Defaqto rating: 5/5 stars
People’s Choice car insurance is rated as 5 star by Defaqto, an independent financial research company.
Note: Not all Defaqto five-star rated products have the same covers and terms.
People's Choice is a trading name of Hastings Insurance Services which is based in Bexhill-on-Sea in East Sussex.
Hastings Insurance Services is part of the Hastings Group, which is listed on the London Stock Exchange.
Has been providing car insurance for 15 years
Has over 1.5 million customers,
People’s Choice company stablemates include: Hastings Direct, Hastings Essential, Hastings Premier and Insure Pink
Since 2015 motorists have taken out a total of five million policies
Insurance features include an uninsured driver promise and new for old cover
Its shares are listed as HSTG
It is listed on the FTSE 250
It is among the UK’s largest insurance companies
People’s Choice is a car insurance intermediary, so it works with car insurance providers rather than providing its own insurance. It is authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority to sell insurance.
This means People’s Choice works with several insurance providers, sometimes called a panel, in order to check and compare car insurance quotes.
People’s Choice is an intermediary so it can source cheaper quotes from a panel of insurance providers.
People’s Choice doesn’t make recommendations or give advice,
It receives commission paid by the insurer and a fee paid by you
The total price you pay is made up of the insurer's premium plus People’s Choice’s fee
As with all insurance you also pay Insurance Premium Tax (IPT)
Contact Uswitch: 0800 688 8557
People's Choice cannot offer quotes to drivers with criminal convictions or those who have more than 5 accidents, claims, losses, motoring convictions or endorsements in the past 5 years.
They also exclude cars that have been modified to enhance appearance or performance.
People’s Choice offers three types of car insurance:
Third party, fire and theft
Third party only
People’s Choice does not offer short-term or temporary car insurance, except in certain circumstances to existing policyholders.
People’s Choice offers multi-car insurance which lets drivers cover between two and five cars on the same policy.
you can choose to insure all your cars at the same time and get the discount in one go, or add cars to an existing policy as they come up for renewal
your discount will be added as you add each car
Hastings Direct, a sister company of People’s Choice, offers SmartMiles cover, telematics-based policy that monitors driving through a mobile app or online dashboard. SmartMiles offers hints and tips to improve your driver rating and lower the cost of cover.
It’s suitable if:
you’re aged 17 or over,
Drive less than 15,000 miles a year
do most of your driving between 5am and 10pm
it’s only available on single-car, comprehensive insurance policies
People’s Choice also allows drivers to customise their quote to include or exclude legal protection, personal accident cover and breakdown cover. There is also an option to protect your no claims bonus.
It's fully comprehensive policy includes:
RAC breakdown cover
up to 65% no claims discount
EU cover for 90 days as standard
personal belongings up to £150
a courtesy car (subject to availability)
up to £750 for audio equipment
personal belongings cover of up to £150 if they are lost or damaged in an accident, fire or theft (with comprehensive cover only).
legal expenses cover
windscreen cover and key cover for lost or stolen keys
People’s Choice say they want to reward safer drivers and encourage drivers to have a year no claims bonus before taking out a car insurance policy with them.
People’s Choice car insurance policies include the use of a courtesy car, if the insured car is being repaired by an authorised repairer. This benefit is subject to availability.
People’s Choice comprehensive car insurance cover includes cover for personal belongings up to £150 if they are lost in an accident, theft or fire.
If your car is damaged by vandals and you need to make a claim, you won’t lose your no claims bonus.
This is subject to whether:
you have fully comprehensive cover
the excess is paid.
the incident is reported to the police and you have a crime reference number
third party, fire and theft cover won't cover damage caused in an accident or by vandalism
All car insurance policies bought through People’s Choice include 90 days EU cover.
If you are in an accident that is not your fault and the driver of the vehicle that hits you is not insured, your no claims discount will not be affected, and you will not have to pay an excess as long as:
you can provide the make, model, registration of the car
where possible, the other driver’s name and address.
You can claim up to £100,000 to pay your legal costs, claim back your policy excess, or get compensation for you and your family if you suffer injury or loss of life in a non-fault motor accident that would not be covered by any standard car insurance policy.
People’s Choice car insurance offers four levels of breakdown cover, provided by the RAC:
RAC Roadside & Recovery
RAC Roadside, Recovery and at home
RAC European motoring assistance.
If you suffer a specified injury in an accident, you will receive a benefit of £20,000. If you are a victim of road rage, this cover pays £100 for each day spent in hospital, along with other benefits.
this is available on comprehensive policies, terms and conditions apply
as long as you have the appropriate cover and you use your insurer's nominated repairer you will get a courtesy car for the duration of your repair.
this is not available in the event of a total loss.
available on comprehensive and third party fire & theft cover only, for equipment permanently fitted by the manufacture as part of the specifications of your vehicle when first registered.
only applies to comprehensive cover. Items in the car at the time of the accident / loss £300 max for any one claim, terms and conditions apply.
If you want to use an intermediary to compare insurance deals
If you want a discount on RAC breakdown cover
If you want to take out insurance with a UK-based company that has access to speciality products from its own insurers.
People’s Choice’s sister company Hastings Direct has donated £50,000 for local charities as part of a local Covid-19 Community Commitment Grant Scheme
Hastings Direct made a further £50,000 available to support local charities in Bexhill and Leicester, on top of the initial £50,000 previously announced.
Hastings donated nearly £50,000 to many local charities over the past weeks from their COVID-19 Community Commitment Grant scheme.
The scheme aims to help the most vulnerable in our communities via food hamper provisions and through a community grant fund for local charities that colleagues would like Hastings to support.
Collectively, colleagues and other supporters have donated over £7,300 to the charities so far, with Hastings kicking off the fundraising by donating £2,500 to each charity.
Hastings has helped many local charities via the grant scheme, including St Michael’s Hospice, Sussex 4x4 Response, and Warming Up The Homeless in the Bexhill area and Menphys, Leicester Islamic Academy and LOROS Hospice in Leicester.
The Financial Ombudsman Service received 170 complaints about Hastings motor insurance, which runs the People’s Choice brand, in the first half of 2020. This was across all Hastings brands. Hastings had the seventh highest number of complaints. However, most Hastings policies are underwritten by its own insurer Advantage and the FOS received a further 243 complaints about Advantage. That makes a total of 413 complaints in six months, making it the third most complained about car insurer this year.
Hastings (including Advantage) received 8.2% of the 5,029 total complaints about car insurance. Hastings has 7.8% market share when based on gross written premium (GWP), which suggests it gets more complaints than expected for its size. But Hasting sells low-cost insurance to standard drivers in normal cars, and does not insure expensive, high-risk drivers in luxury cars. This means Hastings has more customers for the same GWP as some other insurers.
Realistically Hasting’s complaints levels are in line with other large insurers. To put complaints in context, 67 firms had 10 or more complaints each and those totalled 4,550 complaints. Nearly 200 firms had fewer than 10 each, sharing just 479 complaints between them.