Temporary van insurance

Short-term van insurance gives you the option to get fast, flexible cover from as little as one hour, up to 28 days.

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Tempcover compares temporary van or car insurance to get you a fully comprehensive policy in under two minutes. With van insurance available from 1 hour to 28 days, you only pay for the cover you need. Tempcover has sold more than 3 million policies and thanks to its award-winning customer service, it has an 'excellent' customer review rating on Trustpilot, as at 22 July 2021.

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Looking for Meerkat Meals or Meerkat Movies?*

Temporary van insurance is not a qualifying product for Meerkat Meals or Meerkat Movies.

Rewards qualifying purchases

Car, home, travel, pet, bike, van, business, landlord, health, caravan, motorhome, life (including 50+) and taxi insurance

Energy, broadband, TV, phone and mobile phone

Loans, credit cards, car finance, homeowner loans and income protection

Non-qualifying purchases

Business energy, savings and current accounts, mortgages, business life insurance, business broadband, breakdown cover, home care, temporary insurance and equity release.

How does short-term van insurance work?

Short-term insurance allows you to get temporary insurance cover so you can drive a van – in just minutes. It makes it simple to drive someone else’s van when needed.

The van’s owner doesn’t have to worry or do anything – you can sort it all out. And if you're concerned that it might impact your no claims discount, don’t be. It won’t affect it for either of you. But if you have an accident, it could affect your car and van insurance premiums in the future.

If you have a van and want to allow someone else to drive it temporarily, you can use it that way too.

Why get temporary van insurance?

Cover from 1 hour up to 28 days

No impact on your no claims bonus

Get on the road in minutes

When might temporary van insurance be a good idea?

  • Moving home or helping others relocate. If you can borrow a van, then you won’t need to pay to hire one
  • Transporting large items, like furniture, sports gear or equipment
  • Buying or selling a van. Test drive a van before purchasing or get drive-away cover after you’ve bought it
  • Sharing the driving on long trips
  • Cover somebody else using your van for a short time
  • Business use, for example:
    • Cover for temporary staff
    • Borrowing a van while yours is being repaired
    • Needing someone else to drive if your usual person is off sick or on holiday

Temporary van insurance is for when you borrow or lend a vehicle. It won’t cover you if you hire a van. Normally, you’ll have to get van hire insurance if you want to drive a hired van.

Because many businesses run on tight margins, affordable short-term van insurance can be a real lifesaver for cashflow – especially as it can be arranged at short notice.

What other temporary van insurance options are there?

There’s a variety of options to make sure you’re covered by insurance if you drive a van belonging to a family member, friend or colleague, or if you lend them yours. These include:

  • Adding them to your insurance policy
  • Being added to their policy
  • Adding them to the company policy

There’s likely to be a charge for any of these options. Always consider which is the best option for you in terms of cover, cost and ease.

What’s the shortest or longest time you can insure a vehicle with temporary insurance via Compare the Market?

You can get temporary insurance from one hour to 28 days. Just pick the length of time that suits you. Time limits can vary among insurance providers, so make sure you say how long you need temporary insurance for when comparing.

If you want to insure by the hour you can choose 1-12 hours, once you go over that it’s best to insure for the day. Don’t underestimate the time you need as that would put you at risk of not being insured.

Can I drive a van that I’ve just bought without getting insurance?

No. Driving any vehicle – including vans – without insurance is illegal and you could end up with a conviction. If you’ve just bought a new van, temporary insurance can give you the short-term cover you need while you compare van insurance providers and shop around to find a policy that suits you or your business’ needs.

Can I use temporary insurance for business use?

Yes, from time to time you may need to borrow a van from someone you know to transport something. You may also want to quickly insure new employees while you’re sorting out annual insurance, or to briefly add a temporary member of staff when you’re extra busy for an hour or two or even a few days.

Likewise, temporary van insurance could be useful if you’re going on a long-distance trip, so you can share time behind the wheel.

Temporary insurance can also be useful for businesses including builders, plumbers and roofers if they want to get cover for subcontractors to drive the work van.

When is temporary van insurance not suitable?

Typically, temporary insurance won’t cover you if you’re hiring or renting a van. Usually, you’ll need van hire insurance for that, which you may be able to arrange through the rental company.

You can’t use temporary insurance if you’re going to use your vehicle for ‘hire or reward’. In other words, to earn money from using it as a delivery driver or taxi driver. Instead, you’ll need commercial van insurance (which is also known as business van insurance) or taxi insurance.

Can I get temporary insurance to drive a car?

Yes, you can also easily get temporary insurance for cars as well as vans.

Again, cover is available for as little as an hour to 28 days with Tempcover. It takes just a few minutes to apply and you can soon be on the road.

Frequently asked questions

Am I eligible to get temporary van insurance?

