I absolutely hate Progressive’s Snapshot devices. In fact, the more money you give them up front, the worse the Snapshot program gets. Here’s how. I figured I’ll go for maximum discount and pre-pay a year up front. Many people do month to month, or six month, I did a year. Then I stupidly opted to add Snapshot. Well guess what, the device will be with you for a minimum of your payment interval, so if you’re month to month, you may have it for two to three months, but if you pay six months at a time, or a year at a time, you could potentially have your driving altered negatively (believe me, it will be altered) for up to a year. I want this piece of shit out of my car so bad, but I’m stuck with it until the year is up.
In any case, you already know what Snapshot does or you wouldn’t likely be here. It allows you to voluntarily give your driving habits to Progressive, for them to sell to others, and to use against you if they see fit. In return, you get a glimmer of hope that your rate will not increase as much as they’d normally increase it.
If you have anxiety, or you actually are a bad driver, stay far away from this device. My experience has been this piece of shit has turned me into a bad driver, simply out of my developing a paranoia of my score dropping to the point where it negatively impacts my insurance rate. It tracks your hard braking, i.e. your stopping of your car faster than Progressive thinks you should. It offers no credit for infrequent hard brakes; if you get one, it’s on your record for the rest of the measurement interval, which in my case is an entire fucking year. Across ten months, I’ve averaged one hard brake per month, and that was enough to drop me to a B+. In theory, even a C keeps your discount, but since they are not forthcoming with how they decide on that, who knows if I’ll drop to C for one more hard brake.
As a result of having this device, I have dramatically increased the number of yellow lights I go through, and have even ocassionally run red lights for fear of getting a hard brake. Seriously, I’ve been conditioned to prefer breaking the law to risking my insurance rate. What really pisses me off about it through is the threshold for a hard brake. It is so light that in many cases you will trigger a hard brake simply by stopping from the legal speed limit when a light first turns yellow. You’ve done absolutely nothing wrong, nor have you placed yourself or others at risk; you chose to stop when a light turned yellow, and that causes Progressive to penalize you.
Don’t even get me started on cross walks where the lights go on instantly at button press, combined with pedestrians that obnoxiously walk immediately at button press. Those are my greatest source of hard brakes. I guess Progressive would prefer I simply run them down; better that than actually using the brakes on your in the way they were intended. What if your car has auto braking for collision avoidance? Wonder if I can sue my auto manufacturer for having a feature that caused my insurance premium to increase.
Just do yourself a favor and don’t do Snapshot, it will hurt your driving and frustrate the hell out of you, all so Progressive can sell your info for likely a greater profit than the discount they may continue to extend.