Car insurance FAQs
When you buy your policy with us, you can choose when you'd like your insurance to start.
You can buy your insurance up to 60 days before the policy start date.
If you get a car insurance quote online, you can use the reference to retrieve the quote for 28 days, as long as your details are the same.
Or if you want to save your quote for longer, up to 60 days, just get in touch.
If your car has been modified, we can give you an online quote for a maximum of 2 modifications from the following list:
Modifications will affect the quote price, as they present a higher risk than original components.
Yes, you can pay by monthly instalments. When you buy your insurance by monthly instalments an initial deposit is paid by card, then the rest of your payment will be made in 11 monthly instalments by Direct Debit.
The dates of the instalments will be shown in the Credit Agreement sent to you by post – it takes about 5 working days to arrive.
Credit will be provided by Automobile Association Insurance Services Limited, and you must be over 18.
When you buy your insurance by monthly instalments an initial deposit is paid by card, then the first monthly Direct Debit is taken 59 days after the cover starts.
The remaining 10 monthly Direct Debits are taken on or around this date unless you request a specific date.
You should have received a credit agreement for the monthly payments by post – it takes about 5 working days to arrive.
If you want to change the Direct Debit date, or you've missed a payment, call our instalment team on 0330 041 3690. Lines are open Monday to Friday 8am to 7pm, Saturdays 9am to 5pm.
We keep your personal details and your credit or debit card information private and secure when you buy online.We do this by using secure server software that encrypts any information you give us. It takes the characters you enter and converts them into a secret code, which is then securely sent to us.
For more information about how your personal data is handled, read our privacy notice.
When towing a caravan or trailer, you're covered for the costs you're liable to pay if you cause damage to property, or injury or death to someone.
Your car insurance also covers a single-axle trailer, worth up to £500 and kept in a safe and roadworthy condition, while attached to your car. For example, if you have comprehensive insurance, your trailer will also be covered on a comprehensive basis, which includes accidental damage, fire and theft.
Select business use when you use your car to travel to various places in connection with your work, such as offices or factories. Business use isn't required when you travel to a single permanent place of work.
When you only commute to and from one permanent place of voluntary work, then select 'Social, Domestic, Pleasure & Commuting' for the use of your car.
If you travel to more than one place of voluntary work, our panel of insurers has agreed that 'Social, Domestic, Pleasure & Commuting' is sufficient cover and should be selected.
But if you transport goods or people as part of your voluntary work, then please call 0330 041 3686 for a quote.
We don’t charge an administration fee if you call us to update your policy to show you now do voluntary work.
Our panel of insurers operates under the statement below, issued on the Association of British Insurers website.
"The insurer will insure their policyholders to carry out voluntary driving, that is, the use of a vehicle they own in connection with, or for the benefit of, charities, voluntary organisations, clubs or societies, where payment does not exceed the HMRC mileage rates in force at that time. This does not cover use for hire or reward or vehicles owned by, hired to or lent to the voluntary organisation."
Yes, our comprehensive policy allows you to drive other vehicles with third party cover, unless it's specifically excluded by your insurer. If this is excluded, we'll state this when you get a quote. If you've already bought car insurance from us, check your certificate of insurance. The conditions that apply to this benefit are in your Car Insurance Policy Booklet.
A no claim discount is a reward for not making a claim on your motor insurance policy. Each year the discount on your renewal premium increases, reaching a maximum discount after 14 years without a claim.
If you do make a claim, your discount will normally be less at the next renewal if your insurance company can't get their money back from the person responsible.
When you get a car insurance quote, we ask how many years no claim discount you already have. This information can be found on the cancellation notice or last renewal invitation from your previous insurer.
In order to validate your policy after purchase, we may ask for proof of the discount you've earned. You can send us a copy of the renewal or cancellation notice, or a letter on headed paper from your previous insurer.
The document must be dated within the past 2 years, and isn't used for another vehicle. Also, please tell us about any gap of more than 30 days between your previous and the new policy, including claims or convictions.
You can either email or send the document to us:
Customer Care Unit
Q3, Quorum Business Park
Newcastle upon Tyne NE12 8EX
The document should show:
On receipt we'll acknowledge the proof of your no claim discount. If we do need further information, we'll allow you sufficient time to provide it. Meanwhile, your car insurance policy remains active.
If you already have car insurance with us, the number of years no claim discount is on your certificate of insurance. You'll have received a copy at purchase. If you need a replacement certificate of insurance, please call us on 0330 041 3684.
