Progressive Insurance Snap Shot My Experience Your Comments | Ford Escort Owners Association (FEOA)
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Progressive Insurance Snap Shot My Experience Your Comments

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Gabriel Panoussi, Feb 19, 2016.

  1. Gabriel Panoussi

    Gabriel Panoussi My approval ratings have droped.

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    Recently my daily got into a hit and run. So, I enlisted my Escort into active duty. I live in Michigan the no fault state with the high rate. Anyway, I used to pay 107 per mth for liability state minimum insurance on the old 95 Pontiac Grand Prix Coupe V6 3.1L. My rate jumped to 145 per mth for liability state minimum insurance on the 97 Escort 2.0L Go figure, I was told by many that a 4 door 4 cyl would be cheaper to insure. Apparently that is not my case. Still I have no regrets I enjoy the Escort. I feel the Escort to be a superior car overall as compared to the Pontiac (*cough* 17mpg city).

    That being said I like money, I like having lots and spending less. So I decided to enroll in Progressive SnapShot in an effort to save money. I now had a OBDII port and snapshot was a possibility. I did not know much about the program. I heard it saved 0 to 30 percent on your next policy renewal. I signed up then I researched the internet and found quite a bit of negative comments towards the program. Some complained of the device registering hard brakes when they were cut off to avoid getting into a collision, others claimed that the discounts though applied were met with matching or higher rate increases being explained away as a general rate increase for the "area". Some even said the SnapShot Device caused an SES light to trigger requiring 90 bucks worth of diagnosis work.

    I did more research and came to read the fine print. If I understand the jargon the device reports to a super secret buried bunker off shore. No, I don't know where it reports but it does report and measure 3 matrix of your driving. They are 1. Hard stops via OBDII presumably by monitoring a speed sensor or tranny sensor. 2. Actual distance traveled. 3. Time of diving. That's right time of day or more appropriately time of night. Progressive considers the hours of 12 AM to 4 AM high risk hours for driving. I tend to agree. Night itself creates viability issues reducing the safety and increasing liability. Add the drunks, the sleepy drivers, the ones who "have trouble seeing at night. Well you get it. One person particular situation was worsened by the fact that he set off for his morning commute at 2 AM. My opinion... Yes that would suck for you, is it higher risk to be on the road commuting to work at 2AM than say 7:30 AM rush hour I dunno.

    Further investigation revealed something interesting and unsettling. Seemingly buried. A note that the SnapShot program evaluates your driving for 6 mths the bases your renewal rate based on monitored driving habits. This may result in a discount or decrease of 0 to 30 percent however the information used to calculate the rate is the data not your driving history or number of points.

    Advantageous to some? Perhaps. However as I continued to read it also mentioned that the data can be used to also increase premiums for higher risk drivers. Again all this based on the 3 recorded matrix listed above. That part certainly was not advertised as loudly as the 0 to 30 percent discount for participating.

    30 day I am noping out of this clause is in effect. After the initial collection of 30 days of data you are presented with an offer. An initial discount based on your recently collected data for your current policy term with the stipulation that if you accept you agree to follow through with the continued data monitoring for the additional 5 mths and a review of that data to adjust your rate at time of renewal.

    As for myself well, I am only on day 2 number. My number of hard stops recorded thus far zero. Goose egg. I drive slow and people behind me get hate it. But the way I look at it is that I am broke and at best this means a discount of 43.50 per mth for my situation. So I don't care other people won't pay my insurance and I could give a shit if they have an issue that is why there are two lanes America is about the freedom to remain calm and pass that annoying slow driver without raising your blood pressure one iota. I digress.

    Btw have I decided to keep it? I dunno. So far so good on the hard stops but uh truth be told the car today gave off a burned smell once the heater was turned on shortly thereafter the heater stopped working. Coincidence? I have not checked the fuses yet. I know nothing of this car and it was recently purchased. I will keep you all posted.

    The point of this post was to tell about what I got into see if anyone else has tried it comments etc. Fire away!
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2016
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  2. dchawk81

    dchawk81 FEOA Member

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    F*ck Big Brother. I'm a safe driver but I refuse to be nannied.

