Tag Archive: guides

  1. The Best Insurance for Electric Cars

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    Eager to join the green revolution with your very own electric vehicle? You’re not alone. As the world transitions towards more sustainable transportation, more and more drivers are making the switch to electric vehicles (EVs) and are, therefore, needing to source insurance for electric cars. 

    With the rising popularity of these eco-friendly cars, you will be pleased to know electric vehicle insurance can be found as part of many of our temporary car insurance and temporary van insurance policies, with more and more of our insurance providers covering EV’s. 

    While we may not be covering the high-end Teslas just yet, our comprehensive insurance options now extend to some of the mid-tier EV models, providing peace of mind and security for your electric driving experience.

    With the transition to electric vehicles, ensuring that you’re fully covered without breaking the bank has never been more important. This is where GoShorty’s temporary insurance solutions come into play, offering a cost-effective way to protect your electric vehicle, when you need it. 

    Say goodbye to hefty annual insurance fees and hello to a flexible, on-demand insurance model that keeps your EV fully covered only when you need to use it, without draining your wallet. And if you haven’t switched to an electric vehicle yet, but are looking for more eco ways to drive – car sharing with the help of our temporary daily insurance or hourly cover is a simple solution too.

    Why Temporary Insurance is the Best Insurance for Electric Vehicles

    Electric vehicles are quickly becoming the transportation mode of today, offering environmentally conscious drivers a sustainable and efficient way to commute. Our temporary electric vehicle insurance allows you to enjoy seamless cover for your EV, safeguarding you against potential risks and uncertainties that come with owning an electric car. 

    Our tailored insurance solutions are designed to provide comprehensive protection for your vehicle, ensuring that you can hit the road with confidence, knowing you’re fully covered on your travels.

    Worried about the finances of insuring your electric vehicle throughout the year? You might be asking yourself “Are electric cars cheaper to insure? Or, “Are electric cars more expensive to insure?” The answer is, it genuinely depends on the vehicle, type of insurance, and how long you need it for. But there is no denying insurance premiums are on the up, especially for electric vehicles – which is why choosing temporary cover can be a cost saving solution. 

    Our temporary insurance options offer a budget-friendly solution to curb unnecessary costs. With our on-demand insurance model, you can secure cover for your EV precisely when you need it, allowing you to save on premium expenses during periods when you’re taking a break from the roads, or using a different car. This cost-effective approach to electric vehicle insurance ensures that you’re only paying for insurance during the times when you’re actively using your vehicle, bringing that overall cost down.

    We provide the option to insure your vehicle only during the periods when you actually need it. Say goodbye to the days of paying hefty annual premiums for a vehicle that spends more time parked, than on the road.

    The Benefits of EV Temporary Insurance

    When it comes to managing your vehicle’s insurance costs, flexibility is key. Our temporary insurance solutions empower you to customise your policy based on your specific usage needs. 

    Whether you’re using your vehicle for occasional weekend drives or seasonal road trips (perhaps a summer staycation is on the cards?), our on-demand insurance model allows you to tailor your policy duration to align with your driving requirements. 

    This streamlined approach not only helps you save on electric vehicle insurance expenses during periods of minimal use, but also offers the flexibility to adjust your cover based on your changing driving patterns. 

    With the popularity of EVs increasing, short-term leases are on the rise and that means you might just be after some short-mid term insurance. We’ve got you covered with our fully comprehensive insurance for electric cars.

    With our comprehensive insurance options for electric vehicles, you can drive into the future with confidence, knowing that your travel adventures are fully covered and protected. Say hello to seamless and cost-effective electric vehicle insurance that aligns with your sustainable lifestyle, and embrace the joys of emission-free driving without the worry of high insurance costs. 

    Embracing the eco-friendly benefits of electric vehicles doesn’t mean compromising on comprehensive insurance, though. With our insurance for electric vehicles, you can be certain that your EV is fully protected against potential damages, theft, or other unforeseen incidents.

    Our temporary insurance solutions are designed to accommodate the unique needs of electric vehicle owners, offering peace of mind and security as you navigate the roads with confidence.

    Whether you’re commuting to work or embarking on a weekend adventure, our eco car insurance ensures that you can enjoy a worry-free driving experience, all while contributing to a cleaner, greener planet. Get a quote today to insure your EV.

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  2. A Student’s Guide To Moving House 

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    Moving away to university is an exciting time for many students. Every year the UK’s roads see a huge influx of students who’ve packed up and set off for their new homes. Whether you’re a fresher excited for your first term, or a third-year student who can’t wait to graduate, there are a few things you need to know before hitting the road. 

    It doesn’t matter if you’re just moving around the corner or to a whole new city miles away, getting your stuff from A to B can be a challenge. So if you’re packing up the car or looking to borrow a van for moving your new IKEA furniture, we can insure students making the big move, quickly and – most importantly – safely.

    A Guide To Moving As a Student

    The 2021-2022 school year saw 2.8 million students enrol in UK universities and that number is predicted to grow year on year. But before you get on the road, you’ll need to make sure you have everything you need to get the job done, whilst you may not be driving a van day-to-day, getting insured on one can make the moving day run a lot smoother. That’s where temporary van insurance comes in. 

    To make your whole moving experience easier, we’ve created a handy guide to ensure you get to your new place, stuff intact, safe and sound.

    Clear Out Your Old Space

    There’s nothing worse than arriving at your new home and receiving an angry call from your ex-landlord – or parents! When moving out it’s important that you leave the place the same way you found it. Giving your old digs a deep clean before you leave is the best way to make sure you get your full deposit back, or a warm welcome home at Christmas! It’ll also mean you get a fresh start without having to worry about any loose ends.

    Keep Important Documents to Hand

    It’s probably best not to store all of your important documents at the bottom of a box somewhere. There’s a lot of admin to get through when moving into a new space, so keeping your docs to hand is crucial to avoiding any panicked unboxing – you never know when you might need them. This means finding a safe, accessible spot for your tenancy agreement, driving licence (especially if you’re the one behind the wheel), vehicle insurance policy and other important bits. Best to have eyes on them and not need them, than to need them and not have them!

    Enlist Helping Hands

    If you’re a student moving house, one of the most important things you’ll need is help. No one wants to be on their own carrying multiple boxes up accommodation stairs. Asking family and friends to help out can make life a lot easier. Just make sure to order a pizza afterwards to thank them. 

    Arrive Early

    With so many other students hitting the road, it’s best to leave early to avoid any annoying delays. Sitting in traffic will undoubtedly spoil the excitement of moving into a new home. Unpacking can also take a while, especially if you’re not particularly familiar with your new layout or storage. Arriving early also gives you the chance to meet your new housemates before that inevitable first night out!

    How To Move Cheaply

    If you’re a student moving to a new home, then you know that every penny counts. The last thing you need is to be spending money on superfluous things, especially when there are 2-4-1 cocktails to buy instead. Finding ways to cut moving costs is essential, especially if you’ve just put down a hefty deposit on your new pad. Take a look at our top tips to help cut down on moving day costs.

    Find The Right Vehicle

    The family car might not be your best option when it comes to moving. You need space – and a lot of it – so pick a vehicle that can get you and your stuff there in one trip. 

    It’s always best to give the vehicle you’re using a thorough once over before hitting the road, to avoid any nasty surprises getting on your possessions. Checking the tyre tread depth, brakes and oil levels will ensure that your trip runs smoothly. If it’s a long journey you may also consider asking a professional to service the vehicle before you hit the road. While this can cost a little more in the short term, it can save you any nasty surprise bills in the long run.

