Car insured temporarily for breakdowns

Does Short-Term Car Insurance Provide Cover for Breakdowns?

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Short-term car insurance, also known as temporary car insurance, is an ideal solution for many motorists in need of flexible, brief insurance. Yet, the question arises, how well does this type of policy protect you in the event of a vehicle breakdown? This article explores this very aspect in detail.

Understanding Short-Term car Insurance

Before we delve into the specifics of breakdown cover, it's essential to first understand what short-term car insurance typically involves. As its name suggests, this form of insurance provides protection for a short period, often ranging from a day to a few months. The main aim is to provide drivers with an immediate, temporary solution without the commitment of an annual policy.

Breakdown Cover: Is It Included?

Whilst short-term car insurance is primarily designed to cover drivers against third-party damages or injuries they may cause, the inclusion of breakdown cover is not standard across the board. Most short-term policies focus on offering the basic protections and might not automatically include support for breakdowns. That being said, some providers may offer this as an optional add-on, often for an additional fee.

Benefits of Having Breakdown Cover

Breakdowns are unpredictable and can occur at the most inopportune moments. Having a breakdown cover integrated into your insurance policy can bring several advantages:

1. Peace of Mind

Knowing that you're protected in the event of a breakdown can be reassuring, especially if you're on an important journey or far from home.

2. Financial Savings

Breakdowns can be costly, especially if you need towing or off-site repairs. A good breakdown cover can save you from these unexpected expenses.

3. Prompt Assistance

Insurance providers with breakdown cover often have dedicated teams or partnerships with recovery services to ensure that you receive timely assistance when you need it most.

Considering Additional Breakdown Cover

If your short-term car insurance policy does not include breakdown cover, it might be worthwhile to consider a separate breakdown policy. Many companies specialise in providing breakdown services, offering various packages that cater to different needs. From basic roadside assistance to more elaborate plans that include home start and onward travel, there's likely a package that aligns with your requirements.

Factors to Consider

When evaluating the need for breakdown cover in conjunction with your short-term car insurance, consider the following:

1. Age and Condition of Your Vehicle

Older cars or those in less than optimal condition might be more prone to breakdowns. If you're driving such a vehicle, breakdown cover could be particularly beneficial.

2. Duration and Purpose of Your Journey

If you're taking a longer trip or a journey of particular importance, having breakdown cover might be a sensible choice to ensure you reach your destination without major hiccups.

3. Cost Implications

Balance the potential costs of a breakdown against the price of adding breakdown cover. In many cases, the peace of mind and potential savings in case of an incident far outweigh the cost of the cover.


Whilst short-term car insurance offers a flexible insurance solution for temporary needs, it's important to be fully aware of what your policy includes and what it doesn't. Breakdown cover, although not a standard inclusion, is a vital aspect to consider, given its benefits. Always read the fine print and understand the scope of your policy to ensure you're adequately protected on the road.

It's important to note that all policies are different, and terms, conditions, and benefits can vary significantly.

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