Three in four motorists put price first when buying car insurance

15 May 2012

A whopping 76% of motorists are putting price before quality as they desperately strive to save money and beat rising car insurance premiums, according to the Moneywise Consumer Opinion Survey 2012.

The survey, ­which forms the basis of the annual Moneywise Customer Service Awards ­polled more than 14,000 readers, asking them to rate their own financial providers across a range of products from savings accounts to car and home insurance.

It also asked readers how they shopped around and what drove their purchasing decisions.

More than three-quarters of motorists admitted that price was the driving force behind their decision, with 86% shopping around every year.

 Only 11% considered the quality of cover, while 15% of respondents chose it because they trusted the brand.

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Johanna Gornitzki, editor of Moneywise says: "Car insurance premiums are continuing to spiral so it's understandable that consumers are doing everything they can to cut costs. However, with such an important product it's essential that drivers read and understand the terms of their policy to ensure they don't get caught out if they claim. Buying on price alone could be an expensive mistake."

Popular insurers among price conscious drivers were Diamond ­with 93% of its customers choosing it for this reason ­closely followed by Sheila's Wheels and Hastings Direct each with 91%.

Only 28% of NFU Mutual customers chose the insurer based on the competitiveness of its quote ­the lowest score across all the insurers featured in the survey.

The majority ­at 51% - selected it because they trusted the brand. CSIS, which provides insurance for civil servants, was also perceived as trustworthy by its customers with 41% selecting it for this reason.

More than a quarter of Frizell's customers ­which represents members of unions including PCS and Unison ­chose it because it was perceived to have the best cover. This issue was also a priority for 21% of Marks & Spencer Money customers.

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