How to get cheap car insurance in Ireland

If you drive on the road in Ireland, there’s no getting away from it - you’ll need car insurance. Here’s all you need to get up to speed with car insurance.

info icon Motorists are legally obliged to have motor insurance under the Road Traffic Act, 1961. As a minimum you need to have third party cover.

Types of cover for your car

How to pick the right cover

Work out how much you can afford and weigh up the pros and cons of each level of cover. If you’re still unsure, ask these questions:

info icon If you bought your car with a finance option, you may be required to get fully comprehensive cover until the loan has been paid in full.

Car insurance types in focus

3rd party

This is the minimum level available, and it’s the cheapest.

What it covers

What it doesn’t

It’s fine if you have an old banger and only use your car for occasional, short trips, but a higher level of cover is best if you can afford it.

3rd Party, Fire & Theft

All the benefits of 3rd party cover, but you also cover for fire damage and theft.

What it covers

What it doesn’t

For many drivers, this is enough cover for peace of mind. So, if you’re strapped for cash but commute or drive regularly, pick this type of cover.


This cover is often the most expensive because it gives you the best protection when things go wrong.

Unlike the other types of car cover, if you’re to blame for an accident or damage your own car - you’re covered regardless of fault.

What it covers

Personal injury may NOT be covered

If you can afford it, go for this type of cover. It’ll protect you for most eventualities, plus you may get extra perks thrown in.

Benefits & extras

Insurers often let you add extra benefits to your policy. You may get some perks thrown in for free with your comprehensive policy, but that depends on the insurer.

Extra benefits to look out for

Replacement car Replacement locks Key rescue Breakdown rescue cover Windscreen cover European travel Excess free claims Protected no claims discount Legal expenses cover

TIP! Check out the free benefits on offer before taking out a policy. Perks can really add value to the cover, especially if it’s something you’ll need.

How much is car insurance?

>The average cost of car insurance in Ireland is around €653, with comprehensive cover the most expensive and 3rd party the cheapest.

9 ways to drive costs down

Car insurance is one of life’s non-negotiables, and drivers pay a hefty sum each month for the pleasure. Here are our tips for bagging yourself the cheapest car insurance.

info icon Stay alert for hidden administration charges. Insurers may charge a fee for changing your car, job type or address.

Car insurance FAQs

Which cars are cheapest to insure?

Insurers will group cars based on several factors like engine size, make, model and safety features. The groupings are individual to insurers but typically range from 1 to 50.

Ideally, you want to pick a car in the lower groups because the higher the grouping, the higher the premium. A vehicle with a small engine will get a cheaper car insurance quote than a larger, powerful car.

If you’re thinking of changing your car, check which group it’s in to get a ballpark figure of how much it’ll cost to insure.

Are old cars more expensive to insure?

Generally yes, because they are more likely to need repair and are harder to fix if they’re damaged. Due to fewer safety features, they’re also viewed as more of an accident risk.

That said, classic cars may be cheaper to insure because they’re used less and maintained to a higher standard.

What is a no claims discount?

It’s a discount based on the number of years you’ve held a policy without making a claim. Your premium discount is based on the number of years you go without making a claim on your policy. Here’s an example:

No.of years with no claims % discount  
2 years 5%  
5 years 10%  
10 years 15%  

Can I get temporary car insurance?

Short term insurance can be anything between 1 hour and 28 days. It’s useful for short trips, weekends or drive sharing.

At the moment there are no Irish brokers or insurance companies offering short term insurance for drivers. This is likely due to the high risks associated with driving a vehicle over a short period.