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Does Your Car Insurance Policy Cover Off-Road Driving?

By Juhi Walia
23 September 2022, 1:43 PM

Off-road driving is one such term that plays a very important role in determining the car insurance policy that you should buy for your car. Off-roading refers to driving a car on natural or unexplored paths where you do not have access to proper roads. People who use their cars to travel from one city to another might have to get off-roading as they may not find the best roads.

While off-roading might sound like a thrilling experience, it comes with different types of risks. Your car might suffer major damage on a rustic, unexplored road. Therefore, you need to understand if the car insurance policy covers the damages caused by off-roading.

Understanding Off-Road Driving

Off-road driving is an activity where you need to drive your car on a road or path made of rocks, sand, potholes, and other elements that can affect your smooth driving experience. Some off-road driving activities include rock racing, desert racing, etc. While some people get into off-road driving as part of an adventure, others might encounter a road of that sort during their journey and are forced to cross it. 

Off-road driving is also a source of income for some people. They help people cross challenging paths and compensate them for any accidental damages caused on the same. Therefore, you must understand different kinds of off-road driving.

Types of Off-Road Driving

There are different types of off-road driving. While these types might depend on the quality of the road, some off-road driving types also depend on the drivers' driving patterns. Some common off-road driving  types are:

  • Rock crawling
  • Dune bashing
  • Desert racing
  • Mudding
  • Cross country

The damages caused by any of these off-road driving types might be covered if you are forced to cross a way that requires off-road driving.

Risks of Off-Road Driving

Off-road driving is quite risky. Your car becomes prone to dangers if you get into off-road driving. Let us understand some dangers involved in off-road driving:

Error in Judgement

This is one of the major risks in off-road driving. People tend to look at the road on the surface and then underestimate the hurdle. While you are on that road, you might encounter an issue with dangerous consequences.


Off-roading involves driving on an unknown path. Hence, if the weather conditions experience a slight change, it might impact visibility. Also, the sand blowing around can impact your visibility if you drive a car on dunes. You should avoid off-roading if there are heavy rains or a fog situation.

Vehicle Damage

While physical damages like surface scratches might not affect you while off-roading, the vehicle's malfunctioning can create serious problems; generally, these poor roads are found in rural areas where you might not get any assistance instantly. Hence, you will have to be stuck on that road for quite a long time.

Does Car Insurance Cover Off-Road Driving?

You need to talk to your car insurance companies and check if they cover off-road driving. Generally, the damages caused by off-road driving are considered valid and are covered under a car insurance policy. However, if you take your car on an unsurfaced road for adventure, knowing the possible risks, your insurance policy will not cover the damages caused by the off-roading.

There is a spectrum of damages not covered by any car insurance policy, while some sustained damages might be covered. However, if you participate in an off-road driving or car adventure event, the insurance policy will not cover any losses your car suffers. Some insurance policies do not cover losses from such sporting events.

If you are driving off-road and collide with a vehicle, your car insurance might protect you against these damages. But you should clarify the inclusions of off-road driving with your insurer.

What is Covered in Off-Road Driving?

While your insurance provider might not include off-road driving in the insurance policy, they might protect you against some damages. Some insurance policies cover the cost of accidental damages sustained during off-road driving. If your regular travel involves off-road driving, you should opt for a comprehensive insurance policy.

A comprehensive insurance policy covers a wide range of damages, including own damages and any third-party liabilities. However, some damages are not covered when you get off-roading. Some of these damages include wear and tear, damages caused due to drunk driving, speed racing, etc.

Add-ons for Off-Road Driving

You can increase the car's coverage and protection by purchasing some car insurance add-on covers apart from your regular auto insurance policy. Some add-ons that can help you increase the coverage are:

Roadside Assistance Cover

If you avail of a roadside assistance car insurance cover, you can get assistance in case your car breaks down somewhere in the middle of your journey. Some inclusions of the road assistance cover are battery repair, fuel delivery, flat tyre repair, etc. These services can be instrumental while you are off-roading and your car breaks down during the journey.

Tyre Protect Cover

Off-road driving poses a major threat to your tyres. Hence, this add-on will protect your tyres from any damage the tire sustains while off-roading. With tyre protection car insurance add-on, you can claim a reimbursement for damaged tyres and tubes, puncture repair, etc.

Engine Protect Cover

The engine of your car is one of the most expensive components. The engine's quality is at risk while off-roading. Hence, look to buy an engine protect cover as an add-on to your regular insurance.

An engine protection car insurance cover will help you bear the repair or the replacement cost. Water ingression, oil spillage, etc., are some common causes of engine damage.

Consumables Cover

A consumable cover in car insurance protects the consumables used in the car, like nuts, oil filters, etc. Off-roading can damage the consumables, but with this cover, you can get a claim for the damages.

Final Words

While auto insurance policies do not cover most damages caused by off-roading, coverage is provided for some of them. Off-roading can cause damages beyond repair.

Hence, you should try to avoid it as much as possible. While off-roading, you should prioritize your safety. Try to keep your hands inside the vehicle and safeguard your luggage.

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