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How to Get Car Insurance for Second-Hand Vehicles in the Philippines

Venus Zoleta

Venus Zoleta

Last updated May 23, 2023

Second-hand cars are cheaper to own than brand-new ones, which is why cash-strapped Filipinos typically opt for a used unit for their first car. And with the emergence of more organized selling channels, the used car market in the Philippines is expected to gain momentum in the coming years.[1]

Did you buy a pre-owned car? Motor vehicle insurance for second-hand cars is a must rather than optional. To insure a second-hand vehicle, you have two choices: either retain the old car insurance policy or buy a new policy.

Here's a walk-through of how to get car insurance for second-hand cars in the Philippines.

How to Transfer Car Insurance Policy for a Used Car

car insurance for second hand cars - how to transfer policy

The easier way to insure a second-hand car is to keep its existing insurance policy intact. However, a policy doesn't get transferred automatically with the change of vehicle ownership. The original owner has to get approval from their insurance provider to transfer the policy to the new owner.

Do you prefer to retain the car insurance of your newly bought second-hand unit? As long as the original policyholder has not canceled the car insurance, you can have the policy transferred to your name right after finalizing the vehicle sale.

The seller or original owner is the one who will coordinate with the insurance provider to request a transfer of the car insurance policy. Once approved, the insurer will issue an endorsement reflecting your name as the new policyholder. You'll then be required to pay the premiums.

Because the car insurance policy is already under your name, you can make a claim should your second-hand car figure in an accident and need to be repaired.

Before the car insurance expires, you can either renew your policy or switch to a new provider.

Read more: Switching Car Insurance Companies: Step-by-Step Guide

How to Get Car Insurance for a Second-Hand Car in the Philippines

Getting new car insurance for second-hand cars involves more work than keeping the old policy. But it ensures you get your preferred coverage at a better price.

The process of buying car insurance for used cars is quite similar to getting a new car insured, save for a few differences. You can get car insurance before or after your vehicle purchase.

1. Check If the Used Car Can Still be Insured

car insurance for second hand cars - check the vehicle

Not all used cars can be insured. Compared to new cars, second-hand units are subject to a more stringent evaluation process by car insurance companies.

Car insurance providers approve a used car based on the following criteria:

  • Age limit - Insurance companies usually cover vehicles with an age of up to 10 years. Older cars in good condition may still be insured, depending on the insurer, but they're likely to be charged a high premium.
  • Vehicle condition - A second-hand car is insurable if it's in good working condition. Meaning, the car doesn't show signs of wear and tear, and it runs without major problems on the road.
  • Vehicle history - Car insurance providers also check the car's past records to evaluate its risk. You can still get your used car insured if it never got involved in an accident and had no or few repairs done.
  • Modifications - Typical car insurance policies don't cover certain types of vehicle modifications.
  • Repair costs - Second-hand cars with expensive and hard-to-find parts are costly to repair. If the repair costs are higher than the unit's fair market value, then insurance providers might not approve a pre-owned car for coverage.

If you haven't bought a vehicle yet, keep those factors in mind when shopping for a second-hand car so that you can have it insured for a lower rate.

Read more: 9 Car Insurance Payment Options in the Philippines

Get a free car insurance quote

2. Find the Ideal Coverage for Used Cars

Compared to brand-new cars, pre-owned units are more likely to break down, get stolen, and have prior modifications. Thus, choosing car insurance for second-hand cars should be done differently than that for new cars.

  • Roadside assistance - This is one of the good car insurance add-ons for second-hand units. It covers your vehicle during an emergency like engine overheating, vehicle stalling, and road accidents.
  • Vehicle loss or theft - This coverage is also ideal if your car has no anti-theft devices installed or if you don't have the budget to install one.
  • Comprehensive coverage - Consider your used car's value to decide if you need it. Vehicles less than 10 years old should get full coverage. However, for older cars that have lost value, it may be cost-effective to forgo comprehensive insurance.

3. Get Car Insurance Quotes

car insurance for second hand cars - get quotes

Now that your insurance requirements are laid out, it's time to gather quotes from car insurance companies and compare them to get the best rate for your vehicle's age and the coverage you need.

