Direct Line Car Insurance Review

Direct Line is probably one of the largest companies that offer all types of car insurance in the UK. If you are in the market for car insurance and are one of those people that is addicted to price comparison websites, be sure to know that you will not find Direct Line on any of those sites. However, feel free to fill your boots and obtain quotes from these sorts of websites, Direct Line advertise the fact that they will beat any quote that you have found there! If you’re about to embark upon looking for car insurance you will no doubt be aware that this can be a potential pain in the proverbial. Car insurance can be very complicated and there are literally hundreds of different policies you can choose from. In this article, I intend to make clear what some of the car insurance policies Direct Line have to help you get started.

Some of the Extras Direct Line Car Insurance Offer

  • Compensation if you are hit by a driver that is uninsured and the accident is not your fault – Direct Line is one of the first car insurance companies to recognise that this is a growing problem within the UK. They offer, as part of your policy, a system whereby you are able to claim for being hit by an uninsured driver and you will not lose your no claims bonus. There are conditions however, these are: you should ensure that you get the registration number of the car that hit you and also the make and model, if possible the drivers details (don’t worry about this point), many uninsured drivers are happy to pass their details on after an accident as they think they will get away with it anyway.
  • Compensation for vandalism to your car – Again, this is an innovative extra that you can get from Direct Line, I actually don’t know of any other company that offers this service. If you are a victim of vandalism to your vehicle you can claim for the damage and, here is the best bit, this cover comes as standard and will not affect your no claims discount. Not only that, if you use one of Direct Line’s preferred repairers, they will make sure that your vehicle is cleaned from top to bottom, inside and out! Be aware however, that certain conditions do apply, you will need to make sure that you have reported the incident to the police and can prove it and that the damage was not caused by another car, this of course would be dealt with on a different part of your car insurance policy.

Direct Line have recognised that people want value for money as well as great car insurance policies so you will find that they offer a huge range of discounts on all types of car insurance policies. Here are some of them:

No Claims Discount for Company Cars

If you are a new customer to Direct Line and have recently given up a company car that you have not had to make a claim on, Direct Line will offer you a discount on up to 5 years of no claims discount, this is available on any type of car insurance policy that you take up with Direct Line. However, you will need to prove that you were the sole driver of the company car in question….not much to ask if you want my opinion, 5 years no claims discount can amount to an awful lot of money.

Discount on Multi-Car Policies

Many car insurance companies charge you extra for registering an additional car insurance policy with them, not Direct Line; they actually save you money if you take out a car insurance policy on more than one vehicle with them. You will receive a discount of 10% on the 1st year and 5% for each year that you renew thereafter. I doubt there is another company in the UK that can offer this. Conditions do apply but they don’t exactly ask for your shoe size! All you need to do is make sure that you can give the company the number of your current agreement, it’s that simple.

Other discounts available when it comes to multi-car insurance policies are breakdown cover; you can save up to an amazing 35% on breakdown cover with Direct Line when you have a multi-car policy. If you are new to the company you are not penalised for being a “newbie” you also can save up to 25% when including breakdown cover on your car insurance policy.

Pass Plus

This will interest all of you that have recently passed your driving test. Many people in their late teens or early to mid 20’s are considered to be a huge risk by most car insurance companies. The reason behind this is obvious, the statistics show that if you are in this bracket of driver that you are far more likely to have an accident than any other bracket of driver. We have to recognise that insurance companies need to make a profit in order to continually offer a service to their customers.

Direct Line have gone one better with this car insurance policy. Basically, if you have passed your test in less than one year you will be given a 5% discount on any car insurance policy you take out with them. Do bear in mind however, that you will be better off going for a fully comprehensive policy – this isn’t something that Direct Line advise it’s just that I was once in my late teens and driving was a new hobby to me…..believe me, I remember some of the scrapes I got into because I was just too over excited about being able to drive without an instructor constantly nagging at me!

Other Great Discounts to be had from Direct Line

Direct Line is very clever when it comes to ensuring that they gain as much business from each customer as possible. If you know Direct Line, you will be aware that they are not limited to offering insurance just for cars. If you happen to have an insurance policy with them which covers something other than your vehicle you can gain discounts on any new car insurance policies you take out with them. All you need to do is ensure that you can produce the policy you currently have with them and they will give you up to 10% on any new car insurance policy you take out.

Just so you know What Comprehensive Cover is from Direct Line

Listed below is what you will get with a comprehensive car insurance policy with Direct Line:

  • Protection from uninsured drivers if the accident is their fault.
  • Claims discounts for named drivers.
  • Protection if you should be the victim of vandalism that will not affect your no claims discount.

