Stop at a stop sign. Get a Ticket.

You heard that right. The police are not the bad guys here; it’s your insurance company! The “ticket” you receive is not a moving violation, but an increase in your premium.

Progressive – and many other insurance companies – have a widget that they claim will save you money. It’s supposed to measure and report how much you use your vehicle. In addition, it reports HOW you use your vehicle. Progressive advertises “up to” something like $600.00 average savings if you use their widget. Some savings come from their less expensive policy as well. It’s less expensive for a while.

The Old Bait and Switch

The tactic works in several ways: You get a really low quote from them. You get a discount if you install their widget. Together, the policy looks too good to be true! You are elated! You go through their 30-day trial period and manage to get a pretty good rate reduction because you drive so carefully you were not docked much for doing dangerous things like slowing down too quickly when approaching a stop sign( I tried their widget, and got no reduction largely because I stopped too quickly). So, all is well. For a while.

Then, someone hits your car. Not your fault. You get a rate increase. That’s right. Not your fault! You pay more! Or, they drop your policy, or charge you a fee if you decide to drop their policy! Other items are denial of coverage for some reason they make up. Or, you stop at a perfectly safe rate, have to maneuver in traffic to avoid a collision, etc. and surprise! part of your widget-based savings disappears! They make ridiculous claims like the damage to your car was not the result of the collision, increase your rates every year just because they can, and just plain lousy customer service.

Usage based insurance is a proven way to reduce insurance costs, and look to be a great deal for the public. The only problem is the insurance companies like things as they are, so by gaming the system, you the customer get tricked into thinking that you are saving money, when the reality is that most of the savings “promised” by the companies gets taken back by multiple means. Like stopping at a stop sign. Personally, I am tired of paying the same rates for a car that racks up 30,000 miles/year and another that barely gets driven at all. Not much risk when a vehicle sits in a the driveway!

The tricks they pull to cheat people seem endless. This is no way to run a business.

The link below will provide more information

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