Comprehensive Car Insurance

Compare a range of instant comprehensive car insurance quotes in one place and purchase your cover today.

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, updated on February 15th, 2024       

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Car Insurance Banner

Comprehensive car insurance is the most complete coverage you can buy for your vehicle, as it can provide extensive protection for you, your passengers, your vehicle and other vehicles or property in case of damage or an accident. However, with so many options available, finding the right comprehensive car insurance policy isn’t always easy. 

Comparing online gives you instant access to a range of comprehensive car insurance quotes from multiple providers in one place, looking at premiums, inclusions, optional extras and more. If you find a policy that suits your needs, you can complete your purchase in minutes. Get the wheels in motion on your comprehensive car insurance today.

What is comprehensive car insurance and how does it work?

Comprehensive car insurance is a type of policy which can provide coverage for your vehicle in case of accidental damage or loss. It’s the most extensive type of car insurance policy available in Australia, as the name suggests. While the specifics may vary depending on your insurer and the policy you buy, the following can be covered under your car insurance:

  • Damage to your car due to an accident or collision
  • Damage to another person’s car or property due to an accident or collision for which you’re at fault
  • Damage to your car due to theft or the theft of your car
  • Damage to your car due to fire
  • Damage to your car due to a weather event (such as storm, flood and hail)
  • New car replacement costs in the event of a write-off or theft

As a result of its wide coverage, comprehensive car insurance is typically the most expensive cover on the market, so the premiums you’ll pay on a monthly or annual basis are likely to be considerably more than other types of car insurance.

How much does comprehensive car insurance cost?

There are many factors which go into determining the cost of your car insurance, including the following:

  • Your age and experience: the younger you are and the less driving experience you have, the more you may have to pay for coverage.
  • Your vehicle: more powerful or classic cars often cost more to insure due to the fact that replacement parts may be harder to come by or simply more expensive than common models.
  • Where you live: some areas may be deemed a greater risk to insure, whether it be your state or territory, city or town or suburb, due to a higher incidence of crime or extreme weather. The cost of cover in Western Australia won’t be the same as in Queensland, for instance.
  • Your car parking situation: cars parked on the road are costlier to insure than those in a garage or driveway.
  • How often you drive: those who are on the road more often are likely to pay more for cover, so if you drive around often for work, you may pay more than someone who catches the bus throughout the week.
  • Your driving history: if you have a patchy track record when it comes to accidents and driving offences, your insurer will likely charge you more for coverage.
  • Your excess: the lower your excess, the more you’re likely to pay for your car insurance premiums.
  • Your optional extras: if you decide to add optional extras to your policy, such as an excess reduction or roadside assistance, these may increase the cost of your insurance.
  • Any applicable discounts: if you haven’t made a claim for several years, you may be eligible for a no-claim bonus. Alternatively, some insurers may offer a discount as a sign-up incentive.

What optional extras can I add onto my comprehensive car insurance?

While comprehensive car insurance in Australia generally provides a high level of cover, most insurers also offer optional extras which you can add onto your policy for additional coverage. These may include:

Optional extra How it might help you
Roadside assistance
This extra can provide assistance in case your vehicle breaks down or you experience a flat battery, flat tyre or other roadside emergencies.
Hire car cover
This optional extra can provide access to a hire car while your vehicle is being repaired or replaced.
Windscreen and window glass cover
This can cover the cost of repairing or replacing your vehicle's windscreen or windows in case of damage. You may also be able to opt for a reduced or no excess for glass-related claims.
No-claim bonus protection
With this added cover, you can maintain your no-claim bonus even if you have to make a claim. It’s important to check whether the cost of this cover is greater than your bonus.
Personal effects cover
This can cover the loss of or damage to personal items inside your car, such as your phone, laptop, or other valuables.
Replacement keys cover
With this cover, you may be able to be reimbursed for the cost of either replacing your key or recoding your car’s locks if your current keys are stolen.

You should carefully consider which extras you need and whether they're worth the additional cost. It's also a good idea to compare quotes from different insurers to ensure you're getting the best value cover for your money.

How is comprehensive car insurance different from other types of cover?

Comprehensive car insurance in Australia is different from other types of cover, such as third party property damage (TPPD) or third party fire and theft insurance (TPFT), because it offers the most extensive protection for your vehicle. While TPPD insurance only covers damage caused to other vehicles or property and third-party fire and theft insurance covers those as well as damage from fire or theft, comprehensive car insurance covers all of these damages, as well as damage to your own vehicle.

Comprehensive car insurance may also provide additional benefits, which are outlined above. However, comprehensive car insurance usually comes with a higher premium compared to other types of cover due to the increased level of protection it offers.

Compulsory third party (CTP) insurance is also different from comprehensive cover because it’s mandatory to hold if you have a driver’s licence and vehicle in Australia. This type of insurance can cover compensation for the injury or death of another person for which you’re at fault, which isn’t covered by any other type of insurance.

