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Would one-day car insurance benefit you?

If you answer yes to all these questions it could be...

Do you need to borrow a car just for one day?

One day car insurance can be cheaper than the cost of hiring a car, or adding you as a named driver, but will give you comprehensive cover.

Do you need to test drive a car you might buy?

While your own car insurance might cover you to drive other cars it probably only covers your for third party risks. One day insurance can be comprehensive.

Do you want to share the driving withe a friend?

One day car insurance can be cheaper than adding a named driver, and, if you do have an accident, won't impact on their no claims discount.

Do you have a garaged car you need to drive occasionally?

Rather than having insurance all year you can get one day car insurance for a car normally kept off the road, such as a classic car.

Temporary Learner Driver Insurance

Temporary learner driver car insurance can insure a provisional driver on a friend’s or family member’s car while they gain valuable driving experience. What is temporary learner driver insurance? Most people learn to drive in a car owned by an approved driving instructor but many will also choose to supplement their lessons with independent practice in a friend’s or family member’s car.

Read our full guide

Explore our guides

Find in-depth information on everything you need to know about comparing one-day car insurance and switching your cover.

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Am I insured if I drive someone else's car?

Many people assume that their own comprehensive car insurance policy allows them to drive another vehicle. Perhaps you occasionally drive your partner’s or family member’s car, assuming you get the same level of cover as they do? The likelihood is that you may not be covered to drive it at all, unless you’re specifically named on the policy. Or if you are permitted to drive other cars on your insurance, it will only be third-party cover and may only be for social, domestic and pleasure purposes.

Read our full guide

One-day car insurance FAQs

Temporary car insurance could be for you if you want to cover yourself to drive someone else’s car or take out temporary insurance cover to allow someone else to drive your car. This can be for as little as a few hours or for as long as 90 days, for example covering a learner driver borrowing a car for lessons.

You might need one day car insurance because

  • you are borrowing a family member or friend’s car 

  • you are using a courtesy car and you want more than third party cover

  • you only drive occasionally, for example you may own a classic car which you don’t use all the time but you need to drive for a day

  • you are hiring a car to go on a day trip 

Most temporary car insurance policies will include fully comprehensive cover, although some insurers may be able to offer third party or third party, fire and theft cover.

Comprehensive cover will normally include:

  • loss or damage caused by vandalism, theft or fire, 

  • damage to the car in an accident

  • accident recovery and repair

  • legal cover in case of death or injury to other people

  • legal cover for damage to other people's cars or property

So if you don’t own the car you are driving, fully comprehensive cover may be the best option, for peace of mind.

Even if you’re using a car for just one day it’s important to have adequate insurance cover, so you must make sure you take out an appropriate insurance policy. It will depend why you are using the car and what other car insurance you have.

If you are borrowing a car you could be added to the car owner’s insurance as a named driver. If you only need cover for one day this option is unlikely to offer the best value. You could also affect the main policyholder’s no claims bonus if you’re involved in an accident and need to make a claim on their policy.

If you have fully comprehensive cover on another car, you may have ‘driving other cars’ cover included. Bear in mind this may only include third party cover so you might still want to take out temporary insurance. Driving other cars’ cover is not included with all policies, so make sure you check your insurance documents carefully. Don’t assume you’re covered to drive another car.

One day car insurance can come in useful in a variety of situations in which you only need insurance for a day.

  • One day car insurance as an alternative to hiring a car: Taking out a one day car insurance policy on a friend’s or family member’s car can be a good alternative to hiring a car. You may find one day car insurance useful for moving house if you’re able to borrow a car or a van (some insurers will also cover vans for one day too) so you could save money on a removals service.

  • One day car insurance if you are buying or test-driving a car: One day car insurance is also handy for buying a car, whether you’re taking a potential purchase for a test drive or you’re transporting it home before taking out a longer term car insurance policy.

  • One day car insurance if you are driving in the EU: Some one day car insurance policies also include travel within the EU, so are ideal for sharing the driving on a short trip abroad. But check with your insurer whether the cover provided outside of the UK is third party or comprehensive.

  • One day car insurance if you are using your car on a race track: Other short-term insurers also offer track day insurance, so you’ll be covered if you want to test your car’s performance on a race track. This kind of driving is usually excluded on standard car insurance so you would need a specialist policy.

  • One day car insurance if you are a learner driver: You can even get one day cover as a learner driver if you want to practise in a friend’s or family member’s car before your test, although you would probably benefit more from taking out a temporary learner driver car insurance policy that can cover you for up to 90 days.

Most people can get temporary car insurance. A number of factors influence the price:

  • Age: one-day insurers will typically take on drivers in the age range of 19-75, although some specialist providers will cover those from age 17 and even learner drivers.

  • Experience: you’re more likely to see a wider variety of quotes if you have lots of driving experience.

  • Car value: Most providers of one day car insurance will also exclude cars over a certain value, usually £50,000. 

  • Previous claims history: you’re more likely to get cover if you have had fewer than two claims in the past three years, and have had fewer than six penalty points on your licence in the past five years.

The cost of one day car insurance varies depending on the car, your postcode, age and driving experience. But it’s often an affordable alternative to hiring a car or van if you’re able to borrow one.

To take out one day car insurance you’ll need:

  • the details of the car you wish to cover – its registration number

  • your driving licence details

  • your personal details such as your name and address

And if you’re borrowing a car, you’ll also need permission from the owner before you can drive it.

When considering the cost of one day car insurance it’s also important to remember the excess included on the policy. There will be a compulsory excess, but like with standard car insurance, you can choose to add to that a voluntary excess.

While you can sometimes cut the cost of your cover by opting to pay a higher voluntary excess, remember you will need to pay out in the event of a claim so it’s best to choose a realistic figure.

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