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Top 3 things to know about car insurance in South Australia

Choose from various types of car insurance cover

Along with having Compulsory Third Party cover, there are three types of car insurance you can purchase in SA to protect your car.

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Consider the features and optional extras of each type

There are various features and optional extras you may be able to choose when you’re considering which type of cover to take out.

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Get to know what factors will increase your premiums

By knowing what can affect the cost of your car insurance premiums you may save money by tailoring the cover for your car.

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Car insurance

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A guide to Car insurance in South Australia

Last updated 20/02/2024

Kenneth Young
Written by Kenneth Young

Adrian Taylor, General Manager of General Insurance
Reviewed by Adrian Taylor

Find out more about car insurance in South Australia

Types of car insurance cover available in South Australia


Comprehensive car insurance offers the broadest policy coverage. It covers car theft, repair costs for a third party’s property and weather-related damages, as well as repair or replacement costs for your car to cover damages caused by an insured event. Optional cover for purchase may include windshield replacement, hire car, roadside assistance and more.

Third Party Fire and Theft (TPFT)

Third Party Fire and Theft insurance covers the cost of damage you cause to other vehicles and property in an accident, as well as limited cover for replacement costs of your vehicle if it’s stolen or lost in a fire. However, it doesn’t cover your vehicle’s repair costs if you’re at fault in a traffic incident.

Third Party Property Damage (TPPD)

Third Party Property Damage insurance pays towards the repair costs for accidental damage you cause to someone else’s vehicle or property. Typically, it will not cover damages to your car. Some insurers, however, may offer limited cover for your vehicle if damaged in a not-at-fault accident with an uninsured driver. This third-party car insurance is the most basic level of optional car cover.

Compulsory Third Party (CTP) insurance

Compulsory third party insurance covers certain legal liability costs if you cause injury or death to someone else in an accident. It’s included in your vehicle registration and you have the choice between CTP insurers in SA.

Which type of car insurance should South Australian drivers take out?

In South Australia, every registered vehicle must have CTP insurance. However, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t consider a higher level of cover. When deciding on which new policy to take out, it’s important to think about the range of hazards on the road and whether your current level of car insurance covers your vehicle’s repair and replacement costs.

On top of that, you should also factor in the repair costs for another person’s car or property that you might damage in an accident, plus damage to government property like electric poles and guard rails. Taking out comprehensive car insurance provides cover for all these instances.

Here’s a summary of what you’re covered for under each type of car insurance in South Australia.

Insurance typeDamage to your carDamage to another person’s car or propertyDamage or loss caused by theft or fire

Note: There are certain factors and variables that may affect your level of coverage. Always read your Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) for specific exclusions and any additional excess applicable to your cover. Also, read the Target Market Determination (TMD) to determine whether a policy is right for you.

What car insurance features should South Australian drivers look for?

Couple comparing features on different car insurance policies
Typically, South Australian drivers can find great value in some of the below features and options in their car insurance:

Although some of these features might be offered as optional extras and come at an additional cost, they can give you peace of mind and be well worth the expense, especially if you find yourself in a predicament.

Car insurance costs

The cost of car insurance in South Australia

The cost of car insurance in South Australia varies depending on the level of cover you take out and your circumstances. Some of the factors that can influence the price of premiums include:

How much do premiums increase after a claim?

While making claims does have an impact on your premium, an at-fault claim will increase it a lot more than a not-at-fault claim would. If you make multiple claims within a year, insurers may increase your premiums to account for the increased risk.

Does my car insurance become cheaper as I get older?

Younger drivers typically pay higher premiums than older drivers. So, provided you don’t make a claim, your insurance costs may reduce as you get older. However, there are many factors that impact car insurance premiums, so there may be other reasons why your insurance costs what it does besides your age.

Are there ways of reducing premiums?

Immobilisers, antilock brakes, alarms and other anti-theft features may help reduce your car insurance premiums. Even just parking your car in a locked garage as opposed to a busy street can help reduce the cost of cover, especially if you’re parked somewhere with a high rate of theft or vandalism.

Important to know

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Is car theft in South Australia high?

South Australia has a low number of motor vehicle thefts, especially when compared to other states like New South Wales and Queensland. While the rate of car thefts in the state was down in recent years, 3,620 South Australians had their car stolen or used illegally in 2022.1

Even though car theft is considerably low, it’s a possibility that South Australians will want to prepare for. Car theft can be covered by either Third Party Fire and Theft or comprehensive car insurance policies, and these policies can also cover vandalism and malicious damage.

Will moving house affect my car insurance in South Australia?

Moving house may affect your car insurance premiums. For example, if you move to a South Australian postcode that’s considered riskier due to higher rates of theft, or to a busy city centre where car accidents occur more frequently, you may notice a rise in your premiums to reflect the increased cost of insuring your car.

Similarly, your premiums may reduce if you move to a safer area, which is why it’s important to let your insurer know as soon as you relocate.

Adrian Taylor, General Manager of General Insurance

Meet our car insurance expert, Adrian Taylor

As the Executive General Manager of General Insurance at Compare the Market, Adrian Taylor has over 13 years’ experience in the financial services industry. Adrian specialises in customer experience and is dedicated to helping customers better understand insurance products so they can save money on their household bills.

Want to know more about car insurance?


1 Offences Reported – Public release rolling stats. South Australian Police. Government of South Australia. December 2022. Accessed March 2023.

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