Temporary car insurance for under 21s

If you're under 21, read our guide to temporary car insurance to understand what to look for and how to save your pennies.

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There are some temporary car insurance providers willing you cover drivers aged under 21, but you’ll need to shop around, and it could be pricey. Out table includes several insurers with a minimum age below 21, and our guide explains your options for cutting the cost.

Can I get temporary car insurance if I am under 21?

As with all car insurance, you should have options, but not all of them will suit your budget. Insurers typically consider young drivers to be more at risk of being involved in an accident due to a lack of experience. And with the increased risk of an accident, there’s more likely to be claims made against insurance. It is this that ultimately pushes the price of insurance premiums up.

There might be some insurers only willing to offer temporary cover to drivers aged over 25 because of the increased risk younger drivers pose. However, there might be other insurers willing to insure drivers aged under 21, but the premium may be higher due to the higher risk of younger drivers.

You’ll need to shop around and check what the conditions and guidelines are for each insurer offering temporary cover. You’ll then need to compare deals for the ones that match your requirements.

What levels of temporary car insurance are available?

All drivers in the UK are required to have at least the minimum level of car insurance, which is third party cover.

  • Third party. If you are responsible for causing an accident, you’ll be covered for damage to third party vehicles or property. However, it won’t cover any damage to your own car.
  • Third party, fire and theft. This will give the same level of cover as third party but will also provide protection against any fire damage to your car or theft of your car.
  • Comprehensive. This gives the same protection as the lower levels as well as protecting your vehicle against accidental damage and vandalism. It might be cheaper than third party, or third party fire and theft, so always check.

What should I look for in a temporary policy?

Temporary car insurance can offer several benefits over a standard annual car insurance policy. If you decide a temporary policy is right for you, consider looking for the following benefits:

  • Save money. By only paying for what you need, you’ll save money rather than simply having an annual policy.
  • Flexible policy terms. If you only need to use a car for short trips once in a while, then being able to choose how long you need cover, for example, from a few hours up to a month, offers the most flexibility.
  • No-claims bonus protection. If you don’t own the car you’re planning to drive, adding a temporary car insurance policy to the car owner’s annual car insurance policy will provide added protection and peace of mind. If you need to make a claim, you would claim through your own temporary policy, which wouldn’t affect the car owner’s annual policy or any built up no-claims bonus they may have.
  • Designed for young drivers. Some insurance providers may offer temporary car insurance designed specifically for young drivers, which could be more affordable.

How much does temporary car insurance for under 21s cost?

Unfortunately, as a young driver, you’ll be on the receiving end of some of the highest car insurance premiums out there. That’s because insurers tend to put young drivers into a high risk category simply because they are unlikely to have much driving experience and will be more likely to be involved in an accident and make a claim. That said, there are a number of factors that insurers will look at when calculating insurance such as where a driver lives, the make and model of their car, what they use their car for and how many miles, on average, they might travel.

How can I save on temporary car insurance if I’m under 21?

  • Consider your cover needs. Decide whether you need comprehensive cover or whether a third party fire and theft policy would be suitable for your needs.
  • Add yourself to an existing policy. Consider being temporarily added to the owner of the car’s annual car insurance policy. But remember that any claim would affect the policyholder’s no claims bonus.
  • Increase excess. Agreeing to pay a bigger voluntary excess could make your overall premium cheaper. But remember that your insurer won’t pay out for a claim that costs less than your excess. So be careful about making it too high, as it could leave you out of pocket if damage occurs.
  • Pick a smaller car. Choosing to drive a small and safe car is likely to lower your premium.
  • Shop around. Shop around and compare your options to find the best deal. Keep in mind that the cheapest policy isn’t always the best policy so check the cover details carefully.

Bottom line

There’s no stopping insurers believing that young drivers under 21 are at greater risk of accidents on the road, which can lead to more insurance claims. Whilst insurance premiums could be high, don’t feel too down as being savvy could help you save money on your temporary car insurance if you’re a young driver. Do a little research and compare deals to find a policy that works for you.

Frequently asked questions

The offers compared on this page are chosen from a range of products we can track; we don't cover every product on the market...yet. Unless we've indicated otherwise, products are shown in no particular order or ranking. The terms "best", "top", "cheap" (and variations), aren't product ratings, although we always explain what's great about a product when we highlight it; this is subject to our terms of use. When making a big financial decision, it's wise to consider getting independent financial advice, and always consider your own financial circumstances when comparing products so you get what's right for you. Most of the data in Finder's comparison tables has the source: Moneyfacts Group PLC. In other cases, Finder has sourced data directly from providers.
*51% of consumers could save £200. Seopa splits the providers on its comparison systems into different categories. It then selected quotes from the high volume sales providers as well as quotes from other providers which returned a price. Based on UK insurance market share data made available by the ABI, by way of a weighted selection process, it selected the cheapest of either the high volume sales providers or other providers (“the cheapest selected quote”). It then compared the cheapest quote on its system against the cheapest selected quote. It then took the savings figure which 51% or over could have saved using that formula. The savings you could achieve are dependent on your individual circumstances and how you selected your current insurance supplier.
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Helen Champion was an associate editor at Finder. She has worked in communications for over 16 years and currently writes on a range of topics including insurance and money transfers in the hope of empowering people to make better financial decisions. During her broadcast career, she helped to produce hundreds of news and breaking news reports for Associated Press TV and ITV News. And in public relations, she managed several high-profile public relations campaigns for Macmillan Cancer Support, the General Medical Council and overseas for Qatar Foundation on behalf of BLJ Worldwide. Helen has a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from the University of Lincoln, a passion for practising karate in the dojo and a deep love of making mischief with her sons. See full bio

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