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VAN drivers in Oldham are paying the highest premiums for comprehensive insurance in the UK according to data from an online insurance price comparison website.

The Van Insurer website shows a mixed picture of premiums, with a clear northern ‘divide’. Alongside Oldham, three other cities in the North West of England feature in the top 10 most expensive locations for van insurance, compared to none in the North East.

Manchester took the fifth spot, Liverpool came seventh and Bolton was placed 10th.

Van drivers in Luton and Slough are paying the second and third most expensive premiums, higher than central London.

At the other end of the scale, van drivers in Scotland were likely to enjoy the lowest regional average, and Staffordshire town Newcastle-under-Lyme had the cheapest premiums in the whole of the UK, with van drivers paying on average £567 a year.

Similarly, Redditch, Lincoln and Mansfield, all in the Midlands region, came within the 10 cheapest cities to get van insurance.

London was only the sixth most expensive place for van drivers to get insured, with the average comprehensive policy costing around £1,468 a year. Birmingham, the UK’s second biggest city, came lower down the rankings, placing eighth at approximately £1,458 annually.

Van drivers in Harrogate, which was the fifth cheapest place to get insured last year, enjoyed a 6% drop in their average policy price, from £742 in 2017 to £697 in 2018.

Those in Liverpool might be paying top-10 rates for their insurance but average prices dropped 17% from £1,766 to £1,465 from 2017 to 2018.

Likewise, in Manchester there was an average saving of £219 in 2018 compared with the previous year with average policies dropping from £1,704 to £1,485 respectively.

Jade Isabelle, commercial director at The Van Insurer, said: “Most people will appreciate that van drivers in rural areas are likely to pay less for their insurance premiums compared with drivers in cities, but it may come as a surprise to those in the North West to have higher premiums versus their neighbours in the North East.

“There are many different factors that can affect how much van drivers pay for their policies, from accident and theft rates in the area to the age and specification of the van.”

Top 10 most expensive cities for van insurance in 2018[2]

City                                         Average annual cost per comprehensive premium

  1. Oldham                                    £1,630
  2. Luton                                       £1,492
  3. Slough                                     £1,489
  4. West Bromwich                         £1,487
  5. Manchester                               £1,485
  6. London                                    £1,468
  7. Liverpool                                 £1,465
  8. Birmingham                              £1,458
  9. Bradford                                  £1,445
  10. Bolton                                      £1,424

Top 10 least expensive cities for van insurance in 2018[3]


City                                         Average annual cost per comprehensive premium

  1. Newcastle-under-Lyme          £567
  2. Chesterfierld                         £633
  3. Redditch                               £634
  4. Shrewsbury                          £690
  5. Harrogate                             £697
  6. Lincoln                                  £712
  7. Ipswich                                 £727
  8. Mansfield                               £729
  9. Worthing                                £756
  10. Bath                                       £772


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Chris Wright
Chris Wright has been covering the automotive industry nationally and internationally for 30 years. Following spells with consumer titles he became News Editor of Automotive Management (AM), Editor of Automotive International, International Editor for Detroit-based Automotive News, and Editor of Dealer Update. He has also co-authored several FT Management Reports and contributes regularly to


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