Who needs breakdown cover?

Nice new car, dealer covered, who needs car breakdown cover? There’s lots of misconceptions about what cover actually covers and why insurance for your car breaking down is usually a great idea for people with cars more than a year or two old. So why not read our simple pointers below to make you consider what you need to think about :

  1. The more you pay, the better the breakdown cover

    The best breakdown cover for you, is the one that covers you for what you need! No point getting European breakdown cover if you don’t go outside the UK! Likewise if you’re 75 and have no clue about how an engine works and you need to drive everywhere, best to think about Home Start seriously as an option – despite the additional costs over a basic roadside assistance policy.

  2. All breakdown covers are the same

    Hmmm…. not on your life! Invariably you get what you pay for and Breakdown cover is no different. One of the key things to consider is that you can get a policy for you, or a policy for your car (the former being more expensive as whatever car you are in – you breakdown, you are covered!), but we deal with that next.

    All companies offer a range of breakdown recovery cover from roadside assistance, to home start or onward travel and of course European cover. Read the fine print before you sign up to anything.

  3. Personal Cover Vs Vehicle Cover

    The difference can be huge – especially if all your friends and mates have awful cars! In reality, personal cover is great if you’re single and drive lots of different cars or your mates drive you everywhere. If you breakdown – you’re covered whoever’s car it is!

    However, if you have a family car and your partner drives your children everywhere without you – then a personal policy is useless unless she also has a personal policy. For families, we’d suggest a car policy and if one person does a lot of driving of different cars, then a personal policy on top of that.

    So personal policies cover the person wherever they are, vehicle policies cover the vehicle whoever is in it!

  4. I’m covered wherever I am

    Not strictly true. In the UK, every policy we know of covers you wherever you are in the UK but no further. Do not assume that with breakdown cover you are covered beyond the UK if you jump on the ferry to Calais or Bruges! When you buy your cover for the year, consider what yuo will be doing – if you think it is likely that you will take your car abroad, then get a policy that covers you abroad to the countries you are going. Do not make the mistake of assuming your car insurance covers you in Europe either… most policies don’t by default!

In summary

As with any type of policy, always read the fine print and always compare different providers – even if you have found them via comparison sites. Not all recovery policies are the same! Make sure you buy for purpose – ie if you are not going to go to Europe with your car – then don’t get Europe cover on the off-chance you might (unless you want to throw £30 down the drain that is).