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Temporary and single day car insurance a quick guide

Article by Simon Christopher
Article added: 23/2/2011 - Last updated: -
Rating: 0.00 (0 votes)

Temporary car insurance is a motor insurance policy where customers can choose the length of the policy which can run anywhere from a single day to 28 days. Beyond this, most insurers will want customers to take out a standard policy

Where does the cover originate come from?

Originally single day or temporary car insurance was designed exclusively for people in the motor trade. It's been available to the general public since 2005, but is relatively unknown. It's become more widely available thanks to technology making it quicker and simpler for an insurer to set up a policy.

Why would I need single day or temporary car insurance?

The main use is for people who own cars that they very rarely use, such as a classic car displayed at shows, or simply saved for an occasional leisure trip. Such polices can also be useful for people with such cars when they move home and decide to drive the car to the new property rather than have it transported on a carrying vehicle.

A one day policy is also suitable for additional drivers. For example, if you are normally the only driver of a vehicle you may well have a sole driver policy. If you then go on a driving holiday and share the load, it may be easier for the other driver to get a day-by-day policy rather than be added as a named driver to the main policy. It can also be useful if you live in a remote location and have visitors who need to borrow your car once or twice. Of course, in all these circumstances you should check whether the person is already covered to drive any vehicle under their own policies.

What about racing?

With cars used for racing, single day car insurance is generally used as a secondary policy. This is because many owners opt for a main insurance policy that doesn't cover racing activities to keep the costs down. They can then get a race-specific policy on a single day basis.

How do the costs work?

As with any motor policy, costs vary immensely. As a general rule, there'll be a set fee for the first day which will then be repeated for the next day or two. After this the daily fee will usually drop substantially. For example, an insurer might charge £10 for the first day, another £10 for the second day, and then £4 for each additional day.

What are the exclusions?

This also varies from policy to policy. As a general idea, the policy conditions will normally be on the tighter end of what you might expect from an annual policy. For example, there may be a high minimum age, a bar on people with even a few penalty points, a restriction on people who've made multiple claims in recent years, and a bar on newly qualified drivers. There will also usually be price limits affecting both the minimum and maximum value of vehicles than can be covered. In many cases there will be a total limit on the payouts you can get, regardless of the actual damages and costs you incur.

Where can I get temporary car insurance?

Some of the major motor insurers offer temporary car insurance such as Aviva but there are also some specialist insurers such as Temp Cover and Day Insure. You can view a comprehensive list in the short term car insurance directory.

PLEASE NOTE: The guidance published in this article is for information only and does not constitute financial advice or a recommendation of any particular car insurance product or company. If you are in any doubt please consult an independent insurance adviser. A database of advisers in your area is available at

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