car insurance nz

Comparing car insurance

Comparing car insurance policies can be a little tricky. It is tough to know what to look for! Here is the Cove guide to ensure you are comparing apples with apples.

With multiple types of policies (third party, third party fire and theft, comprehensive) comparing and buying car insurance can cause a few headaches. It doesn’t help that each policy has a number of extra benefits and optional extras!

So you’ve recently bought a car, and now you are shopping around and doing your best to both understand and compare car insurance policies. Everyone who has purchased car insurance knows it can be a little tricky to figure out if you are getting the best deal, and that’s why Cove has pulled together this guide on comparing car insurance policies.

Types of Car Insurance Policies

Part of what makes comparing car insurance confusing for first-time buyers is understanding the various types of car insurance that most insurers in New Zealand offer. The three most common types of car insurance are Third Party, Third Party Fire & Theft, and Comprehensive. You can compare these three types of car insurance policies by clicking through the tabs below:

  • Third Party

    Third Party car insurance is the most fundamental car insurance policy you can buy. In insurance terms, third party refers to the other person or entity involved in your accident. If you crash into another vehicle, the driver of that vehicle is the third party.

    Third party car insurance policies will take care of the costs of repairing the third party’s car, should you be liable for accidental damage to their vehicle. It will also cover other property (like fences, for example) if the accident involves that. With this type of policy it is your responsibility to organise, and pay for, repairs to your own vehicle.

  • Third Party Fire & Theft

    Third Party Fire & Theft insurance will generally cover all the same incidents that a standard Third Party policy will, with the extra benefit of also providing cover if your vehicle is stolen or damaged by fire. For this extra benefit, you will pay a slightly higher monthly premium.

  • Comprehensive

    Comprehensive car insurance is for people who want to fully insure their own vehicle, as well as pay for damages they may cause to other vehicles.

    With Comprehensive car insurance policies, your insurer will cover the damage you might cause to someone else’s car or property, as well as any damage to your car.

    A comprehensive policy is a great choice for people who don’t mind paying a slightly higher premium each month, to have the certainty that should they be involved in an accident that they are responsible for, they won’t have to pay for the repairs to their own vehicle. They’ll still need to pay the excess of course!

Features of car insurance policies

Each type of car insurance policy comes with a number of features and optional extras. Below we outline a number of common features and optional extras available in New Zealand. Read through these and take note of what features are important to you. Then, when comparing car insurance policies, you will have a better understanding of what each feature actually is, and can use this to help your buying decision.

Lifetime repair guarantee

Some insurers will offer a lifetime repair guarantee, which means when they make a repair, they guarantee it for the life of the car (generally only while you stay insured by them).

Young drivers

Occasionally younger drivers may be behind the wheel of your vehicle, but haven’t been named on your policy. Some policies will still cover these drivers, but you may be asked to pay a higher excess if they’re involved in an accident.

Trailer Damage

If you are towing a trailer at the time of an accident, this can be covered up to a predetermined amount in some policies. It’s also sometimes covered even if it’s not attached to your car!

Rental Cover

Rental cover can be an optional extra, which ensures that if you’re without a car as a result of a claim, you’ll have a rental car organised to keep you on the road while your own car is being repaired.

Temporary Accommodation

If you are in an accident and your vehicle is damaged so you can’t drive it and you can’t get home, this policy feature ensures you receive a payment to organise temporary accommodation.

Excess Free Glass Cover

Typically an optional extra, Excess-Free Glass Cover means that if your claim is only for accidental damage to your vehicle windscreen or windows, you won’t have to pay any excess.

Towing & Transport

If your car is unable to be driven after an accident, some insurers will pay to tow your car to the nearest place of safety, and get you & your passengers home safely.

Roadside assist

If your car breaks down, some insurers will pay to have your car towed home or to a mechanic. This can also cover some roadside assistance like jump-starting a flat battery or giving you a few litres of fuel if you’re out.

The content presented on this page is provided for informational purposes only. Cove Limited makes no representations or warranties as to the accuracy, completeness or timeliness of the information. Each person should consult a qualified advisor for advice specific to their circumstances. Cove Limited assumes no liability for actions taken in reliance upon the information contained herein.

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