These are just a few of the extras that you get with a fully comprehensive car insurance policy with Direct Line.

A Quick Explanation on How Multi-Car Insurance Policies Work

Some of you may be unaware of how multi-car insurance policies work. The type of policy is fairly new to the market place and Direct Line have been pioneers in bringing this type of policy to it’s new and existing customers.

You may think that to have a multi-car insurance policy you will have to be related to the other people that are included. This is not the case; all you need to ensure is that you all live at the same address. I happen to think that this is a fantastic idea. For all of you students out there that are living on a shoe string but still need to make sure that your vehicle (if you’re lucky enough to have one) is properly insured can club together and make huge savings with the multi-car insurance policies that Direct Line offer.

In Conclusion

I happen to be a customer of Direct Line and I have to say that when it comes to customer service, they are second to none. The staff are knowledgeable about the car insurance policies they have on offer and you do not get the hard sell. After all, there isn’t any need for them to go chasing customers, thousands of people sign up with them every day.

If you are looking for a great car insurance company that have a huge range of policies that have been tailored to suit everyone, you will not go far wrong with Direct Line. It’s not all about discounts, although that does help, you need make sure that the insurance company is 100% behind you if you run into trouble. Direct Line will not hamper you with red tape and excuses on why they should not pay out. If your claim is genuine and fits all of the criteria within your policy, they will pay…simple!

Direct Line has been in business for a long while now and they are definitely here to stay.

RAC Breakdown Cover Review

As a Company, the RAC have been around for so long that even my grandmother can remember them and she is in her 80’s! The fact that this company that deals in breakdown cover is still around today is testament to the fact that they know what they are doing. If you ask anyone about the RAC they will know who you are talking about and will more than likely have an insurance policy with them or know someone who does. When you are in a position to start looking for breakdown cover, you will need to know that the company you choose is reliable and will be around for the duration of your breakdown cover policy. You will have no such problems with the RAC.

So, let’s deal with what the RAC actually offer when it comes to breakdown cover. At the moment, if you look at their website, you will find that they currently have a spring offer. If you are new to the RAC and join up throughout spring you will be offered additional savings and they can give you a breakdown cover policy for as little as £29.99….this is some mean feat; there are not many other companies out there that can boast this sort of price.

It’s worth remembering here that the larger the company the more they can offer you in terms of service and affordability. The RAC are, quite simply HUGE…they have a network of branches right across the UK and when it comes to roadside assistance, they have mechanics that can be with you in as little as 40 minutes, for you ladies out there, don’t worry, the RAC will give you priority when you call them, especially if you are out on the road alone.

Incidentally, it doesn’t matter where you are in the UK, the RAC will stick to this time limit even if you have ended up in the middle of a field due to a tyre blowing out! For the people that like statistics that are reading this article, the RAC has approximately 2,000 mechanics out on the road 365 days a year 24 hours a day. As a company the RAC can boast that they have over 100 years experience in the breakdown cover arena.

Breakdown Cover that the RAC offer

  • You (something that many companies overlook) and your car.
  • Owners of motorbikes and 4×4’s can take out breakdown cover with the RAC as standard…lot’s of the major breakdown cover companies require you to take out specialist breakdown cover if you have a 4×4 or motorbike, the RAC see no reason why this should not come as standard.
  • You can have up to 5 callouts per year under your breakdown cover policy and if you have additional vehicles attached to your policy this number will raise. Unless you have a complete old banger that breaks down the minute you pull out of your driveway, it’s unlikely that you will need to make this many callouts in one year.
  • One important thing to note here is that many other companies that offer breakdown cover will charge you in addition to the premium you pay for any parts or labour that is required if you need roadside assistance. With the RAC you only pay for the part itself, the mechanics time is part of your breakdown cover.
  • When it comes to paying for your breakdown cover, you will be able to pay either monthly or annually. This is a great idea for those of you that would rather just get the whole thing paid for in one go and not have to worry about it again until it’s time for you to renew your breakdown cover.

Other Options the RAC offer with Breakdown Cover

Again, I cannot stress enough that you can get breakdown cover from the RAC for as little as £29.99 per month at the moment….get in their fast; this offer will not be there forever!

