Compare European Breakdown Cover

  • Standard breakdown cover policies do not cover you when driving abroad
  • Dedicated European breakdown cover provide peace of mind to motorists when driving on the continent
  • Compare features and prices for European breakdown cover from leading UK providers in the table below

Choose your breakdown cover options

11 products found
  • RAC logo

    Standard European Breakdown Cover (Annual)

    • Full refund guaranteed if you can't travel due to Covid-19 restrictions
    • Personal Price (From)
      n/a
    • Vehicle Price (From)
      £81.74
    • Roadside Assistance
    • National Recovery
    • Home Start
    • Onward Travel
  • RAC logo

    UK Premier Breakdown Cover + Euro

    • Full refund guaranteed if you can't travel due to Covid-19 restrictions
    • Personal Price (From)
      £268.57
    • Vehicle Price (From)
      £216.99
    • Roadside Assistance
    • National Recovery
    • Home Start
    • Onward Travel
  • Eversure logo

    EU + UK Annual

    • Covers trips in Europe for up to 90 days
    • Personal Price (From)
      n/a
    • Vehicle Price (From)
      £50.91
    • Roadside Assistance
    • National Recovery
    • Home Start
    • Onward Travel
  • Green Flag logo

    Euro Plus

    • Personal Price (From)
      £130
    • Vehicle Price (From)
      £70
    • Roadside Assistance
    • National Recovery
    • Home Start
    • Onward Travel
  • Euro Plus logo

    Annual Multi-trip

    • Includes 10% online discount
    • Personal Price (From)
      n/a
    • Vehicle Price (From)
      £90.34
    • Roadside Assistance
    • National Recovery
    • Home Start
    • Onward Travel
  • Emergency Assist logo

    Complete Cover

    • 10% discount using code NW10OFF
    • Personal Price (From)
      n/a
    • Vehicle Price (From)
      £60
    • Roadside Assistance
    • National Recovery
    • Home Start
    • Onward Travel
  • Nova Direct logo

    Gold Cover

    • Exclusive offer: Use code NW10 for 10% off
    • Personal Price (From)
      n/a
    • Vehicle Price (From)
      £47.99
    • Roadside Assistance
    • National Recovery
    • Home Start
    • Onward Travel
  • RAC logo
    Single Trip

    Comprehensive European Breakdown Cover

    • Full refund guaranteed if you can't travel due to Covid-19 restrictions
    • Personal Price (From)
      n/a
    • Vehicle Price (From)
      £7
    • Roadside Assistance
    • National Recovery
    • Home Start
    • Onward Travel
  • RAC logo
    Single Trip

    Comprehensive Plus European Breakdown Cover

    • Full refund guaranteed if you can't travel due to Covid-19 restrictions
    • Personal Price (From)
      n/a
    • Vehicle Price (From)
      £9
    • Roadside Assistance
    • National Recovery
    • Home Start
    • Onward Travel
  • Eversure logo
    Single Trip

    EU Single Trip

    • Price shown per day, based on a 7 day policy
    • Personal Price (From)
      n/a
    • Vehicle Price (From)
      £4.02
    • Roadside Assistance
    • National Recovery
    • Home Start
    • Onward Travel
  • Euro Plus logo
    Single Trip

    Single Trip

    • Includes 10% online discount
    • Personal Price (From)
      n/a
    • Vehicle Price (From)
      £17.95
    • Roadside Assistance
    • National Recovery
    • Home Start
    • Onward Travel

Our comparison service features a selection of providers from whom we receive commission. This table is initially ordered according to our commercial arrangements. Use the drop down menu at the top of the page to order by other criteria.

Award-winning comparisons you can trust

It's always nice to know you're on the right track. Over the years, as we have striven to improve the services we provide to our clients and users, we have been pleased to receive recognition for our efforts from both industry and consumer bodies.

Information written by Rhiannon Philps Last updated on 10 August 2021.

What is European breakdown cover?

European breakdown cover is just like standard UK breakdown cover, except it will cover you when you drive on the continent.

