Most general insurance companies offer two types of car insurance policies – third-party car insurance and comprehensive car insurance. In third-party car insurance, the insurer offers coverage only to the damages you may cause to the third-party’s vehicle. It does not cover damages to your own vehicle.
In comprehensive car insurance, you get coverage against both third-party liabilities and own damage. Another advantage of buying comprehensive car insurance is that you can purchase riders or add-ons to boost your coverage and get protection against specific risks that you don’t get with your standard policy.
What are car insurance add-ons?
Add-ons or riders allow you to strengthen the coverage of your car insurance policy in a cost-effective manner. These are additional protection options that you can voluntarily buy by paying an additional premium. You can buy any number of add-on as you want but it is better to be prudent with your choice as every add-on would increase the premium and overall car insurance cost.
Essential add-ons you can consider buying for Indian roads
Zero-depreciation add-on cover
Generally, when car insurance companies settle the claim, they deduct the depreciation at a specific rate for different parts and pay the balance amount. This means, you must pay the difference from your pocket.
A zero-depreciation add-on helps you mitigate the burden of bearing the depreciation cost and get full compensation from the insurance company during claim settlement. Most insurers in India allow car insurance policyholders to file two zero depreciation claims during the policy tenure.
However, some insurers allow unlimited zero-depreciation claims during the policy period.
Roadside assistance cover
This is one of the best and must-have car insurance add-ons for all. It allows you to get assistance service in the event of a car breakdown while travelling to work or going on a family trip. Getting stuck in the middle of the road can be frustrating and overwhelming.
Generally, roadside assistance add-on allows you to get services like towing the vehicle to the nearest garage, get on-site repairs done, change or fix flat tyres, refuelling, etc.
No claim bonus protection cover
NCB or no claim bonus is the discount you get from your insurance company for not filing a single claim during the policy year. However, if a situation arises where you file a claim, you won’t get the NCB benefit during policy renewal. But with NCB protection cover you can use the accumulated benefits during renewal in the subsequent year, even if you make a claim.
Engine protection cover
The engine is the most critical component of a car. If anything happens to the engine due to negligence, lack of sufficient maintenance or accident, it can lead to serious problems. The cost of replacing and repairing the car engine’s parts are usually very high, and depending on the intensity of the damage and the part that needs to be replaced or repaired, the cost can run up to several thousand Rupees. Generally, the standard car policy does not cover damages to the engine, and you must bear the cost from your pocket.
But if you have an engine protection cover, you can get financial protection against damages to this critical part. Typically, engine protection cover offers protection against damages to the gearbox, hydrostatic lock, oil leakages, water ingression, etc.
Loss of personal belongings cover
If you lose your personal belongings like a laptop, mobile phone, wallet or any other electronic device along with your car, generally the insurer will pay compensation only to the extent of the car’s IDV. But if you have loss of personal belonging add-ons, you can get compensation for the loss of your other belongings provided you file a claim within the specified time.
Thus, add-ons help you get additional financial protection in the event of an accident or car theft. Assess your needs well, and check the various add-ons offered by the insurer and choose the right ones to suit your specific needs.