The Money Lion | » insurance All the latest finance, business, money and legal news Fri, 01 Mar 2023 11:41:22 +0000 en hourly 1 The Money Lion | How long should you learn to drive? Mon, 15 Oct 2023 09:32:56 +0000 Emma Dunn

Image by chuckoutrearseats


It’s a sad fact that 17-24 year olds are statisically more dangerous drivers.

So much so, that the Association of British Insurers are calling for an overhaul to the system.

The ABI want to introduce a number of restrictions, including alcohol limits and night time driving restrictions. However, perhaps the most interesting rule they want to introduce is a minimum learning period of at least a year.

The amount of time that a person takes to learn to drive can vary wildly - I personally passed my test within six months (with only 3 minors - just sayin’), but one of my other friends took five years to learn. It really is a case of how long is a piece of string… so is it right to place a mandatory time frame on these things?

I don’t know how my six months stacks up against the national average, but I certainly put myself under a lot of pressure to pass as quickly as I could in order to save money. Let’s face it, driving lessons can be expensive.

According to the AA, the average learner driver needs 47 hours of lessons to pass their test. At the national average of £24 an hour, that works out to be a whopping £1974. That’s before we even talk about insuring a car and buying petrol for private practice.

This extra cost might be annoying, but it will be worth it in the end if insurance premiums go down, right? Well, unfortunately that trade off can’t be guaranteed.

Speaking on BBC Breakfast , Malcolm Taring said he could not give a solid figure by how much premiums would fall, however he did say that these actions would need to be in place in order to avoid insurance costs rising further for young drivers.

Do you think these proposals are fair on young drivers? Will the enforced learning period make the roads safer? Tell us what you think in the comments section below!


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The Money Lion | The cost of holidaying abroad Mon, 23 Jul 2023 14:31:30 +0000 Liam McClure  

The majority of us that will be heading to warmer climes for sun, sea and sangria will be taking out insurance to ensure that any holiday mishaps are covered.

However, it is becoming more common that holiday makers are being caught out because theyare not aware of certain stipulations within their insurance.

When you take out holiday insurance there are the standard questions that you answer to work out what cover you will require.

Obviously an ice climbing holiday in Norway is going to cost more than lounging on a beach in Spain due to the risks involved.

Read the small print

However, more holiday makers are not reading the finer details on their insurance which may have some fairly important information.

For example your insurance may be void if you have alcohol in your system. For those going away on boozy holidays this is something that they need to look into.

Image by: Derick Purdy

Not that we are in any way encouraging the holiday binge style of holiday, far from it, but for people who will go and get incredibly drunk and fall over may think twice if they were aware that they would wind up footing a much larger bill due to lack of insurance.

Perhaps it is due to the relatively simple process of purchasing travel insurance that leads people to think that it simply covers them while abroad. The truth of the matter is that there is a lot more to it than you may first realise.

Know the limits

The main reasons why travel insurance won’t pay out is - Drugs and alcohol, negligence, lack of receipts or reports in the case of an incident.

Image by: thetejon

These are all fairly standard reasons for insurance companies to not pay out in the case of an incident. However, there are some covers that are a little bit more precise, some will not pay out should your alcohol blood level be over a certain level.

For those of you who will be taking to the mountains for hiking or skiing activities ensure that there is not an altitude clause in your cover.

It may be easy to purchase travel insurance and not overly expensive, but make sure you read the small print as it is rarely as straightforward as you would think and the last thing that you would want is to find your self in a situation where you may be facing a huge bill. And of course, be sensible.

Just because you are on holiday doesn’t give you the excuse to act like an out of control child. Think before you leap.

Have you taken out travel insurance only to discover that you weren’t covered when you needed it? Share your experience in the comments below.

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The Money Lion | The truth behind car insurance myths Fri, 01 Jun 2023 09:26:41 +0000 Jenna Mc Car insurance can be mind-boggling! There are so many terms and conditions to be aware of and you often hear rumours about what might affect your policy and what won’t.

What you can be sure of is that if you rely on myths your car insurance policy could be invalid, should the worst happen. For example, did you know that just because you are fully comp you might not be insured on everyone’s car? When it comes to car insurance, it really is important that you pay attention to the fine print and don’t go on rumours alone.

Elephant car insurance have brought the 10 most common myths to light and discussed the truth behind them. Make sure you find out the facts and read your individual car insurance policy carefully so you can drive safely in confidence.

Click the image below to see the larger version:

10 most common car insurance myths!

Insurance Myths

Image by Elephant Car Insurance

Have you heard any other car insurance myths? Let us know and we will do the best to answer them!