    Borrow, Don’t Rent

    If your usual vehicle isn’t quite right for this trip, but renting a van or hiring a moving company is prohibitively expensive – something it tends to be for students and young drivers – you’ll need another option.

    Borrowing a vehicle from a family member or friend represents a significantly more affordable way to get from A to B. You can get on the road quickly and easily without the faff of endless paperwork, complex policies and lengthy waiting times.

    Choose Flexible Cover

    Comprehensive cover is key to your safety on the roads. It doesn’t matter if you’re moving across town or across the country, you need to make sure that you and your vehicle are covered for every eventuality. 

    If you’re just borrowing a van for a day or two, you don’t need to be lumbered with a costly annual policy, or to be added to a current policy, on a vehicle that you’ll barely use. 

    Temporary van insurance is an affordable way to get on the road super quickly. It takes less than 90 seconds to get covered with GoShorty, so you can drive away knowing you’re insured should anything unforeseen crop up. Our policies cover you from as little as one hour up to 28 days, so no matter where you are in the UK – or how many trips you need to move all your uni essentials – you’re covered.

    Our van insurance calculator can estimate how much our cover could cost, so you can get an idea of the cost ahead of time. Find out how much you could save with our flexible temporary van cover, and move into your new digs without breaking the bank, get a quote in less than 90 seconds, easy.

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  3. Landmark Locations Index

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    The UK hasn’t historically been considered a holiday hotspot.

    The weather’s patchy (to put it politely), you’re likely to require a raincoat on the beach, and your sun protection rarely needs to exceed an SPF of 30. However, what the country lacks in consistent sunshine is made up for with an excellent line-up of landmark locations.  

    Whether you’re driving through Scotland, England, Wales or Northern Ireland, you can be sure there’s something gorgeous to have a gander at. So don’t miss out! Make sure wherever you’re pootling off to, you’re choosing the best routes to catch sight of those famous landmarks on your way. 

    With temporary car insurance you can have the freedom to share the driving with your travel buddy, plus it also expands your vehicle options. Borrow a mate’s 4×4 if you’re heading into rocky terrain, or a convertible to swan off to the beach in – just butter up the owner, get fully covered, and enjoy your weekend away. We’ve even included a couple of the UK’s most beloved motorway services – because at GoShorty, we know the journey’s just as important as the stay itself.

    England’s Best Landmarks

    Perhaps unsurprisingly, one of the most sought out British landmarks is Stonehenge. With a huge 201,000 Google searches per month, the mysteries of the prehistoric people who lived here are clearly still compelling people today. Other man made landmarks you’ll be able to spot from the roadside are Blackpool Tower and the Angel of the North – stunning examples of engineering and icons in their own right. 

    If you’re looking for a more pastoral drive South, Somerset’s Cheddar Gorge represents the largest gorge in Britain and has also been recognised as Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. You’d be daft to miss it on your way through the South West – and indeed, Google has reported 74,000 monthly searches for the idyllic spot. 

    Further North, Lake Windermere – the largest lake in England – let alone the Lake District. Enjoy spectacular views of its glassy expanse, on your way. Not far off you’ll find Winnats Pass in the Peak District – a limestone gorge nestled in Derbyshire, famed for the wind that blows through. Meandering along the road you’ll enjoy the views, without the exertion of a steep walk. 

    Unmissable London Landmarks

    We’d be remiss not to talk you through the capital’s landmarks. Royalty’s the name of the game here, with Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle garnering 447,000 monthly Google searches combined. We recommend swinging by Westminster Abbey too – although maybe not on 6th May – to appreciate its stunning Gothic architecture in the heart of the metropolis. Take in the many turrets and flagpoles of the Tower of London on the north bank of the River Thames, and the Grade I listed Tower Bridge isn’t far either – offering panoramic views of both the city and the busy river itself. You’d be hard-pushed to miss the most contemporary landmark on our agenda: the world-famous London Eye sits proudly above London’s skyscrapers.

    Scotland’s Top Landmarks

    With 135,000 monthly Google searches, Edinburgh Castle is by far Scotland’s most sought-after landmark. Perched on Castle Rock, high above the surrounding turrets, it’s easily viewed from across the city – dominating the capital’s skyline for centuries. 

    Discover the Kelpies in Falkirk – the largest equine sculptures in the world, and certainly worth a quick detour on your way. At over 100 ft tall and weighing more than 300 tonnes each, the Kelpies represent an incredible feat of engineering – a man made Scottish landmark not to be missed. 

    If you’re on your way North, try to plan a stop at Loch Ness along your route. The Scottish Highlands offer spectacular views for road users and hikers alike. We can’t promise you’ll glimpse Nessie from the car, but driving alongside this glorious body of freshwater will enrich your travel plans immeasurably. 

    Wales’ Famous Landmarks

    Snowdon is the highest mountain in Wales, and can be seen towering above Snowdonia National Park. With 60,500 Google searches in the last month alone, it’s one of the UK’s most in-demand landmarks. Whether you’re climbing it (good luck!) or simply passing through – make sure to take in this ancient natural site. 

    Wales has also historically been partial to a good castle, with Cardiff and Conwy Castles each ranking at 33,100 Google searches per month. The British public’s appetite for a crumbling landmark remains undefeated. In fairness, each of Wales’ famous castles are remarkable structures and absolutely worth a drive-by, at the very least.

    Northern Ireland’s Leading Landmarks

    The Giant’s Causeway is by far the most sought-after natural landmark in Northern Ireland, thanks to its stunning geological formation, stretching 33 miles along Ireland’s beautiful coastline. A Unesco World Heritage Site, national nature reserve and widely-recognised to be one of the wonders of the world – we think it’s well worth the drive. 

    Many of Northern Ireland’s landmarks are nautical in theme – and you certainly won’t be disappointed by the stunning Titanic Belfast museum, which takes its design inspiration from the ship of the same name, the RMS Titanic. Situated on the Maritime Mile, if you time your driveby well, you’ll see the museum lit up spectacularly against the night sky. Truly unmissable, especially if you’re planning to travel to or through Belfast over the course of your trip. 

    For fans of Game of Thrones visiting Northern Ireland, The Dark Hedges are a must-see. Whilst the road itself is pedestrianised, there’s a handy car park available to those who are passing nearby and fancy taking a stroll to break up a long drive.

    The UK’s Best Motorway Services

    It’s impossible not to discuss the best UK landmarks to segue into your travel without also acknowledging the UK’s best motorway services. Not to be overlooked, a solid service station makes the difference between innumerable forgettable hours on the road and the dream drive to your destination. Scouting out the motorway services you’ll use before your route is absolutely not over preparation, no matter what anyone else says. A soggy buttie might do some, but it won’t do us.

    Tebay Services

    Tebay Services can be found in Penrith, just off the M6, and it will transform your attitude towards motorway services forever. Set against the idyllic Cumbrian countryside, and boasting a homemade menu of local produce, incorporating Tebay into your trip is a no-brainer.

    Gloucester Services

    Find Gloucester Services just off the M5. A beautiful, farm-inspired pitstop, you’ll enjoy a range of superior brands and a culinary standard which far exceeds most high-street eateries – let alone motorway cafes.

