The future that science fiction once depicted is here. With GPS and other monitoring systems, corporations can now monitor you, but this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. For example, you can now opt into a vehicle and driving monitoring system to try to lower your cost of car insurance. Insurance companies can now monitor your driving to determine whether your insurance premium reflects the quality and safety of your driving as well as the number of miles you drive each day and the average speed you drive. This will provide a new approach to prestige car insurance as there are some factors that need to be carefully considered. Will opting into this monitoring lower your insurance premium?
Vehicle monitoring systems analyze and record your braking, acceleration speed and braking severity to make an assessment as to whether or not you are driving safely. These systems have been used for years by fleet companies to keep track of their drivers’ on-the-road behavior.
Fleet companies use these monitoring systems to teach employees how to drive in a manner that is easier on gas, and it also lowers accident rates by as much as 50%. Apparently, when employees know the boss is looking, they don’t speed, drive aggressively or waste time on driving runs.
This technology is also now being offered to private drivers as a means to lower their auto insurance premiums, usually through a “pay as you drive” insurance plan. These “pay as you drive” insurers often attach these monitoring systems to your car because they have no long-term contract with you. Some other insurance companies that do have long-term contracts will give drivers the opportunity to opt into a monitoring program in order to prove that they are safe drivers and get a lower insurance rate. But what are the benefits and drawbacks?
Well, first off, your insurer will essentially have installed a GPS tracker inside your car, so they will know where you go, how safely you drive, how fast you go and how far you went. If you don’t like the idea of your insurance company knowing exactly where you are at any time, a monitoring system is not for you.
Now if you do want to install a monitoring system in your car, be sure to check with your insurance agent first to see if they even offer such an option. Find out if they have a program in place that will give you the discount, and if you will be switching to a plan where you pay by the mile, be sure a “pay as you go” insurance option is really what is best. As always, ask your insurance agent his or her opinion about the program. You don’t have to follow their advice, but it’s always nice to get an expert opinion.
If you are a particularly safe driver, and you drive at the speed limit, brake early before stops and drive low mileage every day, a monitoring system could help lower your insurance premium regardless of the type of plan you have.
Also, if you don’t feel comfortable with the system your insurance provider is recommending, then you can always try another company. Not every firm uses the same equipment, as some just use a mileage meter to keep track of your travels. But do keep in mind that a company with less information about you will no doubt charge you a lot more.