Category Archives: Information and Alerts

6 Things To Always Do When Travelling

Since festive season is now officially behind us, you may not have too many long distance travel plans till Easter, however, incase you are planning any trips either in the country or outside, here are some essential things to consider before setting off. Of course, tip number one should be to ensure that you have good insurance coverage, the following points are mostly concerned with road safety.

1) Check your tyre pressure
Many people fail to do this simple check before they set off on a voyage. Ensure that your tyre pressure matches the manufacturer recommended pressure shown on a label you will find either on the glove compartment lid or on the side of the driver or passenger door frame. Running tires over-inflated will cause uneven wear on the tread (more wear in the centre) and can lead to blow-outs if the tires get hot. Under-inflating tyres will lead to instability or an increased “pull” to either side.

2) Check your tyre tread
Your tyres should have tread worn out evenly from left to right. Uneven wear can be dangerous to drive with. The tyres should also have around 2 – 3 cms of tread remaining at least, especially when driving in rainy conditions.

3) Check your oil level
Check your oil levels with the oil dip stick to ensure that you have enough oil in the engine. running your car with low oil can be harmful to the motor. If you are unsure how to check the levels, the petrol attendants in most petrol stations should be trained to do it.

4) Rotate your tyres regularly
Rotating your tyres (moving tyres front to back and back to front) allows for even wear. It is good to regularly have this done.

5) Regularly replace your wiper blades
It is important to regularly change your wiper blades to ensure they are functioning well. Generally, before the rainy season starts, most drivers would not have bothered to check their wiper blades, and can get caught on the road in a storm without fully functional wipers.

6) Keep your car serviced
It is crucial to keep your car well serviced and maintained. Check and replace your battery when needed, check and top up brake fluid and radiator coolant as needed. Ensure brake pads and shoes are replaced regularly as well.

Following these safety tips will ensure that you’re always driving your car worry free.

Renting Out Your Home? How Home Insurance Protects Your Investment

An image of home insurance icons
Household Insurance

When it comes to keeping your rental property safe, you’ve taken numerous precautions. If you own real estate that you rent to others, it is still very important to protect your investment. Even if you believe you have the safest tenants renting your property, your house can still be at risk for unavoidable types of incidents and losses. The property home insurance can help to reduce the risks you face when an incident occurs.

How Can Property Insurance Protect Your Rental?

If you were to live in the house yourself, the house insurance policy you have will protect the building itself from many risks. The same is true for your rental. The building coverage will likely provide protection from risks such as:

Bursting, leaking or overflowing water or heating systems including pipes
Storm, wind, water, hail, and snow damage
Impact from trees, animals, aerials, or other objects hitting the property
Breakage of collapse of a radio or television system onto the house
If one of these incidents was to occur, the damage to your home can be extensive. The house insurance plan will help pay for the damages so you can repair it quickly.

What Additional Renter Coverage Offers

If you are not living in the property, you may wish to purchase an additional level of coverage. By purchasing an extension or clause for rental income, your house insurance plan will help you to recoup some of the losses associated with the loss of rent payments itself. Though each plan is different, a standard plan will offer loss of rent coverage if the property becomes uninhabitable as the result of a defined event (any of those that are listed above, or others as defined by your policy).

The insurance company will pay the insured up to 24 percent of the sum the property is insured at through the policy. The amount paid is determined based on how long the individuals must be vacated from the property for the necessary repairs from the damage as well as the annual rent of the building if it is unfurnished or the equivalent rental value.

In short, house insurance for your rental property should include coverage for the building repairs if they are necessary as well as insurance protection from loss of rent should your renters be unable to live there as a result of the cover loss.

If you did not have this type of insurance in place, not only would you have to make the repairs to your property on your own, but you would also lose out on the rent paid to you by your tenants for that time. Additionally, when you have high-quality house insurance, this means the work to make repairs will be done properly by a professional. This in itself can help ensure your renters can move back into a safe, clean, and secure home in no time. The investment in property insurance simply makes financial sense to most property owners no matter who is living in that house.

No BANG for your buck – The cost of being uninsured

Botswana has a significant number of uninsured or under insured drivers. This article talks about the risks you face when you drive without coverage.

Driving without insurance cover, or driving with low insurance coverage (being under-insured) is a risky gamble which inevitably becomes expensive if you have an accident. Botswana has a large number on uninsured drivers on the road, which puts the drivers themselves, and third parties at risk. Alpha Direct offers products, which can make car insurance more affordable, and reduce the risk of personal liability should an accident occur.

