Progressive’s Snapshot Program Expands to Delaware

Motorists in Delaware now have access to Snapshot, a usage-based program from Progressive that has been gradually expanding and is now available in 40 states.

Company representatives say 500,000 customers across the country have used the program, which utilizes a palm-sized device plugged into a car’s diagnostic port to record driving habits. Safer habits, in turn, make motorists eligible for a range of savings that could cut insurance costs up to 30 percent for vehicles that are driven infrequently and safely, according to the insurer.

Snapshot Part of Usage-Based Insurance Movement

The Snapshot device collects data including the distances that a car is driven, when the car is used and how a motorist accelerates and brakes. The data is logged and available on the Progressive website to policyholders who want to monitor their roadway habits and take advantage of possible discounts those habits may make them eligible for.

Initial eligibility for insurance savings is established after one month of using the device, which is kept plugged in until the end of the six-month policy term, and a renewal discount is determined.

Snapshot is the most widely available usage-based program. Other usage-based programs are being tested by major insurers, but most similar programs only collect data on the number of miles a car is driven.

Snapshot last expanded its reach last year, when the program was established in Alabama, North Dakota and New Mexico. It has not yet been made available in California, Washington, Alaska, Hawaii, North Carolina, Tennessee, Illinois, Indiana, West Virginia and Massachusetts.

Studies mapping out strategies of shifting to usage-based measurement show the attention transportation officials are paying to the usage-based movement. One such study from the University of Delaware in 2009 analyzed a five-year plan to use vehicle miles of travel (VMT) as a way to assess state fees and charges. Researchers said VMT-based fees “are possibly an alternative or supplement to fuel taxes that for many decades have been a principal mechanism for funding the transportation system.”

Progressive Reports Lower West Virginia Rate, New Commercial Lines

Progressive is a main source of cheap auto insurance for drivers who are increasingly using direct web- and phone-based means of getting coverage instead of going through agents. In other news related to the insurer, policyholders in West Virginia could see lower costs after Progressive revised its rates there.

The company did not offer specifics but said that the statewide average rate in West Virginia dropped.

“We review our rates regularly, and, when market conditions allow it, make changes to help people save money,” Allison Feakins, product manager in West Virginia, said in a statement.

Also, Progressive doubled its liability limits on commercial car insurance policies, now offering levels of $1.5 million and $2 million. The increase will help small business owners looking to expand without purchasing the often pricey umbrella policies needed to cover the higher liability requirements of large projects, the insurer says.

“This is particularly valuable for businesses that are predominately vehicle-based, such as for-hire truckers whose shippers require $2 million in liability coverage or a trucker hauling aggregate from a quarry to a road construction site,” the company stated in a press release.

Shoppers curious about how current and former policyholders feel about this company’s rates, service, claims response and more can find user-submitted Progressive auto insurance reviews online.

About Matthew Morisset
Matthew Morisset is a proud alumnus of the University of Redlands, where he obtained a degree in English Literature. Utilizing his passion for analysis and writing, Matthew looks for important trends in the auto insurance industry and their implications for consumers and the market as a whole.

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