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Get your car holiday ready!

Published on: 11 December 2013

Get your car holiday readyPadkos. Check. In‐car entertainment. Check. Everything but the kitchen sink. Check. You may be ready for your upcoming holiday, but is your car? Failing to do simple checks on your vehicle before you hit the road this summer could invalidate potential insurance claims or worse, put you and your family at risk.

Start by familiarising yourself with your vehicle insurance policy and make sure it's been updated if anything has changed recently. Also be sure to check:

  • Does your insurer offer emergency roadside assistance?
  • Do you have your insurer’s emergency assistance telephone numbers available in the car (i.e. on a sticker, in the glove compartment or in your cellphone)?

It’s critical that you only use the service providers allocated by your insurer in emergency situations; these companies have been approved based on their reputation and service. Using unapproved providers could result in non-payment of the service provided (i.e. roadside assistance or towing) leaving you with a costly bill, or damage or loss to property. Be sure to call your insurer first in the case of such emergencies.

While most vehicle insurance policies cover minor repairs, they don’t usually cover replacing engine parts. If your car is older than 10 years or no longer under motor plan, look into a motor warranty product for the ultimate driving peace of mind. These are relatively inexpensive and prepare you for the financial implications of unexpected, costly mechanical breakdowns. Once you have a warranty policy in place, it’s as simple as making sure that you service your car regularly and keep it in good running order

Next, check your vehicle. A simple assessment of your car will ensure compliance and reduce the risk of insurance claims being repudiated due to unroadworthiness. Because yes, an accident caused by an unroadworthy vehicle could invalidate your claim.

Follow our simple ‘top 10’ holiday checklist to ensure the safety of your vehicle. Check:

  • Tyres – a simple tread depth test will tell you if your tyres are wonderful or worn
  • Brakes – check pads and discs
  • Windscreen – fix reparable chips
  • The condition of your windscreen wipers
  • Lights; make sure all lights – especially your brake lights – are in good working order
  • Battery
  • The condition of your spare tyre – tread and tyre pressure
  • Shock absorbers
  • That you have a warning/breakdown triangle in your boot
  • Your water and oil, before leaving for holiday

Your vehicle is now roadtrip ready! 

While it may be the silly season, be smart when on the roads: never allow an unlicensed person to drive your insured vehicle and never drive when drunk. And remember, make sure your insurance premium is paid for the month.

Happy holidays!