Breakdown cover is one of those everyday things that people tend to forget about and auto-renew each year. By doing so there is a good chance they are paying over the odds. There are a lot of great deals out there for basic policies or fully comprehensive cover for under £50. Below you will find the best deals in the UK this month.
Firstly some advice on how to find the best deals.
1) If you have a new car that's still under warranty you probably don't need a fully comprehensive policy. The most basic type of policy provides roadside assistance (your car will be fixed by the roadside or towed to the nearest garage). This should be enough for new car owners as the cost of repairs and replacement vehicles is usually provided under their new car warranty. A "Comprehensive Cover" policy usually provides for a replacement car as well as home assistance (when your car will not start)
2) Do you want to cover yourself or your car? Policies that provide personal coverage when driving any car are typically more expensive than those that cover a single car. If you never drive anyone else's car then avoid this type of policy. If you choose to cover your car you get the added benefit of it being covered even when someone else is driving it.
3) Consider a "joint policy" for you and your partner or family. Typically a policy that covers multiple family members will work out cheaper than buying individual policies for each.
4) Negotiate! It is fairly common for people to negotiate the cost of their coverage, especially when it comes time to renew. The breakdown industry is a large, lucrative and highly competitive industry so don't feel shy about haggling for a discount or a price match deal.
Types of Breakdown Cover
There are two common types of Breakdown Cover.
Automatic Policy - This is the most common type of Breakdown Cover and is a fairly standard policy that charges you an annual fee and covers you for a certain number of call-out’s per year. Your vehicle will be fixed and you will be charged nothing for the call out. It's a convenient option for most people and only fails to cover you if your car is an old banger that needs to be fixed every other week.
Insurance Policy - The second type of Breakdown Cover is often a cheaper "pay as you go" option that works like a traditional insurance policy. When you contact your provider they will pass the call to a local company. You will pay for the call out and recovery and then claim the money back from your provider. The reason it's cheaper is that it's a bit more work on your part.
Your Options Explained.
Roadside Assistance is the most basic for of Breakdown Cover. If you break down away from home your breakdown company will send a mechanic to wherever you are. Most companies won't come out if you are less than a quarter of a mile from your home. Hopefully, they will fix the problem there and then but if this isn't possible they will take you and your car to the nearest garage or back to your home, depending which is closer. Each company and each policy varies as to how far they will tow you and what type of problems are covered for free.
Vehicle Recovery is usually offered on top of the basic policy as an extra premium to ensure you, your passengers and your car are towed to anywhere in the UK.
Home Assistance is another option in case your car doesn't start one morning or comes to a stop just as your setting off from home. Most companies cover you while you are less than a quarter of a mile from home and will either come immediately or at a later time if more convenient for you.
Full Cover allows you to extend your policy to include onward travel. This normally includes a replacement vehicle for a set period of time, overnight accommodation while your car is being repaired or alternative transport costs. Each company provide slightly different cover so be sure to check out the details to ensure you sign up to the right policy for you.
Cover Yourself Or Your Car?
When you ask for a quote you'll be asked whether you want the recovery to cover the driver or the car. If you get cover for yourself it means you are covered in any car (useful if you often drive another family members car). If you choose to cover your car then the car is covered even if another driver is behind the wheel when it breaks down.
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