    Making the most of your car journey can mean a lot of things. You might want to purchase temporary car insurance for a couple of your fellow travellers, to share the driving load. You might want to curate a playlist of all your favourite songs to sing along to. You should absolutely consider incorporating beautiful British landmarks into your trip, as well. Don’t let any prohibitive entry costs stop you from admiring both the man made landmarks and natural wonders of the country, from the road. It’s all about the journey, with GoShorty.

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  4. Types of Car Insurance Explained: Third Party, Comprehensive & Excess

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    If you own a car, you need to get insurance. This is a legal requirement. Yup, unless you have registered your car as being off the road (SORN) you have to insure your car.

    This means you’ll need to understand the complexities. And, as there are a few different types of car insurance – each covering an overlapping range of issues, it may feel a little daunting when all you really want to do is get driving Knowing what your insurance covers is essential to getting the right policy for your needs.

    We offer temporary car insurance, but you probably already knew that, and that insurance offers comprehensive cover. But what does that actually mean? How is it different to third party car insurance? What’s all this about excess? We’re going to help answer those exact questions to help you make an informed decision.

    What is third party car insurance?

    Third Party car insurance is the most basic level of car insurance available – and often the cheapest. Not only that, but it’s the absolutely legal minimum requirement for you to drive your car. It does not cover you, it covers a third party. But what does that actually mean, who is this mystical third party?

    In Insurance terms, you and your insurance company are the first and second parties. A third party refers to another person you might be involved in an accident with. I.e. it’s the other person on the road, rather than you and your car.

    What does third party car insurance cover?

    Cover, in this situation, refers to costs resulting from:

    • Injuries to people, passengers or animals.
    • Damage to property.

    Third Party only cover does not cover any costs that arise from the aforementioned situations to you or your property, only to a third party and their property.

    Still not sure how third party car insurance works? Lets run through a basic scenario:

    1. You have taken out third party car insurance and are out for a drive
    2. You are in an accident and run into the back of another person’s car at the lights
    3. The back end of their car is in pretty bad shape and so’s the front of yours. They’re ok, but you’ve given yourself whiplash.
    4. Third party insurance would only cover the damage to the other car. You’d not be able to use your cover to pay for the repairs needed on your car or with any medical bills for yourself.

    What is 3rd party, fire & theft cover?

    Third Party, Fire and Theft insurance is the next step up in insurance cover. It still only covers third parties in the event of an accident. However, it adds two additional elements of cover for fire and theft.

    What does third party fire and theft insurance cover?

    It covers your car if:

    • It is stolen
    • It is damaged by fire

    It can also cover you if someone damages it during an attempted theft, but this can vary from policy to policy, so you may want to double check.

    What is comprehensive cover?

    Comprehensive insurance is the highest level of insurance cover. Not only does it cover everything that third party insurance covers, but it covers a number of other things too. It’s the best car insurance available and should be your go-to level of cover if you are driving an expensive car, take expensive items around with you or simply want to have proper peace of mind.

    What does a comprehensive car insurance policy cover?

    Comprehensive car insurance covers a whole host of things, including both you and a third party. It covers:

    • Injuries to other people, passengers or animals.
    • Damage to other people’s property.
    • Fire damage
    • Theft
    • Accidental damage to your own car
    • Chipping & scratching
    • Vandalism or other malicious damage to your vehicle

    Comprehensive insurance might also cover your windscreen, personal contents and medical cover if you need it after an accident. It can also give you access to a courtesy car and breakdown cover, although both of these are often extra. These are not necessarily included in your insurance policy, so you need to check.

    When you have a comprehensive policy you may well need to pay excess. We’ll run you through what that means now.

    What is excess in a car insurance policy?

    When you make a claim on your insurance, you usually need to pay some of it yourself. This is called the excess. The excess is essentially the minimum claim on your insurance – the insurer pays out the costs of the claim above the excess, and you pay the rest. For example, if you have an excess of £300, and you need to make a claim of £1,000, your insurer will pay £700, and you will pay the £300.

    There are two forms of excess that you’ll see mentioned. These are compulsory excess and voluntary excess.

    Compulsory Excess

    You agree to a compulsory excess with your insurer. This is determined by the insurer, and represents the amount that you need to pay in order to make a claim. This excess is often higher if you are either a young driver, or you drive an expensive car.

    Voluntary Excess

    A voluntary excess is an amount that you agree to pay if you need to make a claim. Accepting a higher voluntary excess is often a good way to reduce the overall cost of your car insurance premium.

    Are there any other types of car insurance?

    While third party and comprehensive are the two main car insurance policies that you’ll see when you’re shopping around, you may see a few other specialised types pop up.

    Often other types are still simply a form of third party or comprehensive cover, but with a specific use.

    These include:

    • Telematics insurance – this refers to a car insurance police that requires your vehicle to be fitted with a ‘black box’ that monitors your driving.
    • European or ‘driving abroad’ car insurance – this is insurance that specifically allows someone to drive their car abroad with the same cover they’d have at home. Our temporary policies don’t offer this.
    • Classic car insurance – this is a specialised policy to help insure classic cars.
    • Named driver insurance – this usually refers to someone being added to an insurance policy. They’ll have the same rights as the policyholder when they drive the vehicle.
    • Multi-car insurance – this allows you to add more than one car to the same policy.

    You may also see other terms like ‘pay as you go’ insurance being thrown around. This simply refers to how you pay for it. As we said above, each of these types of car insurance is generally just a specific use that uses third party or fully comp cover as the actual insurance policy.

    What car insurance extras are there?

    All of these policies don’t usually include quite everything. You may still need a few extras. These tend to include:

    • Breakdown cover – this is one of the most common extras. If you break down your breakdown cover will kick in and someone comes to pick it up then take it to get repaired.
    • Windscreen cover – chips and cracks are a common occurrence when you’re driving. Windscreen cover lets you get it repaired for the cost of your excess. This can be part of a comprehensive policy but that’s not a given.
    • Personal accident cover – this will offer compensation should someone be seriously injured or even killed in a car accident.
    • Motor legal protection – this will help cover the costs of legal action you may want to take after an accident that wasn’t your fault.
    • Courtesy car – your insurer will provide you with a car while yours is getting fixed after an accident.
    • Lost keys cover – your insurance policy will get you sorted with a new pair of car keys if yours get lost, damaged or stolen.

    Does the length of policy affect the type?

    The length of your policy is something that you agree to before you buy it. Many people choose to buy a year long insurance policy. However, this is not your only option. Shorter lengths of insurance policy do exist, and can be a great way to save money. When you get short term car insurance you can still get comprehensive cover and you won’t be limited to third party cover simply because you aren’t locking yourself in for a year.

    Temporary Insurance from GoShorty

    GoShorty specialises in a few types of insurance – short term car insurance and temporary van insurance policies. We offer drivers cover for between 1 and 28 days. This allows you to only insure the period of time that you are actually using the car for. At GoShorty, we offer fully comprehensive temporary car insurance cover – that means that you can protect a car (as well as the car owner’s No Claims Discount), even if you do not own it.

    Get a temporary insurance quote today, and see how much you could save with GoShorty.

  5. What don’t you learn as a learner driver?

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    Learning to drive takes a long time. Indeed, it can be argued that you never stop learning.

    Before you pass your test, you need to be safe while on the road. That’s where hourly temporary learner insurance steps in – with it, you can safely practice until you are ready to take the driving test.

