaqto 5 Star Rating it’s easy to see why 1 million people* protect their car with Aviva.

    Get a quote for Aviva Car Insurance in minutes!

    • With comprehensive cover, if your car isn't sage to drive after an accident, Aviva will get you home, or to your destination and get your car to a repairer**.
    • Settled over 98.8% of all motor insurance claims in 2020, which meant repairing over 45,000 motors.

    Multicar Insurance

    10% off with Aviva Multicar when you insure 2 or more cars.^

    10% discount doesn't apply to optional extras or at renewal. Excludes Aviva Online and Aviva Premium car insurance.

    • Make life easier with just one policy for all your cars, with just one renewal.
    • For each car, you can choose different levels of cover and excess.

    If you have more than 2 cars you will need to speak to their contact centre to complete your quote - tell the adviser you speak to that you require cashback.

    *Correct at August 2021.

    **Onward travel arranged on comprehensive cover. Geographical restrictions apply.

    ^ Up to 5 vehicles can be insured under one policy and must be registered at the same address. Multi product discount applies after any online discount.

  • LV

    Moneyfacts Star Rating: 5 Stars

    See why it’s our heart that sets us apart:

    • We pay out on 99% of claims*
    • You could save 20% with our Multi Car policy**
    • Tailor your cover with optional extras 

    *99.6% of direct motor claims paid Oct ’20 – Sept ’21
    **For new customers buying via the same channel: 27.3% would have saved 20% vs. multiple single policies Jun to Sep '21.

  • Moneyfacts Star Rating: 5 Stars

    • Protecting your No Claims Discount is included as standard
    • No upper age limit, unlike other providers
    • No hidden admin fees
    • Guaranteed courtesy car for comprehensive cover customers
    • 'Get you home service' after an accident - up to £250
    • Award-winning service
    • Net profits donated to Age UK
  • Moneyfacts Star Rating: 5 Stars

    • Misfuelling Cover
    • Uninsured Driver Protection
    • UK Call Centre
    • Courtesy Car
    • Onward Travel Cover
    • 90 Day European Cover
  • Moneyfacts Star Rating: 5 Stars

    • Keep your car on the road and ready for any adventure when you choose Endsleigh car insurance. We’ll search a panel of top UK insurers to find you our cheapest quote
    • Personal accident cover up to £2,000 for you and your passengers
    • 24-hour windscreen and glass cover on comprehensive policies
    • Replacement car included as standard on comprehensive policies in the event of an accident
    • Discounts on RAC cover for students
    • Reward good driving for young or new drivers with Endsleigh loop Black Box insurance
  • Moneyfacts Star Rating: 5 Stars

    • Car Insurance from £168 a year.
    • If your car is damaged,  Comprehensive policies will cover the repair cost up to the market value of your car (this includes both accidents and malicious damage).
    • If your car is damaged or a total loss due to fire or theft Swinton will pay out up to the market value of your car.
    • Windscreen Cover is included in all of Swinton Comprehensive Car Insurance options so you don’t have to buy it separately.
    • Swinton have over 60 years' experience in finding Car Insurance.
    • Classic car insurance specialist.
    • Up to £100,000 legal cover for non-fault accidents.
    • UK & European breakdown cover.
    • Agreed value available.
    • Salvage retention rights.
    • Up to 15% discount for club members.
    • Choose your own specialist repairer.
    • Shows, rallies and events cover.
    • Have a rating of ‘Great’ from 4,500 reviews on Trustpilot.
    • Have gained recognition with numerous awards and commendations down the years.
    • The Carole Nash team boast a wealth of expertise when it comes to classic car insurance, so you can be confident you’re dealing with the very best.
    • Flexible short term insurance from just 1 hour to 28 days
    • Cover available online in just 90 seconds
    • Ideal for borrowing a vehicle, test driving, sharing long drives, or picking up a new vehicle
    • Designed to fit around your needs so you only pay for the cover you want
    • Available for drivers aged 17-78
    • Rated “Excellent” 4.6/5 on TrustPilot
  • Moneyfacts Star Rating: 5 Stars

    • A fairer kind of car insurance for lower mileage drivers.
    • Simple, straightforward car insurance that you pay by the mile.
    • The less you drive, the less you pay.
    • Pay for what you use and always be covered by fully comprehensive insurance. No Claims Bonus protection comes as standard.
    • Instantly see the exact cost of each day’s driving in our app, then pay for what you’ve driven monthly. Simple as that.
    • Stay in complete control with simple bills, reminders and features to help you take care of your car on a daily basis.
  • We offer three different policy types, so you can choose the car insurance that’s right for you. Our Direct and Premier policies are 5 Star Defaqto rated, but if you’re looking for something more basic, our Essential policy is designed so you pay for exactly what you need – and nothing more.

