Sainsbury's Bank Car Insurance Review: How does Coverage Compare?

Sainsbury's Bank Car Insurance Review: How does Coverage Compare?

Good customer reviews and a solid set of "must-have" features make Sainsbury's worth considering.

Good for

  • Longer guarantee for repairs
  • Courtesy car for duration of repairs
  • Solid set of features available as add ons including premium courtesy car

Bad for

  • Need to pay extra for some add ons with standard policy (e.g., motor legal, breakdown)

Editor's Rating

4.0/5.0

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.

Is Sainsbury's car insurance any good? Sainsbury's Bank offers cover from a wide selection of car insurers, such as Zurich and Axa, and they offer a number of desirable features such as a courtesy car. But before you buy, check out our selection of customer reviews to see what real customers have to say about being insured by Sainsbury's car insurance.

In This Review

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Sainsbury's Car Insurance Overall Review

Sainsbury's Bank car insurance offers a solid set of features, but check the customer ratings to learn about issues such as accessing customer service and getting Nectar points credited.

Sainsbury's has expanded their car insurance offering, adding an 'Essentials' plan to appeal to those who want more bare minimum comprehensive cover for a lower premium. Their three types of comprehensive cover are called: Essentials, Standard and Plus. The top two tiers include lots of important features as standard, such as windscreen cover, a courtesy car if your car is getting repaired for damage in an insured incident and uninsured driver protection (e.g. your no claims discount isn't affected by claims resulting from an uninsured driver), but 'Essentials' doesn't cover your windscreen, personal belongings, keys, audio equipment or driving other cars.

But you can add optional extras to your policy such as cover for lost or stolen keys, legal cover and breakdown (the last two are included as standard in the Plus plan). In general, Sainsbury's Bank car insurance stands out for:

  • 5 year guarantee on repairs by their approved repairers (vs. 12 months - 3 years that you get on a lot of other plans)
  • Courtesy car provided for duration of repairs (vs. 14 day limit from some other plans)

However, you don't get a courtesy car in the event your car is written off. Also, there isn't any NCD protection for a no-fault accident. Here's what's covered by Sainsbury's comprehensive cover according to their website, and how it stacks up against what you'd ideally get from a good policy.

How Good is Sainsbury's Car Insurance?Does Sainsbury's ESSENTIALS Deliver?Sainsbury's ESSENTIAL Comprehensive CoverDoes Sainsbury's STANDARD Deliver?Sainsbury's STANDARD Comprehensive CoverDoes Sainsbury's PLUS Deliver?Sainsbury's PLUS Comprehensive Cover
"Must Have" Features
Windscreen
red x
n/a
thumbs up
Full cover if use approved repairer, but you pay an excess
thumbs up
Full cover if use approved repairer, but you pay an excess
Belongings
red x
n/a
thumbs up
£200
thumbs up
£200
Keys
red x
n/a
thumbs up
Up to £1,000 if person who may have your keys knows location or identity of your car
thumbs up
Up to £1,000 if person who may have your keys knows location or identity of your car
Protected NCD
thumbs up
Yes, if you have at least 4 years NCD and buy the option
thumbs up
Yes, if you have at least 4 years NCD and buy the option
thumbs up
Yes, if you have at least 4 years NCD and buy the option
Car recovery after accident
thumbs up
Reasonable costs covered
thumbs up
Reasonable costs covered
thumbs up
Reasonable costs covered
Courtesy car (repairs)
thumbs up
For duration of repairs
thumbs up
For duration of repairs
thumbs up
For duration of repairs
Repairs guaranteed (if use approved repairer)
thumbs up
5 years
thumbs up
5 years
thumbs up
5 years
"Should Have" Features
New car replacement
thumbs up
if cost to repair more than 55% of list price; up to one year old
thumbs up
if cost to repair more than 55% of list price; up to one year old
thumbs up
if cost to repair more than 55% of list price; up to one year old
Stereo and satellite nav
red x
n/a
thumbs up
Full cost to repair/replace equipment fitted as standard by manufacturer; up to £500 for permanently-fitted equipment not fitted to your car when first registered
thumbs up
Full cost to repair/replace equipment fitted as standard by manufacturer; up to £500 for permanently-fitted equipment not fitted to your car when first registered
Alternative transport & Hotel after accident
thumbs up
up to £300
thumbs up
up to £300
thumbs up
up to £300
24-hour emergency helpline
thumbs up
0344 600 9021
thumbs up
0344 600 9021
thumbs up
0344 600 9021
Courtesy car (total loss or theft)
thumbs up
Not available
thumbs up
Not available
thumbs up
Not available
Motor legal expenses
thumbs up
Optional add on
thumbs up
Optional add on
thumbs up
Included
Breakdown cover
thumbs up
Optional add on
thumbs up
Optional add on
thumbs up
Bronze level included
"Could Have" Features
Same cover in EU
thumbs up
up to 90 days
thumbs up
up to 90 days
thumbs up
up to 90 days
Child car seat replacement after accident, theft, fire
thumbs up
Covered even if there is no apparent damage
thumbs up
Covered even if there is no apparent damage
thumbs up
Covered even if there is no apparent damage
Larger/premium courtesy car
thumbs up
Optional add on
thumbs up
Optional add on
thumbs up
Optional add on
Uninsured driver NCD protection
thumbs up
Included
thumbs up
Included
thumbs up
Included
Cancellation fee
red x
£55
red x
£55
red x
£55

