Minibus Insurance


A guide to minibus insurance

Minibuses are perfect for transporting small groups of people at a low cost and with minimum fuss. However, given that minibuses are used for all types of different roles, the type of insurance you'll be able to get will depend on how you use it.

With that in mind, we've answered some common questions you'll need the answers to if you're thinking about getting yourself insured to drive a minibus.

What is a minibus defined as?

A minibus is a vehicle that can seat anywhere between nine and 16 passengers, plus a driver. If the vehicle can only carry up to eight passengers, it is defined as an MPV (multi-purpose vehicle).

What kind of insurance do I need to drive a minibus?

You will need to get specialist minibus insurance. You can usually insure the vehicle to be used by multiple drivers, while some insurance policies also have the option to add breakdown cover and/or public liability insurance, which you will need if you plan to use your minibus for private or public hire.

Is it possible to take out temporary minibus insurance?

Yes. Insurance companies know that many people only need minibus insurance for short periods of time - hiring the vehicle to be driven on a day trip, for example. Many companies will allow you to set a temporary insurance period of anywhere between one day and one month.

Does my driving licence allow me to drive a minibus?

You can drive a minibus with up to 16 seats on a standard driving licence, provided you meet the following requirements:

  • You are at least 21 years old.
  • You meet the Group 2 medical standards if you're over 70 years old (you'll need to check this with your GP).
  • You are driving the minibus voluntarily, i.e. you're not being paid to drive it, this would be classed as hire and reward. 
  • You're not towing a trailer behind the minibus.
  • The maximum weight of the minibus does not exceed 3.5 tonnes. This limit is increased to 4.25 tonnes if you're transporting specialist equipment for disabled people.
  • You've had your driving licence for at least two years. 

If you need to charge your passengers for running costs - i.e. fuel expenses and hire charges - then you'll need to get yourself a minibus permit from the DVSA (Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency).

If you're going to be driving a minibus abroad then you'll need to check if you're allowed to do so according to the driving laws of the country you're visiting.

Do I need a different kind of insurance if the minibus is used by a business or school?

If your minibus is used for commercial purposes - for example, if you use it to transport employees of your business to and from work sites - then you may need to take out commercial vehicle insurance or public liability insurance. When setting up your policy with your insurance company you'll need to tell them about any other people who'll be driving the minibus and the kinds of places that it's likely to be parked. Both of these factors will affect the cost of insuring the minibus.

If the minibus is owned and used by a school - or a similar organisation such as a scout group - then you'll need to let your insurance company know so that they can tailor your policy accordingly for business use rather than pleasure.

If your minibus is being used as a taxi then you'll need to take out taxi insurance on it. Anyone who drives a taxi or minibus for profit needs specific cover as they will be carrying paying customers and are likely to do more driving than those with standard insurance.

While we don’t arrange minibus insurance ourselves, to find out more about the different types of cover we can offer, visit our car insurance page.


Why choose us for your car insurance?

  • We have over 60 years of experience in finding car insurance so we understand what’s important to you.
  • We’ll compare quotes from our specially selected panel of insurers to give you the lowest price we get back.
  • We're here to answer any questions - visit your nearest branch or speak to us over the phone.
  • You can tailor your insurance with optional additional cover to suit your personal needs.
  • We have an online insurance hub where your documents will be stored and you’ll be able to make changes to your policy.