Types of car insurance explained

The different types of car insurance can be quite bewildering. If you don’t know your TPFT from your NCB, we’re here to help!

Types of car insurance

Learner driver insurance

If you want to practise between lessons, you’ll need to arrange cover. It’s possible to add as a named driver to a parent’s insurance policy, but it’s often cheaper to have your own insurance policy. Some learner driver insurance policies cover you to practise driving in a friend or family member’s car, others insure you to practise in your own car. In some cases, learner driver policies allow the learner to begin building a NCB (no-claims bonus), usually if the policy is taken out for a full year.

Telematics insurance

Most young drivers go for ‘black box’ insurance, also known as telematics cover. This uses a clever GPS gizmo to keep track of how you are driving, when you drive, and the distance covered. Drive smoothly and carefully while sticking to the speed limit and you’ll be rewarded with a lower premium.

Short-term insurance

Not everyone buys their own car after passing the practical test, but that doesn’t mean you’ll never need to drive. If you want temporary cover to drive someone else’s car, short-term insurance from the likes of Cuvva.com or Veygo.com will insure you to drive someone else’s car.

Levels of insurance cover


As the name suggests, a third-party policy covers you against damage to other people and their cars. If you have a crash and another car is involved, you won’t have to pay for repairs to the other person’s car. However, the cost of fixing the damage to your car will be down to you. This is the legal minimum level of insurance cover.

Third-party, fire and theft

If you choose TPFT, then in addition to third-party coverage you’ll be insured against fire and theft. So if your car burns out or is stolen the insurance company will pay out.

Fully comprehensive

This is the top level of car insurance. Your car is covered, even if you are at fault. However, you can expect to pay an excess if you need to make a claim.

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