Breakdown Cover

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Things to know when comparing breakdown insurance

Breakdowns can happen at any moment in time, they will usually take place at the most inconvenient time and place. It doesn’t matter if your vehicle is brand new or has never experienced issues in the past.

Having the correct policy and level of cover for your car, motorbike, or van is essential to getting back on the road as quickly as possible should something unexpected happen.

Does breakdown insurance cover me and my vehicle?

This is entirely your choice. You can buy breakdown insurance for you and your vehicle. Consider the following:

Personal cover

This option provides cover for you in any vehicle that meets the policy criteria, you’ll be able to make a claim as a driver or passenger. This cover can also be extended to include others who live at the same address as you, generally allowing for a maximum of four people.

Vehicle cover

This option is applied to a specific vehicle. Cover can extend up to four vehicles registered at the same address. It can be applicable to cars, vans, or motorbikes.

What type of breakdown cover do I need?

Below, we will outline the five main levels of breakdown cover. The following are considered to be features of a standard break down insurance policy, rather than individual types of cover. However, you’ll be able to combine these features by using our comparison tool. It’s important to know that each policy can vary and isn’t always identical to another. Here’s what you need to look out for:

Roadside assistance

A mechanic will attempt to fix your vehicle by meeting you on the side of the road with a recovery vehicle. If he/she is unable to rectify the problem, you may be taken to a garage nearby for further repairs. This is the most basic level of cover you can expect in a breakdown insurance policy.

Nationwide recovery

Similar to roadside assistance (see above), you will still be insured for roadside repairs. However, you have the option of selecting any recovery destination throughout the UK.

Onward travel

Onward travel allows you to continue your journey while minimising any disruption. This could include a hire car, or even overnight accommodation while your vehicle is being repaired. Some policies may even give you the option to choose medical cover as an optional extra.

Home start

If you experience a breakdown while at home or within a one quarter mile radius of your property, you can request a recovery vehicle for assistance.

European cover

European cover will usually include the levels of cover mentioned above, but you’ll also be insured throughout most European countries. You will be able to choose from the following two options:

  • Single trip – covers you for up to 31 days
  • Multi-trip – annual cover for multiple trips each year, up to a maximum of 90 days

Remember that all European cover isn’t the same and can differ between insurance providers. If you are planning to take your vehicle with you, make sure you fully understand any exclusions and limitations that may apply. If you’re unsure about being covered in a specific country, contact your breakdown insurance provider before starting your trip.

Do I already have breakdown cover through another policy?

Breakdown cover may be included as an optional extra with your vehicle insurance. Some bank accounts may even provide you with free cover if you’re already paying a monthly fee for the account. Cars that have recently been purchased from a dealership may also include cover for a limited period, giving you immediate access when you take ownership, and enough time to purchase a separate policy later on.

If you have been given breakdown cover through a bank account you hold or another policy, it’s worth reading the terms and conditions to ensure it includes everything you require.

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Should I buy the cheapest breakdown cover?

Buying the cheapest breakdown cover will save you money but isn’t necessarily the best option. When looking for any type of insurance, it’s important to purchase the right level of cover you require. This can give you peace of mind knowing that should anything unexpected happen, you will be able to make a claim for it.

As an example, if you experience a break down 300 miles away from your property, and are not covered for nationwide recovery, this could be problematic. You’ll need to find a solution to either get your vehicle home quickly, or find accommodation while it’s undergoing repairs.

Similar to motor insurance, you will also need to think carefully about the policy excess. It may be worth buying a policy that costs a few pounds extra to ensure you won’t have to pay a high excess when needing assistance. Utility Saving Expert can even help you compare breakdown cover that doesn’t include a payable excess.

What do I do if I have a break down?

It’s really simple to use your breakdown insurance. The most important thing is to have access to your policy details at all times. You can store this information on your smartphone, or keep a copy of the documents in the vehicle. Many breakdown providers will even send you a card with their contact details.

When you call the breakdown cover provider, they will ask you for the following information:

  • Your details
  • Your location
  • Nature of the problem

After you have given them this information, they will then be able to estimate how long it will take for a mechanic to reach you. The call advisor will also go through a few health and safety procedures with you.

Depending on the type and level of cover you have bought, in addition to the complexity of the problem, your vehicle will either be fixed by the mechanic, or you will be taken to a nearby garage for additional repairs.

How can I save money on breakdown cover?

The quickest and easiest way to save money is to compare breakdown insurance cover through Utility Saving Expert. Simply enter a few details and we’ll present you with a whole range of policies to choose from.

Our comparison tool allows you to filter the results by policy type, level of cover, as well as any optional extras you may require. Once you’ve found cover that you’re happy with, simply click through to proceed.

Utility Saving Expert makes it easy to compare breakdown cover within minutes.