You don't believe in the Loch Ness Monster. You don’t believe your friend caught Jaws fishing off the Florida coast. So why do most boaters believe boat insurance covers them wherever they go?
Progressive surveyed more than 1,000 boat owners. It uncovered a few insurance myths floating around. Here's a sample of the findings and the facts behind each:
Myth: Everyone pays more for insurance because of the hurricanes from a couple of years ago.
Reality: Even though it’s believed by 74 percent of respondents, it isn’t true. Boat insurers generally price policies based on claims in each state. For example, Ohio customers won't pay more for insurance because of hurricanes in Florida.
Myth: Boat insurance covers me anywhere I decide to go boating.
Reality: Seventy-six percent of respondents believed this one. The reality is some insurers only provide coverage where the boat is used most. Insurers may limit coverage to 100 nautical miles of your home port. Progressive provides coverage virtually anywhere you decide to go in the continental U.S. and Canada.
Myth: I’ll get a better insurance rate if I buy from the same company that insures my home or car.
Reality: Buying more than one product from the same insurance company doesn't mean you get the best rate – even though 45 percent of respondents thought so. Boaters can save by shopping around and combining specialized policies from different companies.
"It’s important to understand what’s available," said Dominic Mediate of Progressive. "You want to be properly protected in case your boat is stolen, you get into an accident or contents are damaged. We’re separating fact from fiction so boaters can make the best insurance decisions possible."
With vacation season in full swing, you may be in the process of planning an annual getaway. While most people spend lots of time looking for ways to maximize their budget, one costly decision is often left to the last minute—whether to buy the optional insurance offered by a rental car company.
“Deciding whether to buy ‘damage waivers’ or insurance at the rental car counter can be a confusing experience—especially if you don’t know if you’re already covered by your personal auto insurance policy,” said Rick Crawley of the Progressive Group of Insurance Companies. “Optional rental car insurance can cost between $7 and $25 per day, depending on the rental car company, vehicle make and model and type of waiver. Those daily charges can significantly add to the cost of your rental.”
Follow these three tips, courtesy of Coastal Insurance, to help you decide whether or not you should buy the coverage:
1. Consult with an independent insurance agency – like Coastal Insurance. As licensed insurance professionals, independent insurance agents and brokers can review and evaluate your policies to find out if the coverage you have on your personal vehicle provides protection for you in a rental car.
2. Check with your credit card company. Some credit card companies provide coverage at no charge if you use their card to charge the cost of the rental. However, some restrictions may apply so be sure to ask for a description of the exact coverages provided.
3. Take your personal auto insurance policy and details of your coverages with you to the rental car counter. You may be asked a question that these papers can help answer—or, if you’re in doubt, you’ll have your agent’s name and phone number readily available. “We want people to have the information they need to make more informed decisions about car insurance,” said Crawley.
“Knowing whether you need to buy additional coverage can save you money and give you peace of mind so you can enjoy your vacation. Don’t start off your trip questioning your decisions—take control by talking with your independent agent or broker and knowing the answers to those inevitable questions.”
It can be easier than you think to put the brakes on high auto insurance rates. As an independent agency, Coastal Insurance can help! We can review your policy and possibly help you find a variety of illuminating ways to save money. Here are some things you may want to consider:
1 Shop for comparrison rates. This is the single most important thing you can do to get the best possible rate. The difference between the highest and the lowest rate could be hundreds of dollars.
2 Reduce or drop physical damage coverage on an older car. Depending on the car's age and where you live, comprehensive and collision coverage may not be worth keeping. We can give you advice on whether it makes sense to reduce or drop this coverage altogether.
3 Raise your deductibles. According to the insurance information institute, raising your deductibles from $200 to $500 could reduce your collision and comprehensive cost by 15 to 30 percent. In addition, because the average driver files a collision claim once every ten years, odds are that over the lifetime of your car, a higher deductible will save you money. We can show you how raising your deductibles will lower your premium.
4 Look for discounts. Many insurance companies reduce premiums for certain driver traits or car features. For example, being a homeowner, nonsmoker, students with good grades, senior citizens who have taken an appoved defensive driving course, people who only drive for pleasure, cars kept in garages, antilock brakes, anti-theft devices, air bags, etc. Ask us to check.
5 Sometimes having your car and home insured with the same company can be your best option. Many companies give substanital multi-policy discounts. So it is in your best interest to ask for a bundled home and auto rate.