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Direct Line car and travel insurance customers offered partial refunds

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Direct Line said customers can get in touch to request a partial refund on car and travel insurance premiums.

The insurer revealed it has seen a 70% reduction in motor insurance claims in April compared to last year due to the coronavirus restrictions.

As a result, it is offering a refund of premiums to motor customers who want to reduce their annual mileage or cancel foreign use.

A Direct Line spokesperson, said: “If a customer believes their mileage will be a lot lower than originally estimated at the start of their policy, they can contact us and we can process a refund. As long as you’re reducing mileage by at least 1,000 miles per annum, and you’re not already on a particularly low estimated annual mileage, a refund will generally be available.

They added that if customers want to make a change to their policy, they can update Direct Line via its virtual assistant.

Customers won’t need to get back in touch to reverse the temporary change as Direct Line will automatically revert to the usual mileage from the next renewal date.

It will also provide travel customers with multi-trip policies a pro-rata refund.

The insurer added it is providing additional measures for those in financial difficulty by waiving cancellation fees if people have lost their job or seen reduced hours, as well as offering payment deferrals. Direct Line doesn’t charge mid-term amendment fees.

Car insurance customers of Churchill and Privilege will also see fees waived for short-term mileage changes during the coronavirus.

As part of its trading update, Direct Line reported motor gross written premiums grew 6.2% compared to Q1 2019.

However, on the rescue side, it’s seen a material reduction in new business volumes. Green Flag, part of Direct Line, saw a reduction in claims of around 40%, though it has begun to see an increase in call outs in early May compared to April.

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