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When driving a car in the UAE, valid insurance protects you financially from any unfortunate incident involving your vehicle. Interestingly, you can expand the coverage to receive your new car’s entire value when stolen or damaged beyond repair with the Return on Invoice (RTI) add-on. Popularly known as Back to Invoice in the UAE, it will have your back! So, learn more about it.


  • Comprehensive
  • Third Party
*Above mentioned prices are for Honda City EX 1.5L, 2017 model.
*Above mentioned prices are for Honda City EX 1.5L, 2017 model.

Understanding RTI in Car Insurance

UAE’s RTA (Road Transport Authority) mandates third-party motor insurance as the minimum legal requirement. Still, the comprehensive policy acts as a shield protecting your dream car from all the potential perils. Usually, car insurance considers the IDV (Insured Declared Value) while settling claims. But the RTI fetches your car’s on-road price, disregarding the depreciating factor. So, how do you differentiate between them? Take a look.

  • Return to Invoice: The insurer returns the invoice value of your car while settling claims when it is beyond redemption, stolen, or lost. However, you can add the coverage without the law’s mandate of your own volition while buying the insurance policy.
  • Insured Declared Value: Howsoever well you nurse your car, its current value is never what you pay for the new one. So, the insurance policy on renewal sets the current value as the IDV for reckoning the claim amount.

Benefits of Return On Invoice Car Insurance

UAE car insurers offer custom insurance policies to cater to your needs, with suitable add-ons. Their back-to invoice or the return-on invoice add-on works independently over what is available elsewhere, keeping the real benefits unaltered. Here's what you get.

  • Enhanced scope of coverage

With return on invoice car insurance, you buy the coverage at an additional cost with the new insurance policy or while renewing it.

  • Applies to new cars

You are extra careful when your car is new, and the return on invoice works best. Your emotional drain is higher when significant damages mar your new vehicle. However, how long you can enjoy the coverage depends on the insurance type specific to the UAE. So, let us find out instances when the insurance coverage plays out:

  • Case of theft

There is no protection to prevent theft of your car, whatever the precautions. However, the return on invoice car insurance provides the necessary shield.

  • Case of a total loss

The total loss of your car may be beyond repair due to an accident or an unforeseen calamity. The return on invoice car insurance is a boon as you receive the car’s value without considering the repair cost.

  • Available with comprehensive car insurance

You can think of buying add-ons according to your requirements only with the own damage component under the comprehensive policy offered by the UAE insurers. However, you must adhere to their specific caveats and exclusions to benefit from the add-on when the primary criterion is your car’s age.

How Does the Return On Invoice Car Insurance Work?

The back to invoice springs into action immediately after your car is damaged beyond repair or lost due to burglary. The insurer classifies the condition as a total loss for claim settlement under the return on invoice add-on coverage. Here are a few relevant situations other than theft to consider.

  • Fire: Extensive damage to your car due to explosion or fire beyond rescue
  • Floods: Extensive and significant damage to car components due to inundation
  • Landslide: Natural disasters like land and rockslide crushing your vehicle beyond repair
  • Accident: If the impact of the mishap causes extensive damage to the car and the repair cost is higher than its value

Your claim fetches you the return on invoice value in all the indicative situations above, provided you buy the add-on coverage. Else, the insurance claim brings you the IDV, which is much lower than the invoice value. 

When Does the Return On Invoice Coverage Not Apply?

The add-on coverage comes into play only when it satisfies specific conditions. It implies that there are situations when you cannot file a claim under the return on the invoice coverage. So, let us find out when.

  • Third-party liability policy: You cannot buy add-on covers, let alone return on the invoice, under the TP policy, which does not cover your damage as in the comprehensive car insurance policy
  • Old cars: The return on invoice clause applies to the insured vehicle up to a certain age, depending on the insurance policy type and coverage. For example, the time range for a reputed UAE insurer’s comprehensive car insurance policy is between 6 to 24 months, where the back-to-invoice add-on is available. 
  • Minor damages: You cannot claim under the return on invoice coverage if the damage is negligible, requiring meager repairs. Even if you raise a claim, it will not come in force under the provision. 

A UAE Car Insurance Policy Features

Many global insurers operate in the UAE, offering tailored car insurance policies in compliance with the guidelines of the country’s RTA. However, not all insurers provide the return on invoice car insurance, better known in the UAE as back to invoice. So, let us learn about the typical coverage in a major insurer’s car insurance policy. 

The all-inclusive package comprehensive car insurance policy protects your car, passengers, and you with an in-built third-party liability and personal damage coverage. The typical inclusions are:

  • A dedicated multilingual customer service team that speaks in more than 15 languages
  • Option to undertake repairs in agency, dealership, or the insurer’s state-of-the-art network garages
  • Oman extension coverage for road trips to the country
  • Inspection of your car on the RTA’s behalf
  • Complimentary replacement car when your vehicle is under service
  • Real-time updates of your car’s repair

By now, you are conversant with the primary coverage features of a typical car insurance policy from a reputed global insurer. So, let us summarize the components for clear insight.



Motor Comprehensive 

Motor Third-party

TP property damage 

AED 3.5 to 5 million

AED 3.5 million

Fire and theft 


Not applicable 

Natural calamity/ riot 


Not applicable 

Personal injury 

AED 20000

Not applicable 

Emergency medical expenses 

AED 3500

Not applicable 

Personal belongings 

AED 4000

Not applicable 

Oman cover 



Guaranteed repairs 


Not applicable 

Back to invoice 

Six months to 24 months from 1st registration

Not applicable 

Optional accident benefit – driver 

AED 200000 to 350000

AED 200000

Optional accident benefit – passenger 

AED 200000

AED 200000

Hire car benefit 

Up to AED 1500

Not applicable 

Windscreen damage 

Below AED 5000

Not applicable

Pick up and drop 


Not applicable 

The above provisions are indicative, and you must scan individual car insurance policy documents for specific terms and conditions before making an informed decision. 

Who Can Apply for Car Insurance in The UAE?

Not everyone is eligible for buying car insurance in the UAE, and the indicative provisions are:

  • You are a UAE resident
  • You have a valid UAE driving license 
  • Your car is UAE registered
  • You have not been disqualified from driving, have no criminal records, or have not been refused insurance during the previous 5 years.
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Frequently Asked Questions:

Q1. What is the penalty for driving your car in the UAE without valid car insurance?

Ans: The usual penalty for driving a car in the UAE without valid insurance is an AED 500 fine. In addition, you get 4 black points on your driving license and confiscation of the vehicle for up to 7 days.

Q2. How do you calculate the return on invoice claim amount?

Ans: The return on invoice value comprises your car’s on-road price, including the ex-showroom price, road tax, and registration fees. 

Q3. Can you transfer your car insurance when residing in the UAE?

Ans: You cannot transfer car insurance policies of 9 months or less. However, check with the insurer of car insurance policies with higher validity periods.

Q4. Is car insurance mandatory in the UAE?

Ans: Car insurance is compulsory in the UAE, it makes sense to opt for the return on invoice car insurance under the package insurance policy. 

Q5. What is the maximum return on invoice coverage?

Ans: The maximum return on invoice coverage is up to 24 months, unlike in other countries.

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