SmartMiles FAQs

What's the main reason for getting a SmartMiles policy?

With SmartMiles, your future car insurance premiums will be based on the way you drive. Most insurance policies just use generalisations about people in an age group and with a certain level of experience. If you're a safe but inexperienced driver, SmartMiles has the potential to save you a significant amount of money over the years.

What happens after I start a SmartMiles policy?

You'll need to have one of our SmartMiles boxes fitted to your car within 14 days of purchase. Once you’ve installed your box, it starts analysing your driving straight away, allowing you to view your driving score on our mobile app or on your online dashboard.

How much does the box cost?

The cost of the SmartMiles box is included in the overall price of your insurance for the first year. If you later need another box (eg. if you buy a new car) then you'll be charged a fee.

Can the policy have more than one named driver?

Yes, as well as the main driver (the Policyholder) you can add up to three additional drivers.

Does my car need to be kept at my home address?

With SmartMiles you can keep your car at a different address, but you'll need to let us know as this is important in making sure you're paying the right price for your insurance. For example, if you're a student you can give us your university address as the place your car is kept most often, but use your home address for correspondence. If your car is kept somewhere other than your home address most of the time you can choose this option when getting your quote, or call and let us know on 01733 308 380.

Can the policy include business travel?

No.

Can I earn a No Claims Discount?

Yes, you can.

Can I earn No Claims Discount as well as safe driver discount?

We apply your No Claims Discount and your Driver Rating separately, so if you are a safe driver with no claims on your policy, you could see even bigger savings.

Can I protect my no claims discount?

Yes, you can choose to protect your no claims discount when you get a quote.This means you won’t lose all your no claims discount straight away if you make a claim during the policy year. However, your insurance will cost a little more.

Please note protecting your no claims discount doesn’t protect the overall cost of your insurance. Your price can increase after an accident even if you aren’t at fault. If you choose to protect your no claims, full details will be included with your quote. If you’ve already bought your policy, you can see details on your policy schedule. This is stored in your online portal.

I have a Pass Plus certificate - can I save more?

Yes, if you are under 25 and have a Pass Plus certificate, let us know and it could reduce the cost of your insurance premium.

Renewing your policy

When your policy’s due to renew, we’ll email your new documents to the address you gave us. Please check all your details to make sure they’re still correct.

These documents will include your new annual insurance premium and the total cost of next year’s insurance, plus any optional extras. We’ll also include last year’s prices so you can easily compare. Remember, it’s always worth shopping around to make sure you’re getting the best deal.

If your details are correct and you’d like to stay with us, you don’t need to do anything. We’ll automatically renew your policy for you.

If we aren’t able to, or you’ve asked us not to do it automatically, we’ll be in touch to tell you what you need to do.

How does SmartMiles know about the way I drive?

The box uses data from satellites to work out detailed information about your driving style. We have an extensive and detailed database of the speed limits on roads across the UK and Europe. Your actual speed is reported by the SmartMiles box and we compare it with this data.

To find out more, please visit About SmartMiles.

What aspects of my driving are monitored by the SmartMiles box?

We track your acceleration, braking and speed, as well as your mileage and the time of day or night you drive. In addition, we may use the data to make sure your car is usually kept at the address that you stated on your policy.

As this system is based on satellites, are there any 'blackspots' where you won't be able to track a car?

Standard GPS systems tend to use around six satellites. We use closer to 50. As a result, our information is much more accurate and there are very few places where we won't be able to see your car. This means if your car is stolen, the thieves aren't getting away that easily. In fact, four out of five cars stolen from our customers are successfully recovered.

Do I get to see the data from my SmartMiles box?

Yes, all this information is sent through to your Dashboard. Please see the questions below for more information.

Can I drive outside the UK on a SmartMiles policy?

Yes, you can. The SmartMiles policy offers 90 days automatic EU cover included at the same level of cover as you have in the UK, unless stated otherwise on your policy documents.

Is there anything I need to bring with me when the box is being installed?

If your box is being installed by one of our professional engineers, you'll need to bring up to two documents with you:
 
  • Proof of your No Claims Discount (if applicable)
  • The Vehicle Registration Document (V5/log book) for the vehicle that has been insured. If you've recently purchased the car, the section 10 (new Keeper) slip may be acceptable instead.