UK breakdown cover alone won’t be valid when you drive abroad, so you would need to get a specific European breakdown policy to make sure you have cover.

If your car breaks down and you have European breakdown cover, you will be able to call an English-speaking helpline for roadside assistance and either get your vehicle repaired at the scene or get towed to a garage. If you choose a more comprehensive policy, you will also get further cover such as replacement transport.

You can select either personal or vehicle-based cover, depending on whether you want to cover your car or a certain driver. There are two types of European breakdown policies: single trip and annual.

» MORE: What is European breakdown cover?

Single trip vs multi trip or annual coverage

European breakdown cover is available as a single trip policy or as an annual policy.

As the name suggests, single trip European breakdown cover will cover you for a one-off trip to Europe. You will only have cover for that one trip, for a specified number of days.

Annual, or multi-trip European breakdown cover, provides cover for one or more journeys abroad in a year. However, providers still set restrictions on how many days each individual trip can be, and how many days you can be abroad in total over one year.

An annual policy will normally be more expensive than a single trip policy, but if you drive in Europe two or more times per year, it is likely to work out cheaper overall.

What is typically included in European breakdown cover?

What is included in European breakdown policy will depend on the level of cover you choose. As a minimum, policies will cover the cost of roadside assistance and emergency repairs, plus a tow to a nearby garage if the car can’t be repaired at the scene. Some providers will also cover you if you break down at home or in the UK just before you leave for Europe.

Most providers will have a 24/7 English-speaking emergency helpline so you can contact them at any time of day or night.

If you choose a more comprehensive European breakdown policy, the cost of garage repairs, alternative transport, overnight accommodation and transport back to the UK may also be covered.

Features like misfuel cover and lost key cover may be included, or you may be able to purchase them as an add-on to your main policy.

What parts of Europe are covered?

Different levels of European breakdown cover will cover different areas of Europe. Providers will normally group countries into zones, with their breakdown policies covering one or more of these zones, depending on where you will be driving.

Zone 1 will normally cover countries that are closer to the UK, such as Ireland and France. Zone 2 will then cover some countries that are further away, in addition to all the countries in Zone 1.

Each provider will have their own “zone” system, and they may not be able to offer cover in every single country. Before buying a policy, make sure you check your destination, and that any countries you may drive through to get there, are covered.

What vehicles can be covered under a European cover policy?

Standard European breakdown policies will cover cars, and may include other vehicles like motorbikes, vans, classic cars, caravans, and even minibuses. The exact vehicles that can be covered will depend on the terms of each provider.

Providers will set their own restrictions, and may not be able to cover vehicles that are over a certain height, weight or age, or if they are commercial vehicles for example.

Specialist policies may be available if your vehicle doesn’t meet the requirements for standard cover.

What exclusions to my cover should I be aware of?

Like UK breakdown cover, European breakdown cover comes with a number of exclusions. For example, it won’t cover any non-emergency repairs and will only provide cover for a set number of days.

To make sure you don’t get caught out, check the following points before buying a breakdown policy:

  • If there’s a limit on the number of call-outs you can make.
  • The maximum amount you can claim for, e.g., on repairs or alternative transport.
  • The vehicles that are eligible for cover.
  • If you are covered for towing a caravan or trailer.
  • What countries the cover applies to.
  • What activities could invalidate your cover e.g., if you use your car for business purposes or for racing.
  • If “human errors”, such as filling up with the wrong fuel or losing your keys, are included in the cover.

Driving in Europe during the COVID-19 pandemic

Travel rules and restrictions are changing regularly as the coronavirus pandemic continues to unfold. If you are thinking of driving abroad, you should check the current UK guidance, as well as the guidance for your intended destination, to see whether you are allowed to travel. If you are, you should check if you need to take a Covid-19 test, if you will need to quarantine upon arrival or on your return to the UK, and if you need to have had the vaccine.

Most European breakdown policies will continue to offer cover during the pandemic. However, depending on current local restrictions, their recovery services may be affected. You should check with your provider for their latest updates.

FAQs

What level of European breakdown cover will I need?

