Got questions about your car insurance quote, your policy, payments, making a claim, or taking out telematics insurance? Take a look at our FAQs below.
If you have a question that isn't listed, please contact us.
Car insurance is a legal requirement for every motor vehicle in the UK. Since the Road Traffic Act of 1988, all motorists have to be insured against their liability to others. Because of this, all drivers need to have at least a third-party insurance policy in place before they can take their car on the road. You can incur fines if your vehicle is not taxed* or if you have taken it off the road without registering it as SORN.
*Not applicable if the vehicle is over 40 years old due to tax exemption clauses on classic cars.
At its most basic level, Car Insurance covers the cost of damages you make to other vehicles or road users. Car Insurance can cover you for a lot more, though, including damage to your vehicle — even if it’s deemed to be your fault — and options like breakdown cover.
Annual car insurance payments enable you to pay for your car insurance in one single payment when you take out your policy and works out cheaper because of it. If it works better for you to spread out the costs of your insurance payments, though, monthly instalments may work better for you. Be Wiser offers you the choice of annual or monthly car insurance payments.*
*Additional fees and terms & conditions apply. Be Wiser acts as a credit broker, not a lender.
The easiest way to get a good estimate of your mileage is to keep track of the distance you’ve driven in a typical week. Multiply this by 52 and you should have a number that represents your annual mileage. There are several online mileage calculators you can use to be more accurate: remember, the more accurate your mileage estimate, the better tailored your car insurance quotes will be to your needs.
To get an idea of your car’s value, look up its model and year on used car dealership websites. Assuming your car is in the same condition as those being sold (e.g. no modifications or damage, same mileage, used vs new), it’s likely to be of similar market value.
A No Claims Bonus (NCB), also known as a No Claims Discount, is a reduced rate you can get on your premiums if you haven’t made a claim on your car insurance policy for a certain number of years. The time it takes to get your discount and its value differs between insurers. Your discount is likely to increase with each consecutive year you go claims-free, up to around nine years.
You do need to inform your insurers about any accident you have, regardless of whether or not you intend to claim. This is usually a condition in your Car Insurance policy. If you have no intention to make a claim, advise your insurer about your accident under an ‘information only’ basis; insurers need the most accurate records possible to help you when the time comes that you do want to make a claim.
If your car is modified the seller should inform you of this. Taking it to a garage for inspection will also be beneficial as they may be able to inform you of any modifications.
A Thatcham security device is an alarm or immobiliser, which has been reviewed and certified by Thatcham. They represent a higher quality alarm than the market standard.
A compulsory excess is set via the insurer and is required as part of the quotation, to be paid in the event of a claim until settled.
A voluntary excess is chosen by a customer, who would voluntarily offer an additional excess (on top of the compulsory,) meaning that you would be required to pay an additional amount in the event of a claim, in return for a reduction in your insurance premium.
Here at Be Wiser, we make a fair market comparison of a sample of insurance companies. Once you have received a quote from us, we can advise you which insurers are quoting and at what premiums for you.
Most car insurance policies are annual (1 year) but certain providers can offer you a temporary policy for specific needs (for example a short-term learner policy.)
Please ensure that your email is accurate – we will read it back to you and make any correction necessary. Please also ensure to check your Junk folder, as well as any ‘other’ folders that some mail redirects to.
If you’re awaiting documents via post, they will normally take 3-5 working days to arrive. If they are not received during this time, please contact us directly for help.
Please check your policy documents and insurer wording in more detail to see if this is covered, as it varies on a case-by-case basis. Most policies will cover Towing on a Third-Party Basis only.
As of August 2021, the UK has reached an agreement with the EU that, following Brexit, UK insurance policies will still allow cover in the EU. However, this level of cover can vary, and insurers will still want to know of any dates you intend to travel, so please contact your insurer/broker directly to inform them ahead of time.
If you want to travel further than an EU country, please contact us for assistance as cover abroad is not a standard inclusion for most insurers.
Please check your policy documents and insurer wording in more detail to see if this is covered – some breakdown organisations can also cover misfuelling, which can usually be purchased in tandem with your insurance cover.
No – if you do not have a valid MOT then the insurance policy will likely not be valid either, as this is a condition of most policies.
Yes – provided you complete the full year, and the No Claims Discount is valid, you can request this from the provider upon expiry (lapse) of that policy. Take that proof with you when seeking out new providers.
There are three key types of Car Insurance drivers can choose from, based on your needs and your budget. You can also get additional extras such as Breakdown cover or Protected No Claims Discount where you need it.
