Just recently, we found out Whipcar, UK’s first peer-to-peer car sharing club was listed as a Community Car Club by CarPlus.org.uk. That probably means it passed a checklist of requirements, but with this piece of news, we can certainly offer users of Whipcar our annual Car Club Excess Insurance products.
Is there an excess on Whipcar vehicles (even though they are someone else’s)? The answer is yes. Drivers are liable to pay a £500 car hire insurance excess if damage occurs during any Whipcar booking. Whipcar offers Drivers the option to purchase a Damage Excess Waiver (DEW) for every hire. The excess waiver insurance costs £5 per day and reduces the Driver's financial liability from £500 to £250 in the unfortunate circumstance that a Whipcar Owner's car is damaged during hire. If you get into the habit of using this, would not you prefer an annual car hire insurance policy for £39.99 from iCarhireinsurance.com?
iCarhireinsurance.com is 12 months old this month, having sold our first hire car insurance policy in March 2010. We’ve had a great first year in business and in what feels like a very short 12 months having helped thousands of customers buy low cost car hire insurance for rentals across the world. Within our first few months of business we also created a brand new policy for members of car sharing clubs, such as Zipcar, City Car Club and Street car. Our car club excess insurance can now bought on its own for £39.99 a year, or can be combined with a car hire policy for just £19.99. We are still the only company in the UK to offer this policy. In July of 2010 we also launched two great value Van Hire Excess Insurance policies.
This past February, I took the kids skiing for a break over the half-term holiday. Months of planning in advance, I trawled the internet for advice on the best resorts across Europe, best skiing deals and best overall place for my family to get to grips with the winter sport. Proximity to a good airport was key, so Geneva was an obvious choice after we selected our Ski Resort.
In regard to car rental, I booked it with Hertz this time around to try their service as I am usually hiring from different car rental companies to stay in touch with the industry products and services.
The Office of Fair Trading published the results of its investigation into consumer contracts last week and the car rental industry came off pretty well with the OFT concluding it is an industry which generally services its customers well. The contracts that rental companies impose are generally held to be fair yet there are situations involved in the booking and collection process where circumstances lead to reduced customer understanding. We detail some of the key findings of the investigation below and believe that there are a number of key things that customers can do to avoid the pitfalls that the OFT highlighted in its case study.
Here at iCarhireinsurance.com we’ve been running a survey of our customers trying to understand more about the typical car rental experience. This gives us useful insight into a range of experiences and covers the booking process, collection of the vehicle, the condition of the car and the drop-off process.
Although the survey hasn’t closed yet, I had a peek at the responses so far and my eye was drawn instantly to one statistic that stood out above all others. A staggering 64% of people who have completed the survey so far report that when they dropped their car off it was not inspected by a member of the rental company when they were present.
When you hire a car, you could be exposed to a number of additional charges when you drop your vehicle off. You will normally be exposed to the costs of the car hire excess limit of around £1,000 (€1,200) on your car hire insurance for any damage to the vehicle so it’s worth making sure that you have car hire excess insurance to protect against these charges. However damage to the vehicle is not the only thing that you could get charged for as there could be any number of additional charges in your rental agreement that could start to add up if you’re not aware of them.
As you are probably aware, living in the UK particularly in London is not getting any cheaper. The costs of owning and operating a car in the UK have recently increased significantly. Petrol costs have increased by 48% in the last two years and car insurance costs by 33% in the last year alone (Source: the AA). Everything related to motoring is going up!
While Car Clubs like Streetcar can insulate you from the worst of car ownership costs, these types of costs are a significant part of providing their service and therefore you will only see their rates go up, as a recent email to Streetcar members shows (Source Streetcar members email 02/02/2011).
In February there is traditionally an increase in the domestic car rental market in the UK. There are a couple of things that drive this; Christmas is now a dimming memory and with Valentine’s day falling in the middle of the month it creates the perfect opportunity for the more romantic amongst us to whisk our other halves away for what Bridget Jones always claimed was the cornerstone of any romance………. a “mini-break”! Then towards the end of the month there’s half term which sees holiday cottages from St Ives to Inverness filled with families taking a week off to get away from it all.
With the recent Arctic conditions in the UK we can see at first hand the impact that snow can have on the transport system. We’ve seen drivers stranded on motorways across Britain for several hours, even days leading for calls for the government to be more prepared and to “learn the lessons” for future years. Our friends in Europe are often held up as an example of how to cope with this sort of weather, but what few people in the UK may realise is that the reason their road networks seem to fare better than hours isn’t purely down to more grit lorries and snow ploughs but it is largely due to the fact that their motorists are more used to driving in sever winter conditions, and also they have laws to ensure that motorists are prepared.
With lots of pride and enthusiasm, I must tell you all about how iCarhireinsurance.com is making waves in the general insurance industry. To some, we are only considered a specialist low cost car hire insurance company, but as we growth our customer base and launch new products, we are starting to turn heads.
All prices within this section were correct at time of publication.