To get a temporary van insurance quote, you’ll need to meet the eligibility criteria of the relevant provider. Also, you’ll need to hold a valid driving licence in line with the requirements shown.

You don’t have to be the registered owner of the vehicle, you just have to have the owner’s permission to drive it.

Tempcover eligibility rules: 

  • Aged between 17 and 77
  • Held a licence for at least six months, or 12 months if it's an EU licence
  • Acceptable licences:
    • Full UK licence
    • Full EU driving licence
  • No more than seven licence penalty points in the past three years and no disqualifications in the past two years
  • Must have been a permanent UK resident for the past 12 months
  • Have no criminal convictions

What vans can be covered?

  • Most vans up to 3.5 tonnes gross vehicle weight (GVW) and selected vehicles up to 7.5 tonnes
  • No more than five seats including the driver’s seat
  • Vehicle has not been modified. (Factory fitted extras or modifications for a disabled driver or passenger, or liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) conversions are acceptable). Please check with Tempcover directly for further details
  • Vans with a current market value between £1,500 and £65,000

Please note: This is a broad outline of the eligibility requirements but each insurer on Tempcover’s panel has its own eligibility criteria and so you should pay close attention to their Proposer’s Declaration.

Tempcover works with a panel of insurers to make sure it can provide temporary insurance for as many drivers as possible. Because of this, full details of cover may differ depending on the insurer. Please double-check the policy wording before purchasing to confirm what is specifically covered in your policy.

Does my car or van insurance cover me for driving someone else’s vehicle?

You’ll need to check your vehicle’s insurance policy to see if it offers cover for you to drive someone else’s van or car. If it does, it might only offer third-party cover. This means it will cover you for injuries to other people or damage to another vehicle. However, if the accident is your fault, you won’t be covered for damage to the vehicle you’re using or your own injuries, which could leave you out of pocket.

Temporary van insurance gives you fully comprehensive cover so you and the van’s owner can have peace of mind.

Can I be added to another person’s insurance policy?

Yes, you can be added to someone else’s van insurance policy as a named driver, but temporary insurance could be a faster and easier way – especially if it’s for a short period.

Being added to someone’s policy could be expensive, especially so for young drivers. It could be worth getting quotes for both options to see which is better for your situation.

Can I use temporary insurance for a vehicle I own?

If you own a van but drive it occasionally – for example, only when you’re driving down to the coast with surfboards during the summer – short-term insurance can be a cost-effective option.

If you don’t intend to insure your van to cover the long periods when you’re not using it, you’ll have to keep it off the road and get a Statutory Off Road Notification (SORN).

What is hire and reward insurance for a van?

If you move someone else’s property as part of their business operations – for example couriers, hauliers and furniture movers – you’ll need this type of cover. It’s designed for the particular risks of this kind of work, including:

  • varied nature of the cargo
  • frequency of stops during trips
  • high day-to-day mileage

Taking this into account, specialist hire and reward insurance should cover:

  • the cargo you carry
  • any damage caused to your van and other vehicles
  • public liability
  • employer’s liability.

If you need hire and reward insurance, temporary insurance isn’t suitable. You’ll need a van insurance quote.

Any tips for first time van drivers?

A lot of drivers who want to borrow a van will be using one for the first time. Getting behind the wheel of a van comes with a whole new set of challenges. You’ll find you have a much bigger vehicle to manoeuvre while being sat in a different position than usual – and, potentially, you won’t have a back window or a rear-view mirror.

These changes and lack of familiarity with driving a larger vehicle and how it handles, could make it more likely that you have an accident.

Before you start driving:

  • Make sure anything you’re carrying won’t move about as you drive.
  • Check that the driver’s seat is in the right position for you and that you can reach the pedals comfortably.
  • Position the mirrors so you have a clear view of the road around you.
  • Get yourself familiar with the controls – including the indicators, lights and windscreen wipers – before you set off.
  • Check out the gears – many newer vans have a sixth gear, which is there for motorway driving at higher speeds to increase your miles per gallon.

Once you start driving, you’ll soon experience how different driving a van can be because of the size and power of the vehicle. A large van is usually slower to stop than a car, so make sure you anticipate hazards and take extra care when braking.

Cornering is different too because the vehicle is longer and wider than you’re probably used to. As a first-timer, you’ll want to corner more gently than in a car, being extra careful to make sure you don’t hit something as you’re turning.

Once you reach your destination, your next challenge is parking. Parking a van properly is what sorts the novices from the professionals. If you have a passenger, rope them in to help – or maybe even a willing passer-by. They can guide you as you reverse into a space.

If you haven’t got help, you’ll have to rely on your mirrors. Take it slowly, so even if you do end up nudging a post or another car you’ll be unlikely to do any serious damage. You may need to do a quick check to see how much space you have and that you can open the doors as necessary.

What happens if I have an accident while I’ve got temporary cover?

