Dispelling the Myths of Pay-per-mile Insurance

Paying for car insurance based on the miles you drive is a new and revolutionary concept. So new and revolutionary that we are currently the only company offering per-mile insurance in the United States! In this sense, we like to think of ourselves as trailblazers, offering a more fair and affordable insurance for low-mileage drivers. According to a recent study we ran (more coming soon), 65% of households drive less than 12k miles per year, so this could really benefit a lot of people. As pioneers of this new insurance model, we are always happy to clarify any confusion about how per-mile insurance works. So, to make things a little bit easier for those considering making the switch, here are the answers to some common questions our team receives. We’re all about hassle-free car ownership, after all!

pay-per-mile insurance myths

Myth: My rates will go up if I speed or slam on the brakes.
No judging here- if you hit the gas pedal or slam on the brakes your rates will not be affected. We only measure miles, not behavior.

Myth: My driving data is sold to third-party companies so they can have information about where I am driving.
All of your driving data and personal information is kept private – we do not sell any data to third-parties. The Metromile Pulse (OBD-II) device is only used to measure miles so we can bill accurately based on mileage, and the data you see in our app is only to help you make more informed decisions about your daily driving. You can read more in our privacy policy.

Myth: Per-mile insurance is directly related to the new “pay-as-you-drive” tax I’m hearing about in the news.
Although the phrases sound similar, the “pay-as-you-drive” tax that is being proposed in Oregon has nothing to do with per-mile insurance. With per-mile insurance, you only pay a low monthly base rate plus a per-mile rate for every mile driven. There will be no hidden fees or surprise taxes.

Myth: My per-mile rates will increase if I’m driving more than usual.
No need to worry if you are driving more than originally estimated. The amount of miles you drive have nothing to do with your per-mile rate. Your per-mile rate is fixed and will not be affected by increased driving, but your monthly bill might be a bit higher if you drove more than usual. We also don’t charge for miles driven over 250/per day (150 in certain states) so feel free to road trip as much as you want! (more…)

Car Insurance for Newlyweds: What to Do after the Vows

Bells are chiming, families are celebrating; it must be wedding season! If you’ll be exchanging vows in the coming months, there are a few things to consider aside from what to pack for your honeymoon. One of which is how to handle car insurance. The seemingly simple task might be a little more complicated than originally anticipated, so we’ve compiled a list to check off following your new union. Take it from Metromiler Lauren Hartung, who recently got hitched!

Car Insurance for Newlyweds

1. Moving in together after the wedding? Make sure to update your address on your driver’s license and car insurance (among everything else).

2. Changing your last name? Update your information with the DMV and your car insurance provider. You’ll likely need your marriage license to do this, and make sure you’ve already updated your name with the social security office for an official name change.

3. Married people get into fewer accidents than their unmarried counterparts. We combined our car insurance to one policy and saved money on our monthly premiums – plus, it was much more convenient to only pay one car insurance bill instead of two. We signed up for per-mile insurance when we moved to the city and it is saving us about $60/month! (more…)

We’re Heading East: Per-Mile Insurance Launches in Virginia

We are so excited to announce that we are expanding our service to the East Coast! First stop: Virginia. This is the first time per-mile insurance is being offered in the state, so we are eager to provide car owners with a more fair and affordable insurance.

per-mile insurance Virginia

Virginia has great public transportation options, and many of its cities are easily accessible on foot, so we anticipate there to be quite a few people (read: tons) that will save money with our per-mile insurance. In fact, according to a recent study we conducted, the majority of Virginia drivers (67%) commute less than 100 miles per week.

We also found that a big pain point is the amount of time spent in cars due to traffic and congestion. Our pay-per-mile insurance offering is a great way for drivers to become more aware of how many miles they drive. We’re seeing a trend of folks actually driving less as a result, which ultimately means less cars on the road. And of course, everyone appreciates saving money!

We will also be expanding availability for the new Metromile Tag to Virginia, so people not quite ready to make the switch to per-mile insurance can take a free test drive. The Tag powers our smart driving app, which gives important insights into daily mileage, driving habits, car location, and more.