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The Money Lion | EU rules could cost women drivers Tue, 15 May 2023 10:27:18 +0000 Merlin Harries  

There’s a change coming at the end of 2012, and it doesn’t bodes well for women drivers. From December 21st (uncannily coinciding with the supposed Mayan ‘end of the world’ prophecy).

CC 'F0T0Synth' (Flickr)

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) has ruled that gender will no longer be allowed to be considered when car insurance companies work out how much premium people pay.

This has had very mixed reactions, as it represents a big leap for gender equality, but it also means that premiums are likely to increase for women, making people wonder if the ruling is fair.

The current situation

Insurance prices are calculated based on a mix of difference factors, which themselves are based on years’ worth of insurance statistics.

From these stats, insurers have found that female drivers are consistently safer drivers than men. Male drivers often note that “men have less accidents that women, but when we do it, we do it properly”, and there is some truth in this.

Accident levels between men and women are similar in number, but the average cost of a claim for a male driver is higher than his female counterpart. A lady driver might nick the bumper in the car park or scratch the paint when getting out of the car, but a male driver would be more likely to hit an obstacle or write-off his car completely.

What will change

The statistics don’t lie – women are safer drivers, and as a result have been enjoying a discount on their insurance because of it. This makes sense, as insurance prices are based on risk, and if you’re proven to be a lower risk then you should pay less.

This has been common knowledge for a number of years, and a number of female driver-only insurance companies have sprung up to cater for this, and many other insurers offer special rates on women’s car insurance.

However, once the gender ruling kicks in, that data can no longer be used. This will equalise the rates, which will in all likelihood see car insurance for men go down a little, whereas women’s car insurance has nowhere to go but up.

Light at the end of the tunnel

Although it’s something that all insurers have to adhere to, they won’t take this new ruling lying down. In order to keep a more accurate risk profile for their customers, car insurance companies are going to have to look for other ways of assessing drivers.

What you may see in the future is that insurers put far more emphasis on the type of car that you drive, or what occupation you have. From this, we could even see insurance companies rating more favourably for occupations and car models that are predominantly female-centric.

The system will even out eventually, but for the first few months or even years once the ruling takes effect we’re likely to see our car insurance prices see-sawing as insurers try to find the right balance of rating factors.

What do you think about the ruling? Is it about time we had insurance equality, or should women still get favourable rates? Tell me what you think in the comments below.


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The Money Lion | Which? reveals price comparison sites might not offer best deal Tue, 10 Apr 2023 10:05:41 +0000 Jenna Mc  

When you need a new insurance quote you’re probably likely to visit one of the many price comparison websites that we see advertised on our TV screens.

They promise to compare a wide range of financial services products for us, anything from home utility providers to pet insurance providers.

Use price comparison sites carefully to get the best deal. Image the dalogs via creative commons

These comparison sites have become a very useful and popular way for consumers to shop for financial products conveniently.

However, the respected consumer body, Which?, has recently published its concerns about whether consumers are in fact getting the best dealwhen using these comparison sites.

Which? highlighted the concern that these comparison sites imply that consumers don’t have to go elsewhere for a quote, but the sites don’t cover the whole market. It found that the none of the most popular comparison sites covered more than a third of the market for home or travel insurance. Therefore consumers could be missing out on products from other financial service providers not featured on the comparison sites.

Another concern which was highlighted in the study was that some car insurance searches featured pre-selected boxes. This could make a quote look cheaper. When the user clicked through to the insurer to personalise the quote, it would increase.

Something else that people had to be aware of was that the websites featured some pre-selected options which could result in an invalid insurance policy. For instance, a box showing that the customer has no prior motoring convictions could lead to the policy being invalidated, if they actually do have some.

Shop around…

It seems there is no easy or quick way to saving money. If you want to ensure you get the best and most suitable deal then you should still consult various sources.

When using price comparison sites you should always pay attention to pre-selected boxes and review your product at the end to ensure that you have the correct cover. Some insurers do not appear on price comparison sites so make sure you still shop around for the best quote. Price comparison sites only quote for single-car policies, if you are looking for a multi car insurance quote then you will need to approach specialist multicar insurance providers to get a special discounted quote.

Check out more of our top tips for using price comparison sites and make sure you get the best deal.

Do you agree with the findings of the Which? survey? Leave a comment about your experiences using price comparison sites.


