Usage Based Auto Insurance – Is it Right for You?

Written by Mike

Did you know that car insurance companies are clamoring for information related to your driving habits? They want to know when you drive, how fast you go, when you hit the brakes, and so much more.

Of course, this is not possible in most cases. That being said, more and more companies are offering usage based insurance products to customers.

In short, you agree to let your car insurance company monitor your driving. In exchange, your premium is lowered – sometimes by as much as 30 percent.

If you are not comfortable with a tracking device being installed on your vehicle, this program is not for you. Despite the growing popularity of these programs, only one percent of drivers are currently enrolled.

Is Your Company Involved?

To get started, contact your current insurer to inquire as to their participation in a usage based insurance. If they do not offer this, you may want to change to a company that does.

Before we go any further, it is important to note that your car must be no older than a 1996 model.

Here is a list of the many companies that offer usage based insurance, as well as some basic details of each one:

  • Allstate Drive Wise program. If you are interested in this program, you will have to live in one of the few states that offer it. While the program is expanding, right now it is only available to residents in Ohio, Arizona, and Illinois.
  • Esurance. Many people are surprised to learn that this company has a usage based insurance program. With the help of the cellular phone giant Sprint the company recently began to offer this program in Texas. They offer some of the biggest discounts, with up to 30 percent quite common.
  • Hartford. They have named their program TrueLane. After a device is installed, the insurance company tracks information including: location, speed, and time of the day on the road. Immediately upon enrolling, a five percent discount is credited to your account. After 75 days of driving, you are eligible to receive up to a 25 percent discount based on your performance. Although the Hartford has plans to expand its TrueLane program, right now it is only available in West Virginia, Oregon, Missouri, Minnesota, and Connecticut.
  • Progressive. As you know from their silly commercials, Progressive is making a big push in the car insurance industry. Its Snapshot program is picking up a lot of steam, especially because it is available in more than 40 states. After using their tracking device for 30 days, you will receive notice of how much a discount  (up to 30 percent) you qualify for.
  • State Farm. As one of the largest car insurance companies in the nation, State Farm’s Drive Safe and Save program is becoming more and more popular. Unfortunately, it is only available to those who have a subscription with the popular OnStar service. State Farm receives odometer information from OnStar once a month. After six months of using the system, the driver is awarded a discount ranging form 10 to 5 percent. At this time, the program is available to drivers in 14 states.

So, is usage based insurance right for you? Your answer may be yes as long as you don’t mind your insurer tracking your every move on the road.

This entry was posted in Auto by Mike.