The latest Sainsbury's Car Insurance Index is out and the news is not good for motorists - according to its figures, between July 2007 and June 2008, the average car insurance premium increased by 5.8 per cent.
The index also reported significant differences in premiums based on age. For example, motorists over the age of 65 saw a 10 per cent increase in car insurance premiums - the highest of any age group. However, it is motorists under the age of 25 who continue to pay the most for car insurance even though their premiums increased by the smallest margin over the last 12 months - by just 2.47 per cent. Nevertheless, their average premium is now £1,249.56 compared to a national average of £514.36.
The rise in premiums has been put down to a number of factors including an increase in personal injury claims and the heightening cost of repairs. So what can drivers do to keep their costs down?
The most important factor is to drive safely - according to Sainsbury's research, 65 per cent of motorists admit to some form of dangerous activity when behind the wheel, such as eating or using mobile phones. By cutting out these activities, drivers can stay safe and drive premiums down across the board - not to mention take advantage of no-claims discounts offered by many insurers.
Avoiding convictions is also important - two or more speeding offences could add as much as 74 per cent on to a premium. Look for discounts by fitting a car alarm and parking in a garage overnight.
The Association of British Insurers estimates that drivers can save as much as 35 per cent if they compare car insurance quotes from five providers. Obviously the more you compare the better - use a comparison website to find cheap car insurance in minutes.