Car insurance is an agreement between you (the driver) and an insurer, in which you pay them a car insurance premium in exchange for them covering you in case something goes wrong. In Australia there are 4 levels of insurance. Compuslory Third Party (CTP) insurance is mandatory, and only covers injuries to other people and legal liability. If you want to cover your car or damage you might cause to other people’s car, you’ll need to look at extra insurance.
Your options are third party property damage, which covers damage you cause to other people’s vehicles. Third party fire and theft polices cover you for that, plus any damage from fire and theft (surprise!). Comprehensive car insurance policies cover you if you’re in an accident with someone else and need your vehicle repaired or replaced. It’s the only type of policy that will cover you for pretty much any event, like storms, vandalism, and car crashes.
If you want top cover, this is the option for you.
It covers theft, vandalism, storms, flood, hail, fire, key replacement, emergency accommodation, hire cars, accidental damage (to name a few) – plus everything that’s covered by cheaper policies.
Third Party Fire & Theft
This gives you that little bit extra cover against life’s uncertainties. This protects you if your car is stolen, as well as covering you for fire damage.
You’re also covered if your car causes damage to someone else’s property. But this type of policy won’t really cover you if you’re in an accident with another vehicle.
Third Party Property Damage
The most basic policy. This provides coverage for any damages you may cause to someone else’s vehicle or property.
This means that if you smash into a Mercedes, you won’t be paying the repair costs from your own pocket. However, it won’t cover your own repair costs.
Compulsory Third Party
Commonly known as greenslip insurance, CTP is mandatory for every registered driver in Australia, and is included in your car rego in many states.
If you crash into another driver and they have to go to the hospital for injuries, CTP will cover their hospital expenses. It won’t cover your car or someone else’s car.
We collected real quotes from 12 well known Australian car insurance brands and found that the difference in the cost of car insurance can differ by up to $41 a month, or $414 a year! Insurer A is a budget car insurer, whilst Insurer B is a household car insurance name.
Whilst Insurer A is far cheaper than Insurer B, Insurer B actually offers far more cover, giving you benefits like hire car, new car replacement and emergency travel & repairs included in the cost of the policy. Insurer A does give you the option for these features, but you’ll have to pay more to get them.
These prices are just indicative of how you can’t just go off the cost of car insurance – you should also take into account what you’re paying for. It’s a good idea to not be tied to any insurer, and instead make your decision on cost and the kind of features available, depending on what’s most important to you.
Our quotes were based off a female Sydneysider born in 1980, driving a 2015 Toyota Corolla.
1. Review your policy yearly. The longer you stay with your insurer, the more they will reward you, right? Wrong. Some Aussie’s are paying more each year, just for being loyal to their insurers. A good way to combat this is to review your policy every renewal period. If you can find a better policy somewhere else, don’t hesitate to take your business there. Don’t just check the cost of your policy, but also see whether you still need the same level of cover that you have now. Priorities change!
2. Don’t get tied to a brand. Don’t just fall for a brand because you’ve seen their ads on tv. These policies might even be more expensive to offset their advertising costs! Instead, look for policies that suit you and your unique circumstances. Short on cash? It might be better for you to go for a budget insurer. Driving a brand new car? Then it’s probably best to go for one of the high-end brands.
3. Compare, compare, compare. You’re probably tired of hearing this, we know, but this is probably the most important tip to getting the best car insurance deal for you. Don’t rely on one website to give you your answer (even us!). Set aside 30 minutes, fill in a bunch of quotes, compare car insurance, and make your decision off that.
4. Use autofill. Autofill is a quick and easy way to get lots of quotes for the least effort. It allows you to fill out commonly entered information in your quote form, so you’re not stuck entering your details over and over again. It can be found on most browsers and makes the job of comparing so much easier.
5. Read the PDS. We know it’s daunting, but this one is crucial. Make sure you understand what you’re covered for. If you’ve been seeing the same mechanic for 20 years only to find that a policy doesn’t let you choose your own repairer, chances are it won’t work out.
We ran over 1000+ quotes, putting 38 insurers under the microscope for 36 different drivers for the 2019 Finder Awards and found a huge difference in how much you could pay for car insurance.
The lowest average cost we found was $684 a year. That’s just $1.90 a day.
The highest? $3,015. That’s a difference of over $2,000 a year. This just shows the importance of comparing your car insurance.
For more insights on how much car insurance costs and a cost comparison between Australian companies, head to our dedicated page on car insurance costs.
Don’t like flicking through fine print? Got better things to do than check if a car insurer offers roadside assist? We’re here to help you Find Better.
At Finder we do all the heavy lifting for you. We spend countless hours looking through policy documents so you don’t have to and highlight the important policy features in a table so you can compare policies side-by-side. We choose to compare car insurance features as we believe that the value of your policy is more important than the cost. Features we look at include:
- Roadside assist
- Accidental damage
- Storm cover
- Choice of repairer
- Agreed or market value
- And more
Car insurance quotes
While Finder doesn’t have the facilities in place right now to provide car insurance quotes, we can help you narrow down your search by showing you which insurers offer the features that are important to you. And unlike many other comparators who only provide quotes or compare policies from insurers they have a relationship with, Finder provides an unbiased comparison of insurers both inside and outside of our panel.
Who offers car insurance?
See some of our most popular guides
Am I covered?
Will I be covered for driving off-road?
Are learner drivers covered under my insurance?
Does car insurance cover all types of vehicle?
Can I tow a caravan on my car insurance?
Am I covered if I have an accident while drunk?
Will my insurance cover me to drive other cars?
Does my car insurance cover rental cars?
Will my insurance cover for tools of trade?
What happens if?
What happens if my car is a write-off?
What happens if my car is stolen?
What if I want to modify my vehicle or make alterations?
What happens if another person lodges a claim against me?
Will my insurance premiums go up if I make a claim?
Understanding your policy
Will my policy renew automatically?
How can I pay for a policy?
How do excesses work?
What does ‘amount covered’ mean?
The amount covered is the maximum sum an insurance company will pay for the damage or loss of your vehicle.This amount includes the entire value of the vehicle, alterations and accessories, as well as GST.