    While passing your driving test is one step of learning to drive, the experience you gain after you pass has the most significant impact. There is only so much you can learn during your driving lessons, and a range of things you can only learn through experience.

    It’s easy to think you will know everything about driving once you’ve passed your driving test. But in reality, we all make driving mistakes and are constantly learning when we are behind the wheel. 

    But if you’re a learner or new driver, here are some of the things your driving instructor might not teach you and some of the common mistakes that learner drivers make. 

    What do You Still Need to Learn?

    How to drive on the motorway

    One of the most significant things you need to learn after you pass your test is the art of motorway driving. This used to be because learner drivers were not allowed onto the motorway. As of 2018, learners are allowed on the motorway with a qualified instructor.

    However, using the motorway takes practice. There are a number of elements of motorway decorum that you cannot appreciate until you have experienced them.

    These include hogging the middle lane, undertaking drivers who are doing so, tailgating slower drivers on the motorway and knowing what to do on smart motorways

    Learning to drive on the motorway is as much about avoiding these common learner driver mistakes as it is the theoretical knowledge of which lane to use and how to change.

    How to use your headlights properly

    The driving test does not feature specific guidance on being behind the wheel at night. As a result, it can be challenging to understand the proper use of headlights, among other aspects of driving when it is dark. 

    Part of learning to drive over time is getting a feel for when you need lights on and the timing of using full-beam headlights. You also need to grasp how and when to use your fog lights. It is actually prohibited to use your fog lights if the visibility is above 100 metres.

    How to use full beam headlights

    Full beam headlights are handy if you spend a lot of time driving at night on roads with limited lighting, helping to keep a clear view of the road ahead. But, do you know how to use them correctly?

    As soon as you encounter another vehicle ahead of you, you must switch back to dipped headlights to ensure you don’t dazzle the driver. This is one of the common mistakes drivers make and could lead to other drivers losing control of their vehicle. 

    How to use the horn

    As a learner, you might see fellow road users using their horns to signal their displeasure. Perhaps they have been cut off on a motorway, or surprised by a driver pulling out on them. Either way, using the horn for any reason other than to warn a fellow motorist of a dangerous situation is forbidden. 

    Your horn is only really meant to be used to signal to other cars that you are present. It is also against the highway code to use your horn if you are stationary (like at traffic lights) or in a built-up area at night.

    How to make the most of your mirrors

    You need to have a basic understanding of your mirrors to pass your driving test. However, there are several aspects of proper mirror use that are not essential parts of most driving lessons. 

    Your rear-view mirror is key to keeping an eye on other cars and low-speed driving. You should be familiar with this to pass the test. 

    However, do you know how to use your car’s anti-dazzle switch? Equally, learners need to make sure they have full command of their mirrors to maintain safe driving.

    How to check tyre pressure

    Many new drivers rely solely on their MOT for checking tyre pressure. Unless your car is equipped with a tyre pressure monitoring system that alerts you when your tyre pressure is low, you should take time to check your tyres are properly inflated. 

    Not only will driving on poorly maintained tyres can reduce your vehicle’s performance, but it can also increase fuel consumption and even lead to a blow-out. 

    When checking your car’s tyre pressure, make sure to do so when the tyres are cold: recently driven-on tyres could lead to a false reading. 

    Not to hog the middle lane

    Although you may think this is just an annoying driving habit, hogging the middle lane when driving on the motorway is actually a breach of the highway code. 

    This is classified as careless driving as it makes overtaking considerably harder. If you’re caught unnecessarily driving in the middle lane of a motorway for long periods, you could face a fine and points on your driving licence.

    Not to play loud music

    Although you might enjoy blaring your favourite music when you are behind the wheel, this isn’t best practice when driving. 

    Not only could it prevent you from hearing emergency vehicle sirens or other road users, but it could significantly distract you from driving safely and to the best of your ability.

    If a police officer finds that you’re distracted by music when driving, you could be charged with driving without due care and attention.

    If you do listen to music when driving, make sure to keep the volume at a suitable level to keep away distractions and allow you to maintain control of the car. 

    How to clear ice from your windscreen

    On a cold day, you may be tempted to clear just enough ice from the driver’s side of the windscreen to allow you to see out. 

    However, learner drivers should be aware that if your vehicle is deemed to be in a dangerous condition, you could face a fine and points on your licence. 

    By law, drivers need a full view of the road and traffic ahead, so take your time to clear all ice from the glass and mirrors. 

    One of the common mistakes that both new drivers and experienced drivers make is pouring boiling water onto the windscreen to clear ice. This extreme temperature change can crack or even shatter the windscreen, making your vehicle unsafe to drive. 

    Some handy advice that you probably won’t learn from your driving instructor is the safest way to clear your windscreen from ice and snow. Using the defrost setting to blow air onto the windscreen, as well as deicing liquid and a windscreen scraper, is the most effective way to clear the glass and mirrors before you travel. 

    Not to splash pedestrians

    Although this is something your driving instructor probably covered, experienced drivers forget that splashing pedestrians is considered driving without reasonable consideration for other persons. For mistakes like this, you can face a fine and points on your driving licence if caught by the police. 

    Get temporary car insurance from Goshorty

    Learning to drive takes everyone a different amount of time. Failing a driving test is not a sign of being a bad driver, it is simply a sign of not being ready to take your test yet. All that it needs is more practice. 

    Hourly Learner Insurance is perfect for however long you need to learn. It covers you to drive either your own or someone else’s car for between 1 hr and 28 days. Hourly learner insurance allows you to get out and practice safely for as long as you need. 

    Get a temporary insurance quote today, and see how much it would cost you to get hourly learner insurance.

  6. Can an 18 year old buy temporary car insurance?

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    Is temporary car insurance right for an 18 year old?

    For young drivers, buying car insurance is a costly business, because they lack experience and statistics show they have more accidents. No wonder insurers hike up the premiums.

    Safe driving comes with practice and so it’s tough for those who have recently passed their test to gain that invaluable time on the road. Insurance may be priced at around £2,000 a year for those in urban areas and added to all the other costs of owning a car, can make matters impossible.

    So, what can be done to allow young drivers the chance to obtain insurance and drive when they need to?

    Think short-term insurance

    One option for an 18 year old is temporary car insurance. This means a young driver can take out comprehensive cover on a car they borrow on an as needed basis. The car’s owner can be reassured their No Claims Bonus remains protected.

    The leading provider, GoShorty, will insure drivers aged 18 and above. This is providing they have held a driver’s licence – full UK or EU/EEA – for at least six months. They also need to have been resident in the UK for at least 12 months and have a permanent address.

    Temporary car insurers want to cover sensible young drivers.  As a result, they won’t cover those who’ve racked up many penalty points or had several accidents. Drivers with driving bans and criminal convictions will also not able to obtain temporary insurance. In terms of the car they borrow, this needs to be registered in the UK and without modifications, other than for a disabled driver or an LPG conversion.

    Those meeting the criteria will find short term car insurance cover is the ideal way to get behind the wheel.

    Pick a suitable car

    Understandably, insurers don’t want to see a young driver in a Lamborghini. So, a cheaper quote can be obtained if the car is from a ‘low’ insurance group. All cars have an insurance classification and there are 50 groups. Generally, the lower the number, the lower the premium and vice versa.

    Those in low groups are newer affordable models with less powerful engines and cheaper to repair if there’s an accident, along with having built-in security. Typical examples include VW’s Polo, Hyundai’s i10 and the SEAT Ibiza.

