Car Insurance Discounts for Older Drivers

Older drivers are involved in daytime accidents at a higher rate than other drivers, according to a study by Carnegie Mellon and the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. The rate of accidents and deaths equals that of teenage drivers.

Safety for Older Drivers

There are several reasons for older drivers being involved in accidents at a high frequency, including decreased vision and response time, frustration in difficult traffic situations, and side effects of medications they may be taking. Some medications even warn against driving due to potential dizziness that can occur while taking these medications.

Some older drivers will be more likely to panic and make poor driving decisions in heavy traffic. There have been cases of drivers hitting the accelerator instead of the brakes when they are frustrated in traffic.

Many older drivers will take side streets rather than risk highway driving. They will also tend to avoid heavily trafficked intersections. However, their limited mobility often makes it harder for them to have the flexibility to see behind them or check their blind spots. Loss of vision and hearing also impede elderly drivers and create a risk when they are behind the wheel.

Many older drivers understand the risk of driving so will only travel short distances in their familiar neighborhood. But often they get confused with changes in traffic patterns and end up lost or disoriented while driving.

Insurance Discounts for Older Drivers

Families very often live far apart from each other that older drivers depend on their cars to shop for groceries, visit friends, or just get out of the house for a few hours. So what do they do when insurance companies believe they are high-risk drivers and raise their insurance rates?

Here are some ways older drivers can get discounts from their insurance companies.

•Car insurance rates for older drivers differ in just about every state. Call your car insurance agent and ask about available discounts for older drivers. Then do some comparison shopping to see what other insurance companies offer.

•Research car models to see which cars are not often stolen or have low repair rates. This can affect the insurance rates significantly.

•Make sure the insurance agent knows about safety features on the car, such as alarm systems that will mean discounts.

•If the driving mileage is low, there should be low-mileage discounts available, especially for the driver that only goes on local trips and does not put a lot of miles on a car each year.

•If the older driver is a member of AARP, they should check with them to see if a senior safety driving program is available in their area. This can result in a discount of up to ten percent if the older driver takes a defensive driving course. Add to the discount by taking a senior safety driving program and get a double discount. The classes do not cost much and are worth taking for the discount.

•There are pay-as-you-drive discount insurance programs where a diagnostic port is put in the car that collects information about driving habits. This can save a driver almost 30 percent on insurance costs.

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