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Insurance experts warn retail couriers could end up ‘driving without insurance’

A leading UK insurance firm is warning that retail couriers doing casual delivery work with their own vehicles could be at risk of invalidating their insurance unless they ensure their policy includes coverage for ‘hire and reward’ journeys. says standard car insurance will not provide protection or compensation if retail couriers have an accident while dropping off orders, even if it is just for the odd trip.

The car insurance comparison website says that while many drivers might ignore or not know they must have this specific type of courier car insurance, there was still a notable surge in demand for courier policies in the three months leading up to Christmas last year – shooting up by 140%, according to’s own figures.

The firm is anticipating the trend will be repeated again this year to reflect changes in buying behaviour that were experienced over the pandemic, and with a predicted spike in covid cases in winter, online shopping is likely to remain in high demand.

While many drivers might not have the correct insurance because of an innocent misunderstanding, failing to have ‘hire and reward’ insurance while working as a courier would be classed as driving without insurance, with this IN10 motoring offence potentially resulting in 6 to 8 points on a driving licence. This can add 25% or more to a premium annually until the offence is spent after four years.

Courier insurance is suitable for drivers making lots of drop-offs every day within a local area and offers additional protection compared to standard policies, most notably giving cover for the goods themselves when the policy includes ‘goods in transit’ cover.’s Founder Greg Wilson comments: “There’s a huge uptake of people picking up deliveries for takeaways in the evening and extra deliveries at the weekend to make a bit of extra cash, which I expect will only increase once furlough comes to an end on September 30th and once the festive shopping commences – but it’s vital that drivers ensure they have the correct insurance in place before they begin making these courier trips.

“It’s illegal to drive without the appropriate insurance, and operating as a courier with only a standard car insurance policy is actually classed as driving without insurance for those journeys. These drivers run the risk of penalty points, fines and being unprotected in the event of an accident if they only have personal car insurance. Luckily it’s very easy to get a suitable courier insurance policy – our comparison site helps people find a competitive quote with a quick online form.”