The 5 Worst Excuses For Not Buying Car Insurance
The 5 Worst Excuses For Not Buying Car Insurance
Without compulsory motor insurance, the decision to buy car insurance in New Zealand is left to the individual driver. Many people think that their driving is safe enough, or that they don’t drive often enough or have a nice enough car to bother with vehicle insurance. However it doesn’t matter how good a driver you may be, you can never predict what will happen on the road, or how other road users will behave. Not being properly insured can have big consequences if you’re not careful - or even if you are.
We can empathise that the online insurance marketplace is crowded, overwhelming, and extremely confusing to say the least. However, there are many reasons why car owners should purchase good insurance. Here are the five worst excuses we’ve heard for not having insurance, and the reasons why they aren’t acceptable.
1. I only drive short distances
Many car owners assume that because they only use their vehicle for short distances, i.e. doing the weekly food shop, dropping off and picking up the kids from school or driving the short, 10-minute car journey to work, they’re unlikely to experience a car accident.
However, no matter how short the journey is or how well you know those routes, statistics have proven that more accidents happen during these shorter drives. The theory is that we’re less alert and focused when driving close to home - complacency or over-confidence often sets in, putting us at more risk of having an accident.
2. My car’s not worth insuring
New Zealand is full of older vehicles and low-cost imports, and it’s not uncommon to see some utter wrecks on the road. If your car isn’t worth much it’s tempting not to bother with insurance, especially if you’re unlikely to get much back if anything happens to your car.
However, without third party insurance, if found at fault in an accident, you’ll be responsible for the damage to the other party’s vehicle. So if you can’t afford to replace a car such as the all-new Audi SQ7, it’s advisable to at least invest in good third party coverage - it’s a small price to pay compared to what you could be shelling out for if you prang someone’s expensive car.
3. I’ve been driving for years
Time and time again, we hear the good old excuse, “I’ve been driving for over 30 years’, I don’t need insurance - I’m a great driver!” It doesn’t matter how many road years you have under your belt, over time we all pick up bad habits and can get very complacent, particularly with multitasking in the car. Whether it be speeding off the driveway, drinking coffee or changing the radio station, it’s these inattention moments when mistakes happen.
Also, the older we get, the slower our reaction times are, the more likely we are to have forgotten the road code that we learned years ago, and the less likely we are to be able to remember changes to the road rules.
4. I live out of town - there isn’t much traffic
New Zealand has a lot of rural roads which can often have very little traffic most of the time, and even in larger towns and cities, the volume of traffic is generally much lower than overseas, leading drivers to feel that they are at less risk of an accident.
However rural roads just so happen to be where the majority of accidents happen. Speed, low visibility around tight corners and inattention are often the culprits, but you can also encounter slow moving agricultural vehicles, stray farm animals or herds of stock crossing the road, creating extremely hazardous driving conditions.
5. My car is safely stored
You may store your car in the garage at night or have a carport to protect your vehicle, or you have access to secure parking at work, or live in a nice area, leaving you feeling confident that your car doesn’t need insuring.
However, even the best-protected vehicles can end up damaged or destroyed during storms (which can cause damaging hail, knock trees over and start fires), flash floods, or earthquakes and other natural disasters. And just because you live in a nice area, it doesn’t leave you immune to theft. Most thieves don’t shoot holes in their own boat (e.g. they don’t steal from their own neighbourhoods) so yours could be a target.
Motor Insurance in New Zealand
New Zealand has a different motor insurance policy to most other developed nations in that third party insurance is not compulsory, and ACC provides no-fault personal injury insurance for accidents. Additionally, injuries involving motor vehicles operating on public roads are covered by premiums collected through levies on petrol and vehicle licensing fees.
The ACC and the Motor Vehicle Account won’t always cover you (or other parties) completely during an accident, so it’s better to protect yourself with private insurance just to be sure.
Also, as we've discussed above, it’s not just road accidents that can relieve you of your pride and joy - mother nature, fires, vandalism and theft can also leave you without a car and in a financial hole.
Do you know someone that uses one of these excuses or have you heard a unique excuse for not having car insurance? Please share this post with your insurance-dodging friends and your comments with us.