More Consumer Annoyances (Insurance Dept.)

Toyota RAV4 (XA20) in the mud

Seems cars like this, which mine vaguely resembles, cost a lot to insure.

Generally, I find that my car insurance company, GEICO, has among the most pleasant phone support folks I deal with.  And, fortunately, I don’t have to deal with them very often.

Today I called in to find out why my insurance rates had jumped 10%.  It’s not like I had an accident; indeed I hardly leave the house these days.  And the car is, to put it mildly, somewhat ancient, so it’s not as if its value (if any) has created a high risk.  But maybe GEICO has a model in which drivers of aging cars (even Toyotas!) are a greater risk to other drivers?  Or maybe it’s just aging, although neither one of us had a milestone birthday.  So what was it?

I called GEICO, got a phone tree, and eventually lost patience and demanded “Operator”.  So I got put in the operator queue, and told I’d be better off online (nope, tried that already) or I’d just have to wait for the next available operator. And the wait would be … 40 minutes.  40 minutes??? Fortunately there was a ‘call you back’ option, so I took it.

About 40 minutes later the GEICO robot called me back, and then connected me to a charming representative. She explained to me that the reason my insurance had gone up 10% is that, and I quote, “the cost of insurance has gone up.”

Charming as she was, she seemed puzzled by my suggestion that there was something circular in saying that the cost of my insurance had gone up because the cost of insurance has gone up. “Some people had theirs go up even more,” she added. “But they had accidents.”

Someone is doing well out of this….

Interestingly, the cost of insurance for a new car of the same model  would only be 25% more than the cost for my old one.  So it’s either about inflation in medical costs or other people’s cars. Or price gouging. I’ve read there had been a lot of inflation in car prices, with prices at least for used cars dipping a lot in the past month.  But I’m going to bet my insurance cost does not go down in the next six month period, not even with GEICO.

My last question was whether GEICO was passing on 10% raises to its workers.  That got a laugh. It’s not.

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