If you drive in Europe, your car insurance should protect you against damage or loss. If you want to be covered against breakdown, however, you usually need separate European breakdown cover.

Cheap car insurance will usually only provide the minimum amount of car insurance cover whilst you’re abroad. This means you’re covered for liability to third parties – and nothing else. If your windscreen cracks or you lose your keys, you will be on your own.

Quality car insurance, however, will usually extend the same level of cover stated on your policy for when you’re driving abroad in Europe. This means that whether you are driving down country lanes in England, zipping over the Alps in France, or whistling down the Autobahn in Germany – you can feel secure with a high level of cover against damage, injury, theft and liability to third parties.

If you are driving abroad, you will want a level of car insurance which includes:

  • Damage: you will be protected against accidental damage that includes cracked windscreens, broken windows or damage to the car body and even damage to the car’s audio or sat nav equipment.
  • Injury: you will be covered for the injury or death of a third party for which you are liable and your own personal injuries will also be covered whilst you are getting in or out the car, or whilst driving.
  • Theft: this includes theft of the car itself, as well as theft of personal possessions inside your car that have been stolen despite being secured or hidden from view

You should check the details of your policy to confirm the level of cover you receive in each of these areas. Good car insurance companies will usually extend your policy cover for up to a specified number of days in Europe per period of insurance: this can usually be for one long road trip or taken in short, separate trips. You should always inform your provider if you intend to take your car abroad, and they can give you details of how to protect your car.

With complete car insurance, you should be able to enjoy your driving holiday in Europe, safe in the knowledge that you and your family are financially protected in the event of an accident or theft.