The Female Premium: Garages in 8 out of 10 UK cities charge women £45 more for car repairs


ClickMechanic investigation reveals large-scale pricing differences across gender and regions
British women are charged an average of £45 more than men for car repairs, an investigation by ClickMechanic has found. ClickMechanic, the online marketplace for car repairs, examined independent car garages across the UK and found that a standard repair costing a man £571 will typically cost a woman £616, an increase of eight percent.

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 six percent of the surveyed garages gave a consistent quote to both male and female customers.

“For every female car-owner in the UK this report will come as an unwelcome surprise,” says Andrew Jervis, Co-founder and CEO of ClickMechanic. “While 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.”

Birmingham repair garages charged the highest female premium at 31 percent, 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 garages quoting males 5% and 19% more than females respectively.


City
Average Female
Average Male
Difference (£)
Difference (%)





Birmingham
£582
£445
£137
31%
Manchester
£631
£494
£137
28%
Glasgow
£581
£483
£98
20%
London
£793
£673
£120
18%
Cardiff
£612
£546
£66
12%
Bristol
£642
£617
£25
4%
Leeds
£510
£495
£15
3%
Liverpool
£594
£589
£5
1%
Sheffield
£590
£622
-£32
-5%
Edinburgh
£629
£746
-£117
-19%





Average
£616
£571
£45
8%
 
The investigation also uncovered some price-hiking across the country, regardless of the customer’s gender. On average, garages quoted both men and women £594 to carry out the work, £80 more (16 percent) than the £514 recommended by industry standard guidelines provided by car manufacturers, parts providers and trade bodies.

“Customers, both male and female, rely on mechanics to be accurate with their pricing. We recently carried out a study that found roughly half of people (45 percent) have no idea how much common repairs on an average household car should cost. While there is a small number of cowboys taking advantage of the fact that most consumers just don't know how much their car repairs should cost, most mechanics are reliable and trustworthy. These results should therefore encourage the car repair industry to focus its efforts on making sure mechanics have the best possible tools in place to provide reliable quotes.”

Research was carried out during April-May 2015 across 182 locations in Birmingham, Manchester, London, Glasgow, Cardiff, Bristol, Leeds, Liverpool, Sheffield, and Edinburgh. Male and female mystery shoppers separately requested quotes for replacing the clutch plate, cover and concentric slave cylinder (release bearing) of a Ford Focus TDCi 2.0L 2011.

To get an approximate idea of how much you should be paying for your car repairs then the ClickMechanic price estimates tool can be found here: https://www.clickmechanic.com/price-estimates/
The Female Premium: Garages in 8 out of 10 UK cities charge women £45 more for car repairs The Female Premium: Garages in 8 out of 10 UK cities charge women £45 more for car repairs Reviewed by Hayley Reeve on Wednesday, July 22, 2015 Rating: 5

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