You can get quotes through each provider's website or by calling them one by one. To save time and effort, though, use a car insurance comparison platform. Moneymax, for example, makes finding quotes quick and easy. Simply enter your vehicle details, and you'll get quotes from various reputable insurance companies in the Philippines.

Below is a list of top companies in the Philippines that provide car insurance for second-hand cars. Compare your options and get a free auto insurance quote from Moneymax!

Car Insurance Company Maximum Total Sum Insured CTPL Coverage Own Damage & Theft Coverage Acts of Nature Coverage Death or Disablement Coverage
FPG Insurance
Get free car insurance quote
₱4 million ✔️ ✔️ ✔️  
Malayan Insurance
Get free car insurance quote
₱7.5 million ✔️ ✔️ ✔️  
The Mercantile Insurance Corporation
mercantile insurance logo
Get free car insurance quote
₱5 million   ✔️ ✔️  
OONA Insurance (formerly MAPFRE)
Oona logo_horizontal with insurance_purple
Get free car insurance quote
₱5 million ✔️ ✔️ ✔️ ✔️
PGA Insurance
Get free car insurance quote
₱3 million       ✔️
SGI Philippines
Get free car insurance quote
₱5 million ✔️   ✔️ ✔️
Standard Insurance
Get free car insurance quote
₱5 million ✔️ ✔️ ✔️ ✔️
Stronghold Insurance
Get free car insurance quote
₱3 million   ✔️    

4. Submit the Requirements

Once you've chosen the provider with the best coverage and price, prepare the documents and vehicle information that the insurer will require. Usually, requirements include the vehicle specs (make, model, year, plate number, etc.), photos of the car, official receipt, and certificate of registration.

As soon as you have them already, submit the car insurance policy requirements via email or personally in the company's office.

An officer from the car insurance company may visit you to inspect the condition of your second-hand car.

When purchasing car insurance for a second-hand vehicle, it's important to choose a provider that offers comprehensive coverage that suits your needs and budget. Some of the options you may consider include Mercantile Car Insurance and Stronghold Car Insurance, which are known for their affordable rates and flexible coverage options that can be tailored to your specific requirements.

5. Receive Your Policy

car insurance for second hand cars - receive your policy

Wait for your new insurance policy to be sent to your email. A hard copy will also be delivered to your mailing address if you prefer it.

Don't forget to pay for the premium so that your policy stays active and you won't encounter problems when filing a claim.

FAQs on Car Insurance for Old Cars in the Philippines

1. Can old cars be insured?

Yes, a used car can have insurance coverage as long as it's in good condition and its age is within the limit set by the insurer. 

2. Is insurance for older cars cheaper?

The premium depends on your insurance provider, but older cars are more likely to get charged a higher price because of their age. Since old and vintage cars require special maintenance and their car parts are difficult to replace, expect to pay more expensive car insurance.

Also, participation fees in car insurance cost more for older vehicles, as they come with higher depreciation fees compared to newer cars during a claim.

3. How much is the insurance for old cars in the Philippines?

To get up-to-date and accurate rates for insuring your used car, we strongly recommend that you get car insurance quotes from at least three providers. Your premium cost will depend on your car's age, its condition, history, and the add-ons you'll avail of, among other factors.

Final Thoughts

Whether you get a new or used vehicle, you need car insurance to protect yourself financially in case it breaks down, gets stolen, or figures in an accident. When buying car insurance for second-hand cars, make sure to give it careful thought.

Get a free car insurance quote

Source: [1] Philippines Used Car Market is Expected to Gain Momentum (Bloomberg, 2022)

Venus leads the blog content strategy and optimization at Moneymax as the Head of Editorial Content. She has 15+ years of experience in content marketing, corporate communications, and public relations. Venus graduated cum laude with a Journalism degree from the University of the Philippines Diliman. Before joining Moneymax, Venus had written informative guides and articles, specializing in personal finance and digital marketing. She also invests in stocks, mutual funds, VUL, and Pag-IBIG MP2. A hardcore Hallyu Tita, she enjoys bingeing K-dramas on Netflix while bonding with her rescued cats. Follow Venus on LinkedIn.


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