There is a car insurance advert that’s currently on TV (feels like we’ve seen it a million times already) where a charismatic young guy rolls around with “happy customers” in a car, chatting about how much money they’ve saved since switching. Hands up if you know which advert we are talking about?
It’s obviously working like a bomb because it doesn’t matter which channel you try and escape to, the Ad somehow manages to track you down. What’s the marketing strategy? Have their brand in the consumer’s face so often that eventually they act like robots and phone the second they think of “car insurance”. Of course it is. Look, we aren’t knocking them. They clearly understand consumer behaviour and have deep advertising pockets. It’s business.
We are looking at this from a consumer standpoint though. Is it a good idea to take the first car insurance quote you are offered, just because the insurer is promising to beat your premium or give you cash if they can’t?
This is how we used to make car insurance decisions – before direct insurers, a broker used to be the first person you would call, if you were in the market for car insurance. After providing all your details, your broker would come back to you with quotes from various insurers.
The role of the insurance broker (and that hasn’t changed) is to take the insurance quotes and to read between the lines and cut through the marketing jargon. The role of the broker is to give you an honest appraisal and to steer you in the direction of the insurance product that’s best suited to your needs.
Our workload has increase ten-fold over the years and we don’t pay attention to anything that doesn’t have the following marketing hooks:
- Switch and save
- Instant cover
Who has the time to look at several comparative car insurance quotes nowadays?
Nobody. That’s what some companies are banking on!
- Would you buy the first car that you laid your eyes on?
- Would you book the first overseas flight that you found online?
- Would you enrol your kid in the first school that sprung to mind?
This is what we propose – call the “Car Karaoke” guys and get a quote.
Then make sure you get a few comparative quotes before you make an informed decision.
Here are a few pointers when it comes to comparing car insurance quotes:
We are all sold on price (the lowest common denominator). This premium is cheaper than that premium, so that is my best option. The day you claim, you might regret your decision. If insurer A has a cheaper premium than insurer B it might be because the excesses are higher. Are you getting a flat excess or a % based excess? Which one is better for you? These are the types of questions you need to be asking yourself.
- Am I insured comprehensively?
You would think that would be the case. Unfortunately, it isn’t. We once heard a story about an insurer that wouldn’t pay out a hail claim because it wasn’t covered as an “insurable risk” in the client’s policy wording. How upset would you be if the heavens opened and rained down golf size hail stones, only to find that a clause in your policy stated “hail damage” wasn’t covered?
- What’s the deal with car hire?
Do you get a week or 30 days car hire? It doesn’t take a week to repair your car and if your car hire option is limited to a ridiculously short period of time, you can bet your bottom Dollar that your insurer is going to swing the extra car rental costs your way as soon as the invoice arrives in their email inbox.
- Who gets to drive your car?
How strict is your insurer when it comes to “nominated drivers”? If your 18-year-old pops down to buy milk at the corner quick shop, what are the ramifications if they prang your car?
These are just some pointers you should be looking at before making up your mind.
Before we finalize this blog post we want to introduce you to the guys at BetterCompare.co.za. We have personally tested their service and we like it because it speaks to consumers starting to make decisions themselves and to seek out their own car insurance deals. BetterCompare.co.za is an impartial and independent car insurance comparison platform that retrieves live rates directly from different insurers all in one go so that you don’t need to spend hours to call around for quotes.
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