How to find the right car insurance and save on the premium.
There are a number of different types of car insurance:
- Compulsory third party (CTP or green slip insurance) is the most basic cover and every car must have it. It provides essential cover against claims for compensation if you injure or kill someone in a motor accident.
If your car is not worth much you may think taking out CTP is enough. However, it doesn't cover you for damage caused to other people's property (if you're unlucky enough to run into a Rolls!)
- Third party property is the least expensive option. It covers you for the damage you may cause to another car and may include limited cover for damage caused to your car by an uninsured driver.
- Third party property, fire and theft also covers you if your car is stolen or burnt.
- Comprehensive car insurance is the best cover option but also the most expensive. It includes the cost of crash repairs or replacing your car, even if you're at fault.
Tip: Saving on CTP in NSW & QLD
In all states but NSW and Queensland, compulsory third party insurance is provided by only one state-owned or government-licensed insurer. In NSW and Queensland it's offered by a number of insurers and it pays to shop around. For an online price guide go to:
- NSW — www.maa.nsw.gov.au or phone 1300 137 600
- QLD — www.maic.qld.gov.au or phone 1300 735 404
How to save $$$
You can save hundreds of dollars by shopping around for comprehensive car insurance.
Our latest survey in 2006 found average differences between the most expensive and cheapest policies in all states of:
- $250 for claim-free adult drivers
- $460 if you’ve made a claim
- $870 for a family with a young driver
- $1650 for a young driver alone
Other ways to save on the premium:
- Choose a higher excess.
- A no claim bonus (NCB) can get you a discount of up to 70%. You need up to six claim-free years to be entitled to the maximum NCB.
- Nominating drivers or restricting the use of your car to drivers over a certain age (for example, 25).
- Discounts - for example if you have another policy with the same company, you're a long-term customer or if your car has an immobilizer.
If you have an accident
You'll need to let the insurance company know immediately. You might also be required to contact the police. Most insurers leave your no-claim bonus intact if they agree you're not at fault, provided you can identify the person responsible.
Want to know more?
See the full report from Choice. Choice is an independent, non-profit organization for Australian consumers.
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