Yes, you can pay an additional premium to protect your no claim discount. You’ll usually need 4 or more years with no claims before the option of protecting your no claim discount becomes available. Depending on your insurer, you can usually make 2 'fault' claims in a 3- or 5-year period without affecting your no claim discount.
If you make a claim following an accident that isn't your fault, and the driver of the other vehicle isn't insured, you won't lose your no claim discount or have to pay any excess.
We just ask you to tell us the other vehicle's make, model and valid registration number, so that we can identify the driver of the other vehicle.
Yes, they can. Named drivers over 25 can earn their own no claim discount to use on a policy with us.
Thatcham Research certifies security products for vehicles, including alarms, immobilisers and tracking systems. The research centre is better known as 'Thatcham' after the Berkshire town where it's based. Most insurers give a discount if you have a certified security product in your car.
The police can track a stolen car with an electronic signal sent by this bit of kit hidden in the car. Most cars that have this are found after they're stolen. You can pay up to 10% less for your motor insurance if your car has a tracking device.
You can drive anywhere in the EU, and in several other European countries, and get the same level of cover you have in the UK for up to 90 days during the 12 months of your policy.
Depending on your insurer, and for an additional premium, you may be able to extend the 90-day period. You might also get cover for countries that we don't include as standard.
Since 2 August 2021 you no longer require a Green Card (or International Motor Insurance Card) for travel in the EU and the EEA states.
You also don't need a Green Card for Andorra, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia and Switzerland.
Instead of the Green Card, your Certificate of Motor Insurance now proves you have the minimum insurance cover needed by law in the country you're visiting.
The European Economic Area includes all the European Union countries plus Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.
The EU countries are:
Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden.
BEAM set up and administer your policy using a panel of insurance underwriters. The name of the underwriter will be shown on your car insurance quotation.
We provide cover for drivers who are aged between 18 and 99.
An excess is the part of the costs of a claim for loss or damage to your car that you have to pay out of your own pocket. Your insurance will be cheaper if you agree to pay more of these costs yourself. There are 2 types of policy excess:
Compulsory excess – the insurer will decide how much you'll be asked to pay for each claim before you buy the motor insurance policy. Check that you're comfortable with how much you'll have to pay for each claim before you buy a car insurance policy.
Voluntary excess – the amount you'd be prepared to pay on top of the compulsory amount. The higher you go, the lower your premium.
Yes, you can pay a higher voluntary excess for when you make a claim, usually up to £500. Typically, you pay less for your car insurance if you select a higher voluntary excess.
Call our 24-hour claim line 0330 041 3689.
Before you call, please see how to make a motor insurance claim.
Yes, a courtesy car is available with comprehensive cover. Following an accident, you'll get a courtesy car for as long as your car is being repaired at an approved garage.
If you have comprehensive cover, then windscreen cover is included. We cover the windscreen, sunroof and the remaining windows. And your no claim discount is not affected by a windscreen claim.
A windscreen replacement is subject to the applicable excess, but there's no excess to pay on a windscreen repair.
You can check your windscreen replacement excess when you get a quote online. On the quote page, a summary of your details includes a link to 'Excess details / policy terms'.
To make a glass claim and arrange a repair, you need to book an appointment.
Please have your details ready, including the policy number, start date and insurer. You can find them all on your Statement of Insurance.
Please call 0330 041 3684 to make any changes to your policy.
If you've changed your vehicle, we'll need the same type of details as you provided for the previous model, such as registration number, market value and any modifications.
Usually, yes – call us on 0330 041 3684 and ask to add a temporary additional vehicle. We'll need to know all the details of the model.
Allowing a temporary additional vehicle is subject to the current insurer accepting the risk. Test drives aren't covered.
You can add a temporary additional vehicle from 1 day to 4 weeks, and a cover note will be issued.
We can't offer insurance where a policy is already in place for the vehicle.
We want to make renewing your policy as simple as possible. That's why we've put together a dedicated BEAM car insurance renewals page. We explain when you'll get your renewal quote, how to let us know about any policy detail changes and what happens with automatic renewals.
You can't create an account at the moment. Instead, call us on 0330 041 3684 if you need to make changes to your policy or discuss your BEAM car insurance.
Your documents are either emailed to you or posted to the address you specified when you bought the policy, depending on your chosen preference.
If you selected email, make sure you check your junk folder.
If you can’t find your documents, give us a call on 0330 041 3684 and we’ll resend them.