    You can buy cover online within minutes with GoShorty. For young drivers, it’s the flexible and affordable way to drive.

    Other options

    A young driver can appear on a parent’s policy as a ‘named’ driver. This will push up the cost of the main driver’s insurance, but will be cheaper than the young driver buying their own cover.

    A higher excess can also push down the price of cover, although care should be taken to ensure the amount chosen is within reach should an accident occur. Telematics, known as ‘black box’ insurance, is another possibility. This technology allows the insurer to monitor the driving style and car use. Clearly, some may find this somewhat intrusive, but the purpose is to reward safe driving with lower premiums.

    There’s no getting away from the fact car insurance for young drivers is expensive. However, the price can be brought within reach and mean getting on the road safely. For an 18 year old, temporary car insurance represents a cheap and easy option.

    Get a Quote today

  7. Make sure your car is ready for winter

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    Is your car winter ready? Preparing your car for the cold weather can help protect you against accidents or breakdowns.

    This article will look at the critical checks, preparation, and supplies to prepare your car for winter driving.

    Car Checks

    As the weather worsens, checking your car is ready for the winter before it is too late is advisable.


    Checking your tyre tread depth to ensure they aren’t worn will give you better traction in slippy conditions. Your tread must be a minimum of 1.6mm by law in the UK. If you are even close to this coming into winter, you might want to consider replacements.


    Checking car batteries should always be a part of preparing for colder weather. A flat battery is bad at any time, but it is even worse during the winter.

    You will be able to check the health of your car battery using a home battery tester or by getting a professional to help.


    Checking antifreeze levels in your engine’s cooling system will help you to avoid your system freezing in the dead of winter.

    To check your engine coolant level, ensure you have a cold engine before taking off the radiator cap. Start the engine and allow the engine to reach operating temperature. Insert the probe of a digital multimeter that has been set to 20 DC volts or less.

    Rev to 2,000 rpm before placing the probe onto the negative battery terminal. Look for a reading of .4 volts or below. Anything over this shows that coolant is needed.

    Screen wash

    Screen wash levels should be regularly checked as wet weather, salt, and dirt on the roads can make visibility challenging if you cannot efficiently clean your windscreen. Checking that your washer fluid is topped up regularly is advisable.


    The winter months in the UK are naturally quite dark. Ensuring your lights work will allow other road users to see you in dim light.


    You must have the correct insurance cover anytime you want to drive. Because the winter weather can cause a lot of accidents, getting more protection could help.

    If you find your insurance policy is due to run out, temporary car insurance that offers a higher level of protection than you usually get can be a great solution.

    GoShorty offers temporary car insurance and temporary learner driver insurance, so you won’t have to pay for an entire year’s policy. You can select your cover before deciding whether you want to continue with the same level of protection for the rest of the year.

    Car Prep

    After checking your car, you will be able to protect certain parts from the bad weather in the UK by performing some essential car maintenance.

    Clean and protect the car battery terminals

    If you have checked your car battery and it is in good health for the coming winter, cleaning the terminals and using a protectant spray will help them make it through the winter without corrosion.

    Lubricate windows

    Protecting your window tracks from drag caused by freezing water can help you avoid damaging them. Spraying the window tracks with a lubricant should minimise this risk.

    Lubricate stripping, door locks, hinges and latches

    Cleaning and lubricating the weather stripping between car doors can minimise the risk of your car doors freezing shut.

    Lubricating door locks will also help minimise their freezing or corroding.

    Lubricating your hood latch and door hinges are also recommended to ensure you don’t suffer from any corrosion during winter. Metal parts are particularly at risk because of the road salt and water at this time.

    Fit winter tyres

    Switching from summer tyres to winter tyres can be expensive and might not be necessary for most UK. They offer better grip and handling but work best in conditions below 7°C.

    This can be a good option for those that use their car a lot during the winter.

    Fit winter wiper blades

    Winter blades are designed, so they don’t get packed with snow. A packed wiper blade will leave streaks across the windshield, reducing visibility.

    Make A Winter Car Survival Kit

    Now that your vehicle is winter-ready, you should consider packing and keeping an emergency kit in your car for winter. A well-stocked vehicle will be able to help you in any situation.

    LED torch

    Keeping a small LED torch in your car during the winter is always helpful. Most phones will have a torch, but having a separate light source can be invaluable if you are using your phone or trying to preserve the battery.

    Mobile phone charger

    If you are involved in an accident or break down, your phone will be a vital lifeline. Having a phone charger and even a portable battery pack will help should you run out of battery.

    Pen and paper

    A pen and paper are always handy to have in your car. This can be useful for taking down information on the phone or other drivers’ information if you are involved in an accident.

    Tool kit

    A basic tool kit should include duct tape, an adjustable wrench, pliers, and screwdrivers. You might not be able to fix all car problems, but having these tools can help resolve minor issues.

    Grit or cat litter

    If the temperature drops when you are out, it is possible that your vehicle can get stuck on ice or snow. Carrying grit or cat litter will allow the tyres to gain traction and get you moving again.

    Jumper cables

    Even if you have checked your battery before winter, mistakes like leaving the lights on can drain it. Keeping jumper cables in your can help you deal with a flat battery should it occur.


    Having a foldable shovel in your car won’t take up much space but can be helpful if there is heavy snowfall and you need to dig your car out.

    First aid kit

    A first aid kit should be kept in all cars to help deal with minor scrapes or cuts in an accident.

    Winter clothing

    Making sure you have warm clothes in your car during winter is advisable if you break down. Every winter survival kit should include a hat, gloves, and jacket.

    Waterproof clothing or an umbrella can help if you wait outside the car in freezing rain.

    Hi-visibility clothing, such as a bib, vest, or armband, should be included to make you more visible to other road users.


    If you break down in the winter and have to wait for breakdown assistance, having a warm blanket in your car will help keep you warm.

    Warning triangle

    Carrying warning triangles in case of an accident will allow you to alert other road users a safe distance away. This is especially important in winter when visibility is low and stopping distances are increased by wet or icy roads.

    Scraper and de-icer

    Being able to clear your windscreen and windows is important in the winter as you need to ensure you have maximum visibility. De-icer and a scraper will make this job a lot easier.

    Food and drink

    Having water and food in your car is essential if you get snowed in or break down. Bottled water and high-energy cereal bars should last through the winter.

    Final Thoughts

    Preparing your car for the winter will improve road safety and ensure you are ready for the worst-case scenario. Safely storing a winter emergency kit in your boot won’t take up much space but could be important.

  8. Why is Car Insurance Mandatory?

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    If you drive a car in the UK, you are legally required to be insured to drive it. This is because everyone who is driving needs to have a degree of financial protection. The minimum degree of insurance that you need to have is Third Party cover.

    You might think that if you damage your car, this is your problem, and only you should be responsible for fixing the damage. However, the vast majority of accidents involve other parties, and the damage you might cause in an accident is often not to your own property. As a result, you need to have insurance that at least covers the third party in any accident you might have.

    What is Insurance?

    An Insurance policy is a type of contract. You take out this contract so that you receive financial protection or reimbursement again financial losses you might incur under certain circumstances. The insurance company charges you for this potential reimbursement based on how likely they feel they are to need to pay out.

    What does car insurance cover?

    Car Insurance can cover a wide variety of potential risks. How much cover you receive depends upon the level of cover that you purchase. Third Party insurance covers only the other parties in an accident, not you. Third Party, Fire and Theft insurance also covers you in the case of a fire or your car being stolen. Comprehensive Insurance covers both a third party in an accident, and you.