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The Money Lion | Peacocks, puppies, and other hazards of the road: strange car insurance claims Tue, 03 Apr 2023 08:33:21 +0000 Domenica Goduto  

Peacock attacks, a puppy mistaken for a handbrake, hungry mice, and a series of small but distracting creepy crawlies are behind some of the UK’s strangest motor insurance claims.
Male peacock in full show

Image via Meena uba on Flickr

Car insurance specialists Admiral requested their employees to submit the oddest reasons they’ve encountered for making an insurance claim, and the winning list – released late last week – reveals that the clear leaders came from the animal kingdom.

Peacocks were particularly well represented, with 4 of the top 12 animal claims involving the showy birds and their apparently vicious dislike of motorised vehicles.  Also well represented were dogs, most unusually in the case of a passenger in a car who reached down to pick up a puppy which had escaped from their lap and accidentally seized the car’s handbrake instead.

An elephant, a camel, and a miniature horse were among the more unusual critters that made an appearance on the list. Mice and rats showed an unfortunate tendency to treat vehicle parts as food, and a spider and fly proved that you don’t have to be large to create havoc on the road.

Dave Halliday, Admiral’s managing director, pointed out that:

“Although amusing to read about now, any incident is distressing for those involved and our handlers are trained to be understanding and professional. However, it goes to show car insurance is not always as dull as you may think!”

Indeed, when you realise just how many bizarre things can go wrong in regards to your car, it becomes obvious how important it is to have good car insurance. This is not as expensive or complicated as you might think – if you have numerous vehicles consider multicar insurance to get the best deal.

The 12 most unusual animal claims Admiral has handled are:

  1. The front seat passenger had a puppy on their lap which jumped down from the seat. The passenger reached down to pick up the puppy but accidently pulled up the handbrake causing the car to skid into another vehicle.
  2. A car was damaged at a village fete when a miniature pony broke loose and climbed over the bonnet.
  3. A car was damaged by a peacock which, on seeing its reflection, clawed the car.
  4. A driver was distracted by a camel and an elephant tethered at the side of the road and collided with a bollard.
  5. A driver drove into a telephone pole while trying to swat a fly inside the vehicle.
  6. A rare show car, a Lancia Delta Intergrale, was destroyed while in storage by a nest of mice which chewed through the leather and foam of the two front seats, partially devoured the rear seats and completely stripped the leather from all four door interiors.
  7. A car was damaged by a group of peacocks which escaped from the owner’s neighbour’s garden.
  8. While driving, a man leaned over to stroke his dog, got distracted and crashed his car.
  9. A driver caused a multi car shunt after being startled by a spider dangling from the rear view mirror.
  10. A car was parked in a woodland car park and was damaged by a male peacock which took a dislike to the vehicle.
  11. A car was damaged by rats which entered the engine compartment and chewed through internal parts.
  12. A car was damaged while parked in a hotel car park after it was attacked by a peacock owned by the hotel.

(And check out our Pinspire board with images of the usual culprits here.)

Dave Halliday continues:

“From territorial peacocks, creepy crawlies and cute puppies, it seems it’s not just other road users motorists should be aware of. These unusual incidents illustrate how important it is to remain focused on the road ahead at all times and not to get distracted by animals whether they’re inside or outside your vehicle. Whilst it’s more difficult to protect your car exterior from a frantic peacock, if you are transporting pets, make sure they are safely secured so as not to cause any distraction.”

Have you ever experienced an animal-related mishap while driving? Tell us your stories below…


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The Money Lion | £100m worth of damage caused by London rioters… Wed, 10 Aug 2023 13:27:47 +0000 Debbie Thomson

Image by: Alan Stanton

…and it looks like UK taxpayers could be footing the bill!

It has been estimated by the Association of British Insurers that damages caused in recent London riots could cost “well over £100m”.  With hundreds of businesses and members of the public affected by loss and damage, insurance companies can expect a vast amount of claims to be made in the coming weeks.

Although most insurance companies will be honouring insurance claims in this situation, a 125 year old clause states that insurers have the right to reclaim the money from the police authorities.  The Riot Damages Act of 1886 specifies that damages caused by those “riotously and tumultuously assembled” should be compensated for by local police Authorities, in this case The Metropolitan Police Authority.

So where does the taxpayer come into this?  The Met suggested in a statement to the Guardian that as there are no funds in place to deal with situation like this, the cost could come out of reserves which incidentally are funded by the taxpayer.  A spokesman for the Met said, “No specific fund is maintained by the Metropolitan police authority to cover claims against such contingencies, but we maintain general reserves to cover unexpected events. Such risks cannot be insured against.”

