Comprehensive car insurance

  • Buy comprehensive car insurance for less than £734/year[1]
  • Compare prices from 169 provider products[2] to find the right cover for you
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[1] 51% of our customers were quoted less than £742.43 for their comprehensive car insurance in June 2023. | [2] Correct as of June 2023.

What is comprehensive car insurance?

A comprehensive car insurance policy (also known as fully comprehensive car insurance) offers the highest level of protection for you and your car.

As well as covering you for third-party damage to another vehicle or person, comprehensive insurance also covers fire, theft and damage to your own car, no matter who is at fault.

What’s the difference between comprehensive and fully comprehensive car insurance? 

There isn’t any difference, they’re just slightly different names for the same thing. It’s the highest level of cover – protecting you, your vehicle and third parties. But comprehensive doesn’t mean you’ll be covered for everything. You still need to check the policy carefully to see what you will or won’t be covered for. 

What is covered by comprehensive car insurance?

Comprehensive policies are designed to provide you with full car insurance coverage. However, the exact details of what this kind of cover includes will depend on the policy and the provider you choose.

Here’s what comprehensive policies typically cover and some common exclusions:

Typically covered:

  • Third-party damage to other cars
  • Fire damage to your own car
  • Theft of your car
  • The full cost of repairing damage to your car
  • Injury to other people
  • Damage caused by flooding.

Typically not covered:

  • Theft caused by carelessness
  • Damage or injuries caused when driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Driving with an invalid driving licence
  • General wear or tear
  • Driving someone else’s car – this can vary between providers and policies.

Upgrades and additional cover

Comprehensive policies can vary a lot in terms of the additional cover they include. Some policies offer optional extras as standard, while others charge you to add them on. Some of the most common include:

Why do I need comprehensive insurance?

A comprehensive policy offers total car insurance coverage. It’s the highest level of protection you can get. If you want peace of mind that you’re insured against risks to your own vehicle, comprehensive is the way to go.

Ultimately, to drive legally on UK roads, you must have some type of car insurance. Other options are:

Third-party car insurance

Offers protection if you damage another person’s car or injure someone while driving. It doesn’t cover your own vehicle if it's damaged in an accident.

Learn more about third-party car insurance

Third-party, fire and theft

This offers the same cover as third-party but may also cover you if your vehicle is stolen or damaged in a fire.

Learn more about third-party, fire and theft


Popular among young drivers, black box insurance is based on data about your driving from a device installed in your car or smart phone app.

Learn more about telematics car insurance

How much does comprehensive car insurance cost?

You might assume comprehensive car insurance costs more than third-party or third-party, fire and theft, but that’s not always true. Sometimes comprehensive cover is the cheapest option.

Drivers who take out third-party only cover are statistically more likely to take risks on the road. So even though it only offers the most basic level of cover, a third-party policy is often more expensive than a comprehensive one.

However, the cost of your car insurance premium will depend on various factors including your age, driving history, the type of car you drive, and even where you live.

Here’s the average cost for our customers:

Comprehensive cover[3]

Third-party fire and theft [4]

Third-party only [5]

51% of our customers were quoted less than [3] £742.43 for comprehensive car insurance, [4] £1,157.59 for third-party fire and theft car insurance,
[5] £1,667.76 for their third party car insurance. Based on Compare the Market data in June 2023.

How can I get cheaper comprehensive car insurance?

There’s a few ways you can try to reduce the price of your cover, including:

  • Cutting down the number of miles you drive and giving an accurate mileage in your quote.
  • Adding another responsible driver to the policy – it needs to be somebody who might reasonably drive your car. Don’t add someone as the main driver if they’re not – this is called fronting and is a type of insurance fraud.
  • Paying up front rather than in instalments – this way you’ll avoid paying interest on your premium compared with monthly payments.
  • Considering a telematics policy.

One of the best ways to find cheap comprehensive car insurance is to compare different quotes so you can find the right policy for you.

What do I need to get a quote?

To start comparing comprehensive car insurance quotes, you’ll need to tell us:

Your car and how you use it

We need to know the registration number, or the make, model and age. We’ll also ask for your annual mileage and where you keep your car at night.

Why does annual mileage matter?

Does where I keep my car impact the price?

Personal details

We’ll need some details about you, including name, age, where you live and what job you do. We’ll also need the details of any additional drivers you want to include on the policy.

How does my address affect my car insurance?

How do job titles affect car insurance policies?

Your claims history

We’ll ask about any no claims discount (NCD) and any insurance claims or convictions. Providing false information could invalidate your car insurance policy.

What is a no claims discount?

What else could invalidate a car insurance policy?

Author image Alex Hasty

What our expert says...

"As a result of people trying to save money during the cost-of-living crisis, many car insurance providers now offer different levels of comprehensive cover. For example, ‘essential’ policies may not offer windscreen cover, personal belongings cover or car key cover.

We understand that the price of ‘essential’ policies may be attractive right now, but it’s also important to understand that this type of policy may offer you less protection. What might seem a cheaper option could end up costing you more in the long run, if you need to claim. Ultimately, it’s up to the driver to weigh up the cost versus the level of cover, based on their needs. It’s worth checking with your provider if you need any information about what cover you may need.”

- Alex Hasty, Insurance expert

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Compare cheap car insurance quotes from 169 trusted provider products[2], including:

[6] As of July 2023,Compare the Market had an average rating of 4.8 out of 5 from 31,285 people who left a review on Trustpilot. The score 4.8 corresponds to the Star Label ‘Excellent’.

[2] Correct as of June 2023.

What do our customers say?

Based on 93,683 reviews, our customers rated us 4.6 out of 5.

Saved £160 and stayed with same Provider
Britpart • 09/09/2021
I got a great price for my car insurance, I would definitely recommend to friend
JTHOM • 09/09/2021
So easy and fast. Got a great deal half of what my current insurers quoted.
Jak60 • 09/09/2021
Love the way your details are kept which make it easy to review and choose each.
Carol G • 02/11/2021

Frequently asked questions

Can I drive any car if I have comprehensive cover?

No, it’s a common misconception that comprehensive car insurance covers you for driving other people’s cars

It used to be the case that many comprehensive policies gave you third-party cover when driving other people’s cars, but this is rare these days. It’s important to check your policy wording carefully so you’re clear what’s covered, or speak to your insurance provider if you’re unsure.

If you want to drive someone else’s car, or you want someone else to drive your car and you want to make sure you’re covered, you should look at adding a named driver. Or if you only need to drive someone else’s car for a short time, you could consider temporary car insurance.

What impacts the price of a comprehensive policy?

The price of your premium depends on various factors including your age, driving history, where you live and where you park your car overnight.

Insurance providers will consider these factors along with statistics based on their experience to determine how much of a risk there is of you making a claim. That level of risk will then be reflected in the price of your policy.

See more on how car insurance premiums are calculated

Page last reviewed on 12 JULY 2023
by Alex Hasty