Car insurance for young women is set to soar by up to 25 per cent this month when an EU gender equality ruling comes into force.
From December 21, car insurance companies cannot take gender into account when calculating premiums, so female drivers could be forced to pay thousands more on their insurance premiums.
Female car insurance has always cost less than men’s because statistically women have fewer accidents.
“It really annoys me,” said English literature student Alice Whitton. “I’m selling my car partly because of it as it’s just becoming too expensive to run a car whilst at Uni.”
The Association of British Insurers said that female drivers under the age of 25 would experience average premium increases of almost 25 per cent and male drivers in the same age group would benefit from an average 10 per cent reduction in their insurance premium.
Gareth Kloet, head of car insurance at Confused.com, said: “Men will see their costs fall – but not as much as women will see their costs rise.”
Research conducted by The River on Confused.com, found that for an 18-year-old female student living at Denmark Road, Kingston, a fully comprehensive policy starting before the increase could cost £2,621.69 if paid annually.
Using the same details for a policy starting after the ruling comes into force; the premium rocketed to £5280.80 with the same company, showing an increase of 101 per cent.
But a quote for a student driver who had been driving for several years and had kept their no-claims record intact showed a rise of just over 10 per cent.
Narinder Kumar, 55, a driving instructor, recommends to his students that they should enrol on a Pass Plus practical training course once they have passed their driving test to help lower their car insurance premium.
The course helps drivers improve their skills and drive more safely.
Some insurance companies offer fitting a black box to reduce premiums. This is a small device that is fitted into your car to monitor your driving habits and collects data such as when you drive, where you’re driving, speed and breaking behaviour. This data is sent via GPS to your insurer and is used to calculate a premium based on how well you drive.
Media and cultural studies with French student Charlotte Tanner, 20, who has been driving for nearly two years and has made one claim, thinks the new EU ruling is fair. “It is kind of good because then [car insurance] prices won’t be biased,” she said.
Music student Lloyd Evans thinks the change in the law is a good thing. He said: “Gender ruling is ridiculous, whatever is in your pants shouldn’t affect how much you pay for car insurance, unless it gets in the way of the steering wheel.
“The same way age affects insurance prices is absurd. If you crash more, you should pay more.”