Optional extras and your car insurance car insurance

Comprehensive car insurance covers damage caused to your car, and damage you cause to other people’s property, in an accident. 

However, comprehensive car insurance isn’t exactly… um… comprehensive. 

You may need to add optional extras to fill the gaps in your comprehensive car insurance. But they come with additional costs and conditions. Compare Club’s team are here to help you make sense of it all. 

Key Points

  • There are some things comprehensive car insurance doesn’t cover. 

  • You can fill these gaps by adding optional extras to your policy.

  • Optional extras come with additional costs and conditions.


What are optional extras with car insurance?

There are certain things some comprehensive car insurance policies don’t cover. Noticed a chip or crack in your windscreen and have don’t have nil excess?

Your insurer will deduct the excess of the repairs or replacement from your claim amount, which will leave you out of pocket depending on your excess range.

To remove the excess on a replacement windscreen, most car insurers will charge an additional cost, which is sometimes known as an “optional extra”.

 Some other optional extras include:

  • Roadside assistance.

  • The cost of a hire car if you’ve damaged your vehicle following a car accident.

  • You can be covered for theft of personal items up to a limit, depending on the insurer. Some insurers will give you an option to increase the limit you are covered for on some personal items, including phones.

It’s important to note that some car insurers offer “optional extras” that others automatically include in their policies, which impacts the pricing.

If you’re looking for a specific type of coverage, such as a hire car if you’ve gotten into a car accident, make sure you check what is an optional extra before purchasing your policy.

Most car insurers will offer hire car services or costs if your vehicle is stolen, but not if you get into a car accident.

Give Compare Club’s team just a few minutes of your time, and we’ll help you find the cover that works best for your needs and budget.

Are optional extras available with all types of car insurance?

That’s a good question without a simple answer. Some car insurers include certain types of cover — like windscreen cover for example — as standard on their comprehensive car insurance policies, while other insurers class these as optional extras. 

Some car insurers also offer different levels of comprehensive car insurance. For example, they might include windscreen cover as a standard inclusion on their gold comprehensive policy, but as an optional extra on their silver comprehensive policy. 

This is one reason why it can be so difficult to understand whether you’re getting the best value on your comprehensive car insurance. 

Accounting for extras included in some policies and not in others can make it feel like you’re comparing apples to oranges.

Confusing, right? It doesn’t have to be. Compare Club’s team is here to help. We compare a range of insurers to find the right car insurance policy for you. Click the button below to take out a car insurance quote now.


What types of optional extras are available?

Some car insurers offer a range of optional extras that you can choose to add to your comprehensive policy. Some popular optional extras include: 

Windscreen cover

Windscreen cover can be complex, so it’s important to understand exactly what is included under your comprehensive car insurance and what is not.

If your windscreen is damaged in a car accident, the cost of repairing it may be covered under your comprehensive policy.

However, if you notice chips and cracks appear in your windscreen as part of the general use of your car, your insurer may not cover the cost of repair under your comprehensive policy due to excess (which is where the cost needs to be covered by you).

That’s when you’ll need to add windscreen cover to your comprehensive insurance as an optional extra.

You also have to weigh up whether or not the additional premium cost of your “optional extras” will pay off during the year.

For example, if you know that you can afford paying for a chipped windscreen straight away and you haven’t had one during the entire time you’ve owned your vehicle, the extra premium cost in your insurance may not be worth paying for.

Personal effects/property

Comprehensive car insurance generally covers damage caused to your car, but many policies may not extend coverage to your personal property inside the car. 

So if your laptop is damaged in a car accident, or stolen out of your vehicle, your comprehensive car insurance may not pay for a replacement. For that, you’ll likely need to add personal effects or personal property insurance to your comprehensive policy as an optional extra. 

But keep in mind that there are typically limits and restrictions as to what personal effects insurance actually covers. Check your insurer’s personal effects policy carefully to ensure it provides the right coverage for your needs.  

Accident hire car

Comprehensive car insurance means you can rest easy with the knowledge that your insurance company will pay for your car to be repaired if you’re in an accident.

But car repairs can take time. Unless you’re happy to take the bus while your car is in for repair at the smash repairer, you’ll need a new ride.

In some instances, you might already have a relationship with their smash repairer, where the smash repairer might offer a free courtesy car while their vehicle is being repaired. This means that, for you, paying for accident hire cars may not be worth the extra premium.

Again, check your comprehensive policy first. Some insurers include hire car coverage in their comprehensive insurance offering normally if your car is stolen only, however hire car costs are not included following an accident. Also be aware that when it comes to covering the cost of hire cars, insurers tend to impose different daily cost limits and hire duration restrictions.


What optional extras are best for me and my needs?

That’s going to take some careful consideration. It will depend on things like how many kilometres you typically drive in a year, the age of the car you’re insuring, and how experienced the drivers are.

Compare Club’s experts make the comparison process easy. We’ll find the comprehensive car insurance policies that best fit your needs, and can adjust the excess you’ll pay in just a few clicks to ensure your policy is right for your budget.

The bottom line

Car insurance can be complex. Comprehensive insurance isn’t quite as comprehensive as you might think. Adding optional extras to your policy can fill the gaps in your coverage. But it comes with additional costs. Compare Club’s team can help you get that balance right.


This guide is opinion only and should not be taken as financial advice. Check with a financial professional before making any decisions.

GENERAL ADVICE WARNING: General Advice is advice that has been prepared without considering your current objectives, financial situation or needs. Therefore, before acting on this advice, you should consider the appropriateness of the advice having regard to those objectives, situation or needs.

If the advice provided relates to the acquisition or possible acquisition of a new insurance policy you should consider the insurers PDS prior to making the decision to purchase their product. Information regarding the income we have been paid by the insurer for this transaction is available upon request.