Car insurance is necessary to drive any vehicle. All motorists need to purchase insurance before a car can legally be driven on British roads, but what if you only need cover for a short period? Car insurance doesn’t come cheap, so it might not seem fair to have to buy a full year’s cover when it’s not needed or risk increasing your premium by altering your current policy. That’s where temporary car insurance comes in. Temporary car insurance offers comprehensive cover and can come in a number of forms, whether it’s, for example, an emergency cover, short-term cover or insurance for overseas. It is a policy that can adapt to the motorists needs when a full term insurance is not required or if your current policy does not cover you. We have taken a look at who it is for, what it covers and how it works to answer all your questions about temporary car insurance.
If you are looking for temporary car insurance, there are a number of policies available for all motorists including learner drivers, new drivers or those who want to borrow someone else’s car. If you are in a situation where you might need short-term cover, we’ve taken a look at who it is ideal for, how it works and what it covers.
Temporary car insurance can come in very handy for those who are learning to drive. Provisional drivers may need to be insured on a relative’s or friend’s car while they learn. Rather than alter the owner of the car’s insurance policy to add the learner, a temporary policy can be taken out and could save a lot of money.
The benefits of having temporary car insurance for new drivers are similar to learner drivers. If you have recently passed your driving test and don’t yet own a car, it can be handy to take out a short-term policy to continue to drive the relative’s or friend’s car. Car insurance for beginner drivers are often the most expensive policies, therefore, temporarily having this kind of policy could potentially save a lot of money.
Car insurance for young drivers falls into the same category as new drivers. Those under 25 tend to get charged higher rates than those who are older and more experienced. Taking out temporary car insurance to be able to drive a borrowed car at intervals could be a cheaper option to give you more time to save up for your own car. However, you must be over 18 and some providers will not cover those under the age of 21.
Some students may not have a car during term time, but want to drive someone else’s car back home during the summer break. Rather than rely on others to drive you around, you could take out a temporary car insurance policy and drive yourself.
As soon as you’ve bought the policy, along with the car owner’s permission, you are legally able to drive the car immediately. When filling out the policy form you will need to include:
Temporary car insurance can often range from one day to a month depending on why you need it. There are many reasons why someone would need insurance for a short period, so we’ve taken a look at the most popular reasons as examples.
If you have an emergency and need access to a friend’s car for one day then a short-term policy is ideal. This could include moving house, visiting a relative or borrowing a car while yours is in the garage. This could give you the freedom to do what you need to do without relying on the owner of the car to chauffeur you around.
For those who need cover for a little longer, the policy can extend up to a month. For example, if you have sold your old car and are in the process of buying your next car but need to borrow someone else’s in the meantime if you’re a student returning home for the summer or if you have a road trip planned, temporary car insurance could come in handy.
Temporary car insurance offers comprehensive cover and is often used to drive someone else’s car or a rental car. The policy will often protect the owner’s no claims bonus, but it is advisable to check this with your insurance provider. Other than the day-to-day use of a car, there are other reasons why someone might want to take out this policy including driving abroad and occasionally driving a classic car.
If you are planning a road trip abroad then you could even opt to add European cover to the policy so you can set off on your dream trip without it costing too much.
Classic car enthusiasts may drive a classic car as a secondary car, therefore, they may not want to be insured to drive it for the full year. They may only bring the classic car out for the summer months or for car shows. Short-term cover will allow them to take their favourite, iconic car out without having to pay out a fortune.
Many insurance providers will offer temporary cover. As a first step, it could be worth checking that your current car insurance provider has a temporary policy as an option to see how much you could get it for. From there, it is advisable to shop around to seek out the best deal.
Temporary car insurance could work out to be the cheapest option rather than being added to an already existing policy, particularly for the owner of the car. If whoever borrows the car is involved in an accident, and they have temporary car insurance, it won’t affect the owner’s policy or their no claims policy. However, like all other policies, the cost will depend on a number of factors, including the car's value and the amount of voluntary excess you choose to pay.
It is worth noting that temporary car insurance is not to be used as an alternative to a full term policy. Car owners cannot opt for multiple short-term policies throughout the year just because they don’t use their car often. If it is not insured it needs to be registered as off-road via a Statutory off Road Notification (SORN). You can find out which car insurance policy is ideal for you from our guide.