    Since Progressive isn't actually in the damned car with me they won't know why I make a move that I make and I knew about that rate increase potential from the get go because I'm cynical and know that a company isn't going to give discounts without making up that revenue somewhere.
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  3. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    I agree with dchawk81. I agreed to use that 'snapshot' for a few months with my 95 Saturn sedan, and found it was affecting my thinking about how I drove. It amounted to a distraction. Its metrics for 'good' or 'risky' driving were simplistic; but maybe that is the best they can do.
    At the end of 6 months they said they gave me a 10% rate discount - which meant my 6 month premium dropped from $180 to $162. That was for the VA state minimums of liability insurance. So I returned the unit to them, with a note about what I saw as the limitations.
    My driving record is good, I even have some 'good-driver' points on my record in VA. My last speeding ticket was in the late 60's.
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  4. dchawk81

    dchawk81 FEOA Member

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    The fact that I have the wherewithal to brake hard, make quick turns, and punch it to speed up when necessary is part of what makes me a good driver, yet I would be penalized for that under this scheme. These are basic accident avoidance maneuvers. Progressive would see it as aggressive and inflate my rate.
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  5. madmatt2024

    madmatt2024 FEOA Member

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    I don't know if I could play nice for 6 months. I have to let my aftermarket exhaust sing and my V rated tires hug the curves once in awhile. Besides, last time I checked my current insurer (GEICO) was already 30-50% less than other insurers. My mom has Allstate and uses their Snapshot 'equivalent' but it has to be plugged in constantly.
  6. Intuit

    Intuit FEOA Member

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    The more information they have, the more information they have to use against you. They are in the business to do one thing, make money, not service the customer. You could take any individual on the planet and come up with at least two excuses to justify an exorbitant rate.

    The best way to avoid increases and possibly pay less, is to keep hopping from one carrier to the next, playing one against the other and outright refusing to pay more; even if that means risking lapse time. (and yes, lapses are one of the endless number of excuses to charge more)

    Think I'll make my agent earn his keep a little and fetch a lower rate even though my contract is maybe 50% through. Waiting until the last minute and trapping you up against a lapse, plays to their advantage.


    =========================

    As for night time driving, I disagree. It is true that there is reduced visibility however I believe most people compensate in much of the same ways that we do with fog and heavy-rain conditions. The chief risk to night driving are animal and debris impacts.

    The case for disagreeing begins with the fact that less people on the road equals less random variables to deal with. Personal experience, most of the tickets I ever received, were issued at night; and this is despite the fact that it represents a small percentage of my driving time. Why? For the aforementioned reason; less people on the road. With fewer people out there to screw-around with, guess what? Conversely the two collisions I've been involved in, were during daylight hours. (neither at fault) An insurance company could look at this data and correlate tickets, risk-behavior and driving hours, but that would be incorrect. One question is whether more on-the-road per-capita wrecks occur during the day or night. That I do not know and wouldn't venture to guess; but wouldn't be surprised at either outcome. Most of my driving is during the day and that of course yields more observed wrecks and risk-behaviors, mistakes during that time; not to be perceived as any sort of indicator.

    =========================

    Sometimes speed is the bad decision, but the overwhelming majority of wrecks are a result of poor decision making, mistakes, not speed. Speed comes into play primarily when you start to consider the severity of a wreck. I'd wager that we're much more likely to face serious injury or death during a highway collision, while at the same time less likely to be involved in one per mile traveled, in the first place.

    More discussion...
    https://www.feoa.net/threads/barlul-needs-window-tint-removal-advice.90649/page-3#post-822081

