Reality bites: Timely tips for parents of campus-bound students, from RBC Insurance

    TORONTO, Aug. 14 /CNW/ - With summer fading into the sunset and school on
the horizon, many Canadians will be busy getting their children ready for
their first time away at university or college. But before they pack the
laptops and other expensive electronic gadgets, parents would be wise to
review their insurance policies to ensure their students' belongings are
adequately covered for loss or damage while living away from home.
    Judging by the results of a recent RBC Insurance/Ipsos Reid survey,
knowing exactly what their home and auto insurance policies cover may not be
top of mind for most parents. According to the survey, while three-quarters
(75 per cent) of Canadians with home and content insurance are parents, one in
three (33 per cent) don't know if they have the right amount or types of
    "Parents and students may not agree on what qualifies as must-have items
but by the time parents are finished getting their college-aged children ready
for their first year away from home, they've spent a significant amount of
money," said Francois Boulanger, president & CEO of RBC General Insurance
Company. "In the process, many of them are so busy getting everything together
that they overlook insurance. It's an oversight that could result in some
costly surprises during the school year."
    Those who aren't sure what their policies cover should review their
coverage now, before the school year begins. Although many household insurance
policies automatically extend coverage for a student's possessions while
living in a campus dorm or an off-campus apartment, it may not be the best
coverage option for all. This is because a parent's policy will usually limit
the amount of coverage for the student and any claims incurred can affect the
overall claims history and future premiums of the main policy. Arranging
tenants' coverage in the student's own name may be a better option, as the
student will also be able to select the coverage necessary for items that may
exceed the value of limits on their parent's policy.
    "Tenant's insurance is more affordable than one might think," added
Boulanger. "For example, a tenant's insurance policy for a student living in
an apartment in Kingston would cost approximately $250 a year."
    Auto policies should also be reviewed when a student heads off to college
or university. The distance between home and school and how much the student
plans to drive while away could affect the rate being paid.
    "Many parents wonder if they should take a student off their car
insurance when their student goes away to school," noted Boulanger.
"Generally, it is best to keep the student as a listed driver on the policy so
they have continuous insurance coverage. This will ensure that your policy
provides coverage if your child is injured in an accident involving any
motorized vehicle, whether it be as a pedestrian, cyclist or while riding in
someone else's vehicle."
    While it would be best to continue to include occasional student drivers
on their parent's insurance policies, Boulanger emphasized that students who
take their own cars away with them to school need their own policies.
    For these and other tips on how to maximize coverage and minimize the
costs of having a child away at school, RBC offers a wide range of advice
online at or by phone at 1-800-Royal-26.
    These are the findings of an RBC Insurance/Ipsos Reid survey conducted
between May 1 and May 20, 2007. The poll was based on a randomly selected
sample of 2,000 adult Canadians who were interviewed by telephone. With a
sample of this size, the results are considered accurate to within +/-2.19
percentage points, 19 times out of 20, of what they would have been had the
entire adult Canadian population been polled. The margin of error will be
larger within regions and for other sub-groupings of the survey population.
The data was statistically weighted to ensure the sample's regional and
age/sex composition reflects that of the actual Canadian population according
to the 2001 Census data.

    About RBC Insurance

    RBC Insurance, through its operating entities, including RBC General
Insurance Company, provides a wide range of creditor, life, health, travel,
home, auto and reinsurance products to more than five million North American
    RBC Insurance's home and auto insurance operation provides Canadians with
protection for their houses, condominiums, rental and seasonal properties,
cars, minivans, motorcycles, recreational vehicles, snowmobiles and boats. Our
home and auto insurance is offered to individual customers through direct
sales channels and through employee and affinity plans. For more information,
please visit

For further information:

For further information: Media Contacts: Judi Levita, (416) 974-8810;
Kerry Gaetano, (905) 816-5583

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