Acorn Car Insurance Review: High Risk or Learner Cover for You?

Acorn Car Insurance Review: High Risk or Learner Cover for You?

Good for

  • Specialist insurer that considers drivers with previous convictions or points on their licence

Editor's Rating

3.5/5.0

The guidance on this site is based on our own analysis and is meant to help you identify options and narrow down your choices. We do not advise or tell you which product to buy; undertake your own due diligence before entering into any agreement. Read our full disclosure here.

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Read about Acorn to see if their car insurance for learners or high risk drivers might be suitable for you. Find out how Acorn features compare and how existing policyholders rate Acorn's customer service.

In This Review

Acorn Car Insurance Overall Review

Acorn specialises in cover for learners and those with points on their licence or previous convictions, who might have trouble getting cover elsewhere. Customers give Acorn high marks for their customer service, which should give some peace of mind to those considering sign up for an Acorn policy.

Potential customers should be aware that Acorn policies are quite basic and don't include a lot of features you might find on other policies. For example, Acorn doesn't include a guarantee on repairs to damage after an accident, accommodation and onwards travel after an accident or a new car replacement. However, this can help keep their prices lower. So if you don't need these features then Acorn might be a good option for you, especially if you have points or convictions.

Acorn policies purchased online (e.g., through their website or a price comparison site) are provided by Haven Insurance Company Ltd. Add on products may be provided by other companies; for instance, for keycare cover they deal with Ageas Insurance, one of the biggest UK car insurance companies.

Features

While Acorn offers three types of polices (Comprehensive, Third Party Fire & Theft and Third Party Only), we'll discuss the features of their comprehensive Private Car plan from their website. As you'll see in the features table below, Acorn comprehensive Private Car plans are relatively stripped back, missing a few "must have" features as recommended by the Money Advice Service. If these aren't important to you then Acorn might still be a great option for you.

This is a high-level summary for policies bought direct from Acorn through their website—remember, these are always subject to conditions and exclusions, which you can read about in the policy documents.

How Good is Acorn Car Insurance?A Good Policy IncludesDoes Acorn Deliver?Acorn Comprehensive Black Box Coverage
"Must Have" Features
WindscreenFull repair or replacement
thumbs up add on
Some policies/if you buy the add on
Belongings£200+
red x
Up to £100
Keys£300+
thumbs up add on
If you buy the add on
Protected NCD2 times in 3 years (standard or optional extra)
thumbs up add on
If you buy the option, protected up to 1 fault claim within the period of one policy year.
Car recovery after accidentIncluded
thumbs up add on
Included
Courtesy car (repairs)Minimum 14 days
question mark
If you use their repairer; for drivers over 21 years old
Repairs guaranteed12-month guarantee
red x
Not included
"Should Have" Features
New car replacementTheft or damage at least 60% of list price; cars up to 12 months old
red x
Not included
Stereo and satellite navMarket value for manufactur fitted
question mark
Up to £250
Alternative transport & Hotel after accident£250+
red x
Not included
24-hour emergency helplineStandard
thumbs up
Included
Courtesy car (total loss or theft)Standard or add-on extra
question mark
Included, up to 7 days
Motor legal expensesStandard or add-on extra
thumbs up
Included
Breakdown coverStandard or add-on extra
thumbs up add on
If you buy the add on
"Could Have" Features
Same cover in EUStandard or add-on extra
thumbs up add on
Up to 28 days if they agree and you pay an extra premium
Child car seat replacement after accident, theft, fireIdeally replaced even if no visible damage
red x
Not included
Larger/premium courtesy carStandard or add-on extra
red x
Not available
No fault NCD protectionStandard
thumbs up
Fault or Split Liability claims will affect your No Claims Discount
Uninsured driver NCD protectionStandard
red x
Not convered
Cancellation feeNo more than £50
red x
Range of fees from £0 to £100, in addition to cancellation fees from insurance provider

Acorn Car Insurance Customer Service Reviews and Ratings

Acorn customers are generally quite happy with the company, as evidenced by solid customer reviews and 4.2 out of 5 stars on Trustpilot, but customers do have some problems. The negative reviews were a complaints—some potentially serious, some not (e.g., closed on Sunday, someone charged a cancellation fee, renewal price higher, not showing up in the Motor Insurance Database, etc.).