    =========================

    Speaking of hit & runs, my vehicle has been hit twice. Maybe two weeks after replacing the driver front fender from a run-in with a buzzed driver, someone backed into it on a hit & run. Later someone hit & run again on that same fender (setting off the alarm) and given that neighborhood I'm sure the perpetrator could've afforded repair. After having owned it over a decade, all this happened in relative short time span. For the most part, just stopped giving a hoot. Being aesthetically less than perfect ain't slowed it down a bit.
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2016
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  7. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    I have had auto insurance with GEICO for 48 years, and still have my Texas cars insured with them. I have gotten quotes for slightly lower rates from other insurers, but not enough to tempt me to change. (Of course the quoters can never guarantee what the rate will be 6 months later). We typically insure 3 cars in Texas, but only for the 6 winter months we live there; having insurance only on one car during the summer, to keep policy continuity.
    I insure my cars in VA with Progressive - which was marginally lower than GEICO, but not by much. Progressive's tally of customer complaints is much higher than GEICO's, though I have no gripes with them. In VA if you have a car registered and the insurance lapses - the DMV will suspend your driver's license. They used to do this by spot-checking your coverage, but now some insurers notify the DMV database automatically. My daughter ran into this after her car's insurance lapsed for a week. The VA DMV reinstatement fee to un-suspend her driver's license was $600.

    GEICO really wants to know how far you drive in a year; and may be able to check - since the annual inspection info sent electronically to the TX DMV includes odometer readings. But since the wife and I dont have a commute, our 'miles-per-year' is low and our rates are reasonable.
    So far Progressive only asks about annual driving distances when you renew, and doesnt seem to check on what you tell them. Yet.

    In general VA has lower insurance rates than many states, regardless of insurer.
    I understand Louisiana has very high auto insurance rates, due to insurance fraud.
  8. Gabriel Panoussi

    Gabriel Panoussi My approval ratings have droped.

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    I think that the matrix they judge is limited by the data available at the OBDII. I don't think there is anyway possible of determining if someone is a safe driver by monitering what comes out of OBDII.

    The only way to do it would be to have someone there (which would affect your driving for "normal") or to have 360 cameras (which would affect your driving for "normal"). If you know you are being monitored your behavior will deviate from normal. So unless the subject does not know they are being monitored any approach at this will not yield realistic results in my opinion.

    Safe driver to me is one who safely has the ability to avoid a collision without thought to how his actions will be interpreted in the event of a collision. The participation itself is distracting reducing safety. Good concept, bad approach. Indecently, if you are in a collision at the time of a collision Progressive says they will not use the recorded data unless you agree to it. Guess we just trust them on that one.

    Lets face it we all have done it hard stops, almost missed a turn and took it a little fast. Does that make you a bad driver? Depends. when I pull shit like that I am always aware of the cars around me. I have an image of my car on the road with an arial view in my mind. IF that makes sense. Even when I come to a light I catch myself looking in the rear view to see who is back there? Are the coming in too hot? I leave some space to creep up if I need to. How can an insurance company measure this?

    That being said I think I will play the game. So, far I still have 0 hard breaks.
  9. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    The only part of the whole exercise I liked, was being able to go to the Progressive site, and call up the day by day record of my driving. It showed a chart with the time of the day across the bottom, and a jagged line representing how fast I was travelling. Sudden stops were just shown as a steep descent from fast to slow. You could have seen at what times I was driving, and sort-of inferred my distance. No indication of where I was driving. That might be in the next upgrade.
  10. madmatt2024

    madmatt2024 FEOA Member

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    That would require a GPS tracker which I think they would be legally required to have you sign an acknowledgement for.
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  11. dchawk81

    dchawk81 FEOA Member

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    I'd probably get a higher rate just by the fact that I like to cruise a couple ticks over the speed limit. 68 in a 65 for example. That's just normal for me and it's still slower than most.
  12. zzyzzx

    zzyzzx FEOA Member

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    I got one from Allstate last September and put in in my 1999 Alero. I got a 27% discount on a portion (on one of the my line items) on my 6 months renewal for the insurance for that car. The thing is, I don't drive that car in the winter. It's mostly been in a garage connected to a battery tender almost the whole time since it's been installed. It'd been driven very little.

