Breakdown cover can be a good investment if you drive frequently and don’t have the mechanical know-how to take care of things like a tyre puncture along the way. If you are a woman who frequently drives alone or at night, breakdown cover can provide you with much greater peace of mind when you set out in your car. While ordinary breakdown cover is concerned with getting your car off the road and to a mechanic, comprehensive breakdown cover, also sometimes called “recovery plus” or “onward journey cover” goes several steps further in helping you.
Some insurers offer onward journey insurance as part of a comprehensive policy that normally includes roadside assistance, vehicle recovery, and home assistance as well. Others may offer it as an upgrade to your existing breakdown cover.
In most cases, you can claim the cost of hiring a car for a certain period (usually 24 hours) with comprehensive breakdown cover. You can also claim the cost of public transport, a hotel stay if you’re caught out away from home, and even delivery of your repaired vehicle to your new location (if you are on holiday, for example).
Comprehensive breakdown cover provides protection should your car break down at home, which can be a real lifesaver if your car won’t start when you set out for work in the morning.
“Onward journey” cover is considered the most comprehensive form of breakdown cover.
In addition to regular roadside assistance, you will have access to immediate onward transportation for both yourself and your passengers. It allows you to decide how you will proceed with your journey so that your plans are not disrupted anymore than necessary.
This may mean paying to travel on public transport by taxi, train, plane, or bus, with your breakdown insurance reimbursing your costs. Reimbursement may or may not extend to cover several different modes of transport should you have to use, say, a taxi and then a train to reach your destination. This is something you should check for when you compare breakdown cover.
Some comprehensive breakdown cover packages let you borrow a replacement car for the rest of your trip. If so, it will be available for pick-up at a pre-determined location or delivered to you, depending on where your car breaks down. If you should have to factor in overnight accommodation in your onward journey, your policy may meet these expenses too. This can be a big money saver when you consider the cost of putting yourself and any passengers up at a hotel on short notice.