Mark Harrop Business Development Manager

Mar 01

Aquarium Software warns over 55s to shop ‘til they drop for appropriate travel cover

A new online YouGov research for Aquarium Software reveals the rise of the price comparison site for the purchase of travel insurance. Travel technologist Aquarium says the newly-released figures also point to the fact that over-55s in particular may be paying too much, by not shopping around enough when purchasing travel insurance. The figures show that 30 percent of GB Adults now use a Price Comparison Website (PCW) to take out an insurance policy, and while buying direct is still ahead on 34 percent, revealing trends lurk behind the headline numbers. Not least the changing buying patterns between old and young, and the impact technology is having on the market.

“The last decade has seen a marked shift in the way travel insurance is purchased,” said Aquarium Software Director, Mark Colonnese. “The days of travel insurance sold solely as a bolt-on in the travel agent’s shop on the high street are almost gone, we have moved in a relatively short space of time to PCWs flying away with 30 percent of the market. What is telling, is that it is the over-55s continue to buy direct from travel service providers (41%), while 25-34 year olds are driving the e-commerce boom, with a healthy 37 percent opting for PCWs.”

Travel insurance as part of a packaged bank account now makes up 22 percent of the market, which together with PCW, now accounts for nearly half (46 percent) of travel premiums purchased. The irony is, older groups could be paying in the pocket for their loyalty, as better deals can be found online, particularly where quotes are higher due to pre-existing medical conditions. “There are lessons here for the travel insurance sector and consumer alike,” added Colonnese. “The over- 55s are perhaps too loyal for their own good when buying direct (41%); they are also less likely than 18-24 year olds to switch bank accounts and may be losing out there, too1. The challenge for the industry is to continue to reward old fashioned purchasing loyalists, while still developing the new technology and functionality that younger generations yearn,” concluded Colonnese.