Choice insurance review ratings (or lack thereof)

Why has Choice stopped providing ratings and recommendations for insurance?
I need to buy travel insurance today, so I opened the Choice website and looked up travel insurance, intending to buy Choice’s top recommendation, as usual. I was very disappointed to discover no ratings of insurance policies and no recommendations. I was similarly disappointed last year when I was looking for home and contents insurance, and found that Choice had not rated the various policies or provided any recommendations. Why? What is going on? Assessing, reviewing and recommending good products over bad is the whole point of Choice (along with consumer rights advocacy).


I leave it to Choice staff to give an authoritative reply but my guess is that it is too complex. The range of conditions, inclusions, exclusions etc is too great to say which is best value as our individual needs will all be different. For an appliance it is reasonable to say what it does and work out how well each does it, for insurance not.


Data must be gathered concerning insurance policies . I tend to rate them not on when I purchase them but how they perform when a claim is made . This could be a rather long term process .I agree with @syncretic . Appliances etc can be judged on how they suit your needs ,energy efficacy etc . Insurance policies are judged more on the ease of making a claim when one needs to .


Hi @Dale,

Apologies for any frustrations we have caused, we understand the lack of overall ratings score is a problem. I’ve copied a response from our insurance expert @JodiBird below as to why this has occurred, it applies to all general insurance reviews - car, home, travel, pet etc. At moment, we’re still consolidating insurance data and looking for ways to improve these reviews, in the meantime the reviews are in front of the paywall.

I will make sure your comments are passed on to the appropriate teams. Apologies once again that we couldn’t be more helpful in this instance.

Hi all.

Thanks for your comments on this. You are correct that we have pulled our ratings and recommendations from the general insurance products - pet, car, home and travel insurance. i.e. everything but health insurance. The reason is twofold:

  • Lack of pricing - we did used to collect prices either manually or direct from the insurer, but the large number of risks factored into an insurance quote now means this method can no longer be relied on to generate an accurate representation of how an insurer prices itself in a particular market.
  • Lack of claims data - we used to use the complaints data from the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS). But when FOS transitioned to the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA), they removed the relative measure of complaints per 100,000 policies (at the insurer’s request of course). This makes it difficult to extract meaning from the complaints data, because obviously the insurers that issue more policies, have more complaints. We have complained to AFCA about this both in private and in public submissions, but we don’t expect they will address this…

This means that we are left with only the policy data that we extract from the Product Disclosure Statements. And while this data is very important, and perhaps the most important criteria to base a policy purchase on, we don’t think it’s enough to justify ratings and recommendations of the policies, hence we have pulled those from the general insurance comparisons.

We agree that it is not adequate value for money for our members to pay for a comparison, as opposed to reviews and recommendations, which is what people expect from CHOICE reviews. Hence the general insurance comparisons (pet, car, home, travel), are not currently paywalled.


I agree that insurance is complicated, but I would like to make three points:

  1. Lots of other things Choice reviews, rates and gives recommendations on are also complicated and subject to different particular needs of different individual buyers. That doesn’t normally stop Choice from doing its job.
  2. When I buy a product, I don’t necessarily have to get the best possible product for my particular, individual needs. I just want to be sure that I get something that is OK and not a lemon.
  3. Choice used to provide ratings and recommendations for travel insurance. Why have they stopped?

I apologise. While I was writing my previous reply, new replies were sent which I had not read.
Thank you, Choice, for your replies and explanation in response to my enquiry.


Quite clear and understandable, thank you. Any ratings based on incomplete data would be useless and potentially misleading…


Rating insurance based on price is easy and a trap many people & businesses fall for. You need to know exactly what you are and are not covered for as insurers use every means possible to deny claims.
My son is a full AFSL qualified Insurance Broker. He does not do household or car insurance as it is simply price competitive “cookie cutter” policies.
He now concentrates wholly on business insurance. Anyone who just asks for price is told they are not the right broker for them. He only accepts a client who agrees to a FULL risk assessment of all parts of the business and he provides quotes for policies required to cover their risks. If they decline any part of the quote his professional liability is covered.
He is very successful, they have more business than they can handle, and has won state & national insurance broker awards.
It’s not what you pay - it’s how well you are covered (including not covered) and most of us aren’t knowledgeable enough to work it out. (Even reading & understanding the exclusions is a good start.)
I don’t blame Choice for not rating & recommending insurance - it’s a minefield with potential litigation
Cheers John