You read the review so rate it or leave your own feedback

Unless your a bit of a chancer (nothing wrong with that) it is quite likely that before buying something or going somewhere to stay or eat that you will ask or search for the opinion of others.

If you have never done so then I am a little surprised as it is so easy now with a wealth of information available online.

So when you read the feedback do you ever show thanks or leave your own as way of making up for the advice you received?!

imageI am on a bit of a personal mission at the moment to do just this as for too long I have been reading and acting on the advice of others and not giving credit to them.

I can understand how some think it is a bit of an anoraks thing to do, but so be it, I think there is value in it! And I don’t do it the minute I get back from wherever I have been or even worse when I am there!

Personal opinion is just that but you can often very quickly get a feel or impression of somewhere based on what people say, and also find some hidden gems too!

By no means the only source, but a popular one is tripadvisor.co.uk.  Some of the reviews are extensive whilst others are brief and to the point, both work.

If you read a review and find it helpful why not give a virtual thumbs up to that person by hitting the ‘yes’ button.

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If you have been somewhere why not leave your feedback and help others, such reviews can too be the lifeblood of small businesses too and I am sure many are grateful of the feedback.

Confused.com is owned by Admiral Group

Confused.com - on a mission to save you money

Confused.com is one of the largest online insurance comparison sites, but did you know it is part of the Admiral Group which are also owners of Admiral, Bell, Diamond & Elephant insurance?

Not that it makes a great difference to members of the public but it is quite a clever way of capturing market data, competitors prices and ensuring that one of their own companies actually come up cheapest for your insurance.

I think it is an excellent business model!

Admiral insurance document confusion

I have had insurance with Admiral for a few years and generally can not complain they have been fairly priced and I got what I expected (although I have not had to claim).

This year when renewing my cars insurance I was asked about multi-car for my partners car. 

I got given a price for my insurance for 1 year that included a discount based on my partners car being added to the policy in several months when hers was due for renewal. The cost even before discount was acceptable. I was then given a cost for her car insurance being on the policy and told that if when the her car came on policy it was too expensive, then I would pay a bit more for my own and her car could be insured elsewhere.

Basically the more cars you insure under the same policy in one household the bigger the discount.

It does also mean that all cars insurance renews at the same time the following year, so if you add an additional car 6 months in you will pay pro-rata, but drivers actually gain a years no claims.

All was good. 

When it came to adding her car the premium offered by Admiral was competitive and we decided to take them up on the offer.

However this is where the fun started. Back when I setup the policy, I had the date wrong, her insurance was due on the 14th and not the 20th that I had quoted originally.

We called up 2 weeks prior to the required renewal date and was told all was fine, it would be covered from the 14th and the premium would be deducted from our account. Great.

The renewal date passes and her car does not show up as insured http://www.askmid.com

Working in insurance herself she is quite particular and we went online to check our documents. We couldn’t access them.

Thinking it may be a little blip, we leave it and sure enough the car then shows up as insured and on the 24th we could access our documents. However, these said the policy started on the 27th.

Naturally confused, I called up to only have confirmed that the insurance did commence on the 14th, not the 20th and explained that documents online can not be changed or updated unless the policy is cancelled and setup again, something to do with when the policy was first setup!

We left it at that having had the confirmation insurance commenced on the 14th still none the wiser why the document online showed the start date of the 27th.

No documents were ever received in the post to confirm that the insurance started on the 14th.  Apparently had we wanted this we had to ask for it. Seems odd but ok.

All insured, everything is fine, but it leaves me slightly confused as to where the 27th came from and also how many other customers are experiencing the same thing.

It just leaves you slightly confused and you end up calling up because you can not make head or tail of it.

Admiral is a big insurance company. Surely allowing the changes to be made could in the long term save a lot of confusion for customers?!

Energy supplier change made easy

uSwitch.com

Just over a year ago, I switched to a dual fuel tariff with EDF energy after they offered a fixed price per unit over the period rather than a variable cost.

At the time I made the switch using uswitch.com.

From what I recall the process was simple and straightforward.

I have just used them again to change my tariff as the 1 year fixed price contract has ended. I am with EDF Energy again, now on a 5 year plan.

Irrespective of the cost of gas and electricity (we all know how expensive it is) I want to recommend uswitch.com as it is quite frankly superb.

I use a lot of websites some good, some not so good, but uswitch.com is excellent.

Asking a few simple questions of your current costs/usage it quickly and simply compares the cost of electricity and gas with suppliers and the tariffs they have on offer clearly showing you increase and decreases in the costs to you should you switch.

It probably took less than 10 minutes for me to enter the information and decide on my plan and confirm the change. I wont go into all the details and features, but I don’ think they are missing anything.

Quite simply, if you are looking to change suppliers for gas and electric, try uswitch.com, it is quite simply brilliant and I will now be using them for other comparisons in the future.

I am not affiliated to uswitch, I just believe in leaving honest feedback.

Buying online–You don’t get the same warm feeling

Online v The High Street

I buy an awful lot of things that I need online.  I am not ashamed of it.  I know I am not always helping the small high street retailer, but online is convenient for me and where possible I try to buy from independent stores online.

Not everything I buy is online though.  Clothes for example I will buy in a shop because it is simpler to feel the fabric quality, try things on etc.  Although I can get bored very easily in a shop.

Whilst it is always nice to have a package arrive I don’t get that psychological warm feeling having bought something online as I do in the high street.

Is it just me that has this feeling that when you walk down the high street with your new purchase in hand you feel like a warm glow inside of you.

Now I must stress this is normally when I have bought something for myself and not the fruit and veg from the supermarket.

I think anyone reading this will know what I mean.  Psychologically making the purchase on the high street makes you feel better but online is often 10 times more convenient.  Get what I mean or am I on my own on this one?

Your source of information

imageWhen I read many tech sites, especially smaller sites but even some of the big news sites I wonder where they got their story from.

Most will have a source, others will not because it is obvious that it is content or news that they have generated themselves…i.e a guide on how to do something, their opinions etc.

However some have no source on what can big quite big or breaking stories and this winds me up because I do not trust the story so much.  Every story starts somewhere but at some point there will be a source.

How many of you see sites failing to source their stories and get annoyed?

Image Source: Screen Capture from www.theverge.com

Misleading Article Titles

Press always mislead you just to get traffic

I know there is an acute need to get readers to view content on many mainstream websites, but some article titles really take the mick in terms of what the title suggest and what the article is actually about.

It is all about the headline to capture the reader and it works.  They view the page read the article and get the message, but probably not the one the headline suggested.  So the writer has got their views and that is great but they may too have many unsatisfied readers as a result, so what’s more important?

Initially it has to be the views because that is what keeps the writers in a job helps bring in advertising revenue etc.

However the longer terms affect is that too many of these types of articles sends the readers away because they feel cheated or mislead by the content.

I think I have zoned myself out now from which sites I have been to and do this or which ones do it more regularly but it does annoy me when i click on something because I feel its a good story only to read it and find it is at best loosely connected.

Moan over!