Types of car insurance you can choose from

The pros and cons of comprehensive car insurance

PROS

Greatest overall cover

Comprehensive car insurance can provide the highest level of protection for your vehicle, covering eligible damages caused by accidents, collisions, theft, fire, extreme weather and more.

Freedom to add optional extras

There’s a wide range of optional extras which can be added to your comprehensive car insurance policy, so you can consider which of these is most suitable for your needs.

Peace of mind

Comprehensive car insurance can give you peace of mind while driving, knowing that you can be protected against a range of events included under your policy’s coverage.

CONS

More expensive premiums

Comprehensive car insurance is generally the most expensive type of car insurance due to the higher level of protection it offers.

Exclusions remain in place

Even with the most extensive policy, exclusions will still apply, meaning you won’t be covered for all accidents which may take place.

Top tips for comparing comprehensive car insurance

Compare policies

Comparing is an excellent way to consider different comprehensive policies. Weighing up different car insurance quotes can make it easier to understand the differences between each policy. You can view the inclusions and exclusions, excess fees, optional extras and limits for each policy, which can help you make an informed decision.

Look at the cost of premiums

When comparing comprehensive car insurance policies, it’s important to consider the cost of premiums. While comprehensive car insurance typically costs more than other types of insurance, these costs can vary between providers. Comparing premiums can help you to find a policy which not only fits your budget but also provides the level of coverage you need.

Consider the optional extras available

Many comprehensive car insurance policies offer optional extras which can enhance your coverage. When comparing policies, consider which optional extras you may need or want and whether they’re included in the policy or available as an add-on. For instance, if you’re looking for roadside assistance cover, look at whether it’s available as an extra or included in the policy.

Analyse the inclusions and exclusions

It's crucial to look at the inclusions and exclusions so you can be sure of what is and isn’t covered under your insurance. Each policy will have a different level of coverage, and some may exclude certain events or situations. Understanding the inclusions and exclusions can help you choose a policy which meets your specific needs.

Common comprehensive car insurance queries

How do I reduce my comprehensive car insurance premiums?

There are many ways to reduce the cost of your comprehensive car insurance, including:

  • Choosing a higher excess
  • Driving a car which is cheaper to insure
  • Avoiding making frequent small claims
  • Drive less frequently where possible
  • Park your car in a more secure place, such as a garage or driveway
What is an excess on my comprehensive car insurance policy?

An excess is the amount that you’ll have to pay out of pocket when making a claim. For example, if your excess is set at $400 and you get into a car accident that causes $1,000 worth of damage, your insurance policy would cover $600 of that bill and your excess would handle the rest. There are different types of excess, such as for younger drivers, which you may have to pay on top of this. As mentioned, increasing your excess is likely to decrease your premiums.

What is a no-claim discount and how can I receive one on my comprehensive car insurance policy?

A no-claim discount can occur when you go through your 12-month policy without making an at-fault claim. This discount is likely to increase the more years you build up without making a claim, which can come in handy if your premiums are expensive. To determine how much your discount will be, you’ll often be given a rating of 6 at the beginning of your insurance cover which drops each year you go without an at-fault claim. Rating 1 typically attracts the biggest and best discount.

How frequently can I make my comprehensive car insurance payments?

You’ll often be able to choose between monthly and annual premium payments on your car insurance policy. It’s important to note that you may be able to access a cheaper policy if you’re paying your premium annually, as there are fewer administrative costs associated with less frequent payments, but this will obviously require you to pay more upfront.

What are some of the exclusions under a comprehensive car insurance policy?

Exclusions under a comprehensive car insurance policy in Australia may vary between insurers, but can include:

  • Intentional damage
  • Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Using the car for illegal purposes
  • Not maintaining the car properly
  • Damage caused by a driver not included under the policy
What is the difference between market value and agreed value in car insurance?

Market value refers to the estimated value of your car in the current market, while agreed value is the value you and your insurer have agreed upon at the start of the policy. This is the sum which is paid out to you if your car is stolen or written off. Market value coverage is cheaper than agreed value in most cases, as they’re generally covered for a lesser cost.

Can I include an L-plater on my comprehensive car insurance policy?

Yes – you can generally include your learner driver under your car insurance policy. Depending on your insurer, you may not have to list your child on your policy if they’re a learner driver, provided you're instructing them and are a full licence holder. However, if they have an accident while driving, you may be liable to pay an additional excess. You’ll have to add your child to your insurance once they become a P-plater if they continue to drive your car.

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Savvy’s comparison service includes selected products from a panel of trusted insurers and does not compare all products in the market. Any advice presented above or on other pages is general in nature and doesn’t consider your personal or business objectives, needs or finances. It’s always important to consider whether advice is suitable for you before purchasing an insurance policy. We always recommend readers to consult the Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) of different policies before purchasing your car insurance.