Previously Prime Meridian Direct (PMD) Prime Meridian Direct

Is it Time to Switch Car Insurance Providers?

Have you thought that perhaps you should switch car insurance providers? The reality is that many South Africans sign up with the first car insurance provider they come across and never even consider that they might be able to switch companies at a later stage.

Of course, if you’re happy with the premium cost and service you’re currently getting, there’s no need to switch car insurance providers. However, many people accept poor customer service, have trouble claiming, or they struggle to make their hefty car insurance premiums each month. Here are some top signs that it might be time to consider switching insurers.

Comparing Car Insurance in South Africa

The cost of living for South Africans continues to climb, making budgeting more difficult than ever. Whereas there are ways you can stretch your money, like cutting down on unnecessary expenses, your fixed costs, like your car insurance premium, are set in stone and will increase annually. However, you don’t just have to accept it.

Your contract with your car insurance provider is not a forever commitment. You’re allowed to switch for whatever reason and could be surprised by what you might have missed out on. Here are some reasons why you could want to switch car insurance companies.

1. You’re Struggling to Pay Your Premium

One of the top reasons South Africans decide to switch to a new car insurance provider is for a cheaper premium. You don’t just have to accept your current premium rate. Do your research and compare rates to see if you can get a better price for similar benefits.

A good car insurance provider will listen to your circumstances and needs before offering a tailored quote to suit your lifestyle. Car insurance rates should be personalised, as no two people drive the exact same car, live in the same area, drive as frequently, etc. Furthermore, if you’ve been driving responsibly and have not had many claims, it should also be considered when calculating your premium.

Some companies will also offer car insurance discounts. For example, you could get a discount if you buy your policy online, have anti-theft features like a tracker or alarm in your car, or have not had a claim with your previous insurance company. Remember to avoid a lapse in coverage, which means not making your monthly payment and not being covered as a result.

2. It’s Difficult to Reach the Car Insurance Provider

Your car insurance provider should be there for you at the touch of a button when you need them, which is often in emergencies. It might be time to switch if you’re being put on hold, not getting through, or just having to jump through hoops to contact someone to help you.

Customer service is the number one thing to look for in a car insurance provider. When you’ve been in a car accident, you want the person on the other end of the phone to be empathetic, helpful and quick in assisting you. Therefore, we always recommend you research online review platforms like Hellopeter before committing to a new car insurance provider. Your insurer might make lots of promises, but what really matters is what their existing clients say about them.

3. You Find it Difficult to Claim

If you feel like your insurer is still stuck in the past, and you have to go back and forth on the phone or email, consider moving on. With everything moving online, your insurer should have an app to make it extra easy for you to claim or communicate with them.

For example, we’ve created our PMD app that you can download from Google Play or the Apple App Store to make it easy to lodge your claim, submit your vehicle photos, as well as view and download your policy documents to keep you up to date on your claim’s progress.

4. Your Requirements or Circumstances Have Changed

When you first got car insurance coverage, you might’ve lived and worked somewhere else, or perhaps you used your car for work. You could also have built up a better credit score, making you more reliable financially in the eyes of the insurer.

When your lifestyle changes, your premium will too. Therefore, it’s always a good idea to get a new quote to see how that will affect your monthly debit order. However, we don’t recommend you downgrade your policy, for example switching from comprehensive to third-party, as it does come with reduced benefits and could lead to regret when you end up needing those benefits.

5. Additional Benefits Offered by an Other Insurer

Not all insurance companies offer the exact same thing. For example, you might find out that another insurer offers unique benefits, like PMD’s fixed premiums and reduce-to-zero* excess. This means that you can rest assured that your premium payment will stay the same for two years, which makes budgeting much easier! Your premium will only increase within the 2 years if you’ve had a claim or there has been a change in your risk profile.

We also have a unique benefit called Reduce-to-Zero Excess*. The term “Excess” refers to the first payment you must make when claiming, which is what all insurance companies require. This “base” or “basic” amount stays the same. At PMD, however, your excess amount will reduce to zero over 36 months* if you don’t make any claims. So, the longer you don’t claim, the lower that excess will be when you do end up needing to claim.

Things to Remember

Although you’re free to switch whenever you want to, you should always go through your policy to see what the insurance companies offer and understand their terms and conditions. For example, many insurers will charge a cancellation fee if you cancel your policy.

Even though it’s a good idea to compare quotes and choose a better fit, you should not continually switch providers as you could lose out on loyalty benefits, and it can be a lot of admin. Furthermore, it will look like “insurance hopping”, which could push up your car insurance premium in the future.

Also, always get proof of insurance from your new car insurance provider and get it in writing before you cancel your old policy. You should never drive without car insurance!

Switch to PMD and Save

We’re proud to have a Trust Index Rating of 10/10 and an overall rating of 4.46/5 on Hellopeter, South Africa’s number one online review platform. We always put our clients first and strive to offer affordable car insurance to all South Africans.

Get a quote today to see how much we can help you save on your monthly car insurance premium and enjoy the peace of mind of knowing that you’re backed by the best when you need it most.

Disclaimer

This article provides general information to help you understand some of the reasons South Africans consider switching car insurance providers.

Always remember that buying car insurance should be done with much thought and from a certified financial services provider.

Contact us today if you want more information about getting affordable, comprehensive car insurance with fixed premiums* and a reduce-to-zero excess*. *T&Cs apply.

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