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Sally is a key member of the MoneyMaxim editorial team. She is a frequent hire-car user and often goes on holiday with her family. With an interest in getting great value for money, Sally shares her hints and tips for travelling and insurance.
It appears that car hire excess insurance prices are on the increase - at least if you buy directly and don't use the Moneymaxim car hire insurance comparison service.
After years of steadily reducing prices the past few days have seen one of the UK's leading insurers in the market, Insurance4carhire, raise their prices on a range of policies.
The price of a European Annual Excess insurance policy has risen from £39.99 to £43.99, while the equivalent Worldwide policy has risen from £49.99 to £53.99.
The increase can still be avoided, at least for present, by using the Moneymaxim comparison service, which compares the leading UK insurers, where prices are held at £37.25 and £46.99 respectively.
The company, which are the longest established brand in the UK, have decided that price increases are the better of two evils, preferring to ensure the high levels of service they are renowned for are maintained rather than either reducing the support they offer or reducing the cover levels offered on the product.
Over the past year, for instance, they have extended cover by insuring both additional rental charges incurred as a result of unscheduled flight delays and in the case of a flat battery, being the only company in the excess insurance market providing this without extra cost.
It should also be remembered that back in 2005 the European policy from the company cost £51.45 or over £71.50 in today's terms, once inflation has been accounted for.
When we approached the company to understand the motivation behind the price rise Tim Thornhill, Commercial Director, Specialist Personal Lines at Towergate, who operate the Insurance4carhire brand advised
'Insurance4carhire is committed to offering a fair service and we will continue to champion, on behalf of our customers, for better customer service and transparency when using car hire companies.
As with all UK businesses with operations in the European Union, Insurance4carhire has seen an impact in costs of claims due to fluctuating exchange rates between the Pound and the Euro, in addition to recent IPT changes. In order to maintain our commitment to high service standards, these fluctuations have to be reflected in our pricing. We are committed to providing an excellent service to our customers, and constantly review our products and practices with our ambition to lead the car hire excess market with our 15 years of experience behind us.'