Lowering auto insurance rates doesn’t involve “rocket science,” Alberta Premier Ralph Klein scoffed last week. To prove his point, he vowed to sit his MLAs down together in the same room one day soon to lower rates for 80% of Alberta drivers. His ideal is one-size-fits-all insurance. “What we want to achieve is comparable levels of premium payments for the middle of the pack so to speak . . . you, me.”
Wednesday, Nov. 5: “We’ve been impressed by your recent columns on auto insurance in the Post,” the insurance industry’s public affairs rep tells me over the phone. “Would you be willing to go to Fredericton next week and offer your views at a luncheon?” Thus began my adventure into the zany workings of lawmaking in New Brunswick.
Canada’s private automobile insurance companies gouge almost all their customers. But there are exceptions.
U.S. auto insurance is not only fairer, it’s cheaper, thanks to free enterprise. Politicians and other advocates of state control should keep that in mind.
Pay-per-minute automobile insurance — a new approach that a major U.S. insurance company has tested in the Texas market — is a hit with consumers. On average, the hundreds of Houston-area drivers who signed up are saving 25%, and some — those who don’t drive much, or who are insuring a lightly driven second or third car — are saving up to 50% over what they had been paying for traditional automobile insurance.