Am I Insured To Drive Any Car
4 minutes

Driving other people’s cars is a topic fraught with misunderstandings. Some people believe they can drive anyone’s car just as long as they have a comprehensive car insurance policy. Others aren’t sure about the difference between third party cover and comprehensive cover when it comes to driving someone else’s car.

Typically, if you want to borrow a friend’s car, you’ll need to double check your policy actually covers you to drive their car. Then, you will also need to look into what type of cover applies when you drive someone else’s car. For example, just because you have a comprehensive policy for your own car doesn’t mean this will extend to you driving other people’s cars.

This is where temporary car insurance might work better for you. There are all sorts of reasons why you might need temporary car insurance when you borrow a friend’s car. In this blog post, we’ll delve into all the intricacies of driving other people’s cars and the required car insurance.

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Can I drive someone else’s car on my insurance?

Some people think that having a comprehensive car insurance policy automatically entitles them to drive other people’s cars. But that’s not actually true.

You may have come across the term ‘Driving Other Cars’ (DOC)’ to indicate an extension of a comprehensive car insurance policy that allows drivers to use someone else’s car. Typically, however, this type of extension only offers third-party cover. This means that the insurer will cover third-party claims – i.e. another person or property damaged by the driver – but not repairs to the car itself.

It’s up to you and the car’s owner to decide whether this is sufficient cover. The most obvious consequence here is that if you need to claim, the car you were driving under DOC won’t be covered so you and/ or the car owner will need to pay for repairs. Also, the DOC extension often comes with restrictions and limitations. Some insurers impose age restrictions, for example. It’s common to limit the DOC extension to people over the age of 25 for instance.

Further, many insurers that offer this extension specify that it’s only valid in emergencies. The definition of “emergency” here can be pretty narrow, and in some cases only extends to actual life and death situations.

And, often, if you want to drive your partner or spouse’s car, the DOC extension might not apply at all. Instead, you’ll need to be a named driver on their policy or have a family or any driver car insurance policy.

What is a named driver?

A named driver is a person added to an existing car insurance policy as an additional driver. Named drivers benefit from the same level of cover as the main driver, which may include third party only, comprehensive or third party fire and theft cover. This means that if a named driver has an accident while driving the car, then the insurer should pay out for any damage caused, up to the agreed cover limits.

Adding someone as a named driver makes sense if the person is going to be driving the car frequently. Also typically, if you want your partner to be able to drive your car, you may need to add them as a named driver as it’s unlikely that a DOC extension will allow them to drive your car.

Adding a person as a named driver can have an impact on your premium. If the person is less experienced or has points on their licence, your premium might go up. But, if the person is more experienced and has a better track record than you on the road, your premium might go down, so you could actually make a saving.

Can I get short-term car insurance on someone else’s car?

If you need to drive someone else’s car, you can get short-term car insurance to do so. It’s actually a great way to put comprehensive cover in place if you’re borrowing a friend’s car, for example. Generally speaking, all you need is the owner’s permission and the car itself has to be roadworthy in order to be eligible for a policy.

However, different providers will have their own set of rules and limitations when it comes to taking out short-term cover so you should make sure to read the fine print before you take out a policy.

There are lots of benefits to taking out a short term car insurance policy. For instance, this type of policy doesn’t typically require a lengthy commitment. You can usually get cover for anywhere between an hour and a few weeks depending on what fits your needs, so it’s a great option if you just need a fill-in for occasional car sharing or if you want to borrow someone else’s vehicle for a one-time trip.

What’s short-term insurance?

Short-term insurance, also known as temporary insurance, is a type of car insurance that provides cover for drivers in the UK for a set period of time – typically between one hour and a few weeks.

It’s also quick to arrange and flexible, meaning you can take out a policy quickly if you’re in an emergency situation. With some insurance providers, you can be on the road within a few minutes of getting a quote, safe in the knowledge that you’re insured.

Additionally, most of these policies come with comprehensive cover which generally includes things like accidental damage or theft of the vehicle (unlike third-party only policies). This means that you are covered if something unexpected happens while you’re driving someone else’s car.

Short-term car insurance is a great option if you want to drive someone else’s car. It comes with far less restrictions than the DOC extension. And, in some circumstances, it makes more sense than being added to someone else’s policy.


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