If you’re looking for cheap insurance quotes, the type of car cover you choose can affect the deals you see. Here, comparison site mustard.co.uk, explain what the different types of policy are and how they help determine what you pay.
What are the different types of car insurance cover?
Car insurance is a safety net that can help cover the cost of damage if your car is involved in an accident. You can choose from three ‘levels’ of cover, which are:
Third party only (TPO)
If you’re involved in an accident, third party only will pay to repair or replace other people’s property (the third party). It can also compensate them for injuries caused by the incident. If you’re carrying passengers in your car, these policies will also cover injury costs for them.
However, third party only, does not cover any of your costs. So, if your car was damaged or you were injured in an accident you caused, you won’t be able to claim for repairs or compensation.
This is the lowest level of cover you can have by law in the UK. In other words, if you drive a car on public roads, you must have at least third party only insurance. If you don’t, you could end up with six penalty points and a fine. In the worst case scenario you could be given an unlimited fine and be disqualified from driving.
Third party, fire and theft (TPFT)
As well as providing third party cover, these policies will also compensate you if your car is stolen or damaged by fire.
Comprehensive car insurance
This includes third party, fire and theft cover and will also cover the cost of repairing or replacing your car if it’s damaged or destroyed in an accident. Even if the accident is considered your fault, comprehensive insurance will cover your costs.
What other features can I add to my car insurance policy?
Most insurers will also offer other features. Depending on the insurer, some of these may be included as standard with their comprehensive policies. If they aren’t or you choose a lower level of cover, you’ll usually be able to add them on as an optional extra for a small cost.
You’re under no obligation to add on any extras but it does mean you’re covered for more events. Popular features include:
- Breakdown and recovery services
- Windscreen and glass cover
- Cover for driving in Europe
- Misfuelling cover in case you fill up the tank with the wrong fuel
- Legal expenses cover which pays for professional advice if you need to go to court
- Courtesy car if yours is being repaired after an accident
- Personal accident cover which provides you with compensation if you’re badly injured in an accident
What’s the cheapest type of policy?
Although third party only is the lowest level of cover you can buy, it’s not always the cheapest. This is because figures show that third party policyholders tend to make more claims compared to those with comprehensive cover, and this is often reflected in the policy price.
That’s not to say third party policies are always more expensive as insurers consider more than just the policy type when calculating your premium. For example, as well as the policy you choose, insurers will factor in your age, your address and driving record. Not only that, the car you drive and the job you do can also impact premiums.
Which car insurance policy should I choose?
There’s no right or wrong when it comes to insurance, it fundamentally comes down to what you want out of a policy and your budget.
However, if budget is likely to play a big part in your decision, bear in mind that it’s usually worth considering all policy types, even ones that look expensive at first glance.
Pricier policies may well include a range of additional features as standard (for example, breakdown cover or windscreen cover). In contrast, cheap car insurance policies might not, and adding them could make them more expensive.
The trick to getting the balance right, is to search for policies on sites like mustard.co.uk, where you can compare different policies and providers. Starting a quote online is easy or you can speak to an expert on 0330 022 8825.