Car insurance is available for motor vehicles, motorcycles, light delivery vehicles, caravans, and trailers. There are also specific business policies available for emergency vehicles. There are three types of insurance for your car:
• Comprehensive cover
• Third-party, fire and theft cover
• Third-party cover
This type of cover is compulsory if your car is still financed. It is more expensive, but it’s the best insurance you can get, even if your car is fully paid. “Comprehensive insurance” means that the following is covered:
- The damages to your own car when you were in an accident (excluding your excess, which is a payment that you must make when you have a claim).
- Full or part of the damages to any other car(s) that were directly involved in your accident which we call “Third-party cover”.
- Fire that damages or destroys your car.
- The theft and/or hijacking of your car (some policies do not cover this in full or with higher excess payments that you have to make, so check your policy document).
Third-Party, Fire and Theft Cover
With this cover, you are not covered for damages to your own car so, it is definitely cheaper to have only this insurance, but you may not be able to replace your car if the car is written off in an accident. If you have this cover and you are the wrong party in an accident, it is likely that the other car will, even if they have their own insurance, claim against your policy. You are also covered for a fire that damages or destroys your car and the theft and/or hijacking of your car.
This is the cover that is the cheapest and will only provide cover for other cars, as described above.
What is Not Covered?
Normal wear-and-tear on a car and services are not covered by car insurance. It is also important that you read your policy schedule so that you know of any types of cover that may be specifically excluded from your policy. Like with most insurance, your car is not covered for intentional damage. Make sure that your car is covered outside of South Africa when you leave the country, in which case you need to request a certificate from your broker or insurance company that confirms you have a cover in the car. This certificate is to be presented at the border.