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John Stewart

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    According to new research from Auto Trader Compare, the motor insurance comparison service from the UK’s largest motoring website, BMW owners are deemed to be the worst drivers on the UK’s roads according to a massive 59% of respondents, followed by:

    • Subaru drivers (42%)
    • Porsche drivers (39%)
    • Audi drivers (30%)
    • Mercedes-Benz drivers (27%).

    BMW drivers are most associated with bad or inefficient driving according to the survey, with 68% of respondents claiming that bad drivers of these vehicles drive too fast, overtake in dangerous situations (66%), intimidate other road users (66%) and drive too close to the car in front (64%).

    Ford Tops The Claims Table:
    Despite BMW drivers being seen as the worst on our roads, the drivers making the most insurance claims are Ford owners. Insurance claims data from online car insurer swiftcover.com looked at claims made during April 08 to April 09.

    Fig One: swiftcover.com Claims Data April 2008 – 2009

    the worst motorist

    The claims data shows that perceptions of other motorists do not reflect the reality of those drivers that make the most claims.

    Van Drivers Are Worst On The Roads:
    The survey, conducted amongst more than 1,500 UK motorists nationwide, shows that outdated driving myths are still prevalent, with 37% still believing that men are generally better drivers than women and that van drivers are the worst on the road (100%), followed by young drivers (98%), old drivers (90%), taxi drivers (78%) and ‘school run mums’ (78%). Bus and HGV drivers were considered to be the best road users.

    When asked about other road users, over a third (34%) said that Londoners were the worst drivers in the UK, followed by motorists from the South East (10%) and the West Midlands (4%). ‘Sunday drivers’ were classed as the worst type of driver (53%), followed by ‘rush-hour drivers’ (43%).

    Motorists Want To Save Money:
    It seems that UK motorists are happy to find fault in other road users, but not in themselves as the survey results also show that 22% of motorists rating their own driving as ‘excellent’ and 63% as ‘good’.

    In fact, 77% of motorists claim to now drive ‘green’ by not revving the engine and braking smoothly, with 53% agreeing that their driving style has changed recently to help reduce fuel consumption. Now, nearly three quarters (73%) claim to make sure their tyre pressures are correct, accelerate smoother (66%), brake gently (65%) and use their air con less (47%) in order to save money on motoring.

    Toyota Tops Green Poll:
    In terms of certain drivers that are associated with this type of economical, green driving, 38% of respondents said Toyota drivers were the greenest, followed by Honda drivers (37%), Volkswagen drivers (23%), Volvo drivers (23%) and Citroen drivers (19%).

    Matt Thompson, Marketing Director at AutoTrader.co.uk, comments: “It’s good that most motorists recognise bad driving habits, both in themselves and other road users. However, the important thing is that motorists change these bad driving habits because with the rising cost of motoring, it is well worth driving responsibly to stay safe and ensure your insurance premiums stay low. Remember that you must report all points on your licence to your insurance company, otherwise your policy could be invalidated.”

    Tina Shortle, marketing director for Swiftcover says: “Comparing car insurance quotes is one of the best ways of reducing your insurance costs, but driving safely is crucial to keeping your premiums as low as possible. Dangerous driving can obviously leads to accidents, which could wipe out your no claims bonus and increase your premiums, whilst getting a traffic conviction is also likely to push up the cost of your motor insurance and could even result in some companies refusing to insure you.”

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    the award-winning travel insurance for action-minded travellers, has launched a new product for the sub aqua market which guarantees divers ultimate peace of mind both in the water and out.

    Dogtag Dive has been carefully developed to cater for all the needs of the modern scuba diver with a policy which maximises their safety and remains fully competitive on cover and cost.

    Like all the best ideas, the concept is simple:  A policyholder is issued with a surgical-grade stainless steel dogtag. Engraved on the back of the dogtag is the diver’s name, their unique identification number and a dedicated web address so that should they get into difficulty and emergency services are called, medics can verify their insurance details. Quite simply, in many parts of the world, divers who encounter problems may have difficulty receiving immediate medical attention. This is normally because it is impractical to carry a flimsy paper document which verifies their insurance details.

    Crucially, the Dogtag ID number also provides medics with instant web access to vital medical and personal information including next of kin details, their blood type, current medication and allergies. The Dogtag also carries a 24/7 medical rescue phone number.

