Gadget Promotes Safe Driving

Think you’re a safe driver? Want a chance to prove it? Most car insurance companies offer discounts for good drivers, but now Progressive is offering customers a chance to show off their safe driving skills – and get a discount at the same time.

Here’s how it works:

  • Previously called MyRate®, the Snapshot Discount(SM) program involves plugging a gadget into your car’s on-board diagnostic port.
  • The device tracks your driving information and sends it straight to Progressive.
  • You can monitor your driving data online and see if you’re likely to get a discount on your next car insurance renewal.
  • You could be eligible for a discount in as little as 30 days.
  • When the 30 days are up, you send the Snapshot device back.
  • Progressive notifies you near the end of your 6-month policy term what your renewal discount will be.

What they track:

  • Time of day when you drive the car
  • How safely you drive (i.e., driving speed, sudden stops, etc.)
  • How far you drive

What they don’t track:

  • Where you drive (The device has no GPS)
  • Who is driving

This program is not yet available in all 50 states. Progressive maintains a list of states where the program has been implemented.

Not all cars are eligible for this discount due to technological limitations. Most cars manufactured before 1996 don’t have the compatible on-board diagnostic port that the Snapshot device plugs into.

The Snapshot Discount (SM) program is only available to current Progressive customers. If you are getting car insurance through another company, you would have to sign up with Progressive before you could start the program.

The company says it could ask customers for snapshot updates periodically. To continue receiving the discount, you might have to prove your safe driving skills again down the road. In addition, you may have to pay shipping and other fees in certain states.

People who drive more miles than the average driver in their state may not see a discount, nor would those who drive too fast or have to make a lot of sudden stops. If you do sign up, you should track your Snapshot data online to see if you’re likely to get a discount on your car insurance. If you’re not racking up savings, you can cancel before the 30 day monitoring period is up.

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