Hire car insurance for Mitchell Plateau

by Peter
(Netherlands)

On the way to the Mitchell Plateau

On the way to the Mitchell Plateau

We understand that our hired 4wd car insurance only covers the Gibb River Road, and not the Kalumburu Road and Mitchell Plateau Track. Does someone know if you can get an additional insurance for those?

Comments for Hire car insurance for Mitchell Plateau

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by: Birgit

Hi Peter,

For many drives like that you need written permission from the hire company. It depends on the company. They all have different rules, regarding which roads exactly are excluded from what. But the majority of them require you to get written permission first for that trip, that's if they give it at all.

Here is a good FAQ and reasonable summary for most big hire companies. (Link removed, page does not exist any more.) Scroll down about half way to the heading "Roads".

The Mitchell Plateau Track is still not a gazetted road (or "recognised" road or track). Most car hire companies that I know stipulate that you need to stay on gazetted/recognised tracks. If you do leave them it is totally at your own risk.

So basically you are asking to buy insurance for the consequences of breaching your hire agreement...

You need to find someone who is willing to hire you a vehicle and give you permission to take it to the Mitchell Plateau. Or ask the hire company you already selected for that permission.

That's what I know. If any readers have managed to get permission/insurance for a trip to the Mitchell Plateau, please let us know.

Thanks
by: Peter

Thanks Birgit,

This is very helpful.

Our plan was to drive up to the Mitchell Plateau Campsite and do a hike to the falls, but now understand Kea will likely not giving a written permit for that destination.

many thanks again,
kind regards,

Peter & Marjolein
(excuses for my bad english)

Don't be put off!
by: Charles Callis

(Name removed as company has changed names and the old name is now used by a different company.) said we could take the vehicle up to the Mitchell Plateau,no written permission required - their terms and conditions effectively give carte blanche to go off road, but no insurance for it. Insurance anyway only covers you for collision damage, but this is the biggest risk on that track. Provided you drive carefully and watch out for other vehicles at bends and rises, there shouldn't be a problem.

Only the wording varies
by: Anonymous

Well, if they don't cover you, then at the end of the day it makes no difference. No matter which company, you can ignore the requirement for written permission and pay any damages out of your own pocket.

So to say they "allow" it where others don't is a bit misleading. The outcome and costs of any damage would be exactly the same.

Update: after following up with (Name removed as company has changed names and the old name is now used by a different company.) I learned that in fact they do cover you on all existing tracks. You would only be breaching your agreement with them if you left the track and started pushing your own track through the bush (so, no carte blanche for offroading).

If anyone knows of other companies who can cover you up there, let us know.

Another update: one reader wrote in to report that Britz gave them permission to go to the Mitchell Plateau without any problems. But I also heard from people who used Britz and didn't get permission.

Avoid
by: Anonymous

I just wanted to throw in here our experience with (Name removed as company has changed names and the old name is now used by a different company.). First they tried to increase our hire rate and throw on some additional fees 6 months after we made our booking, and then when we finally agreed as we were only 2 weeks out from our holiday and not likely to find another suitable vehicle in peak season, the sent an email (no courtesy call) to say they suddenly had no vehicles available and their Force Majeur in the contract said they didn't have to provide us a vehicle at all. This is after being charged the wrong amount twice. Save yourself the heart ache!

Re Avoid by: Anonymous
by: Brook Picken

It is disappointing (and telling) when someone will not put their name to a negative comment. I remember this incident well. What is not written here is that Auto Trans, one of Australia's largest car carrying companies, had left the vehicle in Perth. They also left it to the last minute to inform us. We did what we could and helped the client find a replacement vehicle. They were able to continue on their holiday. We could not do any more than that.

Brook Picken

COLLISON DAMAGE WAIVER
by: Anonymous

(Name removed as company has changed names and the old name is now used by a different company.) DO ALLOW YOU TO GO TO MITCHELL FALLS AND YOU ARE COVERED TO GO THERE. WE ALSO ALLOW YOU TO GO TO OTHER STATIONS AND PARKS IN THE KIMBERLEY AND HAVE DONE FOR NEARLY TEN YEARS.

NO CAR HIRE COMPANY WILL COVER YOU FOR WATER DAMAGE, OVERHEAD DAMAGE OR UNDERBODY DAMAGE. THIS IS CONSIDERED TO BE NEGLIGENT. IF YOU DRIVE A VEHICLE ON THESE TRACKS AND DO NOT MAKE YOUR OWN TRACKS YOU WILL HAVE NO ISSUES, WHILST STILL BEING COVERED.

