What's the easiest way to make friends on campus? Volunteer to be the designated driver

ingenie.ca, an auto insurance provider for Ontario drivers aged 16-24, suggests some guidelines for students who volunteer their services as the designated driver this fall

Until October 31, students could win $1,000, simply by getting an auto insurance quote from ingenie

TORONTO, Sept. 2, 2015 /CNW/ - Did you know that one-half of impaired driving incidents reported by police take place between 11 p.m. and 4 a.m. with the peak usually between 2 a.m. and 3 a.m., the hour after bars close in most provinces?i If you are driving to bars with your friends this fall, make sure you have a designated driver.  If you volunteer to be the designated driver, remember one thing: it's your car, your rules.

"As a driver, your most important responsibility is safety. When you volunteer to be the designated driver, you may deal with some passengers who aren't exercising the best judgment," says Lorie Phair, CEO of ingenie Canada. "Setting ground rules in advance is a good way to ensure everyone gets home safe."

As college and university students settle in to campus life, ingenie.ca, an auto insurance provider for drivers aged 16-24, offers the following tips for designated drivers:

  • Communicate your departure time to passengers in advance: If you don't want to stay out late, let your friends know in advance that if they plan to shut down the bar, they will need to organize alternative transportation home.

  • Finalize your passenger list early: Offering rides is an easy way to become "Mr. or Ms. Popularity." Don't be tempted to pile in more people than there are seatbelts. It's dangerous and distracting, not to mention illegal.

  • Remember you're responsible for transportation, not entertainment: Don't worry about playing DJ for the party animals in your car. Focus on your driving. Pick someone to ride shotgun who you know will help you maintain a safe environment in the car.

  • You control who - and what - gets in your car: If someone is acting too rowdy, don't be shy to give them the number to call a cab. The same applies if your friend thinks he's going to bring one for the road; tell him to dump it or to find another ride. Remind him that you're staying sober for the whole night; the least he can do is stay dry on the drive to the party.

  • Don't drink and drive – ever: If you're 21 or under, your blood alcohol level must be zero when you get behind the wheel. Even if you're a fully licensed driver who is old enough, it's best to avoid drinking altogether if you plan to drive. One drink could lead to another and before you know it, four people are stranded. Or worse, they're trying to convince you that you're OK to drive. It's simple: if there's any chance you might want to enjoy a drink, leave the car at home and don't offer to drive. If you do bring the car, stay sober.

"When you take on the responsibility of being a designated driver, you're responsible for your friends' safety at a time when they may not be in their most safety-conscious state," says Phair. "Take the responsibility seriously and don't be shy about enforcing rules to create a safe environment in your car."

Phair points out that students who volunteer to be designated drivers will enjoy the benefit of waking up fresh the next day to get a head start on reading or assignments for the week ahead.

It pays to do your homework, especially right now. Win $1,000 simply by getting an auto insurance quote online at www.ingenie.ca/contest 

Seven in 10 young drivers (72%) in Ontario use the same auto insurance provider as their parents. In fact, 50% don't even look into other options. When young drivers do their research, many find better insurance options are available. It pays to do your research and that is especially true right now. Individuals who get a quote at www.ingenie.ca/contest before October 31, 2015 are automatically entered for a chance to win $1,000 cash.

ingenie is telematics based insurance for Ontario drivers aged 16 to 24, designed to help them become better, safer drivers and reward them with Good Driving Discounts. In the U.K. where ingenie has been available since 2011, the approach has reduced young drivers' risk of having an accident during the first six months of driving by 40%. Seventy per cent of ingenie's U.K. drivers earn discounts for safe driving.

Drivers who sign up with ingenie install an ingenie Smartbox, a small self-contained device, which measures driving behaviours such as speed, acceleration, braking and cornering. Customers receive feedback on how they're driving every 10 days through an ingenie app on their smartphone or online at ingenie.ca. The feedback includes a driving score out of 100, tips on how they can improve and an update on how much they stand to save for driving safely.

Compared to traditional insurance models where drivers would have to wait until the end of the year to see a discount, young drivers with ingenie can earn their Good Driving Discount three times a year – up to 25% off annually. For further tips and information for young drivers, visit www.ingenie.ca.

About ingenie
ingenie is an innovative young driver insurance brand that uses telematics technology to reward safe driving with savings. ingenie builds a picture of a driver's individual style, awareness and safety on the road, rewarding those who drive well with up to an extra 25% Good Driving Discount and helping those who need improvement become safer. ingenie was awarded the prestigious Prince Michael International Road Safety Award in 2013, in recognition of its work to help make young drivers safer on the road. Among a number of industry awards, ingenie has won best start-up at the 2014 British Insurance Awards and insurance innovation of the year at the Insurance Times Awards.

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i Source: Stats Canada: Impaired driving in Canada, 2011: http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/85-002-x/2013001/article/11739-eng.htm

SOURCE ingenie

For further information: Sinead Brown, sbrown@paradigmpr.ca, 416-413-5193

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