    The launch of Dogtag Dive follows the international success of the original Dogtag ski and snowboard product, which was founded after Director Dave Rice suffered an accident on the slopes but was unable to provide immediate evidence to medics that he was properly insured – resulting in a delay to his medical attention.

    “We are confident that Dogtag Dive will help maximise the enjoyment of any diving holiday, and therefore become an essential part of every diver’s kit,” said Dogtag Director, Mike Welby. “We have exhaustively consulted many of the world’s most experienced divers to put together the ultimate diving policy. Both beginners and experts will be safe in the knowledge that should anything go wrong, they will be in the right hands.”

    Key elements of Dogtag Dive policy include up to £2,000 cover for diving equipment with a single item limit of £500, up to £50 per day for loss of diving days due to illness, and up to £40 per day cover for hire of diving gear should it be lost in transit. The policy, of course, also covers search and sea rescue and hyperbaric chamber treatment. Shark diving, wreck diving and night diving are all included in the cover. This all comes on top of the standard Dogtag travel insurance policy which features competitive rates of cover for cancellation, lost or delayed luggage, sickness or injury, legal protection and much more.

    Mike Welby added: “We believe that Dogtag Dive is the finest diving travel insurance available on the market, and one which is unrivalled in its ability to allow divers freedom of expression without putting into jeopardy their personal safety. Clarity is also important to us which is why our policy wording makes it abundantly clear to our customers what they can and can’t do on their travels.”

    Annual multi-trip Dogtag Dive policies start from just £92. Visit www.dogtag.co.uk/dive

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    LV= has been recognised as one of the leading online life insurance providers by independent customer experience benchmarker, Global Reviews.

    The news comes hot on the heels of the launch of their redesigned website.

    Against 13 competitors in the Q1 2009 online life insurance provider category*, LV= has been rewarded for :

    • its overall content
    • a customer experience score of 57%
    • its online claims information
    • its life insurance tips and advice section
    • the customer support and prospective customers categories

    LV= ecommerce director Paul Wishman said: “We are delighted to receive such positive external feedback about our website, particularly after a major redesign and re-launch. Slick online purchasing capability is increasingly important in today’s financial services marketplace and we are committed to continually developing content and usability to enhance the overall online customer experience.”

    They re-launched its website in March 2009. New features include a ‘top tab’ navigation system giving users ‘one-click’ access to all products, and a financial advice tab which consumers can click on to complete an online financial health check and book an appointment with one of LV=’s financial advisers.

    * Independent research company Global Review measured LV=’s life insurance website against more than 650 criteria across 34 categories, interviewing more than 1,000 people to find out how they rated the experience during Q1 2009.

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    British travellers made around 20,000 travel insurance claims in South Africa in 2008 totalling an estimated £5.51m, according to new research from travel insurer InsureandGo.

    This is the equivalent of one claim every 30 minutes throughout the year – and InsureandGo expects the level of claims to increase significantly this year due to thousands of rugby fans visiting the country for the British and Irish Lions tour.

    The data reveals that these were the top five claims made by British travellers to South Africa in 2008:

    Gary Lockett, Managing Director of InsureandGo, commented: “We all want people travelling to South Africa to support the Lions team to have the time of their lives, but our figures demonstrate how often insurance claims have to be made, and how expensive they can be. That’s why we’re urging everyone following the Lions to make sure they are adequately covered before they fly.”

    travel industry claim

    Data revealed as thousands of fans follow Lions tour

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    Thousands of British parents and even grandparents are unwittingly committing insurance fraud as their kids drive off to university in a car primarily insured for mum and dad, or grandma and granddad, with teenage children paying the penalty.

    New research reveals that one in 10 people surveyed (nine per cent) who’ve helped their child or grandchild buy a car currently has it insured in their own name – with many not realising that they could be breaking the law in doing so.

    A staggering 68 per cent of those who have insured the car in their own name admitted they did it primarily to help reduce premiums – as experienced drivers  tend to pay lower insurance premiums than their young relatives, while a fifth (19 per cent) mistakenly believe the car should be insured in their name because they legally own it.

    Known as “fronting”, the practice involves one person insuring a car in their name and adding someone else as a “named driver” to the policy – when the named driver is in fact the main or only driver, rather than an occasional driver.