    Our Hastings Direct and Premier policies include:

    • Courtesy car
    • Windscreen cover
    • 24/7 claims helpline
    • 90 days of EU cover
    • Driving other cars
    • Vandalism promise
    • Uninsured driver promise
    • Personal accident cover
    • Personal belongings cover

    We also offer a range of optional extras, such as enhanced personal accident cover, breakdown, motor legal expenses and key protection.*

    *Limitations may apply to these products.

Note

Links to third parties on this page are paid for by the third party. You can find out more about the individual products by visiting their site. Moneyfacts.co.uk will receive a small payment either if you click the links or if you use their services after you click through to their site. All information is subject to change without notice. Please check all terms before making any decisions.

Disclaimer

The list of car insurance providers on this page is a selection of services available and gives you an idea of the kind of options available. You can find out more about the individual products by visiting any of the providers listed. All information is subject to change without notice. Please check all terms before making any decisions. This information is intended solely to provide guidance and is not financial advice. Moneyfacts.co.uk will not be liable for any loss arising from your use or reliance on this information. If you are in any doubt, Moneyfacts.co.uk recommends you obtain independent financial advice.

Get an insurance quote

An alternative to working with the insurance providers above is to use an insurance broker. Quotezone offers you an immediate quote from their selected panel of insurers.

Find out more

What parts of the car insurance policy do we look at?

  • Compulsory excess
  • Voluntary excess discount
  • Multi-car discount
  • No claims discount
  • No claims discount protection
  • Uninsured driver cover
  • Telematics
  • Courtesy car
  • New car replacement
  • Transport from accident
  • Loss/theft of keys
  • Driving other cars
  • Personal accident
  • Legal assistance
  • Breakdown cover
  • Audio equipment cover
  • Sat nav cover
  • Medical expenses limit
  • Repair guarantee
  • Misfuelling cover
  • Foreign usage availability and limits
  • Windscreen cover
  • Child seat cover
  • Vandalism cover
  • Personal belongings
  • Set-up fees

 

Car insurance – Five Star

Car insurance - Five star

  • 1st Central - Private Car
  • 1st Central - Private Car Legal
  • 1st Central - Private Car Plus
  • 1st Central - Private Car Premier
  • AA - Car Insurance AA Members
  • AA - Car Insurance Non Members
  • AA - Smart Insurance AA Members
  • AA - Smart Insurance Non Members
  • Admiral - Car Insurance
  • Admiral - LittleBox
  • Admiral - MultiCar
  • Admiral - Plug & Drive
  • Age Co - Motor Insurance
  • Ageas - Car Insurance
  • Ageas - Car Insurance Essentials
  • Ageas - Private Car
  • Aviva - AvivaPlus Premium
  • Aviva - AvivaPlus Regular
  • Aviva - Motor Insurance
  • Aviva - MultiCar Insurance
  • AXA Direct - Car Insurance
  • AXA Insurance - Car Plus
  • Bell - Plug & Drive
  • Brightside - Car Insurance
  • Budget Insurance - Private Car Policy
  • By Miles - Car Insurance
  • Churchill - Car Insurance
  • Churchill - DriveSure Car Insurance
  • Confidas - Motor Lux
  • Confidas - Motor Max
  • Covéa Insurance - Private Car
  • Darwin - Car Insurance
  • Dial Direct - Car Insurance
  • Dial Direct - Premier Car Insurance
  • Diamond - Car Insurance
  • Direct Line - Car Insurance
  • Direct Line - DrivePlus Car Insurance
  • Direct Line - Select Premier
  • Elephant - Car Insurance
  • Endsleigh - Car Insurance
  • Endsleigh - Endsleigh Loop
  • esure - Car Insurance
  • First Alternative - Car Insurance
  • Forces Mutual - Car Insurance
  • Ford Insure - Car Insurance
  • Geoffrey Insurance - Car Insurance
  • Go Girl - Private Car Insurance
  • GoSkippy Insurance - Private Car Insurance(Southern Rock Insurance)
  • GoSkippy Insurance - Private Car Insurance (Watford)
  • Got2Insure.com - Motor Insurance
  • Hastings Direct - Hastings Direct Car Insurance (XA)
  • Hastings Direct - Hastings Direct YouDrive
  • Hastings Direct - Hastings Premier Car Insurance (XA)
  • Hastings Direct SmartMiles - Car Insurance
  • Hedgehog - Premier Private Car
  • Hedgehog - Private Car
  • Home & Legacy Premier - Motor Insurance
  • Home & Legacy Ultimate - Motor Insurance
  • iGO4 Insurance - GO4 Insurance
  • iGO4 Insurance - iGO4 More
  • Insure 2 Drive - Private Car Insurance
  • insurePink - Car Insurance (XA)
  • John Lewis Finance - Car Insurance
  • LV= - Car Insurance
  • LV= - Flow Car Insurance
  • M&S Bank - Premier Car Insurance
  • M&S Bank - Standard Car Insurance
  • Mercedes-Benz Insurance - Motor Insurance
  • MORE TH>N - Car Insurance
  • MORE TH>N - Low Miler
  • NatWest - Premier Motor Insurance
  • NFU Mutual - Car Policy
  • Nissan Insurance - Motor Guard (Ageas)
  • Nissan Insurance - Optima Car (Ageas)
  • Nissan Insurance - Private Car (Covea)
  • Nissan Insurance - Private Car (MHR) (MISL)
  • People's Choice - Car Insurance (XA)
  • Police Mutual - Car Insurance
  • Police Mutual - Family Car Insurance
  • Police Mutual - Narpo Gold
  • Privilege - Car Insurance
  • Privilege - Car Insurance Plus
  • Privilege - DriveXpert
  • Provident Insurance - Car Insurance
  • RAC - Black Box Insurance
  • RAC - Car Insurance Plus
  • RIAS - Car Insurance
  • Royal Bank of Scotland - Premier Motor Insurance
  • Saga - Saga Car Motor Insurance
  • Saga - Saga Essential Motor Insurance
  • Sainsbury's Bank - Car Insurance
  • Sainsbury's Bank - Car Plus
  • Sheilas' Wheels - Car Insurance
  • smart - Motor Insurance
  • Swiftcover - Car Insurance
  • Swinton Insurance - Classic Car Insurance
  • Swinton Insurance - Premier Car Insurance
  • Tesco Bank - Tesco Bank Car Insurance
  • Yoga Insurance Services - Private Car

