Why car insurance is so important in the Philippines? Car owners must know

June 4, 2022 at 10:18AM
3 minutes read

Have you heard about road accidents in the news? Perhaps this isn't unusual for you. The Metro Manila Accident Reporting and Analysis System (MMARAS) recorded a total of 65,032 accidents in the Philippines' metropolitan area in 2020, with an average of 178 road accidents per day, according to the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA).

Car road accident

Car road accident

With that considered, the dangers on the road are frightening. What about the hazards posed by unforeseen disasters like floods and typhoons? If you're thinking about buying a car, this will most definitely discourage you from doing so, and if you currently have one, you'll probably consider selling it.

However, owning a car provides convenience, and you may consider it a life milestone, as a product of your hard work, and as part of your asset portfolio. But what if an awful occurrence occurs, and your most beloved car is involved in a road accident, and you are obligated to pay for the damage caused, as well as the cost of your car's repair at an auto shop?

Fortunately, the effects of these risks, particularly financial issues, can be avoided. This is where car insurance comes into play. Car insurance may take away from all your worries and provides you peace of mind while driving - but how? Why should you get car insurance in the Philippines?

Before we tackle how to acquire car insurance in the Philippines, we must first understand car insurance.

1. What is car insurance?

Car insurance is a contract between you and the insurance provider in which you agree to pay premiums in exchange for financial protection in the event that your car is stolen or damaged in an accident. The amount of protection you get from your car insurance policy is determined by the yearly premium you pay and the options you choose.

Car insurance policy

Car insurance policy

There are two types of car insurance that are available in the Philippines, these are (1) Compulsory Third-Party Liability (CTPL) insurance, and (2) Comprehensive insurance.

Compulsory Third-Party Liability (CTPL) Insurance

Prior to registering or renewing a vehicle, you must first obtain a “Compulsory Third-Party Liability (CTPL)” car insurance as mandated by the Land Transportation Office (LTO) for all motor vehicle owners. This type of insurance can protect you from certain liabilities if your car causes an accident that results in the death or bodily injury of a third party. One of the main reasons why this is needed is that pedestrians or any unsuspecting third-party victims are assured that they won’t be left without any aid if they get injured in an accident.

Comprehensive Car Insurance

Comprehensive car insurance policies have a higher yearly premium than CTPL since their coverage is broader, as the word "comprehensive" implies. A comprehensive car insurance coverage typically covers the car in its original state, excluding third-party accessories. You can, however, have your accessories declared under the policy, which will result in a higher annual premium.

2. Why should I get Comprehensive Car Insurance aside from CTPL?

Unfortunately, CTPL insurance only covers death or bodily injury to a third party, so you'll have to pay for your own injuries and automobile repairs. Having comprehensive car insurance provides top-up protection to cover those losses.

The inclusions on this policy, however, may differ depending on your car insurance provider. For example, theft coverage may be limited to the parts required for the insured vehicles to function correctly, as some insurance companies may refuse to cover stolen components or accessories found within the vehicle. If your car is stolen, you can be reimbursed for a set amount depending on its fair market value and depreciation.

When your car sustains damage that is not caused by normal use, such as a collision with another vehicle or being struck by falling debris, your insurance provider will shoulder the costs of repairs or replacement. If your vehicle is stolen or robbed, the same rules apply.

Another benefit of having comprehensive car insurance in the Philippines is that it can protect you from very costly obligations, especially if you hit a pedestrian or damage property such as other cars. Rather than paying for these costs out of pocket, car insurance allows you to file a claim with the insurer for your own damage, subject to the limits of your policy.

In the case of natural disasters which are beyond human control, there is an inclusion of coverage that is known as “Acts of God” or “Acts of Nature”. Natural disasters such as earthquakes, floods, typhoons, tornadoes, hurricanes, hail, tsunamis, or wildfires can cause damage to your automobile. This kind of inclusion is extremely beneficial, especially in the Philippines, where natural calamities are often.

3. How much should my car insurance cost?

The premium of your car insurance in the Philippines is determined by a number of factors, such as:
  • Your age. Younger drivers are often thought to be unskilled in driving and hence more prone to accidents than older, more experienced drivers.
  • Your driving history. Some insurers may request information about previous car insurance claims you've made. Even if the accident was not your fault, a comparable claim could result in a higher rate.
  • Your place of residence. If you live in an area where there are a lot of car accidents or theft, your insurance rate will be higher.
  • The Vehicle. Popular models normally have higher premiums because they are more desirable on the market.
  • Your occupation. If an insurer determines that your job exposes you to high levels of risk on the road, your annual premiums may increase.
  • Insurance Company. The biggest factor in determining car insurance premiums is the insurance company you decide to go with. Rates vary substantially from company to company.

4. Where to get my car insurance?

There are numerous options available for car insurance. Some local banks offer auto insurance such as BDO and BPI. Other local companies, such as standard insurance, offer as well.

But if you like a less hassle transaction, you may opt to choose online. Many automobile websites, such as PhilVex and Autodeal, are linked with these insurance firms and offer flexible options for your car insurance needs.

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