Sunday, March 6, 2011

What is COMPREHENSIVE INSURANCE in the United Kingdom

What is a COMPREHENSIVE CAR INSURANCE (UK) and How does that work?


Car insurance varies in the United Kingdom which also covers Northern Ireland , the Balwicks of Isle Man, Jersey and Guernsey and the Republic of Ireland as a whole. Also known as First Party Insurance, the vehicle is covered for accidents while in the possession of the Owner, Insured or Authorised Drivers and also to any other parties, such as motor vehicles, public and private property and liability to third party as a result of the accident caused by the named persons.

Comprehensive insurance also covers damage to your own vehicle if it was hit by a drunk, Hit-and-Run , Uninsured or of your own fault such as loosing control and hitting the center divider for example and no other party was injured or damaged. Some even cover you while driving other people car at THIRD PARTY RISK, meaning damage caused to other parties.

There are many conditions of COMPREHENSIVE attached to a comprehensive first party insurance which includes, Social , Domestic , Leisure and Pleasure Use, Commuting SDLP, Business Purposes and Public Liability (Private Hire) coverage.


The answer is Yes if your car is worth a lot of money should you run into an accident. In terms of ECONOMICAL SENSE , if the costs of a repair is more than the worth of the vehicle, then it is a CAT C write-off, for example a Proton Persona  which is 4 years old or any motor car which is more than 5 years of age does not warrant repairs should it be in a road traffic accident as repairs will cost more than the car itself. Rule of thumb is that any car whose value is less than 4 times the premium or $3000 is not worth insuring at First Party, unless the cost of First Party Insurance is less than a Third Party Insurance.

The answer is also YES if you are under 27 years old or had a license less than 5 years clocking less than 30,000 miles. These also applies if you tend to drive not just one car at a time such as driving your mom to her weekend activities on her own vehicle.

Comprehensive insurance are usually restricted to just the OWNER , POLICY HOLDER and AUTHORISED DRIVERS so do watch out for the fine print.

Benefits of Comprehensive Insurance / First Party ALL RISKS

The car insured are fully covered against theft, damage to other people , vehicle and property (public and Private) along with own negligence such as driving through BLACK ICE and smacking onto the sidewall of the motorway. Among other things include the following:

-          Driving other people / car at THIRD PARTY RISK (OWNER & POLICY HOLDER ONLY)

-          Theft of Motor Vehicle at Home

-          Theft of Stereo and Belongings inside the vehicle

-          Accident caused by UNINSURED or HIT-AND –RUN drivers

-          Vehicle Recovery (Tow Truck) from accident scene to your home or garage.

-          Green Card Coverage (European Union – Schengen States) Third Party Insurance

-          Complimentary Courtesy Car should your car goes into a garage

-          Outward Bound Passage – gets you to where you want to go from the accident scene to either your home or destination (EU-Home only) by any means possible

-          Discounts at many outlets.

-          Comprehensive Coverage in the British Isles, Balwicks, Ireland.

-          Windscreen cover should your windscreen breaks as a result of a flying rock on the motorway or in an accident.

-          Legal assistance.

These are not comprehensive and dependant on any additional premiums by the insurer. The AA and RAC includes most of these as standard if you take on to be a full member.

What to watch out for in a COMPREHENSIVE INSURANCE

READ THE FINE PRINT. Usually, the excess coverage is usually stated, from $300 to $2000 per accident. Some would say your NO-CLAIMS-DISCOUNT(bonus) NCD/NCB would be protected if you pay an additional premium. It is not wise if you banged up someone else and put a claim in if the repairs are less than the premium and excess combined. The premiums will drastically rise up on your renewal.

Drivers not named on the insurance policy are NOT COVERED BY THE POLICY and thus you may be out of pocket. Automatically, the Motor Insurance Bureau will have to cover the other party(or more) for 3rd party liability.

Look out if it covers COMMUTING. If you park your vehicle in a public car park at a train station and you take a train to work, and realise that someone had nicked your car, then it is not covered as it was not declared to the insurers that you use it to commute to work. Many drivers and riders were caught out in the cold on this technicality. Don’t pinch the additional $30-$70 premium to cover yourself on the commute.


There are many ways to get yourself insured. Have your details handy such as the cover note of your last insurer (or current) with the NCD, Vehicle Logbook or Registration Card and details of your drivers such as your wife and those who will be driving your car.

Getting to a nearby underwriting shop is simple but they don’t necessarily mean the cheapest rate. Students get the brunt of the insurers with skyrocketing premiums. Buying online has been a very good sense since you can check out all the relevant premiums and compare them. Don’t go for the Comparision Websites as they don’t normally give the best bargains.

One advise I normally give is to give a job title to yourself to lower the premiums. Students are costly but if you state you work in McDonalds or a local Pizza Hut, then the difference is huge as much as 70% difference. Company Directors, Doctors, Medical Professionals are charged the lowest with Actors, Drivers, Couriers (UPS, FEDEX, DHL) being the highest risk and in that category includes any GOVERNMENT CIVIL SERVANTS, Military Personnel and Police (the like).

How to find the CHEAPEST QUOTE?


That is the actual fact. Check the value of the perks if you wish to compare them properly. These are offered by The AA, Liverpool Victoria, RAC, SWINDON and many more. Some offer cashback. I offer as much as $20 for every premium taken out to my Charity shop.

Evaluate how you are going to use the policy. Are you going to chug away daily in the car and clocking huge mileage? Is 4000 miles enough or about 20 miles daily? Are you going to drive to France on the ferry for the cheap food, booze and fags weekly or monthly?

A third party quote may be just saving you 30% off a Fully Comprehensive Cover and many people don’t realise that. Pay a little more for that extra sense of security.


(note: this article is submitted to a customer without payment. This is still my copyright)

1 comment:

  1. I couldn't agree more. Getting a comprehensive insurance policy provides you more protection in case of accidents.

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