Why temporary insurance can work well for students

Driving at uni: your guide to student car insurance

Nothing beats the freedom that comes from going away to uni for the first time. Now, a whole new world is opening up and the chances are you’ll be keen to explore your new city.

Many universities tend to be pretty well served by public transport, which means there’s little point to a car. Even if you decided you did need one, it’s hard to find affordable insurance cover. That’s because students tend to be younger and less experienced on the road. Premiums often come as a bit of a shock.

But what if you need to make occasional journeys in someone else’s motor? Or you’re looking to jump behind the wheel when you return home? That’s when it’s worth looking into the idea of temporary car insurance: the kind of cover that is there for very short periods of time, just when you need it.

Choices to make

Maybe you already have a car at home, but you’re going to leave it parked up in the garage when you’re away at uni. It’s gathering dust and depreciating in value. And it’s only ever going to get used once or twice when you return in the holidays. A sad moment for what was once your pride and joy.

So, what are your options?

Well, you could sell up and use short-term insurance to drive someone else’s car when you’re back. A family member could lend you their car or a mate from school. If you’re looking for flexibility, this could be an ideal arrangement.

Here’s an alternative suggestion. Keep your car, but cancel your annual insurance policy. You’d need to declare the vehicle was not in use, by making a ‘Statutory Off-Road Notification’ – otherwise known as a SORN. Then, when you need to drive, ensure the vehicle has valid road tax/MOT and take out temporary car insurance.

If you do choose this particular approach, it’s important to remember to renew your SORN every time the temporary car insurance runs out. A little more paperwork, it’s true, but think of the potential savings and flexibility.

Understanding short-term cover

So how does short-term insurance actually work?

The first thing to say is that it gives you full, comprehensive cover. Be careful, standard policies could only offer the legal minimum for an additional driver, which is third-party insurance. As a result, when you drive someone else’s car, you’re only protected for the damage you might do to another vehicle.

With temporary insurance, you can also choose how long you want to be covered for. So, if you’re back from uni for a few weeks, you can take out a policy that covers the whole holiday period. But it’s also possible to just cover single journeys if you’re not planning on hitting the road that often.

And if you do end up having an accident in another driver’s car, their no-claims discount won’t be affected. Although, while the vehicle owner’s NCB won’t be affected, claims will need to be made in the name of the learner driver and could impact their future insurance.

Find out more about how everything works by checking out the Jaunt guide to short-term insurance.
Then get a quote here today by answering a few simple questions!