Maybe government services aren’t so bad…

Mrs Cz goes on a business trip tomorrow.  Travel insurance expired – no problem, just renew online.

  1. Go to site for provider of last year’s policy.  Works fine right up to final screen.  Click final confirm button, dumped back at initial data entry screen.  Try again, same result.
  2. Go to another big name insurer.  Works fine right up to next-to-final screen.  Fail to click obscure radio button confirming that I have read an even more obscure pdf file.  Error message generated, screen reloads with all data entered neatly removed as punishment.  Get to final screen.  Small print at the bottom, in artful pale grey on a white background says going any further will result in limitless spam from them, related companies, and anyone else they sell the mailing list to (I paraphrase).  No opt out offered.
  3. Go to another big name insurer.  Get to third screen, becomes clear that extremely small print makes the policy effectively useless for business travel.
  4. Go to another big name insurer.  Looks a complete mess because of non-standard HTML, but it seems to work.  Confirm purchase of policy.
  5. Find cheerful email from insurer at step 1, confirming purchase.
  6. Find cheerful email from insurer at step 4, confirming purchase – but with four pdf files attached, all with gobbledegook names, with the most important one still in printer’s layout format, making it effectively impossible to print without editing the pdf, which most people can’t do.

We can’t possibly build anything quite that bad.  Can we?