I’ve been doing consumer news for nearly 30 years. While much has changed in the personal finance world during that time, shopping for one financial product — car insurance — has continued to be a pain.
Until now, that is.
Today, there are a handful of new companies making the car insurance shopping process faster and easier. I recently took one of these — Gabi.com — for a test drive.
If you’ve tried to shop car insurance online, you know the drill. Getting quotes requires you to input reams of information about yourself and your car. When you’ve completed the process, your inbox fills up with come-ons from insurance companies. Even worse, you literally start getting phone calls from insurance salesmen!
No thanks. As Woody Allen said, “There are worse things in life than death. Have you ever spent an evening with an insurance salesman?”
Gabi changes the game
Unlike other services, however, Gabi requires much less information from you, and no salesman will call. Best of all, unlike other insurance search engines I’ve tried, this one actually saved me serious money.
How it works
Here’s the entire process for using Gabi, step by step:
- Select your current car insurance provider from a drop-down list.
- Provide your first and last name.
- Provide your date of birth.
- Provide your home address.
- Provide your email address.
- Provide your mobile number. (This isn’t so a salesperson can call. It’s so you can get a text message with a verification code to set up your account.)
- Enter the verification code that they text you.
- Upload a PDF of your insurance policy.
That’s it. The entire process took me a little under two minutes.
Uploading my existing policy was simple, since I keep a digital copy as a back-up in case of disaster. (You do that too, right?) If you don’t have a digital copy of your policy, however, you can simply give Gabi the username and password to your insurer’s site, and Gabi will get what it needs.
I’m currently insuring two cars with USAA at a combined cost of about $2,400. Gabi said Progressive could give me the same coverage for 22 percent less, saving me $546. All I have to do is give Gabi the go-ahead and my driver’s license number. Then, Gabi will confirm the rate and even do the switching for me.
As I write this, I haven’t made the switch yet, primarily because I want to make sure nobody is going to call and harass me. Fortunately, it’s been almost a week, and although I’ve gotten a reminder email from Gabi, I’ve received zero calls.
I also may check with other companies: Although Gabi deals with most major insurers, nobody represents them all. Finally, I may call USAA to see if it can beat the deal.
All and all, however, I’m liking what I’m seeing. I spoke to the CEO, Hanno Fichtner, and he assured me that my personal information wouldn’t be sold or even shared with any of the companies they work with.
Bottom line? What used to be a pain is now a lot easier. Take two minutes, try it yourself and see if you agree. Then share your results on our Facebook page. And if you’ve had experiences, good or bad, with similar sites, let me know. We’re always on the lookout for companies that can save you money and make your life a little easier!
Over the last several weeks, I’ve also been looking at other new players disrupting the insurance game. As I find other services I like, I’ll write about them,too. Stay tuned!
Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, we sometimes receive compensation when you click links within our stories.