Step-by-Step Guide: How to Renew Your Car Insurance Online
How informed are you on car insurance? Well, if you’re like most Malaysians, the answer is probably not very.
You see, recently the GoBear team conducted a small-scale survey on the level of Malaysians’ knowledge of car insurance. We found most respondents still preferred their insurance agents to renew it on their behalf and were unaware of the benefits or renewing it online.
And with over 29 million registered vehicles in the country (almost one vehicle per person), this lack of knowledge could mean that millions of Malaysians are missing out on the savings that come with renewing their car insurance online.
Why Renew Online? (Answer: Discounts and Learning)
We’ve already covered all the ways you can renew your car insurance, from the post office to online, in our guide here, so check that out if you haven’t already.
This guide is going to focus on the detailed step-by-step process for you to follow if you aren’t used to renewing your car insurance online.
But first, let’s answer the question—why renew online? After all, you may have been renewing your car insurance via your agent, broker (or even your parents) all these years with no issues. So why switch? Well, there are two main reasons.
Reason #1: A 10% discount straight off!
From a bigger perspective, car insurance isn’t really a major expense in anyone’s life. But in these tough economic times, every Ringgit counts. So, if you can save 10% off your car insurance rates for just a few minutes extra of your time, why not? It makes perfect financial sense.
Reason #2: The feeling of self-reliance (plus it’s still convenient!)
If you’re relying on your agent or broker for your annual car insurance renewal, how much power are you putting in their hands? Do they have your best interests at heart?
Remember that insurance agents represent specific insurance companies, so they are naturally incentivised to prevent you from switching insurance providers, even if the switch would serve your interests better.
The feeling of ‘doing it yourself’ and knowing you don’t have to rely on an agent anymore is also rewarding. At the very least, you should try renewing your car insurance online at least a couple times.
That way, if in the future you decide those few extra minutes are worth more than the 10% discount, you’ll be able to deal with your agent on a more equitable basis, knowing that you don’t have to rely on them if you don’t want to.
Sold? Ready to renew your car insurance now? Get started by clicking the button below.
Frequently Asked Questions about the online renewal process
How do I check on when my car insurance expires?
If you haven’t written it down somewhere and don’t remember, there are a couple ways you can check:
- Call your agent or broker and ask
- Check the date on the road tax sticker on your car’s windscreen (since road tax and car insurance are typically renewed together)
How early can I renew my car insurance?
You can renew your car insurance up to 60 days from expiration. Mark it on your calendar and plan accordingly.
What details do I need to have in hand for the renewal process?
The basic details you’re going to need to know beforehand are:
- Vehicle registration number
- Make and model of your vehicle
- Engine capacity
- Year of manufacture
- Sum insured
- Car market value: You can check this on My Car Info
- Number of past claims
How easy is it to switch car insurance providers during the renewal process?
All car insurance providers in Malaysia have access to a central information database which has all the drivers’ information and policy details. This database also allows you to seamlessly switch between car insurance providers upon renewal.
Should I increase my car insurance coverage level?
This question is different for each person, there is no ‘one size fits all’. That said, a couple reasons you might want to increase your coverage level are:
- You currently only have basic third-party coverage or third-party plus fire and theft coverage
- You spot a good opportunity for increased coverage with only a small increase in your premium (perhaps your higher No-Claims Discount can cover the rise in premiums)
Can I renew my road tax online at the same time as well?
Some insurance providers do indeed provide you the option of renewing your road tax together with your insurance (and will even mail your road tax sticker to you as well). However, in most cases, you will need to renew your road tax separately (e.g. at your nearest post office).
Should I choose conventional or Takaful car insurance (and what’s the difference anyway?)
Much like conventional and Islamic banking in Malaysia, there is little difference when viewed from the consumer perspective. While ‘behind the scenes’, each has fundamental differences in structure, on the frontend, they look very similar. And just like banking, you don’t have to be a Muslim to sign up for a Takaful scheme.
There are two main structural differences to note. The first is obviously that a Takaful provider can only invest its funds in halal industries (no gambling, alcohol, etc.).
The second is that the premiums (called a donation in Takaful terminology) paid into the fund are for jointly guaranteeing each other. This means the risk is shared among the participants, instead of being transferred to the insurance company.
The implication of this is any leftover funds does not belong to the insurance company, but to the participants. Which means they will be distributed as a surplus back to the participants. You can claim your share provided you had not made any claims during that year. This is a major appeal of Takaful.
That said, Takaful isn’t necessarily better than conventional insurance. With so many options for both conventional and takaful in Malaysia, it is best to compare them on an individual basis.
| See also: 6 Agencies You Need to Know as a Car Owner in Malaysia |
A step-by-step guide to renewing your car insurance online
Before we go into showing you the actual online renewal process, there are a couple caveats for you to keep in mind.
1. There is no ‘standard’ online renewal process
While the general steps will usually be the same, they may be slight differences between the process of the individual car insurance providers.
2. Only about half of the 21 insurance providers in Malaysia provide the option for online renewal
So if your insurance provider is not one of them, you’ll either have to wait for them to catch up or switch to a provider that does.
The following guide will show how you can renew your car insurance (or switch providers) using GoBear’s online platform.
Step 1: Head to your insurance company’s website
Go to your insurance company of choice's website.
Step 2: Fill in your details
The first detail you’ll probably have to fill in will be your car license number—here’s a quick example.
After filling out your car license plate number, you’ll probably also have to fill out a few more personal details such as IC number, and your vehicle make, model, and location.
In this example, the recommended sum insured is auto-generated from the vehicle details.
Step 3: Select desired coverage level
After filling out all the relevant details, you will now be able to select your desired coverage level.
Again, while standard formats might differ from provider to provider, generally speaking it should be in the form of checkboxes with the coverage and pricing details next to it.
Here’s an example—in this case, checking the boxes automatically updates the final pricing total in the box on the right. Note also that in this example, the No-Claim Discount was 55% (automatically imputed after entering in your details as per Step 2).
Step 4: Pay and that’s it!
The final step is just to pay your annual car insurance for whatever coverage level you’ve selected. The payment methods are pretty standard – either by credit card and online banking (FPX).
That’s it, you’re good to go! You should receive your policy certificate via the email address you provided earlier.
Don't forget to budget ahead of time!
As we said earlier, car insurance is hardly a major expense. That said, depending on your coverage level and the car you drive, it can take a bite out of your budget if you’re unprepared.
One way to prevent being caught off guard is to allocate a fixed amount monthly toward paying for your annual car insurance.
So, for the example above of an annual car insurance premium of RM1,251, a simple RM100 monthly allocation will suffice. Of course, just like most things, it’s simple, but it does take some planning and discipline to execute.
So, if paying for your car insurance was painful this time around, don’t forget to budget for next year!