Car Insurance in Portugal

Written By Lara Silva

Car insurance in Portugal is mandatory, as in most countries, but it can be relatively affordable compared to places like the United Kingdom. If you are moving to Portugal and planning to drive, make sure your vehicle is rightfully insured! Let’s take a look at everything you need to know about car insurance in Portugal. 

Guide to Driving in Portugal

How does car insurance in Portugal work?

Car insurance in Portugal is mandatory, at least third-party insurance that covers any damage on another vehicle. You do not need to have more expensive insurance that covers all damage to your own vehicle.

In Portugal, you insure the vehicle, not the driver. Even if you have multiple vehicles, each of them needs to be insured. 

Portuguese car insurance has a bonus and penalties system. You can get an annual discount if you have not made any car insurance claims through Premio Bonus Malus. Usually, the maximum discount is around 20%. Your insurance will also get more expensive if you make multiple car insurance claims.

Car in Lisbon. Photo by Leandro Silva (Unsplash)

Types of Car Insurance in Portugal

There are three main types of car insurance in Portugal: mandatory third-party insurance (seguro de terceiros obrigatorio), supplementary third-party insurance (seguro de terceiros com cobertura complementar), and full insurance (seguro de danos proprios). 

Mandatory Third-Party Insurance

All vehicles need to have at least third-party insurance. This insurance covers the cost caused to third parties, such as vehicle damage, injury costs, and damage to personal property.

It covers 1.2 million euros for material damage and around 6 million euros for injuries.

Third-party insurance does not cover any damage to your own car or your own injury costs. However, it does include roadside assistance and legal aid for legal processes that might occur. Many insurance companies allow you to add extra add-ons.

Supplementary Third-Party Insurance

Known as seguro intermediario or seguro de terceiros com cobertura complementar, this is the most commonly suggested insurance type. This insurance has third-party coverage and also somewhat protects your vehicle from fire damage, theft, and more. The type of protection will depend on the insurance company, so try to find the best policy.

Full Car Insurance

If you want to be fully protected, the seguro de danos proprios, protects you against all risks. This insurance covers damage to your own vehicle, as well as any damage to third-party vehicles. It also includes any injury costs. 

How much does car insurance cost in Portugal?

In Portugal, car insurance costs anywhere between €150 a year to €350+. The price of car insurance will depend on the type of coverage and several factors such as the vehicle’s age and value, as well as the driver’s profile. If you have a very expensive car, your insurance will possibly cost a lot more than €350 a year.

Photo by Dhiva Krishna (Unsplash)

Applying for Car Insurance in Portugal

To apply for car insurance in Portugal, you will need the following documents:

  • Valid driving license
  • ID or passport
  • Vehicle documents
  • Inspection certification
  • Tax identification number (NIF)

Car Insurance Companies in Portugal

  • Alianz
  • Fidelidade
  • Mercedes
  • MySeguros
  • Montepio Geral
  • Lusitania
  • Adecco
  • Amatoscar

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) About Car Insurance in Portugal

Can you use foreign car insurance in Portugal?

You can use car insurance from EU countries in Portugal. Moreover, insurance from countries that are part of the Green Card Bureaux can also be used in Portugal. This includes the United Kingdom.

Does car insurance cover the cost if I get in an accident in Portugal?

Yes, but what insurance covers depends on your type of insurance. Every vehicle needs to have minimum coverage insurance covering the damage cost to third parties. You can also pay more for fuller coverage that includes your vehicle.

Do I get penalized by my insurance if I get in a car accident in Portugal?

Yes. Car insurance policies in Portugal have a penalties system. If you get into a car accident, your insurance will get more expensive.

Is car insurance mandatory in Portugal?

Car insurance is mandatory in Portugal. However, you only need third-party insurance that covers damage to other vehicles. Depending on the insurance company, this could only cost you €150 a year.

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