Your car insurance can be as flexible as your life

car insurance

Couple of years ago, we got one of ‘those’ calls; you know, the ones you hope you won’t get. On the other end of the line was a close friend of ours and she sounded very upset.

She was phoning from the A&E department of the local hospital. On her way to work, she managed to step into a pothole on the pavement, fell down and broke her arm. This happened after she parked her car.

Apart from the pain, the broken plans and the long recovery period, our friend had a more immediate and pressing problem – she wasn’t able to drive her car home.

John did it; but he took a very large risk. Generally, insurance companies have stopped automatic legal minimum cover for the policyholder to drive other vehicles. So, John drove the five miles to our friend’s house on the hope that nothing bad will happen. It didn’t!

But it doesn’t always work like that and driving without insurance is not only risky; it is also illegal. Back then, we didn’t know about temporary car insurance.

Temporary car insurance is flexible enough to meet the needs to our dynamic lives. It can be used to cover the use of a vehicle temporary – between 1 and 28 days – and can be arranged online with immediate effect – you don’t even need to have a printed Certificate of Insurance as this is all computerised.

Here are five situations where taking out temporary insurance will save you money without hassle and give you piece of mind.

Don’t have a car

Many people today, particularly younger people, choose not to own cars. They are right – car ownership is so expensive that using a combination of public transport (works in most cities) and taxies works out much cheaper day to day.

There are occasions where this doesn’t work very well, though and moving house and going on a camping holiday are two of those. In such cases, cars can be borrowed (parents are always are good option here) or hired.

Whether you need to borrow or hire a car using temporary insurance makes sense.

In fact, I was playing around, checking different options using Insure Daily’s temporary insurance; as you do on a Saturday afternoon. This is what I came up with:

  • To insure a 21 years old driver (gender doesn’t matter, apparently) for 7 days for Skoda Octavia will cost £119.09;
  • To insure me, a 51 year old driver, for 7 days for Skoda Octavia will cost £83.17.

Compare this with the costs of keeping a car (in the thousands depending on how old the car is and whether you own it outright) and using and insuring a car on occasional basis starts making a lot of sense.

Drive someone else’s car

There are many situations when you may need to drive someone else’s car. These cannot be always predicted. Like when I was visiting with friends who live in the country and keep two cars.

One of their cars was at the garage to be serviced and they needed a driver. I couldn’t help – I didn’t have insurance to drive the car back. Okay, between you and me, I was relieved because I don’t like driving very much; but I still live with the regret because I wasn’t able to help.

It is not only that you may need to drive someone else’s car but also that you may need someone to drive your car. Flexibility of arrangements and insurance is necessary.

Borrow a car

Imagine you are moving house and you drive a Smart; or another equally impractical car.

You’ll have to borrow a car for a day or so and you need to be insured to drive it. This is possible if you have family and friends who love you, but love is not enough – you also need insurance. To be specific, you need temporary insurance.

Selling/buying a car

At the beginning of the year we decided to sell our car; yep the one we paid off fully several months earlier. After making a half-hearted attempt to sell it privately – we really suck at this kind of thing – we decided to opt for a third party. As a result we sold it for over £1000 ($1,600) less than the going rate.

Many people sell and buy cars privately and doing that without a test drive is, mildly speaking, silly. Test driving the car you intend to buy requires insurance.

Trade cars in a small way

People today often need a side hustle, something that makes a little bit of money on the side. Usually this is something they know about.

I have a friend who, in his spare time, trades in cars. It is a very small operation but it still involves finding good deals, test driving them and driving them to where the cars are kept. This operation is so small, though, that carrying motor trader insurance is not worth it.

In this case, temporary insurance may work out to advantage.

Finally…

Our lives have become so dynamic that we need a level of flexibility to accommodate different situations. Having a choice of flexible services and other provisions help!

photo credit: timtak via photopin cc

4 thoughts on “Your car insurance can be as flexible as your life”

  1. Gosh, do you think temp car insurance is cheap? I think it’s really expensive, for what it is! I am not 51 & driving a Skoda Octavia, but I do have 5 years no claims and the rest of it. Yet when I wanted to take out temp insurance for my latest car for a week, the cheapest quote I could find was £200+.

    Worth bearing in mind that even if you don’t use your car regularly, if you park it on the street you need valid insurance. This is a relatively recent rule change.

    1. @Miss Thrifty: It is not ‘absolutely cheap’ but…compared to the costs of keeping a car all the time and the very high premiums for young(er) people it is not too bad. The main thing for me is the flexibility, though. You make a very good comment at the end: if you own a car and park it on the street you need valid insurance.

    1. @Krant: We have a car (but only one): a little Skoda CityGo. IT is economic and versatile for the city draving we mostly do. When we need larger car we hire or borrow (but the CityGo is also know in our house as ‘the Tardis’). As to insurance, yep; one of the great adavanrages in aging is that until a certain point insurance gets cgeaper.

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