Can your car insurance cope with Christmas? - Car insurance - News - Moneyfacts

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Can your car insurance cope with Christmas?

Can your car insurance cope with Christmas?

Category: Car insurance

Updated: 07/12/2015
First Published: 07/12/2015

MONEYFACTS ARCHIVE
This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

Chances are that your Christmas shopping is now in full swing, and that means you're likely to start packing lots of goodies into your car, either for safekeeping or to take home after a well-earned break in a nearby café. But does your car insurance stretch far enough to protect all of your Christmas gifts?

Booty in the boot

Research from M&S Bank reveals that, on average, festive shoppers will make at least three trips to buy Christmas presents and food. This means that a great deal of expensive items will be loaded up into your car, with the main shopping trip for presents expected to put a vehicle's contents at approximately £286.

However, the research found that 42% of respondents will be putting their precious shopping at risk from thieves by leaving it unattended in their car. Twenty-seven percent of those questioned said that they will take gifts back to their car in between shops to reduce the amount they have to carry round, while another 8% will use their car as a storage space while they enjoy a rest in a restaurant or cinema. Seven percent also said that they will keep some presents in the car once they get home to keep them hidden from friends and family.

But while your car may seem like a great place to hide gifts or store them while you get other things done, there is a risk that your Christmas booty is discovered by thieves, and if your insurance doesn't cover the extra contents, you could end up having a not-so-merry Christmas.

So, what can you do to keep your Christmas shopping safe from opportunistic eyes?

Shopping safety

  1. Don't keep items in your car any longer than you have to. Your home is likely to be far more secure than your car, so try to find a sneaky hiding place inside instead of relying on your car as a secret hidey-hole.
  2. Put things out of sight. Keep shopping bags covered and lock them in the boot of your car. If you can see them, so can beady-eyed thieves!
  3. Close windows and lock doors. It sounds obvious, but always double-check that your car is secure. It's best to lock it even if you are only going to be out of the car for a couple of minutes to validate a car parking ticket, for example. Don't make it easy for your things to be stolen!

Finally, check your car insurance! If there isn't enough cover in place to protect all of your car's contents when it is full of Christmas shopping, don't leave it in your car at all! If you would like to keep more in your car, shop around when your insurance is due for renewal to see if you can get more cover for less. This will give you peace of mind that you can re-buy all your Christmas presents without causing a huge dent in your pocket should the worst happen.

What next?

Check out our car insurance quote comparison tool

Disclaimer: Information is correct as of the date of publication (shown at the top of this article). Any products featured may be withdrawn by their provider or changed at any time.

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