The cost of motor insurance

Sir, – Terry Dignan's car insurance has risen from €470 to €886 in just four years (June 11th). Let me advise Mr Dignan that this is not despite his being 13 years with the same insurer, but because of it.

From first-hand experience of writing premium calculation software for the motor and home insurance industry, I can assure him and all your readers that there’s an in-built “inertia penalty” for such customers.

As a general rule of thumb, if at renewal time a private motorist is obtaining fewer than five quotes – including at least one via a broker – then he or she is almost certainly throwing away money.

Coincidentally, I too have been driving for 25 years with no claims. The difference is that I’ve never used the same underwriter for more than three years in a row.


Mr Dignan is, of course, still right that the Government should take a close look at the industry. – Yours,



Dublin 18.

Sir, – I’ve been driving for 40 plus years with no claims and no penalty points. In renewing my cover this month, I was informed that my premium has been increased by 60 per cent! When I questioned this, I was told “there have been a lot of claims”.

These insurance companies seem to be able to treat customers however they like. Has the Government anything to say? – Yours, etc,



Co Wicklow.