At WiseDriving, we reward good driving, so improving your driving score is key to lowering your premiums (or to keeping them low!).
To increase your driving score, ensure you drive in accordance with the law. Make sure to remain within the legal speed limit at all times, as this will raise your score. You should also review your journeys on a regular basis to help you identify where your driving has rated as good, and where it hasn’t. You can view your journeys and driving score via your WiseDriving App whenever you like, which will help you to see where your driving may need improvement.
There is a strong correlation between speed and accidents, so slow down when driving. Going over the speed limit means you have less time to react to hazards, stopping distances are increased and if you do have an accident, the damage - or worse, the injuries - will be more severe.
Remember: the speed limit is the maximum legal speed for that road. It doesn't necessarily mean it is safe to drive at that speed all the time or regardless of conditions. You can improve your speeding score by making sure you are within the speed limit for that road overall while also taking into account other factors, such as:
- Whether the road layout or conditions present hazards, such as bends. Even if the road is a 60mph limit, it may not be safe to take a sharp bend at this speed.
- Whether you are sharing the road with pedestrians, cyclists, horse riders and motorcyclists. Reduce speed to give yourself enough time to look at what's around you and be able to react to anything unexpected.
- Whether there are harsh or severe weather conditions. Stopping distances will be greater and you may have less control of the car so you will drive more safely if you slow down.
- Whether it is dark - driving at night makes it more difficult to see other road users, so slowing down gives you more time to react to what's around you.
Time of Day
At WiseDriving, you’ll never have a curfew, but if you regularly drive at high-risk times of day such as at 10pm – 4am or during rush hour commuter traffic, your score will be lower.
Why do we monitor time of day? Only a quarter of all travel by car drivers is undertaken between the hours of 7pm and 8am, but a staggering 40 percent of fatal and serious injuries occur during this time. This indicates that driving at night is far more dangerous than during the day. The same concept is the reason that we also monitor whether you regularly drive at peak times, as they also carry a higher accident-risk.
You can improve your safety when driving at these times by:
- Allowing enough distance to stop. Use your headlights to help you if it’s dark. As a general rule, low beams should allow you to see up to 160 feet away, while high beams should illuminate about 500 feet in front of you. This is also important when driving at times of busy traffic.
- Going easy on the dashboard lights at night. Make sure you dim your dashboard lights to a safe low level so you aren't dazzled by a bright interior against a dark road.
- Keeping that screen clean - cleaning your windscreen of bugs and dirt will limit the glare from other headlights.
- Watch your speed – speeding at night will affect your score even more than it does regularly, as this takes makes your higher accident risk even higher!
Length of Journeys
When you’re driving long distance, tiredness, fatigue and boredom can set in. Especially when driving for long periods of time on motorways. A long journey is classed as a driving time of 2 hours or more, to keep your score high you should:
- Take regular breaks on long journeys – it’s important that you stop and take a minute to rest your eyes and refresh, maybe have a quick walk around a rest-stop car park or get a coffee. This means that you’ll be more focused when you return to the wheel. If you’re stationary for 15 minutes or more, your App will start a new journey. This means your 2-hour journey with a rest stop will become two separate hour long journeys.
- Make short trips where you can, especially if you’ve just passed your test – this will help you to get more confidence behind the wheel.
Your Erratic Driving score is calculated using a few different measurements – how sharply you brake, how quickly you accelerate and your cornering habits. Gently does it is the key to a good score in all of these areas, and to help you stay safe behind the wheel. We understand that sometimes braking sharply is necessary, but your device is able to recognise an emergency brake, and the occasional one of those shouldn’t affect your score. To improve your Erratic Driving score try to:
- Remember the 2 second rule. Think about how close you drive to the car in front of you. If you’re tailgating or having to constantly brake behind cars on motorways or dual carriageways, you may be driving too close. You will be a safer driver if you leave enough space between you and the vehicle in front so that you can stop safely if it suddenly stops or slows down.
- Think about the weather conditions too – on wet roads, you should double the usual distance and even more so on icy or snow-covered roads.
- You can improve your acceleration score by increasing your speed gently and driving smoothly. This will not only improve your score but will also save you money on fuel. When you need to stop or slow down, decelerate smoothly to allow yourself more time to think about what's coming up on the road ahead.
- You can also change gear earlier to help with your acceleration: try changing up at an engine speed of around 2,000 rpm in a diesel car or around 2,500 rpm in a petrol car. This will help you think about your speed as well as cutting your fuel bill.
- Choose an appropriate speed for the sharpness of the upcoming corner, if you can’t see round it very well, you should slow down even more to make sure there are no hazards on the other side.