Car insurance – Four Star

Car insurance - Four star

  • 1st Central - 1st Central Value
  • Ageas - Motor Guard
  • Ageas - Optima Car
  • Ageas - Optima Plus
  • Alfa Romeo Insurance - Motor Insurance
  • Aston Lark - Elite Motor Insurance
  • Aviva - AvivaPlus Basic
  • AXA - Car Insurance (NI Only)
  • AXA - Drivesave (NI Only)
  • AXA Insurance - Car Insurance
  • Bank of Scotland - Car Insurance
  • BMW Insurance - Car Insurance
  • Co-op Insurance - Motor Car Insurance
  • Debenhams - Private Car Insurance (ABC Insurance)
  • Debenhams - Private Car Insurance (Southern Rock Insurance)
  • Debenhams - Private Car Insurance (Watford)
  • Fish Insurance - Car Insurance
  • General Accident - Telematics Car Insurance
  • Halifax - Car Insurance
  • Hughes Insurance - Car Insurance
  • Hughes Insurance - HughesDrive
  • Jeep Insurance - Motor Insurance
  • Lloyds Bank - Car Insurance
  • LV= Broker - Clear Car Insurance
  • MORE TH>N - Smart Wheels Car Insurance
  • Post Office Money - Over 50s Car Insurance
  • Post Office Money - Under 50s Car Insurance
  • Quotemehappy.com - Car Insurance
  • RAC - Car Insurance
  • Santander - Car Insurance
  • Seat - Car Insurance
  • Skoda - Car Insurance
  • Tesco Bank - Tesco Bank Box Insurance
  • Ticker - Car Insurance
  • Vavista - Private Car Insurance (Southern Rock Insurance)
  • Vavista - Private Car Insurance (Watford)
  • Volkswagen Insurance - Car Insurance
  • WiseDriving - Intelligent Car Insurance
  • WiseDriving - Intelligent Car Insurance (Black Box)
  • WiseDriving - Intelligent Car Insurance (Self-Install)
  • Zenith Insurance - Car Insurance

How to cut car insurance costs – 4 tips to keep down your premium

1. Avoid auto-renewing your insurance

Insurance customers that do not shop-around can find that their renewal quote creeps up year after year. While auto-renewing is convenient and can help to make sure you are not accidentally uninsured it could cost you more money. This is because of a practice called ‘price walking’ where insurers creep up their renewal prices despite there being no change in the customer’s risk profile.
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has identified 6 million policy holders that were paying high or very high amounts for their insurance policy (across home and car insurance) in 2018. The regulator is seeking to stop price walking from 2022 when car insurance providers must offer the same prices to new customers as they do for existing ones. Those wanting the cheapest car insurance still need to be vigilant and continue to shop around for the best insurance deals as prices will still differ between providers.

