Just got your UAE drivers license? The next natural step is to get your hands on that dream car. But, there are some essential steps to go through before you hit the roads such as deciding make, budget and financing of your car. Insurance, which is mandatory in the UAE, is even more crucial, particularly when you are a new driver and/or under 25 years old.

The premium for vehicles registered in the name of first-time drivers or those under-25 years old can be around 20% higher as compared to a returning policy buyer above 25. Excess fees in case of claims are also higher for young or new drivers.

Why young drivers could be quoted higher insurance premiums

The higher premium for new drivers is based on the premise that the lack of practice results in poor driving skills and presence of mind, which translates into greater possibility of accidents. Young drivers may also more susceptible to peer pressure and road rage. The numbers indicate the same. In 2013, the UAE Ministry of Interior revealed that motorists aged 18 – 30 years caused 41.8 per cent of road accidents between 2009 and 2012.

No claims could get you a discount on your next insurance policy

The good news is that the Federal Traffic Council recently gave the green signal to a lower minimum age of 17 for UAE drivers. Insurance premium calculation for young drivers will now focus more on driver history.
This is also in practice to some extent now. Beginning from the second year, each additional year that you drive claim-free you may be able to receive a No Claims Discount or reduced premiums. In any year that you make a claim cover your premium will rise, which can prove very expensive for new or young drivers.

[Related: The little extras that come with your car insurance policyWhat to remember when buying your UAE car insurance]

Know about insurance cost while buying a car

Other key factors that impact premium are car value, model, manufacturing year and where the car will be repaired in case of claims.

For insurance to be affordable, if you are a new or young driver you must:

  • Get quotes from minimum three companies.
  • Negotiate for a better deal.
  • Consider buying a low-budget or second-hand car, as premium is calculated on the vehicle value.

[Compare car deals in the UAE and book a test drive]

While driving, keep in mind that the UAE Insurance Authority’s unified policy stipulates that in case of fault of a young or new driver, the motorist would bear 10% of total claims. This is applicable even if the insurance is not in the name of the first-time/under aged driver.