THIS WEB SITE HERE HAS EXCELLENT TIPS FOR THE REGION. AS A COMPANY WE ALSO SUPPLY YOU WITH AN IN CAR COMPENDIUM WITH 4WD DRIVING TIPS. I CAN NOT EMPHASIZE ENOUGH THE IMPORTANCE ON READING THIS OR SOMETHING SIMILAR.

Australis Premium Tours
by: Anonymous

I would never use Australis Premium Tours. They have had a court case decided against them for unlawfully deducting a security deposit and you can't argue against the court on this one. We found their service to be dreadful - The most unhelpful company we dealt with in Australia. They ripped us off!

Xxx ripped us off too!
by: Anonymous

Avoid! We used them on a trip and when we returned the jeeps they slogged us with a cleaning bill above the amount specified on the T&C, damage that they provided no documentation for, and the replacement of equipment which could have been repaired at a fraction of the cost!

Stay Away!
by: Anonymous

Yep, nothing but trouble. No matter how good it might sound, They will try every possible way to rip you off.

Xxx
by: Anonymous

This is yet another warning to keep away from (Name removed as company has changed names and the old name is now used by a different company.). They do NOT have properly maintained vehicles. Just one example is a tyre was repaired with a plug in the wall of the tyre!

car insurance?
by: Rae Edwards

Looks like in those rivers you should make sure you have term life insurance as well. Anything can happen at any given time and it's important to be prepared.

Do not deal with xxx
by: Pipolaki

I'm another one having had a very bad experience with (Name removed as company has changed names and the old name is now used by a different company.).

To make a long story short, we got charged for 2 months after having returned the vehicle for damages that we didn't do. Even though we had the full insurance, and the "damages" were covered by it, they still charged us for them and bla bla bla ...just a huge rip off!

Please Avoid!

Avoid Australis Premium Tours
by: Anonymous

AVOID at all costs! They are incompetent and will not return emails/calls etc. As people from overseas, we had only internet to use to hire car. Unfortunately, we found Australis Premium Tours.

The car was old, crappy and definitely not roadworthy and this was confirmed by the agent when we complained when returning the vehicle. Even as an experienced 4WD enthusiast, it was dangerous and at times we felt our lives were at risk because of the faults of the car.

Australis Premium Tours saw us as cash cows and noting more; not clients who wanted to enjoy their country. When we raised questions via email, they were ignored, or only one line responses suggesting we should wait.

This left us with nothing but bad memories and we could not enjoy our stay in a beautiful country.

Australian 4WD Rentals?
by: Anonymous

Hi there,

Not sure how old these comments are but I was wondering if anyone has been with Australian 4WD Rentals? The name is pretty similar to the one that you are all talking about, but the website looks different.

If anyone has any reviews of them I'd really appreciate it, as I am thinking of booking with them for a trip from Darwin to Broome.

Cheers!

Reviews please
by: Anonymous

I am also in the process of booking with 4WD rentals. Reviews please!
Thanks

That Won't be a Prob
by: Harry Rider

Of course you can get an additional insurance, provided you actually get it before the trip. I mean a week before your trip. They still do have a lot more restrictions for the vehicle. I don’t know the complete details. But I am sure that you can extend it.

Do NOT rent with xxx
by: Anonymous

We had a negative experience with xxx (2015). Very poor service (including threats!), cost are charged without agreement, and camping equipment in very bad condition. Strongly recommend going elsewhere!

No Complaints
by: Anonymous

Wow!!!
We just came back from our family holidays and were thinking of where to go to recommend or endorse this company and stumbled over this blog. After reading some of the comments we decided to give our own.
We hired our vehicle from and to Perth. Both car and equipment were clean and nearly new condition. Guys were quite friendly and gave us some good word of advice and we had great holidays. Sorry but we cannot complain!!!

xxx
by: Anonymous

DO NOT HIRE from xxx. They are disgraceful, rude and cost so many people a lot of money. We had a dreadful experience (July 2015) and could not recommend to anyone - search the web, we are not alone in such a bad experience with this company.

Please add name to negative comments
by: Birgit

Hi everyone,

I had to remove the name of the company that you complained about in the last two posts.

Here is the thing: if you want to complain (and if you are unhappy, please do so!), don't do it anonymously. That is cowardly, bad style, and it also makes it very easy to brush you off as not genuine. You could well be a mean competitor rather than a rightfully disgruntled customer.

If you do not want to make your name public please send your complaint to me. (Use my contact page.) As long as I have your details we can publish it without your name.

Thanks,
Birgit

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