Learner driver insurance

Compare learner drivers’ insurance with our partner Collingwood[1]

What's learner driver insurance?

A learner driver policy is short-term car insurance that covers you to drive your car, or someone else’s, while you’re practising to take your driving test.

If you’re going to be learning to drive in your own car, you can get annual learner driver car insurance that you can update once you’ve passed your test.

Or, you can get a short-term car insurance policy to cover you just while you're learning – it’s entirely up to you.

As well as sorting out your insurance, remember to put your L plates on – or D plates in Wales, There's a six-point penalty on your licence for driving without them. 

Car insurance for learner drivers

Do learner drivers need car insurance?

If you’re learning in your driving instructor’s car, they’ll have their own insurance that covers students for driving their car. You won’t need to take out your own learner driver insurance for official lessons.

But lots of learner drivers take lessons with a friend or family member in their car. If you do that, you’ll need to either take out your own learner driver insurance on their car, or get added as a named driver to their policy.

If you’ve bought your own car, you’ll need to insure it before you can drive it.

What insurance do learner drivers need?

The level of car insurance you need depends on what you want to be covered for and what you can afford. There are three levels of cover available:

  • Third party only (TPO): This is the lowest level of cover and you're legally required to have it. It’ll cover the costs of losses to other people if you’re responsible for an accident. It doesn’t cover your own vehicle.
  • Third party, fire, and theft (TPFT): This covers third party claims, as well as your own vehicle for damage or loss due to fire and theft.
  • Comprehensive: Fully comp includes everything that TPFT does, but it also covers your own vehicle for damage or loss.

You can also buy optional extras for your learner driver insurance if you need them, like accidental damage and breakdown cover.

Join over a million customers with free £250 excess cover^

What’s an excess? It’s the amount of money you agree to pay towards a claim when you take out insurance.

Don’t worry – GoCompare will refund up to £250 of your excess^ if you do need to claim.

We’ve already refunded £1 million* to customers!

Claim your free £250 excess cover >

^Up to £250 refunded after claim settled. Car insurance purchases only. Excludes breakdown, windscreen and glass repair/replacement. Full T&Cs apply.

*Between July 2019 and November 2020, £1M has been refunded to free excess cover customers following a successful claim.

excess cover for car

How long does learner insurance last?

The length of your cover depends on the type of policy you choose. You can get:

  • Annual cover: This will cover you for a whole year and automatically renews at the end of the policy term.
  • Short term cover: Policies can cover you from one week up to a few months.

If you’re a named driver on a friend or family member’s policy, you’ll have the same amount of cover as them and this will last until their policy ends.

They’ll probably be charged to add you to their policy and some insurers won’t accept named drivers under a certain age, for example 21.

If you’re using someone else’s car to learn in, learner driver insurance protects the car owner’s no-claims bonus (NCB) if you need to make a claim.

Black box insurance for learner drivers

Black box insurance – also known as telematics cover – is a type of insurance policy that bases the price of your cover on how well you drive.

Poor driving will increase the price of your premiums, so not only does it encourage safer driving, but it could also save you money.

Some insurers do offer telematics cover for learner drivers, but others might have minimum age limits or be for full licence holders only, so check it’s suitable for you before you buy.

Find out more about black box insurance >

What do I need to get learner drivers insurance?

Each insurer will have its own acceptance criteria for learner drivers but most will ask for:

  1. A valid UK provisional driving licence

  2. Aged between 17-35

  3. A supervisor with a full-UK driving licence aged over 21 years (sometimes over 25 years)

  4. A car under a certain value, with a valid MOT

  5. No previous car insurance claims

  6. No previous driving offences or criminal convictions

Best and worst places to pass your driving test

According to our research, the centre with the highest pass rate is Campbeltown with 92%.

Test centre City/Region No. of first-time driving tests take No. of first-time driving test passes Pass rate
Campbeltown Argyll and Bute 12 11 92%
Grantown-On-Spey Moray 10 9 90%
Fraserburgh Aberdeenshire 82 43 82%
Lerwick Shetland Islands 54 46 80%
Hawick Scottish Borders 58 48 79%
Orkney Orkney Islands 61 33 79%
Montrose Angus 43 6 77%
Islay Island Argyll and Bute 8 8 75%
Kingussie Argyll and Bute 8 13 75%
Benbecula Island Outer Hebrides 18 127 72%
Alnwick Northumberland 176 219 71%

The centre with the lowest pass rate was Erith in London, with 30%, although this low rate could be because it’s likely to have a higher volume of learner drivers due to its city location.

Test centre City/Region No. of first-time driving tests taken No. of first-time driving test passes Pass rate
Erith London 800 242 30%
Belvedere London 481 163 34%
Bodmin Cornwall 850 295 35%
East Kilbride South Lanarkshire 115 40 35%
Sutton Coldfield Birmingham 1,015 370 37%
Crewe Cheshire 838 307 37%
Kingstanding Birmingham 1,501 551 37%
South Yardley Birmingham 1,340 492 37%
Croydon London 689 255 37%
Goodmayes London 3,146 1,166 37%

How can I get cheaper learner driver insurance quote?

Learning to drive can be expensive – our data suggests new drivers aged 17 pay £679.14 on average just for insurance.[2]

Here are some tips to help reduce the cost:

  1. Add an experienced driver to your policy

    But make sure you’re honest about who does the most driving – lying about the main driver is called fronting and it’s illegal.

  2. Compare car insurance quotes

    You’ll find the right cover for the best price when you choose from a range of insurance policies and providers.

  3. Choose a less powerful car

    Less powerful cars are in lower insurance groups, which will make your cover cheaper.

  4. Choose a telematics policy

    Good driving is rewarded with cheaper premiums.

  5. Select a higher excess

    Choosing a higher excess usually mean cheaper cover, but you need to be sure you could afford to pay it if you need to make a claim.

[1] introduces you to Collingwood to provide learner driver insurance quotes. Collingwood is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.’s relationship with Collingwood is limited to that of a business partnership, no common ownership or control rights exist between us

[2]Average cost of annual comprehensive car insurance for policies bought through GoCompare in 2020 when the policyholder is 17.

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