Car Insurance: Your Options in Spain
There are four main options for buying your car insurance. You can go direct to the insurer, use a price comparison website, through an insurance company agent (not independent) or via an independent insurance broker.
Let’s take a look at each option and some pros and cons. We’ve also included a few tips and tricks.
Buying direct from the insurer
People often think that it must be cheaper to buy a policy directly from an insurance company. However this isn’t always the case. Often when an agent or broker is involved the prices you obtain will usually be the same. In some cases they could be even better.
There are a very small number of companies that don’t use brokers and sell direct to the public. You may find that their prices seem lower, but you’ll always need to check the small print carefully to avoid any nasty surprises.
If you buy direct from the insurer you won’t have an intermediary to help you with any claim or dispute that could arise when you claim. In other words, there’s no one defending your interests.
Price comparison websites
There are several price comparison websites in the Spanish market; the vast majority are only available in Spanish. You just need to enter some basic details to receive a list of prices from different providers.
Not all websites cover all companies. Always use more than one, but this can be time consuming. You also need to bear in mind that some companies operate under several brand names.
Using a comparison site limits your chance to check out the small print, especially policy exclusions. Prices can look a lot cheaper, but when you make a claim you might find you’re not covered. And if your Spanish isn’t so great, it can be difficult to deal with the paperwork.
Don’t forget that if you make a mistake when entering your data online you could invalidate your policy.
Once again, when you purchase insurance online it’s up to you to defend your interests against the insurance company.
Using an insurance agent
There are many English-speaking businesses that operate as agents for insurance companies throughout Spain, however they are tied to one company.
On the one hand the pros include having someone who can speak to you in your language and represent you in front of the insurance company if there is a claim. But the downside is that they only offer the products from one insurance company with its limited range of products.
Limiting your choice means that you might not be able to get the most competitive policies for your particular model of vehicle or for your postcode.
Using an Independent broker
The most comprehensive option available to clients looking to buy car or any other insurance is through an independent broker. They can offer a number of quotations from a range of insurance providers. Working with different companies, they understand where to look for the best prices and policies for your type of vehicle and your circumstances.
The broker can listen to what’s important to you and help you find the right cover, which by using one of the other methods to purchase insurance above, would solely be down to you.
With their comprehensive knowledge they’re acutely aware of which companies are difficult to work with when it comes to claims and know which companies to avoid.
If you have to make a claim on your insurance, an independent broker will also be able to check that the insurance company has not overlooked anything. Although the terms and conditions of the policy you have can’t be changed, your independent broker can help where the insurance company has made a mistake.
To avoid delays when dealing with all the paperwork and processes a broker can do the chasing for you!
But if you think all this comes at a price, take into account that brokers are using the same quotation system as the insurance company representatives. This means that a policy issued through a broker will be no more expensive than going direct to the insurer.
Using a broker offers you peace of mind at a competitive price with the knowledge that if you have a claim there is a team to help you.
It might be possible to obtain a cheaper quotation by using to an insurance company that only operates directly with the public. However, if you later have an issue with a claim or other dispute with them, you’re on your own.
When shopping around, compare the quotes and conditions you can find online with our recommended independent broker BMI.
Contact Jeremy Ryan on 952 582 282 / 637 834 552 or visit directly BMI Brokers online.