Speeding is the most common driving offence committed in Wales, according to new research by the UK’s leading price comparison site, MoneySuperMarket.
The research, based on nearly six million car insurance enquiries from MoneySuperMarket, combined with driving licence data from the DVLA, shows car insurance premiums rise the more offences are committed. Committing a driving offence adds £139 to your car insurance costs. A second offence increases premiums by a further 15%, costing £145 more on average.
In Cardiff, 6% of enquirers have at least one driving offence on their licence, with 74.7% having an offence related to speeding, the most common in the area.
Llandrindod Wells (79.9%), Swansea (78.1%) and Walsall (77.6%) have the highest percentage of speeding offences in Wales. On the other end of the spectrum, Cardiff (74.7%), Llandudno (76.2%) and Newport (76.8%) have the lowest.
Most common driving offences in Cardiff
Speeding – 74.7%
Drink driving – 7.2%
Traffic sign offence – 5.3%
Insurance offence – 5%
Construction use -2.3%
Across the country, 10% of enquirers have at least one driving offence against their name, with Halifax having the highest percentage of enquirers who have committed at least one driving offence. Comparatively, Jersey has the lowest proportion of enquirers with offences, with only 3.3.% having at least one offence.
Those who have committed offences also have fewer car insurance options available to them. On the MoneySuperMarket site, enquirers with no driving offences see up to 80 quotes returned; however, after three offences, there is a significant decrease in the number of results shown. Those with four to five offences are likely to only see between six and 10 insurance options – potentially a 93% decrease in available products.
With driving offences leading to penalty points for the holders of nearly three million full and provisional licences, the data shows that having three points on your licence increases your car insurance premiums by £160 (16%).
The price may not go back down to the original cost after the points are cleared either, which will typically take four years. In fact, there is only a 14% (£147) decrease when moving from three to zero points.
Dave Merrick, car insurance expert at MoneySuperMarket, commented: “Driving offences that lead to points on a driver’s license can have a big impact on car insurance costs, as well as impacting the number of car insurance options to choose from. Our research shows that 6% of enquirers in Cardiff have committed at least one driving offence, most commonly speeding, which means they may be seeing fewer car insurance options.
“But even if you do have points or offences, there are things you can do to help to bring premiums down. Keeping your car secure, increasing the excess on your policy and, in certain cases, installing a telematics device can all help to lower the cost. And as always the best way to ensure the cheapest deal is to shop around.”