Female drivers paying £45 more for car repairs

New research carried out by ClickMechanic has shown that UK female motorists are being charged an average of £45 more than males for car repairs.

Male and female mystery shoppers requested quotes to replace the clutch of a 2011 Ford Focus from 182 garages across ten UK cities. The investigation found that eight out of the ten cities charged women a ‘female premium’ and only 6% of the surveyed garages gave a consistent quote to both male and female customers. Males were quoted on average £571 and females £616 – a difference of 8%.

Chief executive of ClickMechanic Andrew Jervis said: “For every female car-owner in the UK this report will come as an unwelcome surprise. Whilst the vast majority of mechanics strive to provide honest and reliable quotes, these results show that there is a worrying minority of garages failing to do so. There is a desperate need across the industry for transparency and consistency in price in order to establish trust with consumers of both sexes.”

Repairers in Birmingham charged the highest female premium at 31%, closely followed by Manchester (28%) and Glasgow (20%). Only two out of the ten surveyed cities bucked the trend and charged men more for a repair, with Sheffield and Edinburgh quoting males 5% and 19% more than females respectively.

We say:
As one of the UK’s leading used car warranty providers, treating customers fairly is the backbone of the WMS Group’s operation so naturally we were disappointed to see that there are still so many garages who are taking advantage of their customers.

Our vast approved repairer network is graded according to ability and each repairer is required to display the customer care charter in their premises, which shows that they will provide an estimate and full explanation of the work required prior to carrying out the repairs. Additionally all work is guaranteed by them for 6 months / 6,000 miles, whichever is sooner, and they ensure that customers are kept informed throughout the repair process.

We also work with the FOXY Lady Drivers Club and FOXY Choice garage networks, the UK’s only female friendly motoring organisations. Their network has signed the FOXY Promise ‘never to overcharge, patronise or sell women services they don’t need’ so all motorists – regardless of gender – can find a reputable garage or dealership that embraces only the highest standards. All drivers should make sure that they are using a qualified and skilled mechanic, and compare quotes between repairers before authorising any work.