This is only the first stop on the road to East Coast expansion. So what’s next on our map? Sign up for our newsletter to stay in touch or add yourself to our waitlist!

Metromile to offer per-mile insurance option to Uber driver partners

Editor’s note: In order to focus on our personal pay-per-mile insurance offering for low-mileage drivers, Metromile no longer offers rideshare insurance.

We are thrilled to announce an innovative solution for driver partners of Uber’s Transportation Network Companies in California, Washington, and Illinois! In our ongoing effort to empower drivers, we have obtained approval for a personal auto insurance product that recognizes and covers the dual nature of rideshare vehicles for personal and commercial use. Driver partners can now feel secure about their insurance coverage and not live in fear of being dropped by their carrier just because they participate in an Uber TNC.

Sign-up will begin in February 2015. Uber driver partners who are interested can add themselves to our waitlist at master-devwww.metromile.com/uber.

The beauty of the Metromile experience revolves around the ability to measure miles. Because we can tabulate all miles driven, it becomes a matter of distinguishing personal miles from “rideshare miles” – specifically, those driven from the moment a driver is matched with a rider until that passenger safely exits, thereby ending the trip. Metromile and Uber will coordinate to verify those timeframes and miles. For each monthly bill, rideshare miles will be subtracted from the total, and the driver is only billed for the personal miles. Rates will still vary by individual, but these are no different than how Metromile determines pricing for current (non rideshare) drivers.

This separation of coverage could translate into big savings for drivers who log most of their miles due to rideshare trips. On average, Metromile customers who drive less than 10,000 personal miles a year are saving 40%-50% on insurance premium.

Not only do drivers have the potential to save money, but ultimately they finally get peace of mind. They no longer have to live in fear of being denied coverage by a personal auto insurer because they participate in an Uber TNC, nor will they worry about coverage during formerly-ambiguous gray areas. Commercial coverage provided by Uber during actual Uber trips is still maintained and does not change because of this partnership.

HOW DID WE GET HERE?

The controversial issue of coverage for rideshare drivers has been debated for several years now. Calls for regulation abound, and several states have recently passed laws requiring more explicit coverage (CA AB2293 , IL SB 2774, and CO SB 14-125).

Why has it been so confusing and frustrating? It comes down to two aspects: 1) creating insurance products that recognize and cover the duality of personal and commercial functions for a single vehicle, and 2) clarifying who is primarily responsible for coverage at different times, or “modes” of a rideshare driver’s activity. These modes have been more commonly and frequently described as “periods”:

Period 1:  driver is actively seeking riders (app is on)
Period 2:  driver has been matched to a rider and is en route to pick up
Period 3:  rider has embarked vehicle

Periods 2 and 3 are covered by the commercial policy of the TNC (Transportation Network Company). Only in 2014 did legislation clarify which type of insurance products would be possible for coverage during Period 1. (States differ on effective dates by when drivers need to choose). Those options are:

1.  Personal auto insurance that recognizes TNC use
2. Commercial insurance (separate from the policy provided by the TNC)
3. Primary liability insurance provided by the TNC

Metromile is proud to offer a solution for option 1!

Other insurance providers are piloting new products as well, but it appears as if they will be charging customers more for this expanded recognition and coverage. Typically, option 2 is expensive and not realistic for drivers to afford long-term.

Outright ‘personal’ time has been relatively more clear:  the rideshare app isn’t on and the driver isn’t actively looking for riders. Thus far, personal auto insurance hasn’t traditionally included coverage for anyone using their car for rideshare (or livery) services. That’s old-world thinking though – when no one could imagine a time where a personal vehicle could also be successfully employed for, essentially, commercial use (i.e. as a cab).

No one can deny the rapid pace of innovation across industries today. Ultimately, it’s the consumer who experiences any Imbalances when adjacent services and products don’t keep pace within their ecosystem. At Metromile, we are motivated by our mission to revolutionize the auto insurance industry – we couldn’t be more excited to bring this new tangible solution to the driver community!

Stay tuned for more!