Pros and Cons of Black Box Car Insurance



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Cheaper car insurance is the holy grail of car ownership. As having insurance is a legal necessity, obtaining car insurance is less a matter of ‘if’ and more an issue of ‘who from and how much’. No one wants to spend more than they have to.

Unfortunately, cheap insurance for new drivers is very difficult to get. Insurance premiums are calculated based on how much risk you pose, and without any history of driving to analyse, or long-term experience to indicate skill, new young driver insurance can be a very high bill.

Enter Black Box Insurance

By having a device fitted to the car which sends data back to the insurers, this type of insurance helps the new driver prove their prowess on the road. By having accurate information of their driving skill, the insurance company no longer has to rely on general statistics or a little faith, but can back up their underwriting with clear-cut evidence.

Telematics Data

So what does the little black box send to the insurer? A standard telematics device details the following:

  • Speed

  • Distance and mileage

  • Time of journey

  • Braking

  • Manoeuvring

This information can give a clear picture of your skill, even going into understanding whether you drive at more accident-heavy times, or the preparedness of your braking.

The data is also available to you with most insurers, with a custom app for your smartphone which allows you to see where your shortcomings are and improve them.

Is it Worth Black Box Insurance? The Pros and Cons

It sounds great – and for many it is, but like anything else there are pros and cons to having your insurance company track your every move.

PRO

There is no doubt that having a black box installed and driving sensibly will lower your insurance premium – and that’s the main reason for getting the box in the first place!

CON 

If you are a dangerous or careless driver, that’s going to show.

PRO

Data is available to help you improve. Not only can you simply sit back and enjoy looking over the statistics of your driving, but you can use that information to see where your skills lack and practice in those areas. More than that, the mere fact that you know you are being recorded will help keep you on your toes and concentrate on being the perfect driver.

CON

With your mileage being tracked, it is important that you stick within pre-defined limits. If you feel you are going to go outside of that limit, then you must contact your insurer in advance to avoid potential fees. Additionally, some cover imposes a curfew on driving times to prevent new drivers being on the road during dangerous hours.

PRO

Your car now has a tracker to deter thieves! With the black box constantly sending GPS information to the insurer, the police are going to be much more likely to be able to recover your car if it is stolen.

CON

For some, the mere idea that everywhere they go is on record is an unwanted layer of worry and an invasion of privacy they’d rather not expose.

PRO

Accident alert – a system which informs the insurer immediately if there is an accident, can add a level of safety and help should anything bad happen.

CON

Sharing a car becomes harder, as the box does not discriminate between drivers and one person’s poorer driving can become a liability on the insurance.

PRO

Claims are handled faster – with solid evidence regarding what happened, it is far easier for the insurance company to determine fault and the background work in investigating a claim is significantly lessened.

For a quick look at black box insurance pros and cons see the table below;

PROS

CONS

  • Cheaper insurance premiums

  • Improves driving

  • Anti-theft tracking

  • Accident Alert

  • Claims handled faster

  • Mileage limits and curfew

  • Personal data sharing

  • Harder to car share

For more information on getting the cheapest car insurance fill in our contact form and one of our specialist advisors will get back to you at your convenience – and if you know anyone at the start of their driving experience, why not share the benefits of black box car insurance?

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author image - crispin

By Crispin Bateman

on Friday 10 August 2018