Defaqto rating: 5/5 stars
Rias car insurance is rated as five star by Defaqto, an independent financial research company. It is the eighth year that the company has received the organisation's top rating.
Note: Not all Defaqto five-star rated products have the same covers and terms.
Rias is a brand underwritten by Ageas Insurance, the UK company of Belgian multinational insurer, Ageas Group. RIAS launched in the UK in 1992. At the very beginning it was a specialist insurer offering cover for the over 50s, but it has long since widen its age range with cover provided to those from age 25.
In its 25 years or so in the market it has built up a reputation when it comes to car insurance with many customers praising its customer service, price and ease of use of its website.
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Rias says it makes insurance “easy and straightforward for our customers”. It has achieved a five-star car insurance as rated by industry experts Defaqto for the eighth year. Rias allows customers to make claims 24/7 through their UK-based claims service.
While it does not offer third party fire and theft, its comprehensive cover provides a courtesy car as standard (with caveats for cars written off or stolen) while your car is under repair by an approved repairer.
It also has other features such as the uninsured driver promise where if the accident is not your fault and your car is hit by an uninsured driver your excess is reimbursed and your no claims discount is reinstated. You will have to provide the make, model and registration of the vehicle involved.
For the absent-minded, there is provision for wrong fuel cover which can be catastrophic if you put diesel in a petrol car or vice versa and it is not taken care of in good time. RIAS will pay to drain and flush your fuel tank, but it won’t pay replacement fuel costs.
if you want excellent customer service
if you want to protect your no claims discount
if you prefer to have your onward travel arranged in the event of an accident
if you want to protect against misfuelling mishaps
Rias is responding to the coronavirus pandemic in a number of ways for its customers. It has set up an information hub on its website to provide customers with additional guidance and a series of FAQs.
During lockdown, when many people were driving less, Rias reduced policy pricing to reflect the situation.
Costs considerations have also been introduced. Administration charges for mid-term adjustments and policy cancellations resulting from customers experiencing financial difficulty as a result of the pandemic were waived.
Rias is also offering motor insurance customers the option to SORN their vehicle and receive a premium refund of 70% for the time the vehicle is not used (subject with a minimum SORN period of 2 weeks.
There is a payment deferral plan for up to three months available to those customers undergoing financial difficult as a result of Covid-19.
The Financial Ombudsman Service received 152 car insurance complaints about Ageas Insurance and a further 10 about Ageas Retail Bridge, which runs Rias, in the first half of 2020. Ageas accounted for just over 3% of all car insurance complaints but has nearly 6% of the market so gets a smaller proportion of complaints than its size suggests. To put that 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.