2. Make a diary note to start getting quotes one month before your policy expires

Research from moneysavingexpert shows that the best time to get insurance quotes is between 20 to 26 days before your policy expires. Their research suggests that insurers include the amount of time allowed for getting car insurance quotes as a risk indicator. Those that leave it to the last-minute pay more for their car insurance on average.

3. A multi-car policy could save money for families with more than one car

Some insurers offer discounts for insuring multiple cars with them. You should still shop around to compare the premiums.

4. Check the interest rate charged if you pay your insurance monthly

If you pay your insurance monthly, you will usually be charged interest on the total quoted for your car insurance policy. This is because the insurer is lending you the money to pay for the policy upfront and you are then paying back this debt to the insurer. If you can pay upfront this will save you interest costs. If you need to pay monthly then check the interest rate you will be charged and include this when you compare the cost of car insurance quotes.

When is the best time to renew car insurance?

Getting a car insurance quote too soon or too late could cost you extra pounds according to research conducted in 2019 by moneysavingexpert. This showed that the lowest car insurances rates available through insurance comparison sites was between 20 to 26 days before your policy is due to start.
Insurers base their pricing on risk, and this includes your driving history, location and vehicle type along with other factors. The research from moneysavingexpert suggests that insurers also use how much time you allow to get a quote before your policy start date as a risk indicator. Those who plan ahead allowing about three weeks before their policy start date are seen as less of a risk than the equivalent applicant requesting a quote closer to their start date.

How to find car insurance quotes

The best insurance policy should combine a competitive price, product features and cover that you need with a good experience if you should need to make a claim. Before you start to search price comparison sites, you should have a look at review and ratings to see which insurers have a good reputation.
We’ve listed above those car insurers and their specific policies that have been recognised by Moneyfacts with a four- or five-star rating – this is based on their product features. This will help you to apply directly to those insurers that offer good quality car insurance policies.
Review sites can also be a good source to find out people’s experiences of claiming through a car insurance company.
Once you have an idea of those insurers that should meet your needs in terms of a good quality product and a positive claims experience you can then look for the lowest price either directly, using our table above or through a comparison site.

Can you get an insurance quote before buying a car?

Yes, you can use a comparison site and the car’s registration details to find out how much this might cost to insure if you go ahead and buy the car. Sometimes when you a buy a car from a dealer it will come with seven days’ free insurance.

Why are my car insurance quotes so high?

The cost of your insurance will depend on your own personal circumstances, your vehicle, where you live and then a range of elements that affects the insurers total costs such as the level of claims, insurance tax and the number of personal injury claims.
Penalty points and previous accidents or moving to an area with higher levels of crime can all increase your insurance premium.

How to get car insurance quotes online

You can choose to either get car insurance quotes online directly from the insurer or from a comparison site. You should be prepared with the details of any additional drivers you want to have on the policy, your no claims bonus details, your car registration details and details of any claims or accidents you have had in the past.

How long does a car insurance quote last for?

Each insurer will state how long their car insurance quote is valid for. Some insurance firms choose to update their pricing as and when required, while others allow for quotes to be valid for a set number of days. Quotes can be valid for 30 days or up to 90 days. If you obtain a quote and then need to make a change, this can also change the price you are quoted.

Car insurance FAQs

How to get cheap car insurance for 17-year olds?

Younger drivers can often lower their insurance premiums by using a tracking device in their vehicle, this monitors their driving speed and style, as well as the times of day or night that they drive. A score is then applied and if this is good there is the potential for a lower rate at renewal. Sometimes this ‘black box’ insurance policies also restrict when you can drive, for example after 10:00 at night.

Does a car insurance quote affect your credit score?

When you get a car insurance quote, the insurance provider will run a soft credit check to check your details. They will only perform a full credit check if you decide to pay for your insurance monthly. This is because when you pay for your insurance monthly you are in fact borrowing the full cost of the premium from the insurer and then paying this back each month. This means you are also usually charged interest on the monthly payment too.

A soft search to check your identity does not have an impact on your credit score, you will only see an affect on your credit score once a hard check is made if you decide to pay for your policy monthly.

Find out more about credit checks.

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Disclaimer: This information is intended solely to provide guidance and is not financial advice. Moneyfacts will not be liable for any loss arising from your use or reliance on this information. If you are in any doubt, Moneyfacts recommends you obtain independent financial advice.

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