Before driving on our country’s beautiful roads, Batswana need to consider the risk of driving uninsured. While there can be small savings on taking on the full risk, especially during difficult financial times, the implications of driving without cover affect not only the uninsured party, but those who do have insurance and even the providers of insurance solutions.

Statistically, every year, one in four people will be involved in a vehicle accident. This puts nearly each and every one of us at major risk. The cost of a vehicle accident can run from the low thousands of Pula, all the way to hundreds of thousands, and in some cases millions of Pula! Uninsured people could have their wages garnished if they are unable to cover the cost of a claim. With over two-thirds of drivers on our roads being uninsured, your chance of being hit by a driver without insurance is high, and getting your dues from another uninsured driver can be an arduous and time consuming affair, and even if you are insured, you will need to consider your excess which will need to be paid to your insurer.

While one aspect to consider is the damage to your vehicle, if you caused the accident, you will probably also be held responsible for the surmounting costs of repairing the damage caused to the vehicles or property of other people, which could be pursued either by them or their insurance company against you.

No matter which way you look at it, the negligible cost of premiums absolutely outweighs in benefit, the cost of an accident. If you are presently uninsured, contact an Alpha Direct Agent at 392-8264 to receive a free quote.

What Does Household Contents Insurance Include?

To follow up on our previous post on Home and household contents insurance cover, this week we will get more in-depth on what items are covered under household contents insurance.

An image of home insurance icons
Household Contents Insurance

Your home is one of the most valuable assets you have, if not the most valuable. You may have home insurance that provides protection to the structure itself. This is a necessary type of cover because it can protect you from financial loss associated with fire or damage to the building itself. However, if a fire should occur, the structure is not the only thing at risk. Many times, people lose valuable assets within their home as well. Household contents insurance provides that level of protection.

What Will This Insurance Cover?

Household contents insurance provides cover for a variety of personal items in your home at the time of a covered incident. These contents and personal effects may include items such as the following:

  • Items that you own
  • Items you are responsible for at the time the dwelling suffers a covered peril
  • Clothing
  • Household appliances and goods
  • Furnishings for your home


If you have items that are very valuable, you will need to report these items to the insurance carrier before such an incident occurs. By providing documentation for items like this, you are more likely to receive reimbursement for those items if an incident occurs. Examples of this may include high-value jewelry, art, collectibles, coins, or other items with a very high value. In some situations, you will benefit from increasing the amount of your coverage to ensure it is high enough to cover the value of these high-end items. Simply inform your insurance carrier about your specific valuable items and their estimated or appraised value.

What Type of Perils Does Household Contents Insurance Protect Against?

Household contents insurance protects against the same types of perils home insurance covers. This will vary from one policy to the next. The most common types of perils include fire and theft. Lightning, storm damage, and flood damage are also often covered. If you are unsure of a type of risks covered, talk to your agent about any limitations.

How to Keep Contents Safe

While your household contents insurance is an important part of protecting your home, it is also important to take steps to keep your home safe and secure.

  • Be sure to install home security systems on your home whenever possible. These will help deter thieves from trying to break into your home.
  • Install bars along your windows to keep people out. Be sure to keep windows and doors locked at all times to ensure you remain safe. Theft is a big concern in Botswana.
  • Consider investing in security boxes and safes to help protect very high-value items. Place jewelry and coins, for example, in this type of storage.

Home contents insurance can protect your belongings from many of the biggest risks. It can help to protect your contents from risks you cannot control such as oil leakage and water damage. It could help cover risks such as malicious damage or theft. You take every step possible to keep your home and family safe. However, when something does happen, you will appreciate having home insurance and contents cover to rely on to help you avoid the financial loss.

How to Keep Your Household and Contents Safe During the Festive Season


The festive season should be about family and friends and you shouldn’t have to worry about theft and vandals. Even so, it is quite the common problem for many households during this time of the year. Crime often goes up during the festive season in Botswana, as well as most other areas. You can protect your home and your family from it by making a few upgrades and modifications to your home now.

Get the Proper Type of Homeowner’s Insurance

Even as you take every step toward improving your home’s safety, there will still be some level of risk present during this time of the year. Your first step is to look at your existing homeowner’s insurance policy and find out if it provides enough protection to meet your needs. There are two major components of this type of insurance you need to have to remain safe:

Homeowners’ Insurance: This particular type of insurance coverage protects the structure of your house. With this type of coverage, you gain protection from risks such as fire and water damage. Additional options may include accidental demolition, or other types of risks to the structure itself.

Household Contents Insurance: This type of cover provides you with security over the contents, or assets, you own. These are items within your home such as your household appliances and personal items. Protect against theft or damage to these items.

