Did you know that many insurers will automatically downgrade your insurance if you take your car over to Europe? If you didn’t, don’t worry, you’re not alone. Recent research from moneysupermarket.com found that 39% of drivers weren’t aware of this.
Regulations state that insurers must provide the minimum level of third party cover in all EU countries. but third-party cover means that if there is any damage to your own car, you will be left to foot the bill. Anyone with a holiday home in Europe or who regularly drives in the Continent should therefore look for an insurer that automatically provides the same level of cover throughout the EU.
Five of the UK’s 10 leading insurers automatically reduce cover when policyholders travel to Europe. Drivers with motor insurance from Barclays, Direct Line, Churchill and esure are most at risk; these policies reduce your existing cover to third party only in Europe.
However, not all insurers downgrade policies in this way. Endsleigh, Marks & Spencer, The Post Office and The AA are among those that will retain your existing level of cover if you take your car abroad. However, the length of time you are insured for is capped, usually at 60 or 90 days, so if you will be away for longer than that you will need extended cover.