When comparing insurance quotes, you’ll often be given the option to add on what is known as “ancillaries” that provide additional cover to the standard third-party/ comprehensive/ multi-car policy that you pick. These extras are both general and more specific so that you can pick and choose the types of cover that you think you could need. You can choose which extras are right for you depending on your lifestyle, the journeys you make and where you leave your car parked at night. Below, we outline each extra and what situations they cover:
Having breakdown cover will guarantee that if your car stopped working, you will be able to get roadside assistance and not risk being stranded. Few insurers will include breakdown cover as part of their policies. Usually, it will have to be added on or purchased separately from another provider – therefore it’s a good idea to have a look around for different deals before you add it on. You should also take into account that the level of breakdown cover provided will vary between insurance providers. Ensure that you are getting the right cover to suit your needs. Breakdown cover will usually fall into these categories:
- Roadside assistance
- Recovery/relay – if your car can’t be fixed at the roadside and needs to go to a garage
- Home start – if you break down at home
- Onward travel – if you breakdown far away from home and your car needs significant repairs, you may be given a replacement hire-car, overnight accommodation or onward travel expenses
- European cover – when driving in Europe up to a limit of 31 days at a time and 90 days a year in total
Windscreen cover will allow you to recover the costs of any repairs to your windscreen as a result of chips or cracks. Even the cost of an entire windscreen replacement if necessary. Although it is called “windscreen” cover, it will often cover any other windows in your car – sometimes sunroofs too. The majority of comprehensive car insurance policies will already include windscreen cover and you might have to pay an excess. This will vary from policy to policy.
Ensuring you have legal cover provides you with financial protection against any costs you may incur from making a claim against another driver, or another driver making a claim against you. Legal cover can be included in some policies but not always and is usually capped at a value of £50,000 (you should check this with your insurer). This type of cover can provide protection against the following uninsured losses:
- Loss of earnings
- Transport fees
- Personal injury
- Excess on your policy
Personal Effects Cover
The majority of comprehensive policies will include cover for any personal belongings inside your vehicle that are damaged in an accident or stolen from your car. This kind of cover is much less common with third party, fire and theft policies. Depending on your insurer and the policy, the value of items that will be covered can vary anywhere between £50 and £500. Bear in mind that many insurers will include certain clauses that mean that you might not always be able to claim. Some policies require there must be signs of forced entry and items must have been stowed away in the glove box or boot, not left in plain view. Because there are a number of limits and exclusions on Personal Effects Cover for car insurance, many people will choose to cover their personal belongings through home contents insurance instead, which will have an option to cover personal possessions outside of the home (i.e. in your car).
When it comes to getting cover for your in-car stereo and sat nav equipment, most insurers will treat factory fitted systems differently to separately installed systems. So you need to disclose this to them. Non-manufacturer equipment is usually considered to be a modification and therefore you may experience higher premiums as a result.
Replacement key cover is included as a standard part of some insurance policies, but not all and the level of cover available will vary between policies and insurers. Most of the time you will not have to pay an excess when you make a claim for lost or stolen keys. This won’t usually affect your no claims bonus either. Usually, you will be able to recover any costs relating to lost, stolen or broken keys up to a value of £1500. Some policies will even cover the cost of a hire car and transference of your vehicle if you are left without your keys far away from home.
Uninsured driver protection
Uninsured Driver Protection will cover you in the event that you are in an accident with an uninsured driver. So that you won’t have to pay an insurance excess, lose your no claims bonus and in some cases, pay for repairs to your car yourself. In order to claim, you will have to provide the details of the uninsured vehicle, as well as adequate proof that the accident was not your fault.
Personal Accident Cover
Personal accident and injury cover on car insurance is in place to provide compensation in the event of death or significant injury as a result of being in a car accident when you are unable to claim from a third party. Each policy will specify the kinds of injuries that are covered, compensation is usually capped at a maximum of £5000. Various policies will also have certain clauses and exclusions for example, sometimes only the driver and his/her spouse will be covered. Some policies exclude older people over a certain age.
There are a variety of different extras on offer, so it’s important to conduct thorough research before deciding whether to add any on. Some are more useful than others and it depends on your specific requirements. Breakdowns can happen to almost anybody at any time due to a number of various problems, so with extras like breakdown cover, it is a case of being safe than sorry.