Insurance Costs
James Mechan

Member Article

Can tracking devices decrease your car insurance costs?

  • Average cheapest premium for comprehensive cover up by 8.5% since 2011
  • Men aged 17-22 still hit hardest, with average price of insurance at £2,792
  • New EU ruling means average insurance for young women risen to £1,995

Car insurance prices are on the increase, and costs for young drivers are the highest they’ve ever been: hardest hit are the youngest drivers, aged 17-22. Fully comprehensive premiums are at an average of £2,792 for men and £1,995 for women – costs for female drivers having been driven up by new EU rules that forbid insurers offering different prices to drivers based on their sex.

Insurance costs are being forced up as insurers cover themselves against things like whiplash claims and accidents involving uninsured drivers: but there is a possible solution to high insurance premiums for young drivers: a car tracking device.

What is a car tracker?

A car tracker, or ‘black box’, sits harmlessly in your car and monitors your driving habits: this information is relayed back to the insurance company and they adjust your policy accordingly.

How does it work?

The tracker works by recording a range of data generated by your driving habits, including:

  • The speed you drive at
  • How far you drive
  • The time of day
  • The type of roads you use – and if you take breaks during longer journeys
  • How smoothly you drive – do you accelerate harshly and slam on the brakes?

All of these factors give a clear picture of just how safe a driver you are. Insurance companies use this to decide whether to increase or decrease your premium – so safe drivers are rewarded.

What are the benefits?

By rewarding careful drivers, there are benefits for everyone on the roads. Tracking devices can record how safely you negotiate corners and bends on the road, so as your costs go down, your driving technique improves and you can become an even safer driver. Many young drivers are involved in accidents between the hours of 11pm and 4am, but by staying off the roads at night you can cut the cost of insurance while keeping the roads accident-free.

Can trackers be fitted to my leased car?

Adding a tracker to a leased vehicle could be very beneficial to both the leaser and customer. It allows the vendor to track the driver performance for future leasing deals and it gives the leaser the opportunity to lower their premium through careful driving. The benefits all depend on the leasing company you chose to lease through, be sure to find out the terms when speaking to dealers such as Flexxilease to get the best terms when leasing your next car.

How is it fitted to my car?

A tracker is installed out of sight, in a location which won’t impact your driving – usually somewhere behind the dashboard or under the bonnet.

How else can a tracker keep my costs down?

By recording the speed and direction of travel, tracking boxes are able to assist insurance companies in cases of accident or other claims. If you have been involved in a collision whilst driving safely and carefully, the tracker may allow you to prove your innocence and avoid claiming – allowing you to continue building your no-claims history, which also helps to keep your costs down.

Trackers can also be used to recover a stolen vehicle. Even if your insurance covers you, it can’t cover the major inconvenience of having your car stolen. Trackers can show exactly where a car is at all times so the chances of you getting your car back are much higher than without them.

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by James Mechan .

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