The rates for car insurance in South Africa might be expensive, but it is essential that you are covered. Think about this for a moment, would you be able to cover the costs if something might happen to your vehicle? Even worse, would you be able to cover the expenses of another person’s property if you caused any damage to it with your car? These are things to consider before deciding that you will go without car insurance.
Getting the Right Car Insurance Policy
First of all, you should decide what kind of car insurance policy you will need. Not all plans are the same, and policies and their premiums will differ from one insurer to another. Most companies offer these three policies:
Comprehensive Car Insurance
This policy is the most comprehensive type of car insurance. It covers most accidents like road accidents, accidental damage due to hail or fire, theft, as well as damages you may have caused to a third party or their property.
Third Party, Fire, and Theft
This policy covers accidental damage to another person’s car or other property. Accidental damage to your vehicle will not be covered, only if it is due to fire. Theft and hijackings are also included.
Third Party Cover Only
As with the last mentioned policy, this policy will cover damage to a third party’s property. It will, however not cover damage due to fire or theft. This policy is usually the least expensive, but you have to keep in mind that your vehicle is not covered. This is ideal if your car isn’t very expensive, but you want to cover a third party, should you get into an accident.
Additional Types of Car Cover
There are several additional types of cover you can get for your vehicle. Not all companies offer these types of cover, and some of the insurers have them included in their primary policies. Here are a few of them:
Scratch and Dent Cover
This will cover the repair of all minor scratches and dents on your car.
Tyre and Mag Coverage
This will cover your tyres and mags when it gets damaged by potholes.
Windscreen Damage Cover
This covers damage to your windows or windscreens.
Roadside Assistance and Towing
When your car breaks down on the road, you will have free roadside assistance and towing if you need it.
This is not additional cover, but something I will mention here. You can get extended warranty or service plans for your vehicle to ensure you do not have to pay for the future services.
If you have installed an audio system into your car, it will be covered if stolen.
If you got disabled in an accident, which affected your ability to work and provide an income, this policy would protect you financially.
Lost Key Cover
Should you lose your car’s key or remote, this will cover the costs for replacement.
What Will Affect Your Premiums?
Several things will affect your monthly premiums, and different companies will determine your premiums differently. Here are some of the things they may take into consideration:
- The type of cover you have
- The kind of vehicle you drive
- The cost of your car
- The mileage your car has driven
- The distance you drive on a monthly basis
- The security you have in place
- The age of your vehicle
- The age and driving experience of the driver
- The location you park your car during day and nighttime
- Your excess amount
- Your gender
- Your driving history
- Your credit score
- Your profession
- If you cover the regular driver of the vehicle or any person with a drivers license
- The popularity of your car (this has a direct correlation to the risk of hijacking or theft)
Insurance Excess – What is it?
Excess is the additional amount you will have to pay when you claim from your insurance company. You usually get to choose your excess, and you will see that a higher excess will result in lower monthly premiums, but a lower excess will result in higher premiums. Because of this, people tend to choose a higher excess, but this is not always the best option.
Think about it this way; let’s say you have the option to choose from one of two excess amounts, an amount of R2000 or one of R5000. An excess of R2000 will mean that your monthly premiums will be higher, but when you claim from your insurance, you will have to pay them an additional amount of R2000 and not R5000. It is much easier to get R2000 in the event of an emergency than it is to get R5000, although the excess of R5000 will result in lower monthly insurance premiums.
Sometimes you even have to decide if it is worth it to claim from your insurer when you have a very high excess amount. Let’s say you choose an excess amount of R5000. Now you bump your car into an obstacle, and the damage costs R3000 to repair. In this scenario, it wouldn’t even be worth it to claim from your insurer. You can rather pay the R3000 the fix the damage yourself than pay the insurance company the R5000 excess.
How to Get Quotes
There are several ways to acquire car insurance quotes.
Comparing Quotes from Different Companies
You can go to each of the car insurance companies in South Africa and ask them for a quotation.
Comparing Car Insurance Using an Online Quote Aggregator
Quote Request Process
Step 1: Visit the quote request page here.
Step 2: Enter your first name and surname and click “next”.
Step 3: Enter your email address and click “next”.
Step 4: Finally enter your cellphone number, gender and preferred language and click on “Get Quotes”.
You will now be called with information about about different policies and rates from different insurers.
How to Choose the Best Company
Based on Cheap Car Insurance Quotes
When you have received quotations from different companies, do not necessarily select the company with the lowest rates. Be sure to check what is covered in their policies, as one plan may seem cheaper, but it is because it does not cover everything the next company’s plan does.
Based on Company or Policy Reviews
Be sure to read the reviews of companies on HelloPeter or similar websites. Remember, these sites exist for people to complain about companies, and many people do not leave reviews when they have a positive experience. This is because everyone believes that they should always receive exceptional service, and therefore they do not praise it when they get it.
Single reviews should not affect your final decision, but when there are many complaints about a company does not answer their phones, for example, it should raise a red flag.
As you can see, there are many factors you have to keep into consideration when comparing car insurance quotes or choosing a policy and a company to insure with. Take it one step at a time, and you will soon see that some companies always stand out due to their premiums and exceptional customer service. Good luck in your search, we hope you have learned a few things from this article!
Read more about this topic here.