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Women 'should be getting cheaper insurance' on back of penalty points drop

There are calls for female drivers to get cheaper car insurance, as figures reveal they clocked u...
Jack Quann
Jack Quann

16.58 22 Mar 2021


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Women 'should be getting cheap...

Women 'should be getting cheaper insurance' on back of penalty points drop

Jack Quann
Jack Quann

16.58 22 Mar 2021


Share this article


There are calls for female drivers to get cheaper car insurance, as figures reveal they clocked up half the number of penalty points that men did last year.

From January to April 2020, men got a total of 34,431 points - while women drivers got 16,587 points in the same period.

A 2012 European Union ruling on gender-neutral pricing means that insurance companies cannot charge different prices on the grounds of sex.

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Pricing has to be based on other risk factors - such as driving behaviour.

However motoring journalist Geraldine Herbert told The Hard Shoulder all this did was raise premiums for everyone.

"As a result what was supposed to happen at the time was male's insurance was supposed to come down and women would go slightly up.

"But as you know, everybody's insurance went up."

She said while premiums are based on a person's risk on the road, nobody is seeing the benefits.

"At the moment, most people will tell you even if they haven't had a crash or they haven't had a claim - or anything in the last few years - their insurance is still going up yearly.

"Insurance just are a law unto their own at this stage".

'Less of a risk on the road'

She said that women are statistically less of a risk on the road.

"The fact of the matter is women should be getting cheaper insurance full stop if they pose less of a risk on the road.

"And insurance companies will tell you that they take all of these factors into account.

"But the fact of the matter is... nobody's availing of particularly cheap insurance or lower insurance premiums.

"If they're statistically safer, that's should be what premiums are based on".

She added that male drivers make up the majority of 'risky behaviour'.

"Men are just more likely to engage in risky behavoiour on the roads - and this pattern is reflected in everything, from the number of fatalities on our roads to the number of drink-driving [offences].

"It's not just alone in Ireland, it's across Europe: men have than three-times the death rate of females on our roads.

"And they're far more likely to be killed as car drivers and motorcycle riders, whereas females are more likely to be killed as pedestrians and car passengers".

Of 62 drivers killed on Irish roads last year, 53 of them were men.

While the implementation of speed limiters on new cars, set to come into force from 2022, could also shake up the market.

Geraldine explained: "Basically what this will do is when you drive into a 50km/h zone, it will automatically slow the car down to that speed.

"Of course the driver can override it, but just even being reminded of that constantly is probably going to make a huge difference on the roads.

"So slowly but surely we'll see all of these coming in - the decision to speed will be removed from the driver".

Main image: File photo shows a young woman driving a car. Picture by: Robert Schlesinger/DPA/PA Images

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Car Insurance Drivers Geraldine Herbert Insurance Premiums Penalty Points The Hard Shoulder Women Drivers

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