Temporary car insurance for students

If you’re a student and need to borrow a car, a temporary car insurance policy could help to save you money in the long run.

If you’re home from university visiting family and need to borrow their car, have you considered how much the car insurance will cost? A normal annual car insurance policy might not be suitable so choosing temporary car cover instead might be more worthwhile. Read our guide to compare temporary car insurance and discover what you’ll need in order to get cover as as student.

Why do I need temporary car insurance?

All drivers are legally required to have car insurance to be on UK roads as it provides financial protection if you’re involved in an accident. It can cover against injuries as well as damage to property for you and others. Car insurance can also offer financial protection if your car is vandalised, stolen or damaged by fire. You may not need cover for the whole year, especially if you spend the majority of your time at university where you might not need a car. Therefore, it’s worth considering only paying for insurance when you need it, such as short term car insurance.

What levels of temporary car insurance are available?

The minimum level of cover for all drivers in the UK is third party car insurance.

  • Third party. If you’re 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 are the benefits of temporary car insurance for students?

Temporary car insurance can offer several benefits over a standard annual car insurance policy. Consider the following:

  • Flexible policy terms. If you’re busy at university and only need to use a car during breaks 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. 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.
  • Save money. By only paying for what you need, you’ll save money rather than simply having an annual policy.
  • Designed for students. Some insurance providers specifically offer temporary car insurance for students, which could be more affordable. You may need to provide additional information to prove you’re a student.

This is the latest available (2016) annual data showing premiums and claims for different age groups, from the Association of British Insurers.

Average car insurance premiums by age group

Average premiums and claims

What do I need to get temporary car insurance as a student?

The requirements will vary depending on which insurance provider is able to offer you temporary car insurance but you’ll usually need to provide the following:

  • Personal details such as name, address and contact details
  • Provide a valid UK driving licence held for at least 12 months with no more than 8 penalty points
  • Information about the car you want to insure on a temporary basis
  • The intended dates and duration you would like to take out car insurance for

Frequently asked questions


Please take reasonable care to answer all the questions honestly and to the best of your knowledge. If you don't answer the questions correctly, your policy may be cancelled, or your claim rejected or not fully paid. 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.
*51% of consumers could save £200. Quote aggregator Seopa split the insurers on its comparison systems into different categories. It then selected quotes from the most popular providers as well as quotes from other providers which returned a price. It then selected providers, weighting them according to UK insurance market share (data from the Association of British Insurers), choosing the cheapest of either the most popular providers or other providers ("the cheapest selected quote"). Seopa then compared the cheapest quote on its system against this "cheapest selected" quote. The company then took the savings figure which 51% or over could have saved, using that formula. The savings you could achieve will depend on your individual circumstances and how you selected your current insurance supplier.
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