Motor Insurance

Do Direct Line and Churchill do delivery insurance?

Here we'll explain what you need to do in order to have a Direct Line or Churchill car insurance policy and get covered to make food or parcel deliveries.

Direct Line won't cover any type of hire and reward (H&R) type work, so they won't insure food delivery or courier driving with the likes of Just Eat or Deliveroo. However, they are one of the few top 10 companies to permit policyholders to buy a supplemental H&R policy to cover their delivery driving. Here's how it works, what you need and what to look out for.

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Does Direct Line cover delivery or courier driving?

No, Direct Line does not generally cover delivery driving, but Direct Line policyholders can still engage in paid delivery or courier work so long as they buy top-up Hire & Reward (H&R) insurance elsewhere—and get approval to do this from Direct Line. This applies to both cars and vans.

H&R insurance covers paid delivery driving (that is, when you're paid to deliver someone else's goods) and is required by law for anyone earning money for making deliveries, whether food delivery or parcel. Top-up H&R cover works in parallel with a motorist's social, domestic & pleasure (SD&P) policy, with each covering one aspect of driving.

To confirm this, we recently reached out to Direct Line to confirm their views on delivery driving. Here's what they said:

"Whilst Direct Line do not currently offer policyholders the ability to add on additional cover to their standard policy to insure against using their vehicles for deliveries such as; Just Eat, Deliveroo, Uber Eats or postal deliveries. If they would like to use their vehicle for these purposes they are able to take out ‘top-up’ insurance with an alternative provider, to cover them when they are using their vehicles for business purposes.

Separate ’top-up’ insurance policies are offered by some delivery firms, as well as, alternative companies such as Zego, and provide cover over and above your standard insurance policy to protect drivers whilst they are using their vehicle for delivery purposes. This ‘top-up’ insurance will not invalidate a Direct Line customer’s personal policy, however, any claims which arise whilst the vehicle is being used for business purposes such as; deliveries would be payable by the ‘top-up’ insurer and not Direct Line."

Direct Line is one of the only big UK insurers to work with top-up H&R cover for delivery people. Many insurers will invalidate your SD&P policy if you use your vehicle to make paid deliveries, even if you've bought top-up cover.

What about Churchill, do they cover delivery driving?

Churchill is part of the Direct Line Group, and they follow the same set of rules when it comes to delivery driving. Churchill won't cover delivery driving, but they do permit SD&P policyholders to buy top-up H&R cover elsewhere that will cover that aspect of their driving.

Can I make deliveries without hire & reward cover?

No, it is critical that you do not make any deliveries until you've secured H&R cover. Working as a paid delivery driver or courier is illegal without H&R cover, and your underlying SD&P policy could be invalidated, too, leaving you completely uninsured. Driving without insurance can result in points, fines, seizure of your car, having your licence taken away and possible financial ruin! Best avoided.

If you're interested in learning more about this, read our in-depth guide to delivery driving and food delivery insurance.

Where to buy top-up hire & reward cover

There are a few top-up H&R options in the UK marketplace, but according to our research it seems like Zego is the most popular option with delivery drivers. You can read our full Zego review to learn more about the company and the product. Or ask your fellow delivery drivers or couriers—they'll surely have useful advice and experiences to share.

The way Zego top-up hire & reward cover works is that a driver has a regular SD&P car insurance policy (with, say, Direct Line) that covers their personal driving, and then they buy Zego PAYG top-up H&R insurance that covers their delivery driving.

What to look out for if you buy top-up cover

Direct Line will cover your social, domestic & pleasure driving; the top-up H&R insurance will cover your delivery driving—but who covers your commute back and forth between home and work? It depends. Investigate whether or not the top-up insurance will cover your commute; if it doesn't, you'll need to declare and pay for commuting on your Direct Line policy.

And be sure to check your certificates of motor insurance. Commuting should be listed on one of them, but not both, as this could lead to confusion regarding who was liable if you have an accident while on your way to or from home.

Final thoughts

While we have confirmation from the Direct Line press office that they'll accept top-up cover, it is still important to call up and inform Direct Line that you're working as a paid courier or delivery driver, and that you've taken out top-up cover. Don't be surprised if your SD&P insurance premium goes up as a result, as it may happen. If it does, please let us know the scope of this increase in the comments below.

Also, note that we've found some customer support team members seem unaware that top-up H&R cover is acceptable—if someone tells you it's not ok, ask the rep to check with the underwriting team, as they have the final say.

Finally, if you'll be working full-time as a courier or delivery driver, it might be more cost effective to buy annual H&R cover and SD&P from a specialist delivery insurance broker, rather than separate SD&P and top-up H&R. To get an idea of prices for your profile, you can fill out a quote form with our comparison parter QuoteZone below.

Find food delivery insurance.
Powered by QuoteZone.

Get Quotes

  • Rated 4.8 out of 5 stars on
  • Fill out only one form
  • Note: Inexperienced food delivery drivers with 0 years of no claims may have difficulty getting a quote in the current market.
Erin Yurday

Erin Yurday is the 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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