Self Drive Hire Insurance

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The self drive hire insurance is how renters of vehicles protect themselves with road risk cover. It includes those that rent out cars, vans, minibuses and caravans. This cover financially protects the driver and the vehicle being rented, and this cover is required by UK law to protect the renter and the businesses renting the vehicle. Self drive insurance is normally the reserve of car rental companies, but it will also provide fleet van insurance that are available for self hire.  

We work in partnership with Quote Zone who provide a simple form which once completed is submitted to a specialist panel of brokers. To get multiple quotes, select GET A QUOTE and provide basic information. The panel of UK brokers also offer comparative quotes for fleet van insurance, a product that is geared towards a business that relies on vans in their day-to-day business.

What Type of Self Drive Hire Insurance is Required By Law?

Just like all private vehicles on the road in the UK, the minimum requirement is Third Party Only. Also, available are Third Party Fire and Theft along with full Comprehensive cover. One of these three must be taken out for the vehicle to be legally driven on the roads in the UK.

Self-drive Hire Cover Payment Structures

Some self drive hire businesses only operate in a seasonal basis, others operate year-round. Providers of this type of cover can normally provide a pay-as-you-go policy (payg) for seasonal operators and an annual policy with monthly payments for all year round operators. The pay as go scheme should work out more cost-effective for seasonal operators than an annual policy.

What is Included in a Self hire Business Insurance Policy

Different providers will offer different levels of cover, and some will exclude certain elements that others include as standard. We have put together the list below to guide you on what should be included in a good policy. Take note, if you only operate a seasonal hire business, you may wish to agree on a miles used policy rather than a no limit's policy.

  • Comprehensive insurance
  • A low excess in the region of £500  
  • No limit to miles or number of hires in a 12-month period
  • Flexible payment plans and the option to pay as you use if only hire out occasionally

What Vehicles Can This Type of Insurance Cover?

A good feature of a self-drive insurance plan is that flexibility in the vehicle type being hired. Most polices will you give you the freedom to provide a range of self hire vehicles. These type of polices are not limited to cars, you can take out self-drive van hire insurance for a removals or van rental company, other examples are listed below.

The list below is not exhaustive, for example if you rent out your splitter van or minibus to members of the public or bands then you will need a self drive hire policy. For those asking, a splitter van is normally used by touring bands, with living quarters in the rear separated from the driver's cab upfront.

  • Self-drive hire minibuses
  • Self-drive hire private cars
  • Self-drive MPVs
  • Taxis for hire
  • Campervans
  • Short term van hire
  • Self-drive hire business cars
  • Self-drive hire transit
  • Horseboxes

Where Can I Get Self Drive Hire Insurance?

There are two sources a renter can obtain self drive hire insurance.

  • All rental agencies offer self drive hire insurance to their clients. Most of them have a minimum level of cover, which is generally comprehensive. Some rental agencies require this level of protection, but not all.
  • Private insurance brokers also offer self drive hire insurance. It can include Third Party Only, Third Party Fire and Theft or full Comprehensive cover. This is less expensive in most instances. The renter must check with the rental agency to make sure the policy from the broker is compatible with the rental agreement for the vehicle being rented.

What Determines the Cost of the Self Drive Hire Insurance?

The cost of self drive hire insurance is determined under the same type of scrutiny as what goes into the determination of insuring a private vehicle. This includes;

  • The driver’s experience on the road, that includes how long they have held a driving licence.
  • The age of the driver.
  • The driving record of the applicant that includes both the history of the claims they have made along with the number of accidents and summons they have been involved in.
  • The criminal record of the applicant has a strong influence on whether the policy will be issued and at what cost. A drink drive conviction could make getting this policy unattainable.
  • The location the rental vehicle will be driven. If just in the UK, it will cost less than if the vehicle will venture on the continent into Europe.

What Can be Expected in A Self Drive Hire Insurance Issued by a Rental Agency?

The most common fleet insurance cover is full comprehensive. This covers both vehicles and all passengers in an accident and event on the road. Unlimited mileage is common. Cover for theft by the renter is also common and protection for the rental agency, the renter that steals the rental vehicle is then sought out and arrested. European cover is common and drivers that can be covered are from 21 to 75 years of age. The typical excess to be paid by the renter is £500.

Are There Any Add-ons that can be Included in a Self Drive Hire Insurance Policy?

Breakdown cover is the most common add-on for self drive hire insurance. This will provide assistance when the vehicle becomes disabled on the road and can take the occupants to their final destination if repairs are not possible on the roadside.

Liability cover is also available with a self drive hire insurance policy. This is legal protection if a third party files a claim against the renter of the vehicle for damages. This covers both the legal fees and any claim assessed to the renter by the courts.

The self drive hire insurance is required by law to have for anyone renting out a vehicle. It can be for a short or long period of time. Know your rights and know that you can have your own policy and not be forced to take the rental agency's policy. This can save you money.

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