Additional driver insurance ('named' drivers)

Male driver in sunglasses with a woman beside him

Adding an additional named second driver, or multiple drivers, to your car insurance policy is a common requirement and one that it's essential to handle correctly.

Key points

  • Ensure you avoid the offence of fronting by declaring who the main driver is
  • If you add an extra driver you need their permission and, if they have their own policy, they should inform their insurer
  • Don't assume you're covered to drive another car just because you have a comprehensive policy
  • Depending on the circumstances, short-term car insurance policies are worth considering

As a motorist you may need to add extra drivers to your car insurance policy for all kinds of reasons and many people share their vehicles.

You might assume it'll be more expensive to have multi-driver car insurance than it is to insure just yourself, but that's not necessarily the case.

Insuring multiple drivers can even work out cheaper in certain cases, although you need to make sure you're not committing the offence known as fronting.

Adding a named driver to your insurance

It's simple to take out additional driver insurance. Just get in touch with your insurers or, if, you're taking out a new policy, input the correct details on the form.

When you use Gocompare.com's quotes comparison service, after you've entered the details of the main driver you'll be asked whether you want to add additional drivers - you can add up to four extra named drivers before comparing quotes.

If you've chosen to add extra drivers you'll need to input details for them including any accidents and/or motoring convictions that they may have had.Telematics car insurance

Remember that you need the permission of an additional driver before naming them onto your policy.

If the named driver has their own car insurance they'll also need to declare to their own cover provider that they have access to another vehicle.

Some insurers may even offer the additional driver a discount on their own policy based on this additional driving experience, but note that they'll have to be able to prove they have use of another car.

Beware of the dangers of fronting

Always declare accurately who the main driver of the vehicle is or you risk committing the offence known as fronting.

This has been particularly prevalent with young and new drivers fraudulently naming older, more experienced motorists as the main driver on their policy.

Young drivers' car insurance can be difficult to arrange within any sort of reasonable budget, but it's perfectly legal to be a second driver on the policy of a parent or another relative.

It's vital, though, that if you're the person who drives the vehicle most frequently you don't pretend that the parent or relative is the main driver and that you're simply an additional driver.

As well as being illegal, this will invalidate your cover, meaning that you won't have valid insurance if you have to make a claim.

Temporary additional driver insurance

Sometimes you need to add an additional driver to your policy for just a few days, such as if you're lending your car to a friend.Beginners' guide to short-term motor insurance

It's often assumed that if the additional driver has his or her own fully comprehensive car insurance, they'll be covered to drive your vehicle on a third party only basis, but this isn't necessarily the case.

In the event of an accident or claim you may find that they're not covered.

If this is the case, or you want to ensure that your vehicle has fully comprehensive cover, there are two main options to consider.

These are adding a named driver to your existing policy, or asking the additional driver to take out a short-term motor insurance policy.

A short-term policy tends to last between one and 28 days and is usually only available to drivers over the age of 21, or perhaps even 25.

Any claims made on the short term policy should not affect your own no claims bonus, but there might be more exclusions than on a standard policy so read the wording carefully.

If you take the other option of adding a named driver to your existing policy, the price you have to pay will depend on the terms and conditions of your cover and on the motorist you want to add.

It may be a significant sum, or it may be cheaper than you think. This will vary from insurer to insurer, so if it's something you think you may want to do it's worth looking into potential admin and other costs when you take out your insurance.

By Rebecca Lees