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.

What insurance do learner drivers need?

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If you’re learning to drive, you’ll need to make sure you have appropriate learner car insurance, especially if you’re planning to practise in between lessons. Policies are generally very flexible so you won’t have to commit to an annual plan. Plus, if you’re borrowing someone else’s car, learner car insurance sits alongside the car owner’s policy so their no claims bonus won’t be affected if you make a claim.

To help you work out if learner insurance is something you need, here’s what to consider.

Do I need learner car insurance?

If you’re learning to drive with a driving school and using a car that belongs to them, you probably won’t need your own learner car insurance policy.

However, if you intend to practise driving in a friend or family member’s car, you’ll need appropriate learner car insurance.

Do I need learner driver car insurance for my own car?

The short answer is yes. If you’re learning to drive in your own car you must have suitable learner car insurance. Remember that you’ll also need cover if you:

  • Are practising in your own car in between lessons with a driving school.
  • Borrow someone else’s car to practise in.

You’ll also need to make sure you’re supervised if you’re practising in your own car. By law, that person must:

  • Be over 21 years old (although this is the legal minimum, some insurers will need you to be supervised by someone over 25).
  • Be qualified to drive the car you’re learning in (for example, if you’re practising in a manual car, they must be licensed to drive one).
  • Have held a full UK driving licence or a licence from the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, or Liechtenstein for three years.
  • Not use a mobile phone while supervising you.

If the person supervising you doesn’t meet these conditions, you can be fined up to £1,000 and be given up to six penalty points. Also bear in mind that you can’t drive on the motorway if you’re practising with a friend or family member.

What are the consequences of driving without learner car insurance?

Driving without insurance is a serious offence regardless of whether you have a full or provisional driving licence. If you’re learning to drive and are caught without insurance you can be given an unlimited fine, up to eight penalty points, and be banned from driving.

Penalty points on your provisional licence can also be carried over to your full licence if they haven’t expired. But that’s not all, if you get additional penalty points bringing your total to six or more within two years of passing your test, your licence will be cancelled. If this happens you’ll have to start all over again and reapply for a provisional licence and take and pass both the theory and practical test again .

What does learner driver insurance in the UK cover?

Learner driver insurance covers you to drive your car in lessons and practise in between. Policies will also cover you as you take the practical driving test. Otherwise, policies are essentially the same as standard car insurance and you’ll be covered for the same sort of risks. That means you’ll be able to choose from one of three levels of cover:

  • Third Party Only—this covers injuries and damage to other people and their property but not yours.
  • Third Party, Fire and Theft—includes Third Party Only cover and will also compensate you if the car you’re driving is stolen or damaged by fire.
  • Comprehensive—includes Third Party, Fire and Theft and will also pay to repair or replace the car you’re driving if you’re involved in an accident.

Insurers will also offer a range of extras, but you’re under no obligation to add them to your policy. Popular additions typically include breakdown cover, legal expenses and personal injury cover.

How much does learner car insurance cost?

The cost of learner car insurance really depends on your own circumstances and insurers will take different factors into consideration. For example:

  • The type of car you insure—expensive cars cost more to cover as they’re pricier to repair or replace.
  • Your address—built up areas or areas with higher than average crime rates can mean you pay more for cover.
  • Where the car is kept overnight—cars parked on private driveways or in locked garages generally cost a little less to insure than cars parked on public roads.

Can I buy learner car insurance for a day?

Learner driver insurance varies in length so you can buy a policy to suit you. In most cases you’ll be able to find policies that last days, weeks or months. Some may even offer you cover from as little as two hours (e.g., Admiral).

If you find you need more time, just let your insurer know and they should be able to extend you policy without any problems.

Does an annual insurance policy already cover learner drivers?

As a general rule, car insurance only covers the drivers named on the policy. That said, insurers set their own terms so if you’re the parent of a child learning to drive, check what your policy says about provisional licence holders.

Alternatively, if you’re the main policyholder, you can add the learner driver to your own car insurance plan as a named driver. This will increase your premium, and in some cases quite considerably. Also, don’t forget that any claims made by named drivers will affect your no claims bonus. For this reason, many learners get their own learners insurance policy.

Does learner driver insurance provide cover after I’ve passed the test?

In most instances, no. After you’ve passed your driving test, your learner car insurance will no longer be valid, and you’ll need to buy a new policy. That means if you’ve passed the test in your own car, you’ll need someone else (who is insured on your car) to drive you back from the test centre.

Compare learner car insurance that fits your budget

Learning to drive is exciting and even though insurance is anything but, it’s important to make sure you’ve got the cover you need. The good news is that you can search and compare 110+ learner car insurance quotes thanks to our friends at Quotezone; all you need to do is answer a few questions and they’ll do all the hard work.


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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