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Find quotes quickly and easily, in around 5 minutes, we’ll show you prices for various policy lengths from 1 day to 6 months

If you are borrowing a car for the day or to test drive a new car, you can get temporary car insurance to get you out on the road.

You can easily search and compare short-term cover with

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  • Can I get temporary car insurance on a friend’s car?
  • What are the benefits of temporary car insurance?
  • How to get cheap short-term car insurance?
  • Insurance for 6 months
  • Can you insure a car for 1 hr?
  • FAQs
  • Useful links

Jump to section

  • Can I get temporary car insurance on a friend’s car?
  • What are the benefits of temporary car insurance?
  • How to get cheap short-term car insurance?
  • Insurance for 6 months
  • Can you insure a car for 1 hr?
  • FAQs
  • Useful links

What is temporary car insurance?

Temporary car insurance, also known as short-term car insurance, is a type of insurance policy that gives you cover for driving your car for a short period of time. You can get flexible cover for a car from as little as one day to 30 days, all depending on your needs.

Temporary or short-term car insurance is a great option if you are only driving a car for a short amount of time. It also saves you taking out an annual insurance policy when you don’t need it.

However, if you find yourself taking out temporary car insurance policies a few times over the year, it might be cheaper for you to purchase an annual insurance policy. You can easily compare annual insurance quotes here.

Why compare temporary car insurance?

Purchasing temporary car insurance shouldn’t mean having to pay over the odds. However, comparing quotes can help you find what you need at a price that fits your budget.

By comparing temporary car insurance quotes, you can find a policy that suits your exact needs, so you can relax knowing you are covered.

Flexible solutions are available from most mainstream providers, and they work as a standalone policy, because short-term and temporary cover exists separately from an annual insurance policy. Take a look at our car insurance providers here.

What does temporary car insurance offer?

Insurers determine their own specific conditions for the cover you will get with the policy, so it is important that you double check any restrictions in place.

Some things that temporary car insurance offer are:


Flexible cover length: you can get an insurance policy for as little as 1 day up to 30 days. For many this will be a better option than taking out an annual policy if you only plan to use the car for a short period of time. A temporary car insurance policy will normally be cheaper than an annual policy.


Fully comprehensive policy: most temporary policies will be fully comprehensive. This means that you and the car are covered if you get into an accident. It also covers fire damage and theft, as well as damage to someone else, their car or even their property. You can look at what a fully comprehensive policy covers here.


Policies when you need it: because a temporary insurance policy is only for a set period, there will be fewer questions for you to answer when purchasing the policy. This makes the process of getting short-term cover for your car even easier and you can begin the cover when you need it. If you take out a temporary car insurance policy, it will not affect your no claims discount or any existing insurance on the car. If you are driving to the conditions set out in the temporary policy, then there will be no effects on the current insurance.

What is not covered with temporary car insurance?

With temporary car insurance, there are some things that are not included in the policy. The main things to consider are:

  • Purpose – generally, you can only have short-term cover if you’re driving for social, domestic or pleasure purposes, or for commuting to a single place of work. If you’re driving for commercial business reasons, short-term car cover isn’t a suitable policy.
  • Negligence – insurers are unlikely to pay out if damage or theft was due to negligence, for example if you left the keys in the ignition and the car was stolen.
  • Unnamed drivers – only drivers named in the policy can drive the car.
  • Driving another car – the temporary policy you take out will only cover the car that you have insured. You won’t be able to drive another car unless you take out a multi-car policy and include all cars that you want to drive.

It’s worth bearing in mind that these exclusions aren’t unique to short-term car insurance policies and are standard in annual policies too.

Do I need temporary car insurance?

Depending on your circumstances will determine whether a short-term policy or annual policy is better for you. If you are taking out a temporary or short-term policy, it can be useful in the following situations:

If you are a young driver – if you don’t have your own car yet but can use a friend or relative’s car then you might want a short-term policy. This can cover you when you take the car out to visit friends and family, run errands and even to drive to and from university.

If you are learning to drive – if you are learning to drive, you can take out a short-term policy to get some extra practice in. Just bear in mind that you will always have to have someone with you. You can find out more about learner driver insurance here.

If your car is being repaired – if your car is stuck in the garage or you’ve unfortunately had an accident and your car is out of action, then you can get short term cover to borrow a car to help you get to and from work.

If you are borrowing a car – if you are borrowing your parents’ car when you are home from university, then a short-term insurance policy will work well for you.

If there is an emergency – if there is an emergency and you need to help a friend or family member, then a short-term policy can help you get on the road quickly and safely.

