Last updated: 29 September 2020

Learner driver insurance is a type of car insurance designed for anyone learning to drive.

  • It covers drivers who have not yet passed their driving test

  • It allows holders of a government-issued provisional driving licence to drive on the road legally

Do I need learner driver insurance?

Not all learner drivers need car insurance, it depends on how you are learning to drive.

There are three ways you can learn to drive and that will determine whether you need to take out learner driver insurance:

  • in your own car: you will need to have a learner driver insurance policy in place

  • in someone else's car: you must either get a provisional insurance policy, or ask the main driver to add you to their policy

  • if you are learning with an instructor: you won’t need provision or learner driver insurance because you’ll be covered by your instructor as the provisional insurance costs are included in the fee you pay them

How old do I have to be to get UK learner driver insurance?

To get provisional driver insurance for a car, you normally need to be at least 17 years old. You also have to have a valid provisional driving licence.

  • it’s illegal to drive in the UK without insurance so find out more about how learner insurance works and what to do if you need cheap learner insurance

  • you can also drive a car when you are 16, but this only applies to people who have the enhanced rate of the mobility component of the Personal Independent Payment (PIP), which offers support to people with long-term ill-health or disability

Learner driver insurance if you own a car

If you’ve bought your own car to learn in, you’ll definitely need learner car insurance.

You can buy a car but you can only start driving as a provisional or learner driver if you're accompanied by a full driving licence holder aged over 21.

  • This adult must also have had their full licence for at least three years.

  • You must have 'L' plates on the front and back of the vehicle

  • Remember learner drivers are not allowed to drive on the motorway

Most providers don’t reimburse you for the provisional car insurance cover you haven’t used, but there’s usually no cancellation fee to pay. Once that’s sorted, you’ll need to compare car insurance policies to make sure you get the best cover for a fully qualified driver.

What learner driver car insurance may not include

Most learner car insurance policies have a maximum value limit for the cars they’ll cover.

  • When you’re getting learner drivers car insurance quotes, you’ll need to check the maximum vehicle value of each policy to make sure it’ll cover your car.

  • If want to learn in your parents' or a friend's car, or even your own car, you'll either need to be a named driver on their policy or take out temporary learner driver insurance.

How long will you need learner driver insurance for?

It depends how long you take to pass your driving test. You can either get short-term learner driver insurance or an annual policy.

  • You’ll be able to find temporary learner insurance policies that give you learner insurance for a day, right up to five months.

  • If you’ve already booked your driving test, make sure you’re covered up until that date.

  • When you pass your test you will need to compare insurance for young drivers.

  • When you pass your test you can arrange short term car insurance, which will cover you until you pass your test.

How can you find a cheap learner insurance policy?

If you’re looking for cheap learner driver insurance, it’s really important to make sure you get the right type for your needs.

Cheap learner insurance can be tricky to find.

  • Young drivers are more likely to be involved in accidents and make insurance claims, so car insurers charge them more.

  • If you’re learning to drive in your own car, you’ll need your own policy, which might make it a little harder to find learner driver insurance.

The cheapest way to insure a learner driver

If you’re learning to drive in someone else’s car, you can either get your own policy. But you could also ask the person whose car it is to add you to their policy which can be a good way to get cheap learner insurance.

If you’re having driving lessons with an instructor, you won’t need your own provisional driver insurance at all.

The best way to find cheap learner insurance is to compare learner car insurance policies.

Your own car and learner driver insurance

If you have your own car the best way to achieve long-term savings on your car insurance is to take out your own policy while you are still driving on a provisional licence.

  • You will be able to start building your no-claims bonus even before you have passed your driving test.

  • Once you start building your no-claims bonus your premium should drop steadily each year as long as you don’t make any claims.

  • Taking out an insurance policy in your own name means you will also avoid the risk of damaging your friend’s or relative’s no-claims bonus as you might if you had to make a claim as a named driver on their policy.

  • If you take out your own insurance policy, there should be no effect on the main driver’s insurance premium.

Car insurance for new drivers

Most car insurers will only offer you cover if you’ve already passed your driving test. Make sure you shop around and look at companies that specialise in car insurance for learner drivers.

Use our comparison service at the top of this page to find the best young driver insurance from the best-known providers. We’ll show you some of the best learner driver insurance policies from smaller insurance companies, too.

I passed my test! What now?

The first thing you’ll need to do is to contact your insurance company to ask them to cancel your learner car insurance or convert it to a standard policy. Your premium is likely to rise once you can legally drive unaccompanied.

Car insurance for new drivers can be expensive, so find out how to get the best possible deal on new drivers car insurance.

You can also get temporary insurance for younger drivers.