Car insurance

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Find the best car insurance for your needs.

We reviewed monthly premiums for 17 car insurance providers. Who should you choose as your provider? The answer depends on your location as well as factors such as the age, sex and driving experience of the people who regularly drive your car. See our premium comparison and database of policy cover for the best provider for you.

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The basics

What are the types of cover, what's an excess, how about agreed or market value? We explain the basics about car insurance.

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Our survey

We asked insurance providers to quote monthly premiums for four profiles: young person, middle-aged person, older person and family of four.

The premiums listed include no-excess windscreen cover.

We’ve made these assumptions:

  • Our drivers are fully licensed – except for the son and daughter in our family of four (they hold restricted licences).
  • None of our drivers has been convicted of a driving offence.
  • None of our drivers has made a claim in the past five years.
  • The cars are fitted with alarms and usually parked in a residential driveway. They’re not modified or used for business purposes.
  • Apart from our young person and the teenagers in our family of four, no one under 25 will drive the cars.

Where applicable, some companies offered discounts if:

  • No unnamed drivers under 25 drove the car.
  • Only those named on the policy drove the car.
  • The drivers had been claims-free for a certain number of years.
  • The car had an alarm.

We accepted these discounts.

Premium comparison

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Ways to save

After some simple ways to save on your premiums?

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Which company has the most satisfied customers?

Insurance providers (responses)[width=40%]Overall satisfaction[bar;width=40%]
MAS (295)86%
FMG (307)83%
Toyota Vehicle Insurance (69)77%
AA Insurance (1670)67%
Youi (55)64%
Aon (202)63%
ASB (150)59%
AMP (118)59%
NZI (175)59%
Vero (159)58%
State Insurance (1378)56%
Lumley (63)56%
Westpac (126)56%
AMI Insurance (1907)55%
ANZ Bank (101)55%
Lantern Insurance (111)50%
BNZ (140)45%
Tower Insurance (368)45%
AVERAGE (7727)61%

These results are from our 2016 insurance survey of 8000 Consumer NZ members.

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After an accident

  • Check the driver of the other car is OK.
  • Don’t admit liability for the accident.
  • Get the other driver’s details including his or her name, address, phone number, car registration and insurance company.
  • Write down the name and phone number of anyone else who witnessed the accident.
  • Note down other particulars about the crash such as the time, location and chain of events.
  • Take all reasonable steps to prevent further loss or damage to your car.
  • Hang on to damaged property in case your insurer wants to inspect it.
  • Notify the police as soon as possible (and within 24 hours) if someone was hurt in the accident and required medical attention.
  • Contact your insurer as soon as possible following the crash.

Be reasonable

Insurance policies for your house, contents, car or travel contain a clause that reads “you must always take reasonable care to avoid circumstances that could result in a claim” or words to that effect.

To decline a claim under a clause for reasonable care, your insurer must prove you were grossly careless, negligent or reckless. It can’t decline your claim for run-of-the-mill carelessness. The Insurance and Financial Services Ombudsman (IFSO) said “this is because insurance, by its very nature, protects the insured against negligence and mere inadvertence”.

So how does an insurer prove gross negligence? According to IFSO, it looks at the circumstances leading up to your loss and asks “would a reasonable person have run the same risks?” If the answer is “no”, it can decline your claim.

In addition, the benchmark for “reasonable care” depends on circumstances such as where an item was left and for how long. There’s a difference between leaving your baggage unattended in the locked boot of your car for 10 minutes and leaving it on the passenger seat overnight.

With this in mind, you can challenge your insurer if your claim is declined for failing to take reasonable care. All insurers must belong to an independent dispute resolution scheme such as IFSO or Financial Services Complaints Limited. If you and your insurer can’t settle the dispute, you can refer it to the applicable service.

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Our car buying guide

We explain the laws governing car sales, tell you how to deal with a dealer and how to decide if a car is worth buying. We’ve also covered reliable makes and included our most recent car reviews.

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