Gibb River Road: additional insurance for rented 4wd needed?

by Bill and Gill

Renting a 4WD is not cheap and the standard level of insurance leaves a very large excess. Damage to the underbody doesn't appear to be covered. As reasonably careful drivers, are we likely to damage the underbody travelling the Gibb River Road and visiting Morningto and Bungle Bungle? Views and experience welcome. Our trip is in the first half of June

Gibb River Road: additional insurance for rented 4wd needed?

I don't think that is likely on the Gibb River Road or on any of the tracks you mention. Not saying it's impossible, just not likely at all provided you are reasonably careful.

4WD vehicles do have a lot of clearance, so for something to reach the underbody it has to be pretty high.

To do any damage to the underside of a vehicle you'd have to hit a rock, or some solid log at a stupid angle, and with considerable speed.

It's not something you'd do on purpose. If you keep an eye on the track and talk to travellers going the opposite direction you would notice any such severe hazards in time. And there won't be any on the usual roads and tracks off the Gibb River Road (or the Bungles)

The only thing I could think of where you might find deep enough holes would be a little used creek or river crossing. If you are very concerned about that you can always get out of the car and make sure you check those first. (There are no crocodiles on the way to the Bungles or Mornington.)

But again, you won't be the first car for the season, so if you ask other travellers about unusual hazards they'd warn you.

Really, you'd have to do something very extreme to damage the underside of your vehicle. I can't see that happen on any of the normal tracks.

Comments for Gibb River Road: additional insurance for rented 4wd needed?

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Feb 26, 2008
by: Anonymous

... friends told us they met a couple that flipped their car over because they had to move out of the way for a road train. This was just an hour from Perth - - -

All I want to say is: if you are unlucky, you can always get into severe trouble without extra insurance. No matter how unlikely it may be.

Check if there are insurance companies in the country you come from that cover this kind of extra costs. In Germany for example there are.

Aug 14, 2013
Yes Extra Insurance
by: CampervanBloke

I spoke to Apollo and Britz just yesterday about this.
For 4wd camper hire Britz recommends the top tier of the "normal" insurance excess reductions they offer and then they also have an additional 4wd option. This option is a one off $350 payment that covers you for recovery in remote places.
Apollo doesn't seem to offer this extra option.

Both companies require you to get written permission from them before going on Gibb River Road. By default this permission will be given. They only say "no" if authorities have closed the road or there is bad weather imminent.

Apollo (& Cheapa Campa) require you to call in 24-48 hours prior to starting on the road to check permissions and so they can remind you that if you breakdown in such a remote location, the recovery cost will be partly bourne by you the renter. This is different to Britz who said that if you take out that extra 4wd insurance you won't be up for recovery.
Double check this yourself with a phone call before you book the camper though.
@CampervanBloke from

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