Short term car insurance

Can you insure a car for a short period of time?

Yes, any qualified driver between the ages of 19 and 75 can apply for short-term car insurance for a car, from a short term insurance company such as even if that car belongs to someone else, provided that it has a current MOT certificate and that it was first registered, and is still kept, in the United Kingdom. If the car doesn't belong to you you will need to have the permission of the owner to insure and drive it of course.

Can any car be insured?

Each insurance company that provides short-term cover has a list of cars that can be insured. This usually includes most fairly modern popular cars but will probably exclude the more exotic ones or older models. The way to find out is to get a quotation, which should only take one minute or so.

Can I drive a car in Europe under short-term insurance?

Yes you can, provided that the journey both starts and ends in the United Kingdom. A standard policy provides you with comprehensive cover whilst the vehicle is in the the UK plus the minimum required by law (roughly equivalent to our third party only) whilst it is in Europe, but this can be upgraded to comprehensive for an extra premium.

Can any driver apply for a policy?

Most companies will require the driver to be aged between 19 and 75, with a full licence which has run for at least one year. Whilst a clean driving licence and a lack of claims in the past would probably lead to the lowest possible premium those with an accident or conviction record within the last few years may still be accepted but this is at the discretion of the individual insurers.

Are short-term policies more expensive than long-term ones?

These are specialist policies designed for people who only require cover for a fairly short time and so yes, they do work out more expensive per day than an annual policy but that is to be expected if you are only paying for a few days' cover rather than 365! Premiums are certainly affordable in most cases and when insurance is only needed for a few days or weeks one of these policies can work out much cheaper than taking out an annual policy and subsequently cancelling it, which can make you liable for substantial cancellation fees.

Does it take long to get a quotation?

Provided that you have your driving licence and the registration details of the car that you wish to insure handy getting a quotation should only take you less than a minute.

How quickly can I get covered?

After you have got a quotation, if you decide to go ahead and buy a policy online it should only take a few minutes longer. You could then decide whether you would want the policy to come into effect immediately, or whether it should start at some time during the following 28 days.

What would I need short-term car insurance for?

Driving a different car in an emergency. You may have to take over as driver for a different car if the owner is unable for any reason.

Test driving a car. With a short-term policy you would be covered, subject to any excess, for any damage that you cause to the car in an accident as well as any third-party liabilities.

Buying a car. If you buy a car, either at auction, from a dealer or from a private buyer, you will probably want to get it home and then shop around for the best quotes for annual insurance. A short-term policy would ensure that you stayed legal, as well as having the peace of mind of knowing that your new car was protected by an insurance policy during that drive home.

Selling a car. If your existing insurance policy has nearly run out it may be completely uneconomical for you to buy a 12 month policy if you are disposing of the car. A temporary policy can enable you to stay legal for the fairly short period before you find a buyer.

Insuring a second driver. On long journeys you may wish to have a friend with you to take over driving if you get tired. A temporary policy for this driver may be far simpler and quicker to arrange than adding this person to your existing policy.