Car hire with car insurance
You can get hire car cover for theft or pay around $8* extra and get protected for accidents as well.
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If your car is stolen or involved in an accident, a car hire feature with your car insurance provides you with a hire car either for a specific number of days or until your vehicle has been fixed. The car you're given is usually a similar model to one you own.
Most comprehensive car insurance policies include a hire car if your vehicle is stolen, but you'll probably need to pay an extra few dollars a month if you want hire car cover for accidents. However, some car insurance policies automatically cover you if you're not at fault.
* This figure is based on a policy from Huddle. It costs $8 more a month to get car hire cover for accidents included with a comprehensive policy. Monthly cost based on a Huddle comprehensive policy for a 30-year-old male driving a 2018 Toyota Camry on 9/10/19.
How does hire car with your car insurance work?
Hire car with your car insurance is usually split into two parts: car hire cover for theft and car hire cover for accidents. In most cases, a comprehensive car insurance policy will automatically include car hire cover if your vehicle is stolen. However, you'll likely have to pay extra if you want cover for an accident as well, regardless of whether or not it is your fault.
Most insurers will pay you a daily hire amount of around $50, $70 or $90 for your car hire and include a maximum hire period of between 14 and 30 days. If you exceed this amount or go over the maximum hire period, you won't be reimbursed for any additional costs you incur.
What does hire car for theft cover you for?
Car hire cover for theft means that if your car is stolen, your insurer will organise the hire of a car for you or reimburse you the cost of hiring a suitable temporary replacement. Car hire cover for theft can be crucial if you rely on your car to get around, whether for business, errands or picking the kids up from school.
However, some conditions and exclusions generally apply:
- You are usually responsible for any additional running costs like fuel.
- You will receive cover for up to a certain amount and only for a certain period of time.
- Cover will generally cease when the car is recovered.
- You may need to collect and return the hire car yourself.
- You won't be covered for accidental loss or damage to the hired car.
Who offers hire car cover for theft?
Here's a breakdown of who offers hire car cover for theft.
|Car insurer||Car hire cover for theft|
What does hire car for accidents cover you for?
Hire car cover for accidents means that, if your car is damaged in an accident, your insurer will cover the costs of a suitable hire car for you. Some providers offer hire car cover for unlimited days while others will only provide cover for a specific period of time.
Cover hire cover for accidents usually comes as an optional extra with most comprehensive policies so you'll need to pay more if you want the service included. However, some car insurers provide automatic car hire cover if you are involved in a no-fault accident.
Who offers hire car cover for accidents?
Check out which providers offer car hire cover for accidents, including those that automatically include it for no-fault accidents.
|Car insurer||Car hire cover for accidents|
What if I'm at fault?
Even if you're at fault in an accident, most insurers should still provide you with a hire car, as long as you have hire car cover for accidents. Since this feature is an optional extra with the majority of policies, you'll need to make sure you have this added to your cover if you want to be reimbursed for hire car costs after an accident.
While it can be a smart move to opt for a policy with a provider that automatically covers you if you're involved in an accident, also keep in mind the number of days you'll be covered for. Car repairs often take a while, so you want to make sure your car insurance will cover you for the entire time your vehicle is being repaired.
Is it worth it?
According to Kayak, the average price of a car rental in Australia is $242 per week ($35 per day). If it costs around $8 a month to add hire car cover for accidents on to your policy, it would take you over two-and-a-half years before you spent as much on the service as you would on a car rental in Australia. Also keep in mind that this is just one week: you might need a hire car for longer. If you can afford to pay an extra few dollars a month, but would be stretched thin by the price of a car rental, adding cover is a smart move.
Whilst adding car hire cover represents potential savings, you never know whether or not you'll be in an accident within that time. The choice really comes down to whether you're willing to take the risk or would rather get peace of mind knowing that your insurer will cover the costs for you.
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