Over 1,500 customers have rated Acorn with 4.88 stars out of 5 at Reviews.co.uk.

Acorn Ratings & Customer Reviews
Trustpilot customer service rating4.2 out of 5
Reviews.co.uk4.88 out of 5

Here are some of the negative customer reviews:

"They email me twice telling my policy would be auto-renewed. Six months later I get a letter from the Motor Insurance Database stating that I have no cover. After 2 hours on the phone and being placed on hold 7 times, they reuse to let me speak to a manager. They refuse to help despite me giving them the letter to them. DO NOT TRUST THEM."

"So I’ve been trying for the last ten dayss to contact I’ve used the chat phone numbers given to me also tried logging in on the website for it to keep saying it can’t find my details"

"The sales team answer calls straight away but customer service don’t answer calls and I’ve been redirected many times in an effort to try and avoid cancelling my policy.... Automated voice also tells the customers to use the online service for queries, and queries will be dealt with immediately, this is untrue and another way of avoiding calls."

"I chose insurance and paid for it, and they sent me a certificate of insurance. But I'm not in MID, I called the company I was switched between employees 5 times, but no one was able to do anything. I will cancel the policy... Update. 4 days later, I'm still not in the MID. I have already made 2 requests to stop the policy. Again, no reaction."

And some positive customer reviews, which mostly highlight a very patient and helpful sales staff:

"Hands down the best customer service ever I was given the utmost respect and treated tremendously"

"On first impressions, I get the feel they're a somewhat smaller company battling out the bigger well known insurers; I feel this makes them far easier to contact, particularly via email as they offer this information. They certainly offer all the usual bits you would expect including online policy management etc. The policy was the cheapest quote at the time and was very easy and straightforward to purchase. Cover was immediate and offers everything I need including the ability to drive other cars... The lady I spoke to on the phone was amazing and went out of her way to sort things out - I was left very reassured that I'm covered and not to worry."

Acorn Car Insurance Discounts

Acorn offers a typical set of car insurance discounts, such as savings for good driving records, no claims discounts and paying in full at the start of each policy year.

DiscountWho qualifies?
No Claims DiscountEach year you don't make a claim should increase your NCD up to 5 years of no claims discount
Pay upfrontPay your full premium at the start of the policy to save money on interest charges
Buy your policy earlyBuying your policy a few weeks ahead of the start date can generally save you money
Safe drivingEstablishing a safe driving record can help you save money on renewal

Cancellation & Administration Fees

Acorn cancellation fees range from £0 to £100, depending on when you cancel your policy. In addition, you may need to pay a fee to the insurance provider (e.g., Haven Insurance). To make another admin change (e.g., add a driver or change your address), expect to pay £25 each time. You'll also pay a new policy set up fee and renewal fees, which you can read about in their terms of service.

Cancellation Fees
Cancel within 14 days
  • Insurer charge: Minimum of £25 + Insurance Premium Tax
  • Acorn charge: £0
Cancel 15 - 30 days
  • Insurer charge: Minimum of £25 + Insurance Premium Tax
  • Acorn charge: £50
Cancel after 30 days
  • Insurer charge: Minimum of £25 + Insurance Premium Tax
  • Acorn charge: £100
Admin fees for amendments£25

Important Acorn Car Insurance Phone Numbers

Customers can reach Acorn customer service 6 days a week—not on Sundays. Except, of course, customers can use the 24-hour helpline if they have an accident and need help. During normal working hours customers can get in touch with Acorn through their online live chat feature and phone customer service lines, which are open Mon through Fri: 9.00am-9.00pm and Sat: 9.30am-5.30pm.

Acorn Car Insurance Contact Numbers
Customer Services01704 272 727
To make changes to your policy01704 339 000 (option 2)
24 Hour Helplines
Claims0345 092 0700 or text “CLAIM” to 83118

Policy Documents

To find out more about the conditions and exclusions, read the Acorn policy documents.

Other Car Insurance Reviews

If you'd like to compare Elephant to other car insurance companies, see our other car insurance reviews below:

Erin Yurday

Erin Yurday is the CEO, Co-founder and Editor of NimbleFins. Prior to NimbleFins, she worked as an investment professional and as the finance expert in Stanford University's Graduate School of Business case writing team. Read more on LinkedIn.

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