A partner at law firm Reynolds Porter, Stuart White explained:

“The theory is that the police are responsible for keeping law and order, and if they fail, they pay for the damage”. 

Barrister Daniel Barratt further explained “The police are required to pay compensation to any person who has suffered losses as a result, including those who have had property stolen,

This would cover not only the owners of the businesses, but (for example) owners of clothes which were damaged by looting of a dry cleaners.”

Those affected have been urged to make their claims as quickly as possible. The Riot Damage Act states that all claims to the police are to be made within 14 days and as such it is likely to be a requirement in most insurance policies that a claim of this nature be made within 7 days.

People are also advised to check with their insurance providers to confirm what they are covered for as it is possible that not everything will be covered.  For example, a car insurance holder who is covered under third party, fire and theft is likely to find that if their car has been burned out they will be covered by their policy, but they will not be in the event of a brick through the window.

 Do you think it is fair for the police to compensate those affected by the riots?  Who do you think should foot the bill for the cost of damages made? Let us know in the comments section below!

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The Money Lion | No love for financial service brands Sun, 31 Jul 2023 07:00:30 +0000 Jenna Mc

Go Compare's singing salesman (Image

The brand agency Uffindel has researched how much brands are loved. The study claims to measure the success of a brand based on the quality of relationships that those brands have with their customers. The findings have been developed into the agencies BrandLove Index.

It aims to reveal the depth of love that customers have with brands and, ultimately, identify the perfect relationship formula for brands looking to win over customers.

The researchers found that consumers favour brands in the technology and fast food sectors over brands in the financial sector.  Insurance brands fared the worst of all with the bottom 10 being dominated by seven insurance and pension brands.

In total 29 financial brands were analysed and 2,000 people were surveyed. The worst brand at number 29 was Go Compare, which is unsurprising considering their singing salesman featured on their ads is slightly irritating. Uffindell said this overall picture suggests the brand needs to work harder to build emotional connection with its customers to complement its stable and safe image

The other most un-loved brands were:

  • Standard Life (24th)
  • Barclaycard (25th)
  • AXA (26th)
  • Admiral (27th)
  • Legal & General (28th)

The research also concluded that the financial service brands we love the most are First Direct, Pay Pal and Nationwide. NatWest, part of the Royal Bank of Scotland which taxpayers were forced to bailout at a cost of $45bn, came forth surprisingly. Could the public have forgotten about the banking crisis already? The relative newbie in the financial services industry Tesco clutched fifth place. This could be a result of Tesco’s strong brand reputation across other industries.

Overall the results show that well established names from the insurance sector, which escaped the worst of the financial crisis, sit at the bottom of the index. The index highlights the need for the insurance industry to work much harder at building stronger customer relationships.

Do you think the BrandLove Financial Services Index accurately reflects the public’s opinion of the financial companies involved?

What do you think can be done to improve the relationships financial companies have with their consumers?


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The Money Lion | Insuring Wayne Rooney - is he worth it? Wed, 27 Jul 2023 11:09:03 +0000 Kevin Gilmartin We all have insurance on the things valuable to us - our homes, our cars our mobiles. We pay up every month happy with the peace mind that comes with the cover in case the worst should happen.

There are other types of insurance out there of course - bunny insurance, anyone? - and most of us will never have to worry about them. It doesn’t make them any less interesting, though.

Take footballers - talented sportsmen, making the kind of money in a week most of us will only ever dream of. But what happens if they hurt their feet - damn fragile metatarsals - and can’t play? Well, just we do with our cars and phones, footballers have their valuables insured.

Imagine insuring Wayne Rooney. Check out the graphic below, put together earlier this year by the folks at and published on, to see how much it probably costs Wayne Rooney to insure his talented tootsies, and how the cost of his policy could be calculated.

What have you had insured that you’d be lost without? Are you happy to pay the monthly premium or do you think you could get a better deal?

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The Money Lion | Phone insurance complaints Fri, 20 May 2023 13:16:51 +0000 Kim Hutton Mobile phone

Phone insurance complaints have gone up by two thirds in the past year after people complained that they were miss-sold insurance in some way. Whether they didn’t need insurance, actually already had it, or were lied to about the type of cover they were getting, a lot of people aren’t too happy with their mobile phone insurance.

More than 3000 complaints have been made, which then lead to around 900 investigations with the Financial Ombudsman Service, but apparently those numbers are just the start.

As I’ve never owned an overly expensive phone, I never see the point in getting mobile phone insurance, as the money I’d have spent on it over the month could just be put towards a new phone if I break it. Though maybe if I had an iPhone I would think a little differently.

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