Temporary car insurance can be a cost-effective way to legally drive a car on a short-term basis. Ordinary car insurance policies last for a full year, and in many cases this can leave you paying for cover you will not use - often carrying extortionate admin fees for making changes or cancelling the policy. So if you are planning on buying or selling a car, borrowing a car for a short period, or if you own a car which is used very infrequently, temporary insurance might be the solution you need.

All You Need to Know About Temporary Car Insurance

Temporary insurance works just like a normal 12-month policy, but with a cover period usually lasting from 1 to 28 days. Different levels of cover are available from many different insurers, and you can even search comparison sites for the best deal. Cover can be arranged online or over the phone and can take effect immediately or at a date of your choosing. Temporary insurance can be obtained for new and used cars, commercial vehicles and even classic and exotic cars.

Is temporary insurance right for me?

Temporary insurance is not the right product for everyone. People who already have an 'any car' or a 'traders' insurance policy do not need any extra cover when driving, and drivers who find it difficult to obtain cover (for example, because they have an extensive claims history or have multiple points on their license) may be unable to qualify for a temporary policy. Young or inexperienced drivers can still obtain temporary insurance, but they may find they have to shop around carefully as some insurers have a minimum age or experience requirement of policyholders.

Short term cover is usually more expensive per day than a long-term policy, so it is wise to choose the shortest possible temporary cover period and arrange long-term cover as soon as feasible for any car you plan to keep. Something to keep in mind is that temporary insurance policies cannot usually be extended, so if you need to insure a car for a period between 1 and 12 months it is worth considering a 'pay as you go' policy instead.

When might I need temporary car insurance

Short term cover can be helpful in many common situations. Maybe you are buying a car at short notice, and do not want to commit to a 12-month policy without taking time to find the best deal. Or your policy is about to expire but you plan to sell your car next week. You might even have a classic or sports car which you only drive a few days a year, and you don't want or need to pay for 365 days of insurance.

You could also take out short-term cover when you are:

  • Borrowing a car from family or friends
  • Teaching your kids to drive in your own car
  • Sharing driving responsibilities on a long trip
  • Driving a hire or courtesy car

One time you do not need to arrange short-term cover is when you test drive used cars at Avon Valley Garage—all of our test drives are fully covered by our own insurance policies.