By: Nthabiseng Moloi, MiWay Head of Marketing & Brand
October marks the start of Transport Month in South Africa, a period during which the spotlight is squarely focused on the state of the country’s roads and those who use them. While members of parliament debate the state of the nation’s infrastructure and firm up plans for better public transport systems, the primary focus for the average driver should be on the state of their vehicle insurance.
According to the Automobile Association (AA), approximately 3 in 10 vehicles currently traversing the country’s roads is in fact insured, with many drivers travelling without cover, convinced that accidents are things that only happen to other people.
Yet with accident rates continuing to increase, particularly over holiday periods, can any South African truly afford the luxury of driving without any insurance whatsoever? While many cite price as a factor in their decision to forego cover, the simple fact is that even a small bump or scrape can set a vehicle owner back many thousands of rands, a price tag many are simply unable to afford.
Not to mention the fact that a collision with an uninsured driver, irrespective of whose fault it might have been, is going to cost a pretty penny when there is no likelihood of a payout from the other party.
Luckily, not all insurance policies are created equal, which means that even drivers mindful of their monthly expenses have options to at least take up partial cover, which may cover the basics in the event of any unforeseen calamities.
Here are a few key factors to consider about car insurance this Transport Month:
Consider third party insurance
If you are not able or willing to pay the monthly premium for full cover, at least consider taking on third party insurance. That way, if you are involved in an accident and a claim is made against you by another party, the bill will at least be partially covered.
Balance out the excess
By taking on a higher excess, you will be able to lower the total cost of your monthly premiums and thus afford yourself partial protection on the roads. While you will need to pay in more in the event of an accident, you will be able to enjoy peace of mind knowing that extremely high amounts will not be charged in full to your account.
Combine insurance policies
If you are married, chances are you are both insured separately, something that can significantly increase your monthly costs. By moving your insurance to a single joint policy, you will likely be able to save on your monthly premiums without compromising your cover.
Review your policies
If you have moved homes or are now parking in a garage as opposed to on the street, you may be eligible for a reduction in your monthly premium, as your risk to the insurer is reduced. Ensure you update such changes with your insurer.
Do your research
The bottom line when it comes to your bottom line is that different insurers offer up a variety of policies, some of which may be better suited to your individual circumstances. So make sure to ask around and do your research, as you may end up discovering that keeping your vehicle covered costs less than you think.