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Operating since 1997, Hastings Direct now has 3.1 million live customer insurance policies across the UK.
Now one of the top five biggest car insurance providers in the UK, there’s a good chance you’ll come across a Hastings Direct policy when you compare car insurance quotes.
Read on for our Hastings Direct car insurance review, including what each policy covers, how its customers feel about its service, and how you can make a claim.
Hastings Direct has four main policies: Essential, Direct, Premier and YouDrive.
While Essential is only offered as a comprehensive car insurance policy, Direct, Premier and YouDrive can also be purchased as third party only, or third party, fire and theft.
All policies allow you to build up your no-claims bonus, but you’ll have to purchase no-claims discount protection as an optional extra.
With Hastings Essential comprehensive car insurance, your policy will include:
If you purchase Hastings Direct at as third party only, you’ll be covered for:
If you upgrade to third party, fire and theft, your cover will also include:
If you choose Hastings Direct comprehensive cover, you’ll have further protection:
Hastings Premier breaks down in exactly the same way as the Hastings Direct policies above. You are able to choose from third party only, third party, fire and theft, or comprehensive car insurance.
In addition, with your Hastings Premier policy you’ll have:
These additional policies are underwritten by a different insurer, and have their own terms and conditions you should familiarise yourself with.
Hastings YouDrive is a telematics insurance policy and, unlike many black box insurance policies, it’s available to all ages.
With a YouDrive policy, you’ll be sent a wireless tab in the post. Once you have received it, you place it in your car and pair it with the Hastings Direct app on your phone. It will then track and monitor your driving performance. Your driving will be then given a score, where anything above 30 is considered good.
Black box policies, such as YouDrive, can help make your car insurance premium cheaper in the long run, as you are proving to providers that you are a safe driver.
You can choose between third party only, third party, fire and theft, and comprehensive car insurance. What is covered at each level is the same as with a standard Hastings Direct insurance policy, as listed above.
Aside from the four policies mentioned above, Hastings Direct also offers:
For an additional cost, you can include the following optional extras with your Hastings Direct car insurance policy:
If you need to make a car insurance claim through your Hastings Direct policy, you can do so online, via the provider’s mobile app, or over the phone (0333 321 9800).
When making a claim, you should:
If you want to cancel your Hastings Direct car insurance policy, you’ll need to call 0333 321 9801.
Hastings Direct will then calculate whether or not you are owed any money once the cancellation fees have been paid. You won’t be refunded any of your remaining premium if you have made a non-recoverable claim on your policy.
The cancellation fees are as follows:
If you need to contact Hastings Direct about your car insurance, you have the following options:
You can also make changes through the MyAccount portal, online and via the mobile app.
If you want to make a complaint, meanwhile, you can:
Hastings Direct has a ‘Great’ Trustpilot rating of 4.1 out of five, based on more than 131,100 reviews.
It’s important to note, however, that these reviews are for the Hastings Direct brand as a whole, and not just its car insurance products.
Of those that mention car insurance, many of the brand’s five star reviews mention how helpful Hastings Direct customer service was when they needed assistance. Competitive prices were also highlighted in multiple reviews.
As for those reviews that gave Hastings Direct one or two stars, many complained about their policy being unexpectedly cancelled. There were also a number of people who had purchased Hastings YouDrive without realising – always thoroughly check the details of your policy before paying.
“Needed insurance for a vehicle that had just been registered and so not on DVLA system and couldn’t be insured online. I was able to speak to a Hastings Direct agent (good to be able to speak to a real person!) who quickly and efficiently arranged the policy.”
“Competitive price as in recent months getting good comprehensive insurance has become so expensive even for people who try to drive carefully and want fair and reasonably priced insurance for doing so. Not having to pay more for those that don’t, that’s my main reason for choosing Hastings Direct car insurance.”
“My daughter had insurance with Hastings Direct and was paying over £2,000 per year as it’s her first car. She was 10 months in when they decided to do a “Policy review”. I supplied all the information they asked for and it turned out there were some small changes to be made. 1) Change the vehicle ownership from my name to her name. 2) Declare she had some stickers on the car. Once these were changed they decided to cancel her insurance. No apology it’s just cancelled. Oh and they charged me £45 for cancelling the policy early! Their customer service is appalling. Because of how they handled this, my daughter can no longer get insurance on a pay monthly as she’s had insurance cancelled. Stay well clear of these cowboys.”
Hastings Direct has the following Defaqto ratings for its various car insurance policies:
All scores are correct as of 16 November 2023.
The ability to purchase the Hastings Direct, Premier and YouDrive policies as third party only, third party, fire and theft, or comprehensive means you have a great deal of flexibility when picking the right level of cover for your needs.
A two star Defaqto rating for Hastings Essential means that it might not be the best option when compared to other similarly positioned policies.
However, four star ratings for its third party, fire and theft cover, and five stars for the comprehensive versions of Direct and Premier, should give you confidence when picking one of those policies.
And unlike many other providers, regardless of your age you can benefit from a black box insurance policy.
Hastings Direct car insurance is underwritten by Advantage Insurance Company Limited.
Hastings Direct car insurance is owned by Hastings Insurance Services Ltd. Alongside car insurance, Hastings Direct also offers personal loans and home insurance.
Connor Campbell is an experienced personal and business finance writer who has been producing online content for almost a decade.
Now writing for the Independent Advisor, Connor is our personal finance expert, helping readers navigate everything from insurance and bank accounts, to energy and loans.
In his capacity as writer and spokesperson at NerdWallet, Connor explored a number of topics close to his heart, such as the impact of our increasingly cashless society, and the hardships and heroics of British entrepreneurs.
At financial trading firm Spreadex, meanwhile, his market commentary was featured in outlets such as The Guardian, BBC, Reuters and the Evening Standard.
Connor is a voracious reader with an MA in English, and is dedicated to making life’s financial decisions a little bit easier by doing away with jargon and needless complexity.
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