Car Insurance

Compare car insurance in New Zealand. State, AA Insurance, AMI, ASB, BNZ, NZI, TOWER, Vero and Westpac were compared on value for money, communication, claims lodgement, claims process, claims outcome, quality of service, clarity of policy, and overall satisfaction.

Rated brands

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Communication

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* Overall satisfaction is an individual rating and not a combined total of all ratings. Brands with equal overall satisfaction ratings are sorted by the mean overall satisfaction score as rated by consumers.
Canstar New Zealand research finalised in April, 2019, published in May, 2019.

Most Satisfied Customers Award | State

State Car Insurance rated number one for customer satisfaction

 

State sweeps up Canstar’s 2019 Most Satisfied Customers Award

Out of nine qualifying car insurance providers, State is the only provider to be rated 5-stars for overall satisfaction, winning Canstar’s Most Satisfied Customers Award for the first time. State is a part of the IAG stable, which is the largest general insurer in Australasia.

With more than 100 years of experience in the insurance industry, State offers various insurance products, including car insurance nationwide.

New Zealanders rated State a 5-star car insurance provider for quality of service, communication, claims lodgement, claims process, claims outcome and overall satisfaction. Canstar’s Most Satisfied Customers Award winner is calculated from the results of a national survey. Canstar asked New Zealanders to rate their car insurance provider on a number of factors, including quality of service, value for money and claims outcome. Only respondents who had made a claim from their car insurance provider within the last three years, qualified for the survey.

Unlike other countries, New Zealand law doesn’t mandate having car insurance. However, if you’re not protected by car insurance, you are at risk of having to pay out thousands of dollars in the event of an accident or vehicle damage. Car insurance can also protect you against the cost of additional incidents, such as roadside rescues and replacements of cracked windscreens. So, it may be in your best interest to have a car insurance cover. It is always beneficial to do your research as, when it comes to types of car insurance, there may be a specific one that is more suitable for you!

Broadly speaking, there are three types of car insurance – comprehensive, third-party and third-party fire and theft. Comprehensive car insurance can cover you for the damage of your car and other vehicles involved, should you get into a car accident. Third party car insurance can only protect you against the cost of damaging other vehicles, while third party fire and theft car insurance can cover you for theft and fire, as well as damage to other vehicles.

Canstar New Zealand surveyed more than 5,000 New Zealand consumers across a range of categories to measure and track customer satisfaction, via ISO 26362 accredited research panels managed by Qualtrics. The outcomes reported are the results from customers who currently have a car insurance policy (which they pay for) and have made a claim within the last 3 years. In this case, 1,782 New Zealanders.

Brands must have received at least 30 responses to be included. Results are comparative and it should be noted that brands receiving three stars have still achieved a satisfaction measure of at least six out of 10. Not all brands available in the market have been compared in this survey. The ratings table is first sorted by star ratings and then by mean overall satisfaction. A rated brand may receive a ‘N/A’ (Not Applicable) rating if it does not receive the minimum number of responses for that criteria.

About Car Insurance

What is car insurance?

With so many car insurance policies on the market, it’s easy to get confused about what they do and don’t offer. Although policies offered by different car insurers will vary, the types of car insurance can be boiled down to three levels of cover.

  • Third party insurance: The most basic type of insurance, it covers all or part of your legal liability if you harm another person or damage their property. You will not be covered for damage to your own vehicle.
  • Third party, fire & theft cover: This is the same kind of insurance as standard third party, with additional cover for fire damage and theft. Some insurance companies will have policies that also cover damage caused by natural disasters.
  • Comprehensive insurance: This is the highest level of car insurance, covering you for almost anything that could happen on the road, or by the side of it. If you damage yours or another person’s property, you won’t be required to pay the full amount for repairs – only the pre-agreed excess amount.

Glossary of terms

Please note that these are a general explanation of the meaning of terms used in relation to car insurance. Your insurance provider may use different wording and you should read the terms and conditions of your insurance policy carefully to understand what you are and are not covered for. Refer to the product disclosure statement (PDS) from your provider.

Account-keeping fee / Ongoing fee: A monthly account-keeping fee that is charged by the lender to cover the administration cost of maintaining your policy. Alternatively, you may be charged an annual fee rather than an ongoing account-keeping fee.

Anti-lock braking system (ABS):  A safety system that stops the wheels from locking up when you brake, which decreases the risk of skidding. Also known as an anti-skid brake system.

Agreed value: The sum for which your car is insured, which has been fixed by agreement between the insurer and the car owner. The option for your sum insured is to insure your car for the market value (see ‘Market value’ below).

Comprehensive: The highest level of insurance policy, which covers your car for damage to other people, damage to the property of others, damage to your own car if it is damaged or lost because of fire or theft, and accidental damage to your own car, regardless of who caused the damage. Comprehensive car insurance also has a range of optional extras, including complimentary replacement vehicles while you can’t drive your own car, and no-excess windscreen replacement if you have a crash.

Compulsory Third Party (CTP): A compulsory insurance policy that covers you if you injure or kill someone in a motor vehicle accident. The specific conditions on this type of insurance are different from state to state, but it is compulsory to hold CTP in order to register your vehicle.

Excess: The excess is an amount that you pay towards the cost of your claim. Different excesses might apply to different types of claim, so you should check your policy for details. You may be able to pay a lower premium if you have a higher excess, but you need to be sure that you could afford to pay the excess unexpectedly in an emergency.

Exclusions: Anything that is not covered by your policy. Exclusions may vary between insurance providers, but find out the common exclusions here.

Forced entry: Illegal entry into your car which includes illegally using keys or picking locks. It does not include entering your car through an unlocked door, window, or skylight.

Inclusions: Anything that is covered by your policy. When a particular event is listed as being included in your policy, the insurer will cover the whole expense or a listed percentage of the cost involved.

Market value: What your car would be worth on the market, or it would cost to replace your vehicle with one of the same make, model, age, and condition as your vehicle was in before the loss or damage. This is one option for your sum insured; the other option is to insure your car for an agreed amount (see ‘Agreed value’ above).

No claim bonus: A discount on your premium for drivers who have not made any claims so far on their insurance. Some insurance providers have a ‘protected no claim bonus option’, where they will let you keep your no claim bonus after you make your first claim in any one period of insurance, under certain conditions.

Nominated driver: When you sign up for insurance, you must advise the insurer who will be listed on your policy as being allowed to drive your car (usually yourself and someone else). These people are the nominated drivers. Other people who drive your car but are not nominated drivers would be required to pay an additional excess if they were in an accident while driving your car.

Premium: The premium is the amount you pay for the cover your insurance policy provides, and may be paid once annually or more frequently (e.g. monthly, fortnightly). Your premium must be paid on time for your car to remain covered.

Third Party Property: This is an insurance policy that covers the cost to repair damage caused by your car to other people’s property. It will also cover your legal costs if they sue you over that damage.

Third Party, Fire and Theft: This is an insurance policy that covers damage to the property of others, and some limited cover for your own car if it is damaged or lost because of fire or theft.

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