    How do I check if I am insured?

    It is possible to check if you are insured on a vehicle, or if a vehicle is insured at all. The Motor Insurer’s Database is a near-comprehensive database of which cars are insured, and by whom. The police use the MID to check if cars on the road are legal to drive, and private individuals can do the same.

    What happens if I don’t have insurance?

    If you don’t have insurance, you can be fined a fixed penalty of £300, and you will be given six points on your driving licence. If you go to court, you could face a greater fine – potentially unlimited. You could also be disqualified from driving.

    Do I need insurance to drive someone else’s car?

    Yes – you always need to be insured on a car to be able to drive it. You can drive a car you don’t own if you are insured to drive it. This comes either from being listed as a driver on someone else’s insurance, or you insuring yourself temporarily on a car that someone else owns.

    Car Insurance from GoShorty

    Car insurance is mandatory. However, getting temporary car insurance is easy with GoShorty. You don’t need to insure yourself for longer than you need to. At GoShorty, you can insure yourself to drive a car for between 1 hour and 28 days with short term car insurance. This can be on someone else’s car. With GoShorty, you don’t need to worry about getting insurance – only get the cover you need, and find out how much you could save compared to getting insured over a year.

    Get a temporary insurance quote today

  9. How do I Drive a New Car Home?

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    Buying a car is supposed to be fun. You want to think about your options, the colour choices, or even just getting out on the road. However, it isn’t always as simple as you would like it to be.

    When you buy a new car, you want to get it home as quickly as you can. However, you can’t just drive the car home. There are things you need to have, and things you need to do.

    What do I need to do to drive a new car home?

    When you buy a new car, it isn’t as simple as paying the seller and driving off with your new car. There are certain things that you need to do before the car is legally yours and suitable to drive.

    Transfer the Ownership

    The ownership of cars is expressed through the V5C form. This document proves who legally owns a car. If you want to buy a car, you need to update this document. If you are buying from a dealership, this will be something you do in the office. However, if you are buying from a private seller, you need to make sure that you do organise this yourself.

    At the bottom of the V5C form, there is a section called V5C/2 – ‘New Keepers Details’. You need to fill this section out yourself, and keep it until you receive the new logbook in the post.

    Make sure that the name and address of the owner match up. If they do not, then the previous transfers of ownership might not have not been done properly.

    Tax the Vehicle

    You need to tax the vehicle you have bought. This is as important as registering it under your ownership. If you are buying a car from a dealership, they may take care of this for you. If you are buying from a private seller, you will need to tax the vehicle yourself before you can drive it away.

    You need to register for tax, even if the car itself is exempt from road tax. This is to register you as the appropriate person – you won’t actually be charged.

    Insure the Vehicle

    You need to insure the vehicle to be able to drive it. Insurance is a legal requirement for all vehicles. Even if you are only driving a few miles back home with your new car, you need to insure it to be able to drive it at all.

    What do I need to have?

    The V5C

    You need to be in possession of the logbook or V5C. The current owner / seller should have the logbook if they are selling the car. It is possible to apply for a replacement V5C if you lose the existing logbook. When you buy the car, you should take the lower part of the form as a temporary logbook.

    What sort of insurance do I need?

    You need to have insurance in order to drive any vehicle. This leads to many people buying the wrong type of insurance for them because they are so keen to have any type of insurance.

    However, there are a great many variables that go into insurance. Some of these are:

    • Length of insurance policy
    • Cover
    • Voluntary Excess
    • Optional Extras


    Is one day insurance right for me?

    Not everyone needs a traditional insurance policy. They are complicated, and feature a great many variables. This can often lead to people buying the wrong insurance for them. With temporary car insurance, you can get a cheap, simple insurance policy that allows you to drive the car away legally. Using short term car insurance, you can then decide on the right longer term insurance policy for you when the car is safely in your possession.


    Get a temporary insurance quote today.

  10. What’s the cheapest car for a young driver to insure?

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    Driving can be very expensive for new drivers when you add up the cost of a new car, insurance, road tax, MOTs, fuel, and repairs. It is not all negative, though, and there are many benefits to passing a driving test, including a new sense of freedom and improved job opportunities.

    Trying to find ways to reduce costs is important to many drivers, and one of the best long term ways of doing this is by looking at the cheapest cars to insure.

    The average insurance cost for new or young drivers is typically expensive. That is why we have compiled a list of cars with low insurance premiums and further information to help you understand car insurance quotes.

    Why Is Insurance So Expensive For Young Drivers?

    Newly qualified drivers will typically have some of the highest insurance premiums because of a lack of experience. This is true of most young drivers who are statistically more likely to be involved in a car accident.

    Car insurance providers look at a number of factors when providing drivers with premiums. If a payout is necessary, insurance costs will be assessed on risk and potential losses.

    Young, inexperienced drivers are considered at a high risk of being involved in an accident. This is why newly qualified or young drivers need to consider alternative ways to reduce costs.

    What Are Car Insurance Groups?

    The car’s insurance group determines the insurance cost. The ABI (Association of British Insurers) independently assess vehicles to give them a rating from 1 to 50. This makes it easier for the insurance industry set its premiums.

    Factors that determine which insurance group a car will be in include the damage it would receive in a collision and the cost of repair.

    Other important factors include the price and availability of parts, the price, the car’s security, and the vehicle’s performance.

    The cheapest cars to insure will be found in lower categories from 1-10. Top-end luxury vehicles are likely to have a higher rating, resulting in higher insurance costs.

    Other Ways To Reduce Car Insurance Premiums For Young Drivers

    As well as finding a vehicle that will get you the cheapest car insurance quote, there are a number of other steps you can take to reduce insurance premiums.

    Advanced driving course

    Taking additional courses after passing a test will give you a qualification to prove to your insurance provider that you are a responsible driver. This is an excellent way for a young driver to reduce insurance costs.

    Black box insurance

    Some insurers offer insurance policies that include a black box monitoring system. This will measure how often you drive, how far you drive, your speed, and the times you drive.

    This makes it easier for the insurance company to provide you with an accurate quote based on this evidence rather than on general assumptions.

    Temporary insurance

    Temporary car insurance is an excellent way for people that don’t use their vehicle regularly. You will be able to choose from daily, weekly, or monthly options, depending on your needs. Temporary learner driver insurance is the perfect option for those still learning that need to get as much practice as possible.

    Cheapest cars for young drivers to insure, UK

    To help you find an affordable car with lower insurance premiums, here is a list of vehicles that might suit young motorists.

    While older cars are great for a first car, as they will be less valuable and therefore cheaper to cover, newer cars offer many modern safety features that will benefit younger drivers. Here are some of the best models on the market:

    Ford Fiesta

    The Ford Fiesta has been popular since its launch almost 50 years ago in 1976. The Fiesta is in Insurance group 2, which will automatically be a cheap option to insure.

    They are well built, comfortable vehicles that are great for new drivers. The small vehicle’s 1.1-litre petrol engine offers excellent fuel efficiency, and entry-level models come with an impressive infotainment screen that allows Android Auto and Apple Carplay as standard.

    Despite being a small car, this hatchback is surprisingly roomy, and there is a range of specs and trims for prospective buyers to explore.