  • Nationwide Recovery – This means that no matter where you are in the UK, the RAC will transport your car to your home or another address. This can include you as the driver and up to 7 people travelling with you (for those of you that own 2 seat sports cars or minis, this will not be a problem you are likely to encounter). If you happen to get ill when you are travelling and can no longer drive your car and do not have any passengers that can take over then the RAC will come and rescue you.
  • From Home – With the standard breakdown cover from the RAC you will not be covered for any issues that arise within a quarter of a mile from your home address, you can opt to take out breakdown cover with them which will cover this. So, if you get up one morning and your car won’t start or it just gives up on you as you pull out on to the main road, the RAC will send a mechanic to help you out.
  • Onward Travel – This is also an optional extra and this will come into play when your car or motorbike cannot be repaired on the roadside. You can get a courtesy vehicle for up to 3 days whilst you own vehicle is being repaired…age limits apply here so make sure you check this out first. If you need to use public transport and incur a cost because of this the RAC will reimburse you up to £150 or £500 if you are a group of people travelling. Bear in mind that this breakdown cover extra does also include air travel. If you need to stay overnight in a bed and breakfast, you will also be reimbursed for the cost, the same amount applies as for public transport costs. If you happen to have a caravan or trailer, the RAC will take this for you, however, be aware that you will need to meet any extra costs for this yourself.

One of the most common problems that occur with cars on the road is that darn battery failing! I myself have been in this situation a couple of times and I’ll be honest with you it’s a right pain in the proverbial! As with other major breakdown cover companies you can become a member with the RAC. If you are a member and your battery does conk out on you the RAC will send a mechanic to replace it for you. All you have to pay for is the battery itself, everything else is covered with your breakdown cover membership.

So, you have had a new battery fitted under the breakdown cover that you have with the RAC, what about the warranty? Well, this is easy, depending on the type of battery you have had replaced the RAC will guarantee it for up to 5 years. There are conditions when it comes to the replacements of batteries simply because it is such a common problem, so make sure you check that this type of breakdown cover is just what you need. One thing to note is that you do not have to be out on the road when your battery fails, if you are at home and find that you need a replacement; the RAC will arrange a time to come out and replace it for you. Once again, be aware that this will only apply if you are a member of the RAC.

Some of you may be people that often travel in your vehicles in Europe; you have not been overlooked when it comes to RAC breakdown cover. There are polices for you too and these cover over 47 different countries throughout Europe. There are 2 types of breakdown cover that you can go for when travelling in Europe – Single Trip or Comprehensive. The benefits you can expect to receive are as follows:

  • Have your car fixed at the roadside or towed to a garage (if on a single trip breakdown cover policy this will only last for 5 days).
  • English speaking mechanics – great idea the RAC – trying to get across to a French speaking mechanic that your battery has died could be a tad difficult if you don’t speak the language.
  • If you are on a single trip breakdown cover policy, you will receive assistance in making it back the UK – again conditions to apply here so ensure that you check them out.
  • If you take out the comprehensive breakdown cover you will receive everything as mentioned above and….
  • Emergency repairs up to the value of £150.
  • If you become ill and cannot drive and do not have a passenger that can take over for you the RAC will provide a driver for you.
  • Help with costs should you need to stay overnight somewhere or need to get back to the UK.

Remember; don’t forget about that spring deal, its well worth taking advantage of!

 

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Breakdown Insurance

When we take out car insurance policies many of us do not take into account that we may need help if we breakdown when we’re out on the road. One of the most annoying things that can happen is that you get up on a frosty morning, already a tad late for work only to find that your car won’t start! This is where breakdown insurance comes in and many companies offer this as part of a fully comprehensive car insurance policy.

Why you should Have Breakdown Insurance

For you ladies out there, bear in mind that if you happen to be driving alone that breakdown insurance is of the utmost importance. It doesn’t matter which way you look at, if you have to abandon your car on the motorway slip road, you are much more at risk than your male counterparts of being a victim of crime. Sorry to say this, but it’s a fact. Many breakdown insurance policies have clauses that are specific to the needs of women drivers and pledge to be with you in less than 40 minutes when you break down. For those of you that are male, breakdown insurance is especially useful because when you breakdown this is more likely to happen when you are on the way to an important business meeting or God forbid your wife or partner has just gone into labour and you need to be at the hospital pronto

Who is the Best When it comes to Breakdown Insurance?

This question is a hard one to answer, there are a multitude of companies out there that offer great breakdown insurance, some of the companies that come out top are listed below:

RAC – This Company is the 2nd largest in the UK when it comes to breakdown insurance, they are not the cheapest but you will not find a bad word to be said about them. One of the great things you get with their breakdown insurance is a mobile locator; this means that if you don’t know where you are then the mechanic can locate you using your mobile phone signal. There are not many other companies that specialise in breakdown insurance that can boast this type of system. You will also get roadside assistance and they pledge to be with you within 40 minutes of you making the call. All of their staff wear company issued uniforms and have ID, so there is no need to worry that some undesirable individual has decided to stop and offer bogus help.

