Sunday Times report on price comparison websites

Sunday Times report on price comparison websites

We’ve made no secret of our views on the murky world of price comparison websites, on how they make their money and on how little consumers are often told about what they’re actually paying to use these “free” services.

This weekend the Sunday Times newspaper ran an investigation into the hidden costs of using PCWs, and whilst the investigation was focused on life insurance and critical illness insurance policies, the same practices appear to apply to other insurance lines including motor insurance.

In their report the Sunday Times found that consumers could be paying up to 25 pence in the pound as commission on such policies to the PCW, with just a third of such comparison sites disclosing the details to consumers. You can read their investigation here.

We believe that the commission model that price comparison sites operate is not clear to consumers, and can represent a significant proportion of the overall price that a consumer pays for their insurance - and often without them being aware. In our Young Driver Rip-off Report last year we found that 92% of the young drivers that we surveyed had no idea that such commissions were tucked away within the headline price, for example. You can read that report here.

This is just one of the key areas where Honcho is different, and we are totally transparent about how we operate. With Honcho, insurance providers pay us £1 for the right to bid to try to win your custom, and that is it. If they successfully win your business there’s no commission or anything else - just the initial £1.

Its all a part of our core values: Fairness, Innovation and Transparency. Read more about these here.