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Last updated: 15 September 2021
There are many situations where you need to use a car you’re not insured on for a day or so but don’t want to get tied down to a long term deal. If this is the case, then a one day car insurance policy might be for you. This guide will explain what one day insurance is and how it works, when you might want it, and where to find the best policy for you.
What is one day car insurance?
A one day car insurance policy is designed for when you have to borrow a car for a very short period. For example, when moving house or when driving as part of a group day trip. You can also find temporary car insurance policies that last for any number of days that you need it for.
The type of cover you will receive will depend on the vehicle you drive and the policy you choose, one day insurance is available for all types of vehicles and typically includes motorhomes.
How does it work?
Even when just borrowing a car for a day you have to have car insurance, it’s actually illegal not to and you can face a £300 fine, points on your license or even risk being taken to court.
One day insurance will cover you for up to 24 hours but this can be extended for up to 28 days. If you want cover for a longer period, an annual policy may be more suited to your needs.
One day car insurance policies are usually very cheap and won’t affect your no claims bonus on your existing policy if you do need to make a claim. You can also add additional cover to these policies, for an extra charge. This can be useful if you plan on driving in Europe for example.
What do I need to get a one day insurance policy?
To get a quote for one day insurance you’ll need the following:
- Your driving license and driving history
- Your name and address
- Details of the car the policy is for
- Date and time of when you want the cover to start
Insurance companies often have some restrictions on who can take out policies based on the following:
- Age: Be sure to check any age requirements, normally you’ll need to be between 21 and 75, although some companies may not impose these limits.
- Car price: Some insurers will exclude cars over a certain value for one day insurance.
- Driving history: You’ll have to provide an insurer with your full driving history, including any points on your license. Typically, the better your record, the less your policy will cost.
- Excess: You’ll usually need to be in a position to offer to pay a certain amount before any claim can be processed. The higher your ‘voluntary excess’, the cheaper your policy will be.
When would I want a one day policy?
One day car insurances policies are particularly useful when:
- Borrowing a friend’s car
- Moving to a new house
- Test driving a car you are considering purchasing
- Collecting a piece of furniture
- An emergency where you need a car
- If you’re a learner driver who wants extra practice
What are the alternatives?
If you don’t want to take out a one day insurance policy you can usually add ‘driving other cars’ as an extra on your existing policy. However, you’ll usually have to pay more than you would for a one day policy and this typically only offers ‘third party cover’, the most limited type of insurance.
Another option is to add yourself to the policy of the friend whose car you’re borrowing. This is usually quite expensive and any claim you make may lead to your friend losing their no claims discount.
A one day insurance policy is often the cheapest alternative to these options and also allows you to make a claim without compromising any ‘no claims bonus’ you may have on your existing policy.
Where can I find the best one day car insurance policies?
Before signing up to any policy be sure to check the minimum excess, any exceptions which may stop your insurer from paying out and all the terms and conditions on each policy.
The key to finding the best policy is to shop around. You can use our free car insurance comparison tool which takes account of your needs and your budget and finds the best car insurance policies for you.