Insurance for the old? No chance
Old people are a menace aren't they? They piss-up your house and rattle tea cups in their dentures with their trembling liver-spotted hands. I can't wait to be that irritating.
Of course, stick an old codge behind the wheel of a car and you've got a death-trap. Their milky eyes peering over the steering wheel, they press the accelerator toward queues of infants without the reaction times to avert certain tragedy.
And yet, people whine about how hard it is for our elderly to get car-insurance.
Naturally, I'm being glib and needlessly nasty to keep the tone of Bitterwallet. One age charity is getting all kinds of cross because finance firms are discriminating against older people. New evidence from Age Concern and Help the Aged shows that half of motor insurers and a third of travel insurers automatically exclude people aged 80 or older, regardless of whether they're healthy or not.
"It defies belief that in 2010 a business is still able to refuse to deal with someone because of the date on their birth certificate," says Michelle Mitchell, the charity director. "We accept age should sometimes be taken into account in pricing insurance, but automatic age limits completely undermine the message the Equality Bill is supposed to be sending. Our fear is that household name insurers will see the new law as a green light to shut their doors to older customers."
The charity asked a number of motor insurers to quote for an 84-year-old man and an 87-year-old woman. Half of those contacted refused to offer cover. Who are they? The list includes Admiral, Axa, the Co-operative, Halifax, Sainsbury's and Tesco. Oh, and let's not forget eSure, who have adverts fronted by the seriously decrepit Michael Winner.
You may well be thinking "Sod those coots!", but you can go younger and access to insurance becomes dicky. Once you hit 65 some companies will refuse to provide insurance quotes.
"Premiums for motor insurance are determined by the risk profile of individuals," explains Lana Clements of More Than. "Older drivers do present genuinely higher risks than drivers between the ages of 25 and 65, which is why age is a factor in the way that motor insurers calculate prices. But this would also apply to drivers under the age of 25."
Even if an old twat is accepted for insurance, they should be expecting cover that's well over the odds. Even then, they may be required to be accompanied by a younger member of their family.
My advice to Bitterwallet's greying readers? Use this article as proof as to why your family members should give you a lift absolutely everywhere and at any time you feel like it. They're eyeing up that sideboard you've got in the best lounge, so milk the little shits for every mile you can.