With just two days to go until the new EU gender directive comes into force, uSwitch research has found that a third of drivers remain unaware of its potential impact.
According to the AA, a female driver aged between 17 and 22 currently pays a typical premium of £2,057 compared with more than £3,000 for men in the same age bracket.
Many within the insurance industry predict that prices for young women will rise by an average of 25%, adding around £531 per policy.
Cheaper cover for men, price rises for women
Michael Ossei, personal finance expert at uSwitch, says: “The new EU gender ruling will affect anyone who drives a car. As it stands, too many consumers are in the dark about how they will be affected.
“From this Friday, insurers will not be able to factor in gender when setting car insurance premiums. The new rules could provide an early Christmas present for men, who are likely to benefit from lower premiums.
“However, women will be in for a rougher ride, with premiums set to rise by up to 25%. Hardest hit will be women aged between 17 and 25 who could see premiums almost double.
Women drivers to cut back on spending
Ossei continues: “The new rules could force almost a quarter of women drivers off the road – 13% have said that they will not be able to afford motor insurance and 11% may have to sell their cars. Over a third of female drivers would have to cut their living expenses to cope with higher premiums and 5% may have to borrow money.
“Very few women are taking action before the new rules are introduced – the majority are seeing their premiums out and risking the rise in the new year. This is a sensible route to take, given the hefty exit penalties charged by most insurers.
“With this in mind, it’s more important than ever at renewal time to do some research to find the best deal possible. With over 100 providers on the market, there can be a huge difference between the cheapest and the most expensive quote.
“A little bit of research will go a long way towards limiting the financial impact of this judgement and not letting cost force drivers off the road.”
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