At this time of the year, it is important to reassess your current insurance coverage and determine if you have enough protection, or if you need additional coverage. Also, look closely at the policy to be sure it covers all components of your home, including high value belongings.

How to Keep Your Home Safe

With your insurance in place, you can rest easy knowing your property is protected should someone cause damage. It’s also important to take every step possible to reduce risks of these incidents occurring. These tips can help you to do that:

  • Install smoke detectors in your home, especially near sleeping areas to ward against fire and smoke damage.
  • Install burglar bars on doors and windows. Ensure your windows and doors are locked at all times even if you are at home.
  • Install alarm systems for the house itself. The most modern systems can help you protect your home and ward off would-be thieves.
  • Add electric fencing to your compound wall to discourage theft.
  • Keep the property clean and tidy to avoid the risk of fire damage.
  • Install an intercom system so that no one enters your property without first gaining access from you directly.
  • If you should have an incident of theft, or potentially fire or other damage, contact your insurance carrier right away.
  • Be sure to file a police report as soon as you notice the damage or the illegal entry. This will help the insurance company process your claim as well.

Most importantly, don’t fight back against an intruder. Your belongings are not more valuable than your life. And, your insurance is likely to provide you with the compensation you need to overcome this loss.

Every home is at a higher risk during the festive season, but you do not have to be a victim. Often times, thieves seek out the easiest target rather than a home that is well protected and guarded.

Protecting your home

Protecting Your Home

Hand of the businessman with the house

We were recently at the 2015 Builder’s Expo at the Airport Junction Mall. We were there to educate consumers and offer up quotes to the public, and as usual, the response was overwhelmingly positive. While we’re well known for our great coverage and competitive offerings on the motor insurance side, we also offer some exceptional products to cover the other valuables in your life. One of our offerings, Home Insurance provides you with cover for your home (Homeowner’s Policies) and its contents (Household Contents); but what does homeowners insurance exactly protect? Each home insurance policy is different, but standard policies usually offer:

– Broad coverage for damage to your home and/or any permanent structures on your property, which could vary depending on your policy (Homeowner’s coverage)
– Damage to your personal property on specific items listed on your policy. This would include your assets in the house (Household Contents coverage)
– We also offer various coverage options for the contents of your home to protect them from fire, wind, hail, lightning and theft. After you pay your deductible, you’ll be covered for the entire remainder of damage or loss.

If you are a tenant in a rental property have you considered a renters insurance policy for all your stuff? You have valuable items in your home too – replacing them could be more expensive than you think.

Alpha Direct offers highly competitive coverage on homeowner’s, household content and renter’s coverage, and you may qualify for further discounts on your policy if you have:

  • A monitored alarm system
  • Deadbolts on your doors
  • Smoke detectors in your house

Most banks typically will require homeowners to take out insurance coverage for the length of your mortgage, but since there is no mandatory coverage for renters, people often overlook taking out policies which could result in catastrophic losses or theft. Insurance coverage is always the smart way to protect yourself.

What information is required for a quote?

We may require some details such as the year the house was built, the address, and a recent valuation of the property. If you are covering the contents of the house, then a list of items and their values may also be required. – Click here to get a quick, easy and free quote.

How to React in a Car Accident

Motor vehicle accidents can happen to anyone. With quality motor insurance and the right steps, you’ll be able to get the help you need through the accident and through the claim process.  

No matter how careful you are while driving your vehicle, a car accident can occur. Motor insurance is there to help you to overcome these losses. Yet, what you do when a car accident happens, is very important. It’s always important to drive safely and to avoid any risks possible. When an accident does happen, stop and take a deep breath. Then, consider a few key tips to help you through this process.

Man talking on phone after car accident
Call your insurance company after a car accident

Never Say It Was Your Fault

Before you get out of your car, remember to never tell anyone in the car or others involved in the accident that you made a mistake. Often times, you do not have all of the information on hand to make that decision. It is best to allow the police officer who responds to your accident to make the decision about who is at fault. Later, this will help protect you from lawsuits.

What To Do

When an accident occurs, move the vehicles to the side of the road if you are obstructing traffic or if it is dangerous. If this is not possible, that’s okay. Call the police immediately. You also need to assess the situation to determine if anyone is hurt and ensure those people get immediate medical care if they need it. Then, consider the following.