    Seat Ibiza

    The Seat Ibiza finds itself in insurance group 3 for the 1.0-litre MPI model. Older models can even offer group 2 insurance if you are interested in a used car.

    The spacious car is great for those that want to take passengers on adventures and even has a large boot. The vehicle offers safe handling and good fuel economy.

    Some models are available with rear-facing cameras and a parking sensor, and the 60,000 three-year warranty offers the owner peace of mind.

    Vauxhall Corsa

    The Vauxhall Corsa is another popular model in the UK and was first introduced as the Opel Corsa in 1982.

    The 1.2-litre Life model is in the group 2 insurance category, and it is cheap to run. The well-equipped car comes with 16″ Alloy wheels, a touch screen entertainment centre, and LED headlights as standard.

    The Corsa offers fantastic handling and, like most similar small cars with small engines, is relatively cost-effective to run.

    Seat Mii

    If you had looked at either the Skoda Citigo or Volkswagen Up, the Seat Mii could be a great choice as all three vehicles are remarkably similar.

    This is a compact car, and its 1.0-litre petrol engine models enjoy excellent fuel economy and group one or two insurance.

    Because of its size and manoeuvrability, the Mii makes an excellent city car. The ISOFIX fittings in the back seat also make it ready for up to two car seats for those with a young family.

    Volkswagen e-Up

    The Volkswagen e-UP is an electric car that is perfect for young drivers who want the freedom and versatility of having a car without the carbon footprint and emissions.

    This car is great for town or city driving and is in insurance group ten. Though this is a little higher than some of the other models featured, you will benefit from not having to pay any road tax because it is fully electric.

    This car offers a range of around 160 miles when fully charged. With so many charging stations being installed around the UK and government regulations requiring all new-build homes to have one installed, it is looking like it will only get easier to charge an electric vehicle.

    The quick acceleration and quiet ride make this an enjoyable car to drive. The other significant benefit of this and other electric vehicles is how much cheaper they are to run.

    Dacia Sandero

    The Dacia Sandero is a great, low-priced option for young drivers. You will find models dating from 2013 to 2021 will start in insurance group 2, making them one of the cheapest vehicles available for below £10,000.

    This might not be the best choice if you are after a flashy car with a great interior. The use of plastic and basic specs is one reason this vehicle is so cheap. But don’t let that put you off.

    You will be surprised at how spacious the Sandero is, with lots of room to transport adults and an excellent boot. Despite being great for budget buyers, the car is surprisingly good to drive.

    Suppose you are happy to sacrifice mod cons, out with air conditioning and a DAB radio, interior quality, and state-of-the-art consoles. In that case, the Dacia Sandero is an excellent option.

    Fiat Panda

    The Fiat Panda might not look as stylish as the Fiat 500, but the low insurance group 3 rating makes it a great option for new or young drivers looking to reduce insurance premiums.

    The 1.2-litre petrol option offers excellent fuel economy and a low insurance level rating, making it a cheap car to run. The boxy style might not be to everyone’s taste, but there are a lot of fans of this quirky style out there.

    This is a practical car that offers a comfortable ride. The only downside is the car’s poor crash rating, which should always be considered when buying a new car.

    Toyota Aygo

    The Toyota Aygo X-Style 1.0 VVT-i 5d model is in insurance group 5. The entry-level models come with 17″ alloy wheels, air conditioning, a rear-view camera, and an Apple Carplay and Android Auto compatible touchscreen.

    The car’s safety features include automatic emergency braking and adaptive cruise control. The 1.0-litre engine isn’t the quickest, but this is still a brilliant car for driving in towns and cities.

    Customers will be able to choose between manual or automatic versions, and you can expect great fuel economy from this vehicle.

    Kia Picanto

    The Kia Picanto DPi(66) auto 2 is a compact car in insurance group one. This is an excellent car for a new driver because of its low running costs and excellent fuel economy.

    Reaching 0 to 60mph in 16.6 seconds isn’t the most impressive speed you will find, but this is one of the reasons it is so cheap to run.

    As well as being a cost-effective option, you will also have the peace of mind offered by its 100,000-mile, seven-year warranty.

  11. How to plan driving home for Christmas

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    Christmas is coming and family members who are currently away will be feeling the call to return home. Perhaps you’re away at university or maybe working in another part of the country? No matter what the circumstances, this is the one time of year when being together really matters.


    Although the roads are often exceptionally busy, for many of us, there are clear advantages to driving. You may need to bring luggage and perhaps have lots of presents to transport too. It can be a lot easier if you have your own wheels – or, as is increasingly happening, can borrow someone else’s. If a friend, for example, will not be using their car, then they may lend it to you to drive home and you can ensure it is fully covered with GoShorty.


    GoShorty makes it incredibly easy to buy online, providing fully comprehensive short term car insurance in minutes. You can take out insurance from an hour right up to 28 days, which should be more than enough for your Christmas family break. Drivers aged from 18 to 75 are eligible and you can insure a car with a value of up to £60,000 as well as protecting the owner’s No Claims Discount.


    So, the transport and the insurance are sorted, now all you have to do is plan for the journey. These are some of the best ways to go about it.


    Plan the route

    It may be a trip you’ve done before or it could be the first time, but check for any changes or possible disruptions. It can be worth having a paper route, just in case you lose signal.


    Make sure the car is serviced and perform some basic checks

    If this is a car you do not drive regularly, ask the owner to run through the controls and to confirm with you when it was last serviced – this is particularly important if it’s a longer journey. Then check the tyre tread, tyre pressure and fluids such as oil, screen wash and coolant. Check the brake lights are working well and also where the spare tyre kit is kept. Check out our more detailed post for further car maintenance tips.


    Be prepared in case you are in an accident or breakdown

    Knowing the vehicle is in good condition means that breaking down is unlikely. But, if you’re in an accident, have the necessary claims number to hand. If you already have personal breakdown cover, this will provide protection and you can even join roadside assistance organisations as required, if necessary, although the call out bill will be higher.


    If you’re travelling on motorways, be aware where service stations are and if on a smart motorway, what to do if you need to pull over. There have been a number of smart motorway accidents in recent years and the advice is to try and reach a refuge as soon as you can and then phone for help. If this is impossible, pull up as close as possible to the nearside verge/boundary or slip road, switch on hazard lights and if it is not safe to get out, call 999. Emergency services can then reroute traffic.


    Get your timing right

    If at all possible, try to leave on a day and time when you’ll avoid the crowds. If you don’t drive that much, you may prefer not to drive at night, even though the roads can be quieter. Can you leave really early in the morning instead?


    Check the weather conditions

    It does not look that likely we’ll be experiencing a white Christmas this year. But, frost and extreme rain can make roads more hazardous. Check the advice and be ready to act accordingly. In the rare event that there are warnings not to drive, you should heed these. But, if driving does appear reasonable, then be prepared to amend your route, such as through avoiding any roads that might be affected by flooding.


    Rest well before the journey and avoid alcohol

    The festive season can involve many nights out and social occasions. But if you have a long drive, potentially starting early in the morning, avoid alcohol, which could not only affect your judgement, but also potentially lead to you driving when over the limit.


    Stop and have a break every couple of hours

    Be sure to have a break and if you leave the car, that it’s left somewhere secure. Ensure piles of gifts are not clearly visible, put these in the boot or cover with blankets or coats.


    Have an emergency pack readily to hand

    This should include your torch, phone charger, food and drink as well as any medicine you need regularly, car essentials such as de-icing spray, scraper and a powerful torch.

