I know a man

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Our car insurance is due and I’ve been checking out some online quotes. There are loads of sites that “will find you the cheapest quote” and I’ve tried most in the last couple of hours. Be it a one-stop site, or the majority of the better known insurers, they all share one thing (seemingly). Badly designed forms.

Point 1: A common feature is the ‘let’s be clever and help the user fill out the form’. So, you enter the make of car (Renault) and suddenly the screen pauses, the mouse cursor changes to ‘busy’ as they dive to a database to pull up a list of cars for you. Now granted this is helpful. But not on a 56k modem where it takes so long you begin to wonder if your PC has died.

Point 2: If I specify the second driver as my spouse, why are you prompting me for her marital status?

Point 3: Well kinda the same as Point 1 really. I am an organised kinda guy. I have all the details I will need already in front of me, I know the date we bought the car, the renewal premium, the average mileage for the last two years, etc etc. So why can’t I just zip through the form and then let it go off and process the details for me? Why do I have to wait 30 secs between each of 3 or 4 screens whilst the information is processed.

I’ve yet to receive a decent quote so I’m still looking. In the midst of all this I remembered that I hadn’t reviewed our AA breakdown coverage (and as we are off to the Lake District next weekend we might need it). So I fired up a second browser window (yes I know it will slow my connection even more), and hit the AA website. First thing I saw was their online insurance quote service. What the hell, I thought. I’ll try this one as well.

Delight! (No, not a cheaper quote) A well designed form! Fast, responsive, smart pre-selections made for you (presumably the most common answers to questions like – have you ever been convicted of a driving offense), and split into two logical sections.

Well done The AA.

Now if only you’d found me a cheaper quote… *sigh*