If you want to share the driving – if you are taking a road trip and want to share the driving with others, then having short-term cover means you can jump in the driver’s seat as when you are needed.

Can I get one day car insurance?

One day car insurance is available from several providers. 24-hour policies offer a flexible solution if you only need to drive for a limited length of time. One day car insurance also works as a standalone policy, so it won’t affect your no claims bonus if you also have an annual policy in place.

The price of your premium will very much depend on your own circumstances and what the risk of a claim being made is. To work this out, insurers will consider several factors, for example:

  • The type of car you’ll be driving – expensive or powerful cars usually cost more to insure.
  • Your age – younger drivers typically pay more for insurance as under 25s are statistically more likely to be involved in an accident.
  • What you’re using the car for – if you’re covering lots of miles, it’s likely to cost more compared to if you’re borrowing the car to just run a few errands.
  • Whether you choose to add extras – adding optional extras will push up your premium.

Temporary car insurance advice and FAQs

What is the longest and shortest time you can get temporary car insurance for?

You can find short-term car cover for as little as one day to up to six months.

Short-term policies by their very nature are pretty flexible and because insurers set their own terms and conditions, you can ask them to extend your policy dates if you need longer than originally set. 

Temporary car cover isn’t an alternative to an annual policy so while you can extend cover if you need to, you probably won’t be able to continue renewing it after a certain length of time. It’s also worth knowing that short-term policies typically provide comprehensive cover only, although if you really want a third-party policy you could ask. 

Short-term car cover won’t affect your no claims discount. You can also hold an annual policy at the same time.

Can you tax a car with temporary car insurance?

If your car has temporary car insurance, you can tax your car. This is a popular reason that many people take out short-term cover on their car.

For example, if you’ve bought a car directly from a private owner, you’ll need to insure and tax the car before you can drive it home. Luckily, organising temporary cover doesn’t take long at all and can be done in just a few minutes.

Can I get temporary car insurance on a friend’s car?

You can, and if you do it can actually save you money depending on the situation. For example, if you’re moving home, borrowing a friend’s car or van and insuring yourself to drive it can save you money compared to hiring a rental or using a removals firm. Similarly, if you’re staying with friends and they loan you their car for the duration, temp car cover can work out cheaper than a hire car.

What are the benefits of temporary car insurance?

Temporary car insurance has a number of benefits, for instance:

  • It’s quick and easy to organise – policies can be arranged in less than 20 minutes.
  • It won’t affect your no claims discount – it won’t affect the no claims of the person whose car you’re borrowing either.
  • It won’t affect your existing insurance – so long as you’re driving according to the conditions set out in the temporary policy. 
  • It’s flexible – policies are tailored to suit you whether you need cover for an hour or for a few weeks.

How to get cheap short-term car insurance?

You can search for the cheapest temporary car insurance right here at It’s simple, just fill in our online form and we’ll search quotes from multiple providers so that you can quickly and easily find short-term cover that fits your needs. 

What documents will I need when applying for temporary car insurance?

You won’t necessarily need any specific documents, but you will need certain details to hand in order to buy temporary car insurance, including information like:

  • When you want cover to begin and end
  • Your details including age, postcode, whether you hold a full licence and for how long
  • The reason why you need cover
  • The number plate of the car you want to drive.

You’ll also need to agree the excess – this is the amount you need to pay in order for a claim to go ahead so it should be a figure you can afford. 

Can you insure a car for 6 months?

Short-term car insurance up to 6 months can be ideal if you need a flexible policy, for example,

  • You’ve just bought a car and haven’t chosen an annual policy yet
  • You need to borrow a car for a short time
  • Want to practise in the run up to your driving test
  • You only drive a car for part of the year, for instance if you have a classic car

If you decide to take out a 6-month car insurance policy, bear in mind that the daily cost can work out more expensive compared to an annual policy. Of course, depending on what your needs are, this can be a small price to pay for the flexibility you get. 

But if you don’t need an annual policy, you can ask for a policy that lasts 6 months instead. Flexible short-term and temporary car insurance is available from most insurers, so you should be able to find a policy to fit your needs. 


Can you insure a car for an hour?

If you need to borrow someone’s car for a very short period or perhaps you are test driving a car from a private seller, then you may be looking for car insurance cover for an hour.

Most mainstream providers offer short-term car insurance with policies typically lasting from 24 hours up to six months. If you only need one-hour car insurance or car insurance for a few hours you’ll need a specialist provider. 


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