Sainsbury's Car Insurance Customer Service Reviews and Ratings

Existing customers have rated Sainsbury's Bank with an average of 4.0 out of 5 stars on Trustpilot by over 12,500 customers, with 20% awarding Sainsbury's Bank with only a 1-star "Bad" rating but 63% giving them a 5-star 'Excellent' rating—here's why. Before you buy, read the selection of real customer reviews below to see the biggest complaints.

Sainsbury's Bank Ratings & Customer Reviews
Trustpilot customer service rating4.0 out of 5

To give you a feel for what people like and don't like about Sainsbury's car insurance, we've scoured the online customer reviews to find common complaints and praise for car insurance specifically. Most of the negative reviews related to products other than car insurance (e.g., loans, credit cards and home insurance). Here's some of what we found:

Excellent Customer Reviews for Sainsbury's Car Insurance

"Was very impressed with how quick and easy it was to get car insurance online. It was very quick in sending over documents. I would recommend sainsbury insurance."

"Cheapest car insurance I found and it's from a trusted company."

Negative Customer Reviews for Sainsbury's Car Insurance

"... I had to make a claim during my policy due to another person hitting me. Process was long, unclear and unhelpful. They're underwritten by someone, who's underwritten by someone, who's underwritten by someone. In the end I think I was transferred to 4 different sub-companies before I actually got through to the people that insured me. When that happened, I finally made a claim of which 1 week later when I chased - they'd never pressed submit their side so wasn't live. Never able to actually get hold of anyone in Sainsbury's Bank..."

"I have been on hold for over an hour through their robotic stages and haven't spoken to an actual human yet. I am trying to cancel my car insurance with them but a simple task is proving difficult."

"Got car insurance from Sainsbury Bank... A few days later I checked the paperwork online and found a mistake as my first name was replaced by my wife's, who does not drive. This could have been caused by me entering her nectar card number to get extra points."

Look out for this—it sounds like the system might create an error if you enter the Nectar card number of someone different than the driver named on the policy.

Sainsbury's Car Insurance Quote Comparison

Sainsbury's Bank car insurance does not appear to be a budget option; their prices are on par with the likes of LV=, One Call and RAC car insurance. We got sample quotes for a 30-year-old drive of a Ford Fiesta over 50 postcodes and found that Sainsbury's was less expensive than Tesco and Ageas, but more expensive than cheap comparison site offerings from Quotemehappy.com (Aviva), Admiral, Churchill (Direct Line Group) and Hastings. Note: this pricing comparison doesn't reflect their new Essentials tier, which will come in quite a bit cheaper and should compete with entry-level tiers from other big name insurance providers.