    Plan a playlist

    Although the radio can be useful in terms of traffic updates, particularly when on the home stretch you may want to start feeling in the Christmas mood by listening to your favourites. This is when your carefully planned Christmas playlist you’ve spent time on before the journey, will come into its own.


    If you are driving home for Christmas this year and need temporary car insurance from GoShorty, get a quote today.

  12. How to plan a road trip with friends

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    Road tripping with your friends is a fantastic experience that you will remember for a long time. Road trips are great for re-establishing friendships, making memories together, and seeing your country.

    Unfortunately, road trips with friends are not as easy as simply jumping into the car and heading out. There are some steps to take to ensure you have an epic road trip to your final destination without any hiccups or conflict.

    Here are some tips to keep in mind when planning fun road trips with friends.

    Checklist Before You Depart

    Before diving in, here is a cheat sheet of what to keep in mind when undertaking the planning process for your next road trip:

    • Travel with the right people
    • Establish a budget
    • Decide on your destination and stops
    • Get the right transportation
    • Prepare the vehicle for a long car ride
    • Spread the responsibilities
    • Communicate openly
    • Design a well-rounded playlist
    • Get healthy road trip food
    • Stay safe and connected

    Consider car insurance

    A road trip with friends is fun, but you also need to be responsible. You should consider temporary car insurance for the journey, to give yourself peace of mind.

    If you are driving a standard car or SUV, take out temporary car insurance. For larger vans, you can get temporary van insurance. If your friend group includes someone who has a learner’s license, consider temporary learner driver insurance.

    1. Travel With The Right People

    You will be spending hours in the car with your friends during your road trip, so you must select the best people to join you. Even your very best friend can test your patience, so you will want to make sure you and your partners are all on the same page about the trip’s goal, destination, and budget.

    You don’t want to spend the entire trip arguing about minor inconveniences, so invite friends who have similar interests and a similar budget to you.

    2. Establish A Budget

    The most crucial step in planning your road trip with friends is determining the budget.

    The amount of money you all have available to spend will determine where you go, how long the trip lasts, which fun things you can do along the way, what car you will take, and where you will stay.

    The easiest way to discuss a budget is to have everyone over for a meeting. Talking about finances can be touchy, but good friends will understand their financial constraints and be willing to work around them and compromise their expectations.

    Splitting the fuel bill

    The most significant expense whilst on your adventure with friends will be paying for the fuel for a long road trip.

    You can either take turns filling up the car or establish a fuel fund where everyone deposits equal amounts upfront, which the driver can then use to fill up the car.

    3. Decide On Your Destination And Stops

    The awesome thing about road trips is the freedom to go where you want. It is a fun way to explore your country, but it is still a good idea to decide on your destination and stop-overs before you head out.

    Once you have a destination in mind, spend time on Google Maps to find the best way to get there and what to see along the way.

    Here are some things to keep in mind when deciding on your road trip destination:

    • How much time do you have to get there? This will determine how far you will be able to go.
    • Will the weather be warm or cold?
    • What is your budget?
    • What kind of experience do you want. Do you want to backpack and spend time outdoors or travel to a luxurious resort destination?

    4. Get The Right Transportation

    If you are going on a more extended trip, you will want a vehicle to get you there safely and comfortably. Preferably, you will want a car with plenty of cargo space, Bluetooth connectivity so you can stay entertained, an aircon and heater, and something fuel-efficient.

    Should your journey take you on dirt roads, you should consider getting a four-wheel-drive vehicle to make the long journey more comfortable.

    5. Prepare The Vehicle

    Before heading out on your adventure, you should make sure the vehicle is in a good condition.

    Firstly, the vehicle must be up to date on its services. Secondly, you should check the following to make sure the car is ready for the long drive:

    • Have a mechanic check the brake fluids, transmission fluids, and coolants. Top them off if required.
    • Check the wear on the tyres. Replace tyres that are worn down. You can also have the tyres rotated and aligned for a smooth drive.
    • Make sure the spare tyre is in good condition and that you have a car jack and wrench.
    • Check that the headlights, brake lights and indicators are all working.
    • Make sure the car battery does not discharge when the car is switched off.
    • Pack the following items for an emergency:
      • Jumper cables
      • Tyre repair kit
      • Reflective triangle to use in an emergency
      • Charged flashlight
      • Fire extinguisher
      • First aid kit with disinfectant, scissors, bandages and pain killers.
    • Keep these documents in the glove compartment of the car or on your person:
      • Driver’s license
      • Proof of insurance
      • Emergency contacts
      • Car’s manual and service booklet

    6. Spread The Responsibilities

    Don’t let the responsibility of planning the entire road trip fall on only one person. Divide the tasks and responsibilities between all the friends to ease the process and avoid arguments.

    How do you spread the responsibilities between a group of people? Simply give each person one crucial task.

    • Have someone research accommodation options along the route.
    • Appoint someone to research fun things along the route and at the destination.
    • The financial-savvy friend can keep track of the budget and expenses.
    • One person can be responsible for packing the car.
    • Someone can provide the onboard entertainment, such as coming up with fun road trip games, playing music, and providing snacks.

    Discuss each other’s findings frequently to make sure everyone is in agreement.

    7. Communicate Openly

    Your road trip with friends will quickly become a nightmare without proper communication. Before one person dominates the entirety of the road trip planning, make sure everyone agrees. This includes discussing the destination, where to stay, and other bookings and reservations.

    Road tripping is a team sport, and everyone should be able to speak their minds and have their opinions heard.

    8. Design A Well-Rounded Playlist

    You are probably going to want to play music on your drive.

    The best way to make the experience in the car fun is to design a playlist that will keep everyone happy. Ask everyone to contribute their favourite music to the playlist and mix in some classic songs to listen to on the road.

    You can also incorporate some podcasts and stories to make the time go by quicker.

    9. Get Healthy Road Trip Food

    You can save a lot of money on expensive takeout if you pack food for the drive.

    As you will be spending a lot of time sitting down, it is recommended that you pack healthy snacks for the road that will keep you full without making you feel heavy or sluggish.

    If you do not have a cooler or fridge in the vehicle, you will do best with non-perishable or dry snacks. Also, make sure always to have fresh water in the car.

    Here are some healthy food ideas for a road trip with friends:

    • Pretzels
    • Nuts, raisins and seeds
    • Popcorn
    • Citrus fruit
    • Bananas (although they don’t do well if left in a hot car for too long)
    • Yoghurt-based smoothies
    • Muffins
    • Crackers and peanut butter


    10. Stay Safe And Connected

    Staying safe is crucial when you are going on an extended road trip. That means you will also have to keep in contact with friends and family back home, so they are updated on your travels. You also want to be able to contact emergency services in a pinch.

    Here are some tips for staying connected while on the road:

    • Always charge your mobile devices and laptops so that you can call someone in a pinch.
    • Invest in a portable WiFi router. This will allow you to stay connected even if your phone does not have data.
    • Share your live location with loved ones when driving long distances so they can track where you are.
    • Notify people of your expected arrival time and tell them where you are staying.
    • Get a paper map so that you won’t get lost if anything happens to your phone or GPS device.

    Final Thoughts

    Planning a road trip with your closest friends means you get to make memories, enjoy fun activities, and bond for many hours each day.

    By following our road trip planning tips and tricks, you will have an enjoyable experience on your next road trip, and the planning part should go smoothly before you hit the open road.