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Motor Insurance Add-ons That Are Worth Considering

Here are a few add-ons that you should consider incorporating into your policy, no matter their impact on the overall cost

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If the veritable army of numbers and terminologies on your motor insurance quote have left you googly-eyed, you're not alone! Discounts, no-claim bonuses, taxes - they're all mashed up into a single document that often makes it extremely difficult to evaluate whether the policy that you're considering buying has your bases fully covered or not. Don't make the selection of your motor insurance policy an automatic "tick mark" exercise - doing so may lead to regrets when you need to exercise a claim. For starters, here are a few add-ons that you should consider incorporating into your policy, no matter their impact on the overall cost.

Zero Depreciation
The king of add-ons, the Zero Dep cover is an absolute must - especially as your vehicle gets older. The cover also goes by the moniker 'depreciation shield' in the case of some policies. Here's how it works in case you don't have the zero-dep cover add-on in place - if your vehicle does meet with an accident, a certain percentage of the claim amount is deducted as depreciation cost in case of plastic or rubber parts, or even paint. The actual quantum of the deductible goes up with each passing year, as depreciation increases year on year. If your airbags are released in the event of a collision, for instance, your entire dashboard will be replaced - and the cost could run into a few lakhs even for mid-segment vehicles. Having the zero-dep cover in place ensures that you're reimbursed in full, without any deductibles. Unfortunately, most insurers do not provide this cover beyond a vehicle age of five years.

Engine Protection
A blessing in areas that are prone to flooding (such as Mumbai), the Engine Protection add-on covers consequential damage to your engine that may arise due to water ingression - a common occurrence in areas that receive heavy rainfall. This add-on also typically covers damage to the gearbox due to oil leakages.

Roadside Assistance
A simple add-on that could spare you a lot of trouble if you're caught in a tough spot, the 24X7 roadside assistance cover is a sensible buy. The benefits of this add-on vary from insurer to insurer - ranging from help with a flat tyre or towing, to medical assistance. Either way, it's a useful add on to have in place, and costs little too. You may choose to skip this is your car manufacturer already provides you with a comprehensive roadside assistance package - which is the case for most luxury car manufacturers.

Tyre Burst
If you're proudly strutting around in a spanking new Audi, Mercedes, or Beemer, you should keep in mind that a burst tyre can set you back by some serious dough. A tyre blowout could result from having over-inflated tyres, worn-out treads, road hazards and other factors. If you're driving a luxury car, and your insurer gives you the option of a tyre-burst add-on, take it up! A blown out tyre may potentially set you back by a lakh or more otherwise.

NCB Protector
You may have accrued a sizeable NCB (No Claim Bonus) over the years, due to your impeccable driving record. Over a five-year period, this could have risen as high as 45 per cent, resulting in sizeable discounts to your renewal premiums. If you plan to hang on to your vehicle for a few more years, it would make sense to take up the NCB protector add-on. Put simply, this add-on ensures that your NCB's stay intact even if you were to make a claim. Beyond year three of your renewal, it's a feature that makes quite a bit of sense - especially when you consider that according to the law of averages, three claim-free years may be followed up by a year or two when you'll be needing to make a claim.