Average premium over 50 sample post codes for a 30-year-old driver of a Ford Fiesta
Churchill£427
Quotemehappy.com£600
Admiral£670
Elephant£677
Diamond£682
Hastings (Essential)£685
People's Choice£735
Bell£749
Sheila's Wheels£776
esure£780
More Than£781
LV=£988
RAC£1,124
One Call£1,177
Sainsbury's£1,194
Tesco£1,584
Ageas£2,805

Quotes will vary drastically for different profiles, so you may need to pay more or less than these rates, but this information can give an idea of how an insurance provider tends to compare in terms of price.

chart showing a cost comparison of Sainsbury's Bank car insurance to Bell, Hastings, Quotemehappy, Hastings Smart Miles, Admiral Little Box, Churchill, LV= and others

Sainsbury's Car Insurance Discounts

Sainsbury's Bank offers a few simple car insurance discounts, such as lower prices for a safe driving history, no claims discounts and paying in full every year.

DiscountWho qualifies?
No Claims DiscountEach year you don't make a claim should increase the discount you receive
Pay upfrontPay your full premium at the start of the policy to save money (the APR is variable)
Buy your policy earlyTry to buy your policy around 3 weeks ahead of the start date to save up to 50%

Sainsbury's Charges and Fees

Sainsbury's charges a £50 fee to cancel your policy after the initial 14-day window—and there's no fee to cancel during the cooling off period. (You'll also have to pay for any time on cover, of course.) Changes such as adding a driver or a change of address cost £25 to make over the phone and are free to make online through the customer portal.

Sainsbury's Car Insurance Cancellation and Admin Fees
Set up fee (new policies and renewals)£40
Cancellation£55
Admin Changes (e.g., change address, add a driver, etc.)£25 via phone, free online

Important Sainsbury's Bank Car Insurance Phone Numbers

Customers have slightly worse access to customer service with Sainsbury's Bank than with other insurers, as they're closed Sundays (except roadside assistance is open 24 hours a day). Lines are normally open Monday to Friday 9am to 7pm and Saturdays 9am – 5pm. There's an online customer portal, but no live chat feature.

Sainsbury's Bank Insurance Contact Numbers
Customer Services0345 266 1670
Claims0344 600 9021
Windscreen claims0344 600 9021
Guaranteed Courtesy Car claims (8am - 6pm)01737 334 252
Key Cover claims01737 334 254
Motor Legal Protection - Uninsured loss recovery and personal injury0344 600 9022
Motor Legal Protection - Motor Legal Advice, Contract Dispute or Vehicle Cloning0333 005 0349 and quote AUXSAINMLP16
24 Hour Helplines
Breakdown service0330 159 8485

FAQs

To cancel Sainsbury's car insurance you'll need to notify them by phone or in writing. They can be reached at 0345 608 6034 during office times, which are Monday to Friday 8am to 8pm, Saturday 9am to 5pm, and Sunday 9am to 2pm. If you cancel before cover is due to start, you should get a full refund of any premium you have paid. If you cancel after cover has started they'll return any premium paid less a charge for the number of days for which you were covered. If you've made a claim, there's no refund (which means if you pay in monthly installments that you need to pay the outstanding premium). For cancellation fees, see our section on Sainsbury's car cancellation fees.
Sainsubry's car insurance is underwritten by a panel of insurers including Zenith, Premier, ABC, Zurich, AXA, Highway (LV), Covea and Sabre—some of the largest car insurance companies in the UK.
Sainsbury's comprehensive car insurance does cover driving other cars, subject to many conditions which you can read about in "Section 6: Driving other cars" of the policy wording .

Policy Documents

To view your documents online, log into your customer portal or access the policy documents here.

Other Car Insurance Reviews

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

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.

Comments

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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