If you’re driving an unfamiliar van, you might worry about what would happen if there was an accident. Typically, short-term insurance gives you comprehensive cover. That means that if you were to have an accident, you could be fully covered.

It’s also reassuring for the person loaning you the van that if you did end up in a crash, their no claims bonus wouldn’t be affected.

Is there anything else I need to be aware of about temporary cover?

  • Temporary insurance isn’t a replacement for annual cover. If you’re looking for longer-term cover, an annual insurance policy is likely to be more cost effective.
  • There’s no cover for any goods carried in or on the vehicle, so you’ll need to find a separate policy with another provider to cover those goods.
  • Temporary cover won’t count towards a no claims bonus.
  • You’ll have to pay for your policy in full before you drive off.
  • It’s best to have a copy of your Insurance Certificate with you during the period of cover in case it’s needed, as the details won’t always be instantly uploaded to the Motor Insurance Database.

Can I use temporary insurance to drive in Europe?

You could ask your insurance provider to cover you on your existing policy should you wish to take your van to Europe for a trip. If you’re borrowing a van or sharing the drive with a friend, you could also get temporary cover for driving in Europe.

Tempcover offers the minimum cover required by law, not fully comprehensive cover. Make sure you know which countries you’re travelling to before you get your insurance, then you can check if the policy will cover you.

Please note, it’s a Tempcover requirement that the vehicle begins its journey in the UK at the start of the policy. Also, the vehicle must be returned to the UK before the policy expires.

If your itinerary changes, you may need to update your insurance provider as well. If you’re planning on hiring a van, you’ll need hire van insurance instead.

Remember, as of 2 August 2021, you no longer have to carry a Green Card to drive in Europe. All the required insurance documentation will be emailed to you directly after you buy, so that you can download and print it out yourself.

Can I get an additional driver on temporary van insurance?

No, with Tempcover only the driver named in the policy is covered. If you want another person to share the driving, they’ll need their own temporary cover policy, unless they’re already insured for the vehicle in question.

Don’t worry, if you each have separate policies they won’t interfere with each other, so this won’t cause any issues with either policy.

Can I get temporary cover to release and collect my van from an impound?

Only with a specific temporary impounded van policy, so make sure you choose the correct policy.

Can I tow a trailer using my van on a temporary policy?

You won’t be covered for loss or damage to a vehicle, trailer, trailer-caravan or broken-down vehicle when being towed by the insured van.

Can I use temporary insurance to get an MoT on my van?

Yes, you can use temporary insurance to take your van for a pre-booked MoT. In any other situation, any vehicle covered should have a valid MoT.

Can I tax a van using temporary insurance?

Yes, you can tax your van using a temporary policy. It’s easy to do this:

  • Online via the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) website
  • At a local Post Office with the temporary insurance documents you’ve been sent – but you must tax the vehicle immediately after you’ve bought the policy. For that reason, it may be easier and faster to take the online route.

Can I get temporary cover for longer than 28 days?

Some providers may offer temporary cover for longer than 28 days, but currently Compare The Market does not offer this length of temporary policy.

How much does temporary van insurance cost?

The cost depends on a few things, including:

Your age and driving experience

The van you want to drive

How long you want your policy to last for

What do I need to get a quote?

It’s easy to get a short-term van insurance quote. You’ll just need to:

  • Give your personal details – including your name, address and date of birth
  • Provide information about the van you want to insure
  • Give information on your driving history
  • Choose how long you want your short-term cover to last

Dan Hutson

From the Motor team

What our expert says

“You might need to borrow a van from a friend or family member for a short time. Getting temporary insurance is a very quick way of sorting it out – and you’ll know that the lender’s no claims bonus won’t be affected if you have an accident. But be aware that although your no claims bonus won’t be affected if you have to make a claim, your future vehicle insurance premiums could be.

“Because it’s so flexible in terms of time, temporary van insurance can be the right solution in many circumstances for both individuals and for businesses.”


  • Offers temporary van insurance from one hour to 28 days’ duration
  • Cover available in under two minutes
  • 4.6-star customer review rating on Trustpilot, as at 22 July 2021
  • Over 3 million policies sold

Tempcover gives you flexible insurance to suit your needs, whether you’re borrowing a van, test-driving a new vehicle or driving away your new purchase.

With fully comprehensive cover available as standard and as a separate, standalone policy, your no claims discount won’t be affected.

If you want to read more about short-term van insurance, just go back to the top of the page.

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Who is Tempcover and what is its relationship with Compare the Market?

Tempcover is a provider of short-term insurance in the UK. Tempcover is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and is underwritten by a panel of authorised and regulated insurers, chosen for their competitiveness, cover and service levels provided.

Compare the Market’s relationship with Tempcover is purely that of a business relationship and no common ownership or control rights exist between us.