    According to the research, 57 per cent of those who have helped their child or grandchild buy a car don’t realise that fronting constitutes insurance fraud, with more than a third (37 per cent) actively believing the practice not to be insurance fraud.

    Many parents appear to be underestimating the consequences of fronting, which can leave the driver uninsured if the insurer establishes that the named driver is, in fact, the main or only driver. Although 46 per cent do think that the person on the insurance policy could be fined, just 24 per cent realise that it would be their child or grandchild who would pay as the uninsured driver.

    Likewise, 30 per cent believe that it is the policyholder who could stand to receive penalty points, while just 22 per cent realise it would actually be the driver.

    While many may think that their insurer will never find out about fronting, if a driver is involved in an accident it could be too late and the consequences can be severe.  The consequences range from policies being cancelled and claims refused, to drivers being taken through the court system; receiving a fine, penalty points on their licence, or ultimately, being disqualified from driving.

    It’s natural that parents and grandparents want to give their kids and grandchildren a helping hand when buying and insuring a car, but fronting won’t help them in the long run. Although many don’t realise that what they’re doing is illegal, they also don’t realise that it’s a false economy with serious consequences, should the driver have an accident.

    An insurer would be within their rights to decline a claim or recover any third party costs from the child or parent and grandparents themselves. If declining a claim, the police could treat the driver as driving uninsured and so be fined hundreds of pounds and receive six penalty points on their licence, which would mean an automatic ban for a newly-qualified driver. They will also have to declare that a claim has been declined on future insurance applications, raising their premiums in future.

    We urge parents or grandparents to check that the insurance details for vehicles driven off to university are up to date, and the details of the main driver are accurate to avoid any future problems.   A simple phone call to your insurer will make sure that the vehicle is in the right name and that in the event of an accident the young driver is covered.

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      Nobody chooses to be in an accident. But if you are responsible for one or a victim of one, either way, it is very difficult to cope. There is a lot of mental and physical tension. In these circumstances, if one also has to go through the formalities of insurance also requires a huge cost in mind and body as well.

      Here is the first-hand information from car accident insurance each driver should know. Different types of insurance coverage of various accidents.

      The first type called, “fully comprehensive insurance system”, typically covers all the aspects of accidents. The company would pay even if the accident is your fault. It covers 80% of the car’s cost and medical expenses for injuries. There are other many variations that typically cover 80% of the car’s cost and medical expenses for injuries if the accident is not your fault. There are many options that will cover the cost of your liabilities, if you are at fault. It not only pays medical expenses but also the cost of property damage to the second party.

      If you do not drive alone, there are packages that include not only drivers but also passengers medical expenses.

      Sometimes the vehicle runs into objects, other than cars such as walls and trees. There are packages that cover the cost of that type of damage too. Don’t forget to buy this package if your car is new had you are letting your novice teen driver, drive it.

      Also keep in mind that there are many factors that will affect your premium rates. These include age and surprisingly gender also. Teens are charged with the highest rates and men drivers are charged higher that the women drivers. Also if your mileage is higher, your rates are definitely going to be higher. If you drive in scarcely populated area it can turn into your benefit because lesser traffic will lessen the probability of the accident.

      Before buying the insurance, make sure you go through it thoroughly. Even if you miss a single point, it can turn into the one, affecting you the most.

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      Starting on the 1st of April business visitors bound for the Channel Islands will be required to have adequate travel insurance.

      The move has been made at the behest of the Department of Health in anticipation of an alteration to the way UK visitors to the Channel Islands receive healthcare.

      At the end of March the present rule, which is that visitors can get a number of treatments free of charge, expires.

      After this anyone visiting the islands, including Guernsey, Jersey, Alderney, Sark and Herm, will have to pay for medical treatment if they are ill or suffer an injury.

      Because of this travel insurance will be required as the health arrangements change, and Channel Islanders visiting the UK will also be required to have proper insurance.

      In 2007 more than 100,000 business trips were made to Jersey, with Guernsey attracting over 27,000 visitors.

      The pound’s sliding against both dollar and euro coupled with the recession means that more people than ever will be choosing to holiday in the UK (and the Channel Islands, with its identical currency and English language will similarly benefit).

      Self-catering firm Hoseasons has asserted that the weak pound has encouraged Britons to take their holidays in the United Kingdom, rather than travelling overseas.