i

Coronavirus update Last updated 9th July 16:00

Show more

In line with guidance from the Government and to help look after our colleagues, most of our team are now working from home and are taking calls. However, waiting times are longer than normal and the quality of the call may not be as clear as if we were talking to you from our call centre. We're committed to supporting you in the best way we can and will be here throughout to keep you updated so make sure to check back regularly.

At this time, please help us to prioritise essential calls by using our online services.

  • If you're a car customer you can use MyAccount or the app to make policy changes or payments, including changing your payment date, checking your documents or to report or track a claim (MyAccount only).
  • If you're a home, bike or van customer, you can make policy changes or requests using our online forms.

If you do phone, we may only be able to deal with your query if:

  • Your policy is due to renew and you're concerned it's no longer suitable for you or you're thinking of cancelling your insurance, or
  • You are worried about making future payments, or
  • You're in a vulnerable situation or an NHS or frontline health care worker who can't easily access our online services, or
  • You need to make a claim and your vehicle is un-driveable or if you need urgent roadside assistance.

For all other queries, including buying a new policy, please first read our Coronavirus FAQs for the latest advice and help to use our online services.

Our opening hours have changed to: Monday to Friday 9am-6pm and Saturday 10am-2pm.

Read our Coronavirus FAQs

Hastings Direct.
i

Coronavirus update Last updated 9th July 16:00

Show more

  • We hope you and those close to you are keeping safe. Our teams are now working from home so we're very sorry if you notice the sound quality isn't as good as usual or you experience periods of silence. We're working hard on improving this so please bear with us.
  • Please help us prioritise urgent calls by only phoning us if you want to discuss your renewal or you're thinking of cancelling your insurance, or you're in financial difficulties and you're worried about payments, or you're an NHS or frontline healthcare worker.
  • For anything else, you can now manage your policy online. For latest advice and help to use our online tools, read our Coronavirus FAQs.

In line with guidance from the Government and to help look after our colleagues, most of our team are now working from home and are taking calls. However, waiting times are longer than normal and the quality of the call may not be as clear as if we were talking to you from our call centre. We're committed to supporting you in the best way we can and will be here throughout to keep you updated so make sure to check back regularly.

At this time, please help us to prioritise essential calls by using our online services.

  • If you're a car customer you can use MyAccount or the app to make policy changes or payments, including changing your payment date, checking your documents or to report or track a claim (MyAccount only).
  • If you're a home, bike or van customer, you can make policy changes or requests using our online forms.

If you do phone, we may only be able to deal with your query if:

  • Your policy is due to renew and you're concerned it's no longer suitable for you or you're thinking of cancelling your insurance, or
  • You are worried about making future payments, or
  • You're in a vulnerable situation or an NHS or frontline health care worker who can't easily access our online services, or
  • You need to make a claim and your vehicle is un-driveable or if you need urgent roadside assistance.

For all other queries, including buying a new policy, please first read our Coronavirus FAQs for the latest advice and help to use our online services.

Our opening hours have changed to: Monday to Friday 9am-6pm and Saturday 10am-2pm.

Read our Coronavirus FAQs

Never know where to store your eggs? A guide to storing food safely

If your kitchen's taken a battering over the festive season, now's the time to turn it around. We all know fresh is better when it comes to food and, while no one is going to judge the occasional ready meal or takeaway, some simple kitchen organisation could be all you need to revolutionise how your household approaches food.

What goes in the fridge?

It's a common misconception that everything fresh must go in the fridge. In fact, some foods will keep for longer and taste better when left at room temperature.

Anything that says 'keep refrigerated' on the label needs to have priority for fridge space. The most common foods are dairy, meat and fish. Any raw foods that can cause food poisoning should be kept in separate containers and ideally on the bottom shelf of the fridge.

According to research by the University of California, not all fruit and vegetables belong in the fridge. Along with potatoes, the University recommends avocado, cucumber and peppers are left in a cool, dry place rather than the fridge. But grapes, carrots and mushrooms should be stored in the fridge.

What doesn't go in the fridge?

Bread — when kept in the fridge it dries out very quickly. If you know you're not going to get through the whole loaf in a few days, keep it in the freezer and just defrost slices as and when you need them.

Honey — while most jams and spreads should be kept refrigerated once opened, honey just needs to be airtight. It can theoretically stay fine for years but it will start to crystallise if it gets too cold.

Onions — when kept in the fridge onions will turn soft and mouldy a lot quicker than if they're kept in a cool, dry place.

Eggs — there seems to be a lot of debate as to whether they belong in the fridge or not. While most sources agree the door of the fridge is the worst place to store them (despite most fridges having egg trays in the door), it's generally agreed eggs should just be stored at a constant temperature below 20°C.

Fridge shelves:

  • Top shelf: ready to eat food like cooked meats and leftovers
  • Middle shelves: dairy like cheese, butter and yogurt
  • Bottom shelf: raw meat and fish, separately packaged.

The freezer

Technically anything can go in the freezer but there are some foods that freeze better than others. Anything with a higher water content won't have the same taste and texture once it's defrosted, but things like frozen lettuce could still be used for cooking.

You should never freeze any meat or fish that's already been defrosted. If you're buying meat or fish from the supermarket, always read the packaging to make sure it hasn't already been frozen and defrosted.

You can freeze meat after it's been defrosted so long as it's been cooked before it's frozen again. This is because any bacteria that were in the fresh meat would have been killed off as it was cooked.

As with the fridge, eggs are another tricky one for the freezer. You can put egg yolks and whites in the freezer (together or separately) but freezing them in their shell isn't advisable as it cracks when it freezes.

While the freezer will help you keep food for longer, it won't keep it edible indefinitely. Things like butter and cheese can be frozen for around three months but milk shouldn't be kept frozen for more than one month.

If you have a power cut, never open your freezer door as most modern freezers are designed to keep the food inside frozen for 24hours so long as the seal isn't broken. If your freezer food is destroyed by lack of power, check your home insurance policy as it's often covered.

Sources:

www.foodnetwork.com

www.goodhousekeeping.co.uk

www.bbcgoodfood.com

Home insurance

At Hastings Direct, we know how important your home and its contents are to you. That's why we offer home insurance that covers you for the unexpected expense that theft, loss and damage can bring. Plus you can choose from a great range of optional extras.

Join us...