Nothing beats relaxing after years of hard work. To reward seniors for careful driving over the years, car insurance companies offer them affordable insurance premiums. The wisdom behind low fees for senior car insurances is that elders drive more carefully, resulting to a lower accident rate in their age bracket compared to younger drivers.
Seniors are still required to have Compulsory Third Party (CTP) insurance but will get comprehensive car insurance at extremely competitive prices. Companies call it ‘rewarding them for their wealth of driving experience,’ which is not bad at all when you think about it. Here's all you need to know about senior car insurance policies.
Comparing Car Insurance for Seniors: What Factors Affect the Cost of Insurance?
While seniors generally pay less for car insurance, the actual premium each of them pays still varies according to some factors.
Just a quick look at how insurers place importance on age when determining insurance fees. Young drivers cause most accidents in Australia and are viewed by insurers as a liability. In some instances, insurance companies are reluctant to cover young people driving "powerful" cars and charge them more for coverage. In 2019, for example, drivers aged between 25-25 paid an average of AUD 1,284.
In other words, the younger you are, the higher you pay. Here’s the catch, though. When it comes to seniors, people older than 70 years pay more than those in the 50-60 or 60-70 year bracket. A company, for instance, charges AUD 797 to insure those in the 50-60 year bracket and AUD 885 for those older than 70 years old. The reason for this is obvious; at 70+, you are at a higher risk of causing an accident.
Insurance companies view men as more likely to engage in risky behaviour than women. So they typically charge women lower premiums than men. They also see men as more likely to drive more expensive cars than women, although this is debatable.
3. Vehicle age
Typically, people with newer cars pay more for insurance than those driving older cars. Vehicles that are two years or younger will set you back more than those 11-15 years old.
Does Senior Car Insurance Differ Per State or Territory?
Each state or territory will have its own set of unique laws affecting senior car insurance holders. The laws are subject to change, so you should check with your local government. These were the regulations at the time of writing this article.
Australian Capital Territory
A medical report from a GP should be provided to the Road Transport Authority for drivers who turn 75. This process is mandatory and should be repeated yearly for as long as they continue driving.
New South Wales
Drivers aged between 75 and 79 will require a medical review yearly, or their licence will be revoked. When they turn 80, in addition to the medical report, they will have to pass a practical driving test.
Drivers over 75 need to have a medical certificate with them each time they drive. The certificate, which states that the driver is medically fit to drive, is issued by a medical doctor and remains valid for 13 months.
Drivers aged 75 and older have to fill a self-assessment form issued by the government. They may undergo a 30-minute practical test if the doctor deems fit. If you are over 85, you need to pass a yearly practical driving test. These regulations apply to class C licence holders.
Drivers over 80 years will have to pass an annual medical assessment test. If you fail, your licence is revoked. When you turn 85, you need to pass a practical driving test as well.
Tasmania and Victoria
Seniors are encouraged to self-assess their driving activities. They are encouraged to consult with their doctors for informed advise on whether they should continue driving.
Why these rules? Well, simple. If you can't drive, you cannot get a car insurance.
What Are Ways to Save on Car Insurance Cost If You're a Senior?
Car insurance senior premiums are very friendly to the wallet, but you can get even better deals. This is how:
1. Buy online
Insurers will offer better deals to people who purchase insurance online. It's less costly for them, so they give incentives to their customers. Some will even give you 10% off your first year's premium.
2. Higher excesses
An excess is an amount you pay when making a claim—the higher the excess, the lower the premiums. Insurers will, at times, allow you to revise this amount to be higher or lower.
3. Make annual premium payments
Making annual as opposed to monthly premium payments results in lower costs for the insured. This the best option for pensioners because they do not rely on a monthly income; they already have their retirement benefits and can afford upfront annual payments.
4. Drive less
Insurers will offer a discount on premiums to people who rack up fewer kilometres per year. Plus, you could choose the ‘pay as you drive’ policy which covers a certain distance and are cheaper than regular policies.
Pensioners’ car insurance policies are affordable. However, the policies differ with the insurance provider and the personal circumstances of the insured. Learn more about insurances through a special section in our blog.
You may also use our many tools, which are designed to help car owners and enthusiasts. One of these is the Car Part Finder – an auto parts locator – which you will find handy in searching for any part you need. Try it today! It’s free!
By Eric Anyega