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How to combat rising pet insurance premiums

Which? Common Money Problems Solved - December 2014

sad puppy lying on ground

In this monthly series, we share recent questions about money and the answers provided by our experts on the Which? Money Helpline.

Our experts have taken a number of calls in the last month from people who are unhappy about excessive increases in their pet insurance premiums.

This included members whose policy was with Axa, which has withdrawn from the pet insurance market. They were told they would be given cover on a like-for-like basis from another provider. However, some members suffered huge price rises – in one case, from £350 to over £1,000 for the same cover. 

Find out more: Call the Which? Money Helpline – your financial queries answered

Pet insurance customers unable to shop around

A key difference between pet insurance and other types of insurance is the difficulty in finding cover for pets with pre-existing conditions. 

With this in mind, some customers may feel trapped into accepting higher premiums from their existing provider, but there are other options. 

Consider using a broker to find a more affordable policy, or whether it’s worth self-insuring. (ie putting money into a savings account and paying any vet bills using these savings). Alternatively, if you think you’ve been subjected to unfair premium increases, it might be worth making a complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service

Find out more: 7 ways to reduce the cost of pet insurance – see our expert tips

Other common insurance queries

We have taken calls from members upset at excessive cancellation fees on their insurance policies. 

One member, who wanted to cancel a policy after just two months because of poor customer service, was charged £125 to do so, despite the policy costing only £177. We advised her to put in a formal complaint. 

Which? provides a full breakdown of the sneaky fees charged by 40 insurance companies in our guide to car insurance charges. 

You can also support our campaign to stop sneaky fees and charges by signing our online petition

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