  • After calling the police, ask the other driver for his or her insurance information. Copy all of that person’s information and share your own. This should include their name, address, phone and insurance company information (name, address, phone, policy number, and other information.)
  • File a police report. Even if the damage is minimal, this works as proof of what occurred.
  • Remain calm. Don’t fight or argue with the other driver.
  • Keep your emergency lights on and flashing to alert other drivers.
  • Stay out of the road and traffic. Don’t stand in the street.
  • Take photographs of the accident. This includes photos of your vehicle, the road conditions, the other vehicle, any property damaged, and anyone involved.
  • Gather information about the other car, such as the make and model number.

With this information in hand, and after you are safe, call your insurance company. Your insurance company will provide you with very specific steps to take to file a claim. This is often done only after the accident report is filed and available. Your insurance company will tell you how and where to tow the vehicle, if needed, and how to handle any claims from the other driver against your policy.

Don’t worry. If you have a quality motor insurance plan, most types of accidents will be covered. If you need a new insurance plan, request a quote today and find out how to make sure your car, your assets, and your finances are protected in the event of an accident.

Driver Festive Season Safety Tips: How to Stay Safe on the Road

Learn how to stay safe on the road during the holiday season, including how to protect yourself with car insurance.  

During the festive season, it’s possible you’ll experience a wide range of good things, but you also face more drivers on the road, worse driving conditions, and potentially dangerous situations. Imagine the many drivers darting to and from locations to finish up their holiday shopping. There are more people on the streets and many more distracted drivers. This is why you need to take the steps necessary to minimize risk to you and your family. Being a safe driver is important during this time of the year. These tips can help you.

Beware of Drunk Driving

With the festive holiday season comes more drinking and celebrating. This often leads to more people on the road driving intoxicated. In many areas of Botswana, the increase in the number of people arrested and charged with drunk driving rises during the festive season. If you plan to head out to a party and drink even a small amount, don’t get behind the wheel. And, as a driver, you need to be more aware of those who you share the road with, as they may be more likely to be under the influence.

Take the Time to Drive Safely

Even if you are not in a rush and do not feel your driving is impacted during the festive season, it does impact other drivers. You have no control over those you share the road with and that means you need to improve your driving habits to minimize risks. Keep the following tips in mind:

  • Drive the speed limit. Slowing down can really help you to adjust to other drivers’ actions.
  • Follow road rules. Aside from staying within the speeding limit, it’s also important to drive slower in construction zones and to stop more frequently for pedestrians.
  • Wear your seat belt. Even if you are a very careful driver, your seat belt is a must for avoiding the actions of other drivers.
  • Check your tyres. Ensure the air pressure meets the manufacturer recommendations.
  • Ensure your lights are working properly so other vehicles see you slowing down.
  • Use a lower gear when going up wet, steep inclines.
  • Drive at least 2 or 3 car lengths from the person in front of you.
  • Purchase higher quality tires for wet, colder weather.
  • Apply pressure to brakes slightly when you need to stop in water. Steady pressure reduces the risk of swerving.
  • Have your vehicle completely inspected by a trusted professional before the festive season starts.

Also realize that there are more people likely to be involved in accidents. This increases the number of emergency vehicles on the road. Be sure you can easily pull out of the way of these vehicles.

Beware of Hijackings

Many Batswana choose to spend the festive period south of the border in South Africa. Remember that Botswana registered motor vehicles are a prime hijacking target in South Africa. Not only is being hijacked a big burden financially, but you and your family could be at risk from injury or even death should things go wrong. Here are some tips to keep you safe outside Botswana:

  • Always be aware of your surroundings and watch your rear view mirrors to check if anyone is following you at all times.
  • Stay away from known hijacking zones where many vehicles have been known to be hijacked.
  • If someone deliberately bumps your car, request to meet at the nearest police station rather than stopping on the road. You can signal them to do so using hand signals.
  • When parking your car, look around you to see if any suspicious characters are watching you.
  • Always keep a separate ”stash bag” with some cash, a credit card, and perhaps an additional cell phone that you can use in the unfortunate event that you are hijacked.

Hijacking is real folks, and we see these cases happening all the time in South Africa, and in particular with reference to Botswana registered vehicles. Make sure your comprehensive car insurance policy is up to date.

Protect Yourself Financially

Being a safe driver is important, but you also need to take steps to minimize the financial risks associated with a simple accident. If you are involved in an accident, you should have car insurance in place to help cover the losses. This can give you the confidence you need when heading out onto the road during this busy driving season. If you don’t have adequate car insurance, request a quote for it today.

The holidays are a time for joy and merriment, but they are also a time when people are rushed, busy, and not thinking about what they are doing. As a result, they could put you at risk on the road if you don’t take precautions to stay safe.