Do I have to wait for the Smartmiles box to be fitted before I can drive?

You're insured to drive as soon as your policy starts, so you don't need to wait for the Smartmiles box to be fitted to start driving. Remember, your SmartMiles box must be installed within 14 days of purchase. (Please note this could be different to the day your cover starts.) If you don't install your box during this time your policy will be cancelled.

What happens if I forget to bring the documents?

Your installation appointment will have to be rearranged and you'll be charged a £35 fee.

Will the SmartMiles box work in my car?

The box fits in the vast majority of cars that are less than 18 years old, but there are a few models of Mini, 2CV and electric or hybrid cars where it can't be fitted. Please call us on 01733 308 380 if you'd like to check your car is compatible.

My car already has a telematics box from a previous insurance policy. Can I use this instead of the SmartMiles one?

Unfortunately, the technology can vary between telematics boxes. This means we have to install our own SmartMiles box into your car, even if there is a telematics device already fitted.

What does the box look like?

It's about the size of a typical Smartphone.

Is the SmartMiles box visible from the outside of my car?

No, it can't be seen from outside the car so it won't be obvious your car has a box installed.

Could the SmartMiles box affect the performance of my car or its warranty?

No.

What happens if the box stops working?

Nine times out of ten, we can fix your box remotely, using its built-in technology. If this doesn't work, we will send out a specialist to repair or replace it.

What should I do if I disagree with the mileage shown by my SmartMiles box?

Let us know and we'll look into it for you.

What happens if the box is damaged in an accident?

If your vehicle is repairable, we'll repair or replace the box for you as well. The cost will be covered by your policy or the insurance of the person you're making a claim against. If your vehicle is written-off and you decide to insure a different car, you'll need to pay our normal fees to install a box in the new vehicle.

Will my policy be cancelled if I speed?

Speeding can lead to your policy being cancelled. Every time you speed, you’ll lower your SmartMiles driver rating, meaning you’ll miss out on safe driving discounts at renewal. If your rating drops below 40, your policy may be cancelled or you won’t be offered a renewal. If you speed by a severe amount, you’ll get a warning. Three warnings means your policy will be cancelled. In cases of very extreme or dangerous speeding (e.g. 100mph or more) you’ll be given seven days’ notice of cancellation.

Will you share the SmartMiles data with other insurers?

Your driving data and scores are only for your insurance with Hastings Direct SmartMiles, and we won't give it to other insurers to use. However we may use the data as evidence to help resolve a claim dispute with another insurer. 

What happens if the police ask for the data?

We will only ever provide the data to the police, or any other civil authorities, if we suspect fraud or we are required to do so by law or a court order. 

Is there anything other than my SmartMiles policy that the data could be used for?

We'll use the data to help us identify false claims, or to protect you against a false claim being made by someone else. We may also use the data as evidence to help resolve a claim dispute with another insurer.

Will you supply any personally identifiable data to any third parties?

We will only do this to service your policy, prevent fraud, meet legal obligations or carry out research into telematics and other insurance products. Please see our use of SmartMiles box data page for more information.

How do you work out the cost of my first year's insurance, as you didn't have any driving data to base it on?

Your initial quote is based on the traditional rating methods used by insurance companies, with a discount that assumes you are an averagely safe driver because you are having a SmartMiles box installed into your car.

As my premium is based on my driving behaviour, could my renewal quote go up as well as down?

The cost of your first year's insurance assumed you would be an average driver (with an effective Driver Rating of 50%). If you drive badly, your rating will fall below this level and your insurance could cost more in future. However, you can always check your Driver Rating in your Dashboard, so you will know if it's lower than you expect, and you can take action to improve your score.

Will I be charged more if I go over my expected annual mileage?

Yes, if you go over your mileage limit before your policy ends, you’ll need to pay an additional premium. This is because the price we quote you is partly based on the distance you say you’ll drive. It’s important to be as accurate as possible, so you can use our mileage calculator to help work this out.

But don’t worry, we’ll let you know if it looks like you’re going to exceed your limit when you reach 75% of your mileage and we won’t automatically stop your cover.

Keep an eye on your mileage by using our app or your online dashboard.

