European breakdown cover protects you against car breakdown while driving in Europe, where getting assistance is not as simple as the UK.
What is covered with European breakdown cover?
Most insurers will provide English speaking, 24 hour, helplines which can be exceptionally helpful and convenient if you are travelling through a predominantly non-English speaking nation and you don’t speak their language, but the levels of other cover elements varies quite significantly depending on provider and policy. This makes the need for comparison ever more important to ensure that you have sufficient protection for your travel.
Comparing EU breakdown cover packages
Most European breakdown cover suppliers offer the option of either basic or comprehensive cover.
Basic cover should provide; roadside assistance and repatriation. This ensures that should you breakdown, you will receive mechanical support. Once you have logged a call for assistance with your provider, their operators will work out your current location in order to isolate exactly where you are (if you happen to be lost or unaware of your location when you break down) and will provide a qualified, local mechanic to assist you. If the mechanic is unable to resolve the issues with your vehicle at the roadside, you will be towed to a local garage in order for your car to undergo further repair as needed.
If your vehicle is deemed to be unrepairable by the mechanic then your insurer may cover you for the repatriation of yourself and the other passengers travelling with you, ensuring your safe return back home. This should also cover the return of your car; however, it may be that if the cost of repatriating the vehicle far exceeds the value of the car itself, then you may find that you’re not covered by your policy. For this reason, it is vitally important to check the terms of your policy to ensure you are covered for all eventualities that may be required.
Comprehensive European cover will include everything that is offered within the basic package, but should also ensure you get a replacement car (or paid accommodation costs) whilst your car is in for repairs.
What to watch for
If you are likely to travel abroad regularly and drive your own vehicle, you would probably benefit from European breakdown cover.
Some providers may charge excesses for European breakdown cover so be sure to check the terms and conditions before buying a policy.