Comprehensive car insurance is the highest level of cover you can have for your car. This type of policy covers you against damage to your car as well as any damage that is caused to other vehicles in a collision. Comprehensive insurance allows you to claim for damage even if you’re at fault.
Third-party insurance is the lowest legally-allowed level of car insurance you can take out. It covers damage to other road users and cars, but it won’t cover any damages to your vehicle. At Swinton, we do not offer third-party-only insurance, but we do offer Third-party, Fire and Theft (TPFT) cover.
Third-party, Fire and Theft (TPFT)
TPFT provides you with the same coverage as third-party car insurance with one additional benefit: it also covers you if your car is stolen or catches fire. TPFT is available with our Classic product.
If you want to discuss an existing policy to either make a change, cancel your policy or something else or if you would like to talk to someone about a new policy, then feel free to get in touch using any of the below means. Our friendly and experienced customer services team would love to hear from you. Call us on 0333 003 8450. Our Opening hours are as follows:
There are a number of reasons why you might need to drive a friend's, partner's or family member's car. If this is something you're going to do, it's a good idea to try to gather as much information as you can about car insurance cover to drive someone else's car. So, to help you out before you get behind the wheel, here are five things you need to bear in mind:
Driving on someone else’s policy? Become a named driver
If you're driving on someone else's car insurance policy, the holder must contact their insurer and ask to add you to their policy as a named driver. This can also be done on a temporary basis. If you were driving and had an accident, you would claim on their policy and would get the same level of cover as the car's main driver.
Remember, you should only become a named driver on someone else's policy if you are not the main driver of the car. If you are the main driver but get someone else to claim that they are, this is called fronting and it is not allowed. For example, if a young person were to put their parent down as the main driver in order to get a cheaper premium, then their policy could be cancelled and they could be prosecuted for fraud.
The UK formally left the European Union on 31 January 2020.
The UK is now in a transitional period until the end of 2020 whilst the UK and the European Union negotiate.
There are no changes to the current rules during this transitional period.
We will update this page when details are known once the UK moves beyond the transitional period.
You must be insured on your/the owner’s policy
It's illegal to drive any car without insurance. If you're caught driving a car that you're not insured to drive, the police can give you a fixed penalty of up to £300 and six penalty points on your licence.
They can even seize the car you're driving, impound it, then charge you for the cost of moving and storing it. If you don't reclaim the car within 14 days, it could be destroyed. You could even be summoned to court, in which case you could get an unlimited fine, and be banned from driving.
Short-term insurance might be your best option
A short-term car insurance policy can be taken out for as little as one day, and up to 28 days. It can also be used in addition to your usual policy. This has the added benefit that, if you were to have an accident, it won’t affect the no claims bonus on your main policy. However, be aware that short term policies often come with restrictions such as having to have held a driving licence for at least one year. It also has to be taken out on a different car.
Driving Other Cars (DOC) cover
DOC (Driving Other Cars) cover is included in many comprehensive policies, so first of all check the small print of your insurance policy to see if it includes DOC cover. Speak to your insurer if you’re unclear. Be aware that some policies will include restrictions on DOC cover, such as only covering drivers aged 25 and over. You must also have permission to drive the car from the owner.
DOC cover is also usually limited to third party only, so if you were in an accident while driving someone else’s car, you would still have to pay for any damage to the car you were driving. Your insurer would only pay for damage caused to the other car involved in the accident.
In every case it’s always best to check with your provider if you’ll be covered. Most importantly, it’s worth noting that this kind of cover is designed for emergencies, and generally only gives third party coverage.
Learning to drive in someone else’s car?
If you’re practising in someone else’s car, you need to make sure their insurance policy covers you as a named learner driver. If you had an accident while learning, you would claim on their policy and would get the same level of cover as the car's main driver. It’s a good idea to always check with your insurer first if you’re not sure what your policy covers
Check policy documents to see if have Driving other cars extension
At Be Wiser we strive to achieve a high level of customer care. However, if for whatever reason you should feel dissatisfied with our service, we will look to resolve this as quickly and fairly as possible.
If you do ever feel that you wish to make a complaint, we have formal procedures in place for complaints handling. Upon notification of your complaint we will investigate your case and resolve the problem as quickly and fairly as possible.
Our team takes great care to ensure that complaints by policyholders against us are dealt with in line with Financial Conduct Authority complaint procedures and that all parties comply with the requirements of those procedures. Contact us on 0333 999 0838 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Find out more on our Complaints page.