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Road tax, also known as vehicle excise duty, is needed for cars being used on the road and parked on public roads, making it a necessity for drivers to obtain. 

You cannot tax your car without insurance. Fortunately, GoShorty’s convenient temporary car insurance policies will allow you to insure your vehicle for a short time in order to sort your tax out. 

You could insure your car for just a day or even a few hours of insurance, which would give you enough time to obtain the much needed road tax. 

When Do You Need Road Tax?

If you are using your car, it needs to be taxed, even if it is just parked on the road outside of your home not being driven.

Road tax is needed to keep roads safe and efficient for drivers, as the money paid towards road tax is paid directly into a government fund which is used for projects such as road improvements and maintenance. 

You will need to tax your vehicle every year, or when you buy a new car even if it is a used one. The tax can be paid annually, which tends to be the cheapest option, bi-annually, every six months or monthly via direct debit, whatever suits you best. 

Some vehicles are exempt from road tax costs, however (you still need to have tax, but in these instances it incurs no fee). These vehicles are:

  • Vehicles for disabled people
  • Vehicles used for community transport purposes
  • Vehicles made before 1983
  • Vehicles used for agriculture, horticulture and forestry
  • Fully electric and hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles, this does not include plug-in hybrid vehicles
  • Vehicles that have been declared as SORN
  • Steam vehicles
  • Mowing machines that are only used for cutting grass (not including tractors used to tow mowers)

What is Needed to Tax a Car?

To get your vehicle taxed, you will need a valid insurance policy and for the car to be MOT’d. Some other things to consider are:

  • If you are taxing your vehicle online you will need a V11 reminder, the V5C with an eleven-digit reference number, or the new keeper slip with the twelve-digit reference number.
  • If you are taxing your car over the phone, you will need the information on your V5C or new keeper slip.
  • For taxing your vehicle in a Post Office, you will need either the new keeper slip, V5C, or V62. You should also take an MOT test certificate, proof of address, and photo ID.

Can You Tax a Car Without Insurance?

Having insurance to get your car taxed is an absolute must – you cannot get road tax sorted if you are not insured. 

When taxing your car, the DVLA checks official databases to make sure you have a valid MOT and insurance, without these obtaining road tax won’t be possible.

Can I Tax A Car With Temporary Insurance?

Since you need to be insured to get road tax, short-term insurance can be a great option for drivers trying to save money. Short-term car insurance is completely valid and acceptable when getting a vehicle taxed, and for drivers looking to sort their tax as soon as possible, it may be the best option to go with. 

In fact, we have seen more than 5,000 drivers use our short-term insurance policies specifically to obtain road tax over the past year

For new cars it could be even more useful, as these vehicles will need insurance and taxing after purchase, even if they are just sitting in your driveway! Taking advantage of GoShorty’s policies will make things easier here, as you can insure your vehicle for a day, a week or a month depending on your needs. 

Getting your vehicle taxed is a necessary step in getting you on the road. Making use of our short-term insurance options is a great way of obtaining tax in a quick and easy manner, without the need for an annual insurance policy, letting you get things sorted sooner rather than later. 


You will need to confirm you can still safely read a car registration plate number from at least 20m away.


You must be able to provide a legitimate form of identification. E.g a valid UK passport.


You must be able to provide your address for the past 3 years, along with proof of residence.


The current cost to renew your licence online is £14.00. If you renew via the Post Office, the fee is currently £21.50.

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