The amount of cover that you need will depend on your own personal circumstances. For people who will travel out of the country more than once a year, it may be a good idea to select an annual policy, whereas those who are only making the occasional trip can look for single trip, one-off cover.

It will also depend on whether you are happy with basic protection or if you would prefer a policy with more comprehensive cover to give you greater peace of mind while driving.

Can I upgrade my standard UK breakdown cover to include European cover?

Yes, if you have UK breakdown cover with a provider that also offers European cover, you may be able to upgrade your policy. However, not all breakdown providers offer European cover, so you will need to check if this is possible with your own provider.

What is included in a European breakdown policy?

European breakdown cover will allow you to call for emergency roadside assistance should you break down in Europe. It will cover the cost of getting your car fixed at the road or getting towed to a garage, and comprehensive policies may also cover the cost of alternative transport and accommodation.

Policies will also include a 24/7 English speaking helpline and may also cover you for a limited time in the UK.

What would happen if I didn’t get European breakdown cover?

If you broke down without cover, you would need to arrange emergency roadside assistance yourself. You would be responsible for contacting a nearby garage for help, and you may need to overcome a language barrier too. Without cover, an emergency call-out, towing to a garage, and repairs, are all likely to be very expensive, not to mention the cost of any alternative transport or accommodation you may need.

Some providers may allow you to take out European breakdown cover after breaking down, but this will cost you more than buying it in advance.

What factors affect the price of European breakdown cover?

The cost of European breakdown cover depends on:

  • Whether you choose annual or single trip cover.
  • Whether you choose personal or vehicle cover.
  • What countries the policy covers.
  • How long you need the cover for.
  • What level of protection you choose.
  • The age and type of vehicle you need cover for.

Do I need European breakdown cover to drive in Ireland?

If you live in Great Britain, you will need European breakdown cover to drive in Ireland as standard UK policies won’t normally be valid.

However, there may be exceptions if you live in Northern Ireland. Some providers will cover Northern Ireland residents who break down in Ireland on their standard policy, so they wouldn’t need to get a separate European policy just for driving in Ireland.

Is my European breakdown policy valid following Brexit?

A lot has changed about travelling to Europe since the UK left the EU. However, European breakdown cover is still valid and works as it did before Brexit.

Find out more about how driving in Europe has changed after Brexit.

What should I do if I break down in Europe?

Many of the rules on what to do if you break down in the UK will apply in Europe. For example, you will need to pull over to the side of the road and switch on your hazard warning lights. However, there may be some extra rules you need to be aware of. In certain European countries, it is a legal requirement to carry and put out a red warning triangle and/or wear a reflective jacket when you break down, so you should check the rules for the country you’ll be driving in.

Certain roads will also have their own rules. For example, in France, you will need to use the emergency telephone if you break down on certain roads, rather than calling your breakdown provider.

What are some tips for preparing to drive in Europe?

When you drive in Europe, you need to make sure you have the correct documents and equipment. For example, you will need to have a GB sticker on your car, your driving licence and your car registration documents, as well as your passport.

Some countries also require you to carry certain pieces of equipment, such as a red warning triangle and a reflective jacket.

Learn more about what you need to drive in Europe.

How do I choose the best European breakdown cover for my needs?

When you compare European breakdown policies, the cheapest cover won’t necessarily be the best. While cost is important, you need to make sure that you get the right kind of cover with the level of protection that you want.

For example, you will need to decide whether you need single trip or annual cover, personal or vehicle cover, and whether you want a basic or more comprehensive policy.

You will also need to check the terms of each policy, to make sure that the cover is valid in the countries you’ll be driving in and that your vehicle is eligible for cover for example.

Why compare European breakdown cover with NerdWallet?

With so many breakdown providers and policies to choose from, using a comparison table like the one we offer at NerdWallet can help you to find the best and cheapest breakdown cover for you. It allows you to compare the cost and level of cover of policies by different providers, which can help you to find the cover you need at the best price.

About the author:

Rhiannon is a financial writer for NerdWallet, with a particular interest in personal finance and insurance guides for consumers. Read more