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Traditional car insurance policies assume that you own your own car and use it pretty much every day to get to and from work – and everywhere else.

But that doesn’t reflect the way that many urban car owners, newly-qualified drivers, or young drivers use their cars (or a friend or family member’s car).

Pay As You Go Car Insurance

24 Hours to 28 Day Car Cover

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Reviewers recommend Fair Investment Company
Cover Term
1 to 28 Days
Applicable Age
18 - 78
Instant Cover

Tempcover Car Insurance

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Cover Term
1 to 28 Days
Applicable Age
19 - 75
Instant Cover

Insure Daily Temporary Car Insurance

Cover Term
1 to 90 Days
Applicable Age
17 - 22

Tempcover Learner Car Insurance

Cover Term
1 to 140 Days
Applicable Age
17 - 40
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Car Insurers Who Offer Telematic Cover

Insurance Offered
Third Party Fire & Theft and Comprehensive Cover
Multi Car Discount*
Online Discount
Uninsured Driver Promise

Direct Line Car Insurance

Insurance Offered
Third Party Fire & Theft and Comprehensive Cover
Multi Car Discount
Online Discount
Uninsured Driver Promise*

Churchill Car Insurance

Pay As You Go Car Insurance

Standard car insurance policies may not suit weekend drivers

Until recently, the options for infrequent drivers were;

  • To be added on to a family member’s policy as a “named driver”.
  • To find a policy with significantly lower rates for lower-mileage drivers.
  • To take out short-term temporary car insurance.

If you own a car it must be insured all the time. But many car owners who live in the city and do most of their weekday commuting by public transport are paying for driver cover they don’t need while their car is sitting in the driveway.

A young driver could be included on a parent’s annual insurance policy. However this could be expensive if they only use the vehicle from time to time.

More flexible car insurance

A new type of insurance policy has been introduced to offer more flexibility and control to UK drivers.

  • Telematics insurance policies use “black box” technology fitted to your car to track how much driving you do.
  • Black box insurers usually charge a set amount per year and allow the policy-holder to drive a specified number of miles per year before being charged extra.
  • Telematics technology insurers may allow you to purchase “top-up” bundles for miles, which can roll over to the following year if you don’t use them.

Another option for drivers are flexible short term, or temporary car cover policies. Temporary car insurance can be taken out from 1 hour to 30 days. You can apply for cover online and have a policy in place in minutes.

How does pay as you go car insurance work?

Pay as you drive cover can be attractive to younger age groups.

The cost of insurance premiums can be reduced with payg cover.

An insurer will require a telematic tracking box fitted into your car which is about the size of a mobile phone. This black box is a tracking device which allows an insurer to monitor your driving. The insurance company will charge on a per mile basis – some insurers will put apply discounts on this cost if you drive at off peak times.

So unlike traditional insurance policies where assumptions are made e.g. age, address, driving experience, telematic cover can be highly bespoke to your driving behaviour which is good news if you are a safe driver!

Research shows that people behave differently if they know they are being observed so telematic technology can result in better driving.

What are the drawbacks of this type of cover?

  • It can be seen as a bit big brother!
  • You will have to pay for the telematics device to be installed in your car.
  • If you drive a lot of miles the savings you make may be minimal.
  • There is currently no distinction of type of roads. So if you drive on safer roads you will not benefit from someone who travels on motorways.
  • Some insurers will impose curfew restrictions on when you can drive e.g. not after 11pm.
  • Driving a high performance car will probably not help if you are looking to keep costs down.
  • When you take out the policy you tell the insurer how many miles you need – e.g. 5000 miles. The rate per mile will depend on the insurance company and some will charge more if you go over the agreed amount.

PAYG car insurance may be ideal for:

  • Car owners who use public transport on weekdays but need cover for short trips in the evenings and at weekends
  • Young drivers using a parent’s car when they visit home
  • Drivers using a relative or friend’s car irregularly
  • Car Club users
  • Older drivers who drive short local trips but use public transport for longer journeys
  • New car purchases

And for business owners, PAYG van insurance can be a useful low-cost cover that helps to control overheads.

Insurance groups who offer this type of cover are authorized and regulated by the financial conduct authority (FCA).

See above for a selection of insurers who offer telematic insurance and temporary cover up to 30 days and save money.