Car accidents happen. The only way to protect against them is to take out some insurance. Before you even begin browsing car insurance quotes, here is the most important thing you should know: Car insurance anywhere in Ireland and the UK is legally compulsory, and you’d be committing an offence if you drove a car anywhere without being properly insured. Car insurance policies vary greatly depending on the specific driver and vehicle, but almost all of them can be put into three main categories: Third Party, Third Party Fire and Theft, and Fully Comprehensive.
Simple “Third Party” insurance is the minimum required by law, and is intended to protect other drivers and the public in general. This means that third party insurance will cover damage to other vehicles, and any injuries caused by your driving, but will not compensate you, even if your car is stolen or is the only vehicle damaged.
Whilst it’s perfectly legal to drive around with third party insurance only, most drivers will want to protect their own vehicles, too. Third party fire and theft insurance are more or less the same, except that this policy also covers your vehicle if it’s stolen or catches fire. The final category, fully comprehensive insurance, which you may have seen shortened to “fully comp”, protects every kind of damage and theft, as well as your belongings kept in the vehicle.