More than one in two Irish motorists have seen their motor insurance bill increase over the last year, despite official figures showing a fall in the average cost of car insurance.
The findings of a new survey by Peopl Insurance of 1000 adults nationwide also showed that one in three (33pc) people would consider having a driving tracker device which monitors a driver’s speed and driving habits installed in their car if doing so would reduce the cost of their car insurance, while one in four (24pc) would be happy to undergo some driver refresher training and one in five (21pc) would be prepared to limit their mileage.
Only about one in seven (14pc) said their car insurance bill had fallen over the last twelve months while one in three (33pc) reported that their car insurance bill had “stayed pretty much the same”.
Commenting on the survey results, Paul Walsh, CEO of Peopl Insurance said:
“With more than half of motorists reporting increases in premiums, it’s unsurprising that six in ten said they would take some form of action to reduce costs if the option was available to them. Motorists showed little willingness to entertain a driving curfew or weekend-only driving in order to get cheaper motor insurance, but they are definitely more open to the idea of some form of driving monitor being in place to allow an insurer to see that the motorist is driving safely, obeying the rules of the road and so on”.
Highlights from the Peopl Insurance survey include:
— Women (56pc) were more likely than men (49pc) to report an increase in the cost of their motor insurance over the last year. Those aged between 35 and 44 were the most likely age cohort to have witnessed an increase in the cost of their car insurance with six in ten (60pc) of this age category reporting a price rise over the last year, compared to 34pc of those aged between 18 and 24.
— People in Dublin are the most likely to limit their mileage in order to get cheaper car insurance, with almost one in three (31pc) Dubliners saying they would do so versus one in five (20pc) Munster people and almost one in seven (15pc) of those living in Connacht and Ulster. This however is likely a reflection of the greater driving distances often faced by those living in rural areas as well as the strong public transport network in place in Dublin.
— Only 2pc of motorists would be prepared to only drive at weekends in order to get cheaper motor cover while less than one in ten (9pc) said they would be prepared to accept a driving curfew or not to drive after certain hours.
— People aged 25 to 34 appear to be more open to the idea of driving curfews or weekend-only driving than other age cohorts. Almost one in eight (13pc) of this age category said they would consider taking a driving curfew in order to get cheaper car insurance, compared to only 4pc of those aged 18 to 24. Although at 6pc, only a small fraction of 25- to 34-year-olds said they would consider weekend-only driving in order to save money on car insurance, this was a higher proportion than recorded for other age cohorts.
Mr Walsh spoke about the financial pinch felt by motorists,
“Despite the various moves made by the Government to try reduce the cost of car insurance, it is clear from our survey that not all drivers are benefitting from reduced insurance prices and indeed for many drivers, the cost of car insurance is increasing. We believe the high inflation of the last two years could be one reason many consumers are facing pricier car insurance premiums. It is well documented that soaring inflation has led to shortages of labour and car parts worldwide and that this in turn has driven up the cost of car repairs.”
“While outside factors undoubtedly have a role to play in the increase experienced by some drivers, not shopping around at renewal will always mean that people pay over the odds for their premium. Loyalty to just one insurer doesn’t pay. If you’re a credit union member, you should always check if you can get a better car insurance deal at your local credit union.”