Morning Live: Expert shares tips on car insurance
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Car insurance experts warn annual mileage has “fallen” as a result of the pandemic with a reduction in new drivers also evident. Go Compare have revealed fewer cars are now being insured as a result of the pandemic as showrooms are forced to close their doors.
Speaking to Express.co.uk, car insurance expert at Go Compare, Ryan Fulthorpe said the insurance landscape “has shifted” over the past 12 months.
He said: “Just like the rest of the world, car insurance and people’s driving behaviour have seen an unprecedented change during the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Customers are driving significantly less, which means annual mileage has fallen due to lockdown restrictions and we’ve also seen a reduction in new drivers entering the market due to people not being able to complete driving tests.
“As well as this, fewer new cars are being insured as a knock-on effect of showrooms being closed – and these are just some of the reasons as to how the insurance landscape has shifted.”
Compare the Market has warned drivers the pandemic may change the way motorists drive but it does not change the need for cover.
As the pandemic continues, insurers have extended cover for people who are having to use their car beyond their relevant classes.
The extension on a rules relaxation was extended by the Association of British Insurers (ABI) up until the end of April 2021.
This means motorists who use their car to commute will not need to contact their insurers about their change in circumstances.
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Compare the Market said they had witnessed a few insurance providers offering money back to drivers and other goodwill gestures during the pandemic.
They said any firms offering this would get in touch directly with any motorists affected.
Mr Fulthorpe added “partial refunds” had been offered by some firms due to a “significant decrease” in car use.
He told Express.co.uk: “In light of the pandemic, some insurers offered a partial refund to their customers due to a significant decrease in the use of vehicles and time spent on the road.
“For example, Admiral paid back all of their car insurance customers a flat fee of £25, LV also offered a refund customers could apply for should they have been financially affected by Covid.
“DirectLine Group also offered customers two percent of the premium back for every 1,000 miles less driven than they originally quoted for up to a maximum of 20 percent.”
However, the ABI has also revealed the price motorists paid for car insurance in 2020 was at a four year low.
The average cost for comprehensive policies was £465 in 2020 in figures down one percent on 2019 figures and the lowest since 2016.
The ABI said firms were still offering a wide range of support for drivers such as adjusting policies and premiums to reflect fewer miles.
They have also pledged to support drivers who are concerned about paying instalments during the pandemic.
Laura Hughes, ABI Manager of General Insurance said: “Despite a year like no other, it is good to see that during 2020 motorists continued to get the best deals in a competitive motor insurance market.
“In addition, the extra support that insurers continue to give to motorists during this uncertain and unsettling time is helping drivers adapt to this ‘new normal’.”
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