If I don't reach my mileage limit will I get a refund?

No, this is because we partly base your price on the maximum mileage you tell us you’ll drive in the year. You can use our mileage calculator to help work out the number of miles you’ll need.

Can I drive at night?

Driving between 10pm and 5am will mean you get a much lower driver rating. We understand there’ll be times when you need to drive at night, so we don’t charge you a penalty. But you’ll need to get very good scores for speed, acceleration and braking to balance it out.

What does my policy consider to be 'night'? Is it as soon as it’s dark?

For the purposes of the policy, night driving is considered to be between the hours of 10pm and 5am.

How do I check the documents relating to my policy?

Your documents can be found in your customer portal - please go to Manage Your Policy to login.

Will you ever cancel my insurance based on my driving?

We want to help you make sure you’re driving safely, so we’ll regularly review your driving data. If your SmartMiles driver rating drops below 40, this tells us you aren’t driving as safely as you could. Scoring under 40 or speeding excessively will mean we have to cancel your policy, or not offer you a renewal. But don’t worry, if your score dips below 40, we’ll let you know so you have time to improve. Please note, if your policy is cancelled it can affect your ability to get car insurance elsewhere.

Please note we updated these terms on 11th May 2016. If you bought your policy before this date, you can find the minimum scores that apply to your policy on page 29 of your policy booklet.

What is the Dashboard?

The Dashboard contains all the information from your SmartMiles box about the way that you drive. It also features your Driver Rating, which is based on the quality of your driving and is used to calculate the cost of your renewal quotes.

Is there a SmartMiles mobile app?

Yes, the SmartMiles mobile app is the best way to check your driver rating, and is now free to download on the Apple and Google Play stores.
Find out more.

Will you help me improve my driving?

You may be surprised how useful the information on your Dashboard can be. Many people aren't aware of the way they drive until they see the facts and figures. Once you know what you're doing, it's much easier to work on improving your driving style. We also have lots of tips to help you get a better rating.

Can I have more than one login to the Dashboard?

No. Each policy has a single login to the Dashboard, though you are free to share this with other people if you choose to do so.

I'm starting a SmartMiles policy for one of my children. It will be in their name, but I'm paying. Will I have access to their Dashboard?

It is up to the Policyholder to decide who has access to their Dashboard. We cannot give the details to anyone else.

Is there a cooling-off period on this policy?

Yes, there is a 14 day cooling off period from the date you buy the policy. During this time, you are free to cancel the policy and receive a pro rata refund of the premium, minus our £25 cancellation fee. A full refund of premium will be issued if your cover has not started and the SmartMiles box has not been fitted. No refund of premium will be given if you have made a total loss claim against your policy.

If your SmartMiles box hasn't been fitted you'll also be refunded the telematics fee.

Can I cancel the policy after the cooling-off period finishes?

You can cancel your car insurance at any time, after the cooling off period a cancellation fee will apply. Please see our fees and charges page for more information.

If I decide to end the policy or sell the car, will you remove the SmartMiles box?

We can deactivate the box free of charge or it can be removed if you prefer. If you need us to send an engineer to remove the box, then you'll be charged a £90 fee.

Electronic devices like your SmartMiles box can be recycled. Go to www.recycle-more.co.uk to find your nearest recycling centre. Like other electronic devices, the SmartMiles box shouldn't go into your general household waste.

Can I change the vehicle on my policy?

Yes, you’ll need to contact us to arrange for a SmartMiles box to be fitted to your new car, which you can do through your online portal. Your new box must be fitted within 14 days of you asking us to change your policy, not from the date you start driving your new car, or we’ll cancel your policy. You’ll need to pay a fee for changing your policy and for the new box. See our fees and charges for more details.

What should I do if my car is stolen?

If your car has been stolen, there are just two things you need to do:
 
  • First, call the police to tell them what has happened and let them know the car has a tracking device. You will also need to get a crime reference number.
  • Call our theft helpline on 0800 048 2954 and give them your policy number and the crime reference number. They will activate the theft tracker to trace your vehicle and liaise with the police.

Can theft tracking make a difference?

Yes, cars fitted with a telematics box are often recovered within an hour or two of being stolen.