AA – This is one of the oldest breakdown insurance companies in the UK today. There breakdown insurance is pretty much the same as RAC however; you will find cheaper prices and more discounts to be had with them. One thing that this breakdown insurance company can boast is that they fix more vehicles roadside than any other company in the UK. The other statistic worth noting here is that almost 95% of members of the AA say they would recommend their service to a friend. This is possibly why you do not often see televised advertising campaigns for the AA, they simply don’t need to.

Green Flag – Although much younger than the RAC or the AA, Green Flag are still a great choice when you are looking for breakdown insurance for your car. They are doing their best to break into the breakdown insurance market to the point where they say that they will beat any quote that you receive from either the AA or RAC when it comes to the time for you to renew your policy. Not only that, they also offer a callout service which is available 365 days a year 24 hours a day, this means that even on Christmas Day you will be able to get your vehicle going again within the hour and make that all important turkey dinner.

Does Breakdown Insurance come as a Car Insurance Package?

Many breakdown insurance companies offer these types of policies as a stand alone product. The reason behind this is that there are many different levels of breakdown insurance cover. You can take out the most basic packages that include roadside assistance and this will cover you nationally, or there are more complicated policies that will cover you for the following:

  • Some of the larger companies will offer to put you up in a hotel if they cannot repair your car by the roadside. This of course is one of the highest premium types of breakdown insurance and will cost you more but if you are someone that is on the road a lot of the time it would be well worth you taking a look at including this type of cover with your breakdown insurance.
  • If your car, motorbike or caravan requires parts this can also be part of your breakdown insurance policy.
  • No callout charges are also an option with breakdown insurance.
  • Of course no claims discount is a must and this is offered as standard with most, if not all breakdown insurance policies.
  • If you use the preferred garages for repairs with the company you have decided to take your breakdown insurance out with, they will cover the repairs under your policy.
  • If you happen to be someone that drives regularly from the UK to Europe, you will find a breakdown insurance policy to suit you.

These are just a few of the options that are open to you when looking for breakdown insurance, some companies will even tailor the policy to suit your own needs. This is especially useful if you are someone that is “outside of the box” when it comes to standard breakdown insurance.

This said there are companies that only offer breakdown insurance as part of the fully comprehensive car insurance package; More Than is one particular company that works in this way. If you want my opinion, only go for this if you need the most basic breakdown insurance. If you need a policy that is more complicated it would be cheaper for you to take out a separate policy and it will also make it clearer to you exactly what you are covered for.

In Conclusion

I cannot stress enough here how important it is that you have some form of breakdown insurance cover. We rely more heavily on our vehicles than we think. You only realise this when your car does actually break down. Standing in the pouring rain with the wind whipping about your legs, whilst you wait for a friend or family member to come and pick you up is no fun, believe me, I know! The other thing that can be real nuisance if you find yourself in this situation is that you will more than likely have to leave you vehicle behind. This means that you may be without your car for some days.

If you have breakdown insurance, you can be back on the road within the hour, imagine how annoying it would be to have to leave your car behind only to discover that it was a flat battery that was causing the problem. If you have breakdown insurance it would take any mechanic minutes to sort this problem out for you. You may think that you could do without the added expense but think about it….someone has to come and pick you up, you can’t get to work because your car is stranded on the motorway or down some country lane. You then have to pay a towing company so that you can get your car to a garage and after all of that you find that you are charged premium labour rates just for someone to charge the battery on your car.

How many hundreds of pounds are you out of pocket so far? No, breakdown insurance is definitely worth having and it’s possible for you to find reputable firms that offer breakdown insurance policies at very reasonable rates. Don’t forget that you can also use price comparison websites to help you find the best quotes out there. If you decide to go down this route, make sure that you also take the best price you find to any companies that do not subscribe to price comparison websites, you never know, you might find an even cheaper price!

All in all, this article has been written to give you an idea of the sort of breakdown insurance that is available in the UK market place at the moment and also to give you an idea of why it is so important to have breakdown insurance. When you are out on the road it can be a potentially dangerous place to be and if you have the proper cover, there will be no need for you to worry about it if you do breakdown. Of course, you may be one of the lucky few that don’t have to make a claim against your breakdown insurance in which case, enjoy the no claims discounts!

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