    I also had GEICO like forever like denisond3, but they kept arbitrarily raising my rates, so I went with Erie, who started out low but jacked my rates every year (by exactly $50 per year only homeowners) just the same (although I loved that the auto policies last a whole year). So I recently switched to Allstate, saved something like $50 - $60 for switching, then got a LOWER renewal rate on my auto insurance.
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2016
  13. madmatt2024

    madmatt2024 FEOA Member

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    For me Allstate kept raising my rates. I talked to my agent because I was 26 with no accidents or tickets but my rate kept going up and I was wondering about the supposed discount people seem to get once they turn 25. He told me that discount was given but the rate just happened to go up by the amount of the discount. It wasn't long after than this I switched to GEICO.
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  14. dchawk81

    dchawk81 FEOA Member

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    What a coincidence, huh? Shysters.
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  15. Intuit

    Intuit FEOA Member

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    Being unmarried, or male or not a homeowner or without children or not wealthy, or in a not-wealthy neighborhood, or your car is new, or your car is old, or it has two doors, or have less-than-perfect credit score, or have a felony, or had a moving violation in the past three years, or have any points, or live "near" a "high" "crime" area, or car not paid for or car expensive, or car is cheap, or you've had a few jobs in the past few years, or you're between jobs, or you're in a more densely populated area, or you're within a mile of a 50mph roadway... on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on....

    As an explanation for a ridiculous rate, was once told "the prior owner recorded two losses on the VIN." The agent agent agreed that didn't make sense. Though that was the best excuse she could come up with, the crazy price didn't change. I could either hobble away from having been bentover and screwed, or walk away. I walked away.

    But that's okay. At least I have the comfort of knowing that the hard earned $$,$$$ claimless cash I've donated to them is hard at work in local and Federal govts, lobbying for their interests.
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  16. Gabriel Panoussi

    Gabriel Panoussi My approval ratings have droped.

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    Soon we may not need insurance at all here is a cool concept car (link below). The article goes on to say that it would require some type of strip to be placed under the roadway for it work.

    I think crash sensing technology is more feasible. A series of sensors on all vehicles on the road made mandatory. Along with sensors mounted on the road sides. Set aside funds to retro fit all vehicles that are older (better allocation of funds than Obama free cell phones) than the new vehicles being manufactured. Make it all mandatory like having insurance.

    This would be a massive project but with the advancement of technology it can happen. I mean bats din't run into each other why should we?

    http://mashable.com/2012/05/11/vws-hover-car-concept/#RXYnbsPbjkqa
  17. denisond3

    denisond3 Moderator Staff Member

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    I have an in-law who works for Allstate handling claims, and another in-law who was an investigator for State Farm before his retirement. So I learned some of the things they dont tell you over the phone, or wont unless you specifically ask, or wont explain at all.
    Example: The amount you admit to driving when you sign-up or renew will of course affect your premium; and if you say you drive 2000 miles a year while the average driver in your state does 10,000 miles annually, they may accept your assertion or they may not - but they probably wont mention that unless you specifically ask. The average annual driving distance is assuming your are fully employed - and if you are unemployed, they might give you a lower rate - if you specifically state your circumstances; like being retired.
    The in-law who was an investigator looked at wrecked cars insured by his employer, looking for unsafe stuff - like brake or suspension problems, or serious rust.

    While I respect GEICO a little more than some others, the day I turned 26 I called GEICO to tell them, and to ask them to lower my insurance premium. They agreed, and I got a minor refund. I asked if they would have automatically lowered my premium if I hadnt called. The answer was "Yes, at the time of your next renewal." - which would have been half a year in the future. The annual premium for my motorcycle coverage dropped in half, for being 26 instead of 25. I think the refund was $30.
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  18. Intuit

    Intuit FEOA Member

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    ...program started with Reagan....
  19. Gabriel Panoussi

    Gabriel Panoussi My approval ratings have droped.

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    Did he start lifeline? Back then it was only on land lines. Personally I think that the free cell phones are excessive. I was just fine with a discount land line when we qualified.
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  20. Intuit

    Intuit FEOA Member

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    Trying to keep the O.T. short. Private companies merely figured out how to bill the government. It's the same thing when companies advertise that they'll put you in a motorized wheel chair at no charge. Though the benefit or reimbursement was old, the practice of marketing that, at one time was new also.
  21. Cymmantix

    Cymmantix My old archenemy, RAKES!

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    I've got USAA and my rates actually went down a couple of bucks each year over the last 3 years. My work car is GPS tracked and that's enough big brother for me. I don't know if USAA offers the Progressive - type OBD monitor, but I wouldn't want it if they did.

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