A traveller’s guide to European Breakdown Cover

Whilst many consumers see breakdown cover as another expense that is classified only as a luxury, there are few motorists who would risk travelling abroad without it. In this guide we look at how you can make a saving if you’re purchasing European breakdown cover and the other factors you should be considering when travelling through Europe with your vehicle.

What is European Breakdown cover?
European Breakdown cover ensures that, in the event of a breakdown, you’re covered, regardless of where you are in Europe. Such policies are ran in the same manner as domestic Breakdown cover policies and give you piece of mind that should the worst happen, you’ll have a mechanic out to you within a set period. Similarly to UK cover, if the mechanic cannot fix the issue at the roadside you and your vehicle will be taken to a garage. Many policies also cover the cost of emergency accommodation and car rental to continue your trip, but you’ll need to check specifically if this is the case with the policy that you’re considering.
Making a saving on your European Breakdown Cover
Using price comparison websites
To establish what price ranges you’re looking at for your particular trip you should start your search with a price comparison website. These tools will give you a good overview of what’s on offer.

Call the insurance company directly

Since not all companies are on the comparison sites and they also have special offers and discounts, it is worth calling them and asking for a quote. The prices may even be better than the ones shown online.
Getting a cheaper deal at renewal times
If you already have breakdown cover then a great time to ask for a reduced rate is when the time comes to renew your policy. Many companies will be eager to retain your business and will offer what can be considerable discounts for staying with them.
Single or multi-trip policies?
When taking out your policy you’ll need to decide whether you want single or multi-trip cover. Of course, if you’re only making the one trip then the former option will inevitably be cheaper.
Other factors to consider when choosing your European Breakdown Cover
Not taking your pre-packaged European Breakdown cover for granted
If you already have Breakdown cover by a banking provider or other similar organisation as part of a package deal (e.g. with your bank account) then you need to take care and find out exactly what you’re covered for and how long a trip it stipulates. Frequently people have been surprised to find that in their hour of need their provider’s insurance is null and void either due to the country of travel or length of trip.
Length of coverage
An essential part of the policy to check out in detail is how long it covers you for. Many policies will only cover you for three weeks at any one time. This means that for those making an extended trip most policies will be unsuitable. There are specialist insurers that cover such trips and you can additionally ask providers about coverage extensions.

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