My RightTrack Telematics Experience
As an independent insurance agent, my job is twofold:
- Help people protect what matters to them by providing appropriate insurance coverage.
- Always be on the lookout for the best insurance deals for my clients.
One of the latest technologies in the insurance space is that of “usage-based insurance (UBI)” also known as “telematics.” Telematics insurance works by fitting your car with a small device that records speed patterns and distance traveled as well as the time of day you drive. Insurance companies then use this data to calculate the cost of your insurance and adjust your premium accordingly, with each aspect affecting the price that you pay for auto insurance.
Early this year I began offering this service as a way to save money for clients on car insurance premiums. In June, I thought I better put my money where my mouth was and try the program for myself! As a customer of Safeco Insurance, I signed up for their “RightTrack” program. In hindsight, it was easier and much less daunting than originally thought.
The process works like this:
- Order device and install. The device fits in your hand and simply plugs into a port beneath the steering column.
- Drive with the device installed for 90 days. It tracks mileage, time of day driven, hard stops, and quick starts.
- Along the way, you can track your progress online to see where you stand regarding a discount on your car insurance premium. (I received a 5% discount just for using the program, regardless of how crazy my driving was).
- After 90 days, return the device via the company provided envelope, and that’s it, done!
Once the term completed, I earned a 19% discount and my wife 17%. We used the program as a friendly competition of “who is the better driver”? Well, numbers never lie, but I’m sure that question will be a point of contention going forward!
I found the process enlightening in that not only did it save us money but that in average driving, I tend to follow too closely…oops! For those of you that have ignored your agent’s advice because you don’t want “big brother” watching…I ask you this: do you have a phone? Then they are already watching.
Telematics/UBI whatever you call it, I recommend giving it a shot. Not only will it help you save money, but it will also make you aware of your driving faults and most likely make you a better driver. Sounds like a smart deal to me!