Best Car Insurance Companies

If you're looking for the best car insurance you can pay for, being in the military may have its advantages with access to more discounts.
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military car insurance

Auto insurance is right up there with health insurance as the type of insurance policy that most draws our attention. There’s a good reason for that too.

A collision could wreck your financial life without adequate coverage, especially if you’re found legally responsible for someone else’s injuries.

With tens of millions of cars on the road across the country, the possibility of being involved in an accident is uncomfortably high.

Auto insurance covers the cost of repairs to your vehicle if you’re involved in an accident and also pays for damage to the other driver’s car and any potential liability if you’re at fault.

For that reason, it’s essential to get the best auto insurance available, not just the cheapest. With that in mind, we’ve compiled a list of what we believe to be the 13 best auto insurance providers on the market.

First, there’s one crucial question you should answer.

Table of Contents
  1. How Much Car Insurance Do I Need?
  2. 16 Best Auto Insurance Companies
    1. Amica Insurance
    2. USAA Property & Casualty
    3. Farmers Auto
    4. Cincinnati Insurance Company
    5. GEICO
    6. Progressive Auto
    7. Esurance
    8. Auto-Owners Insurance Group
    9. Erie Insurance Group
    10. AAA Auto Insurance
    11. Allstate
    12. Liberty Mutual
    13. Travelers
    14. Nationwide
    15. State Farm
    16. American Family Insurance
  3. Our Criteria for Selecting the Best Auto Insurance Companies
    1. Company size
    2. Optional coverages
    3. Discounts
    4. Financial Strength Rating
    5. Company Reputation
  4. What to Look For in an Auto Insurance Company
  5. Average Car Insurance Costs by State
  6. Which Car Insurance Company has the Highest Customer Satisfaction?
  7. What Company Has the Cheapest Car Insurance?
  8. Eight Ways to Lower Car Insurance Rates
    1. 1. Maintain a Good Credit Score
    2. 2. Claim Available Discounts
    3. 3. Drive as Safely as Possible
    4. 4. Drive a Safer Car
    5. 5. Customize Your Coverage
    6. 6. Shop Around for Quotes
    7. 7. Drive Fewer Cars
    8. 8. Maintain Coverage
  9. Quality Auto Coverage Doesn’t Have to Cost a Fortune
  10. Final Thoughts on the Best Auto Insurance Companies

How Much Car Insurance Do I Need?

At the very least, you must buy your state’s minimum car insurance requirements. But state minimums are woefully inadequate and won’t provide any coverage for your own car’s repair bills.

You will need to buy more than the minimum requirements if you want better coverage.

There are several coverage types to choose from. With a basic knowledge of the main types of car insurance, you can put together a good policy that fits your specific insurance needs.

Forbes put together this chart to give you a good idea of what might work best for you.

CoverageOkayGoodBest
Liability Car InsuranceState Minimum– $100,000 per person for bodily injury liability
– $300,000 per accident for bodily injury liability
– $100,000 for property damage
– $250,000 per person for bodily injury liability
– $500,000 per accident for bodily injury liability
– $250,000 for property damage
Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist CoverageState Minimum– $100,000 per person for bodily injury liability
– $300,000 per accident for bodily injury liability
– $250,000 per person for bodily injury liability
– $500,000 per accident for bodily injury liability
Personal Injury Protection (PIP)State Minimum$40,000State maximum
Collission ProtectionNot RequiredRecommendedRecommended
Comprehensive CoverageNot RequiredRecommendedRecommended

Here are a couple of other things to consider.

Consider buying enough liability insurance to cover what you could lose in a lawsuit against you after a car accident. For example, a policy with 250/500/100 would be much better than California’s state minimum.

You’ll typically need to purchase Uninsured Motorist coverage in amounts that match your liability insurance. If you have 250/500/100, you’ll need to buy the same coverage.

Collision and comprehensive insurance are often sold together. They cover many issues like car accidents, car theft, vandalism, collisions with animals, falling objects, fires, floods, and hail damage.

Personal injury protection (PIP) covers medical bills for you and your passengers, no matter who caused the car accident. It also pays for lost wages, funeral expenses, and replacement services you can’t do because of injuries, like cleaning services or child care.

PIP rules vary by the state where it is offered.

Consider other types of optional insurance, such as:

  • Gap insurance covers the difference between your car’s actual cash value (ACV) and how much you owe on the loan or lease.
  • Rental reimbursement insurance, which pays for a rental car or substitute transportation, such as train and bus fare, if your vehicle needs accident repairs.
  • Roadside assistance insurance pays for services like a tow truck, jump-start, fuel delivery, or a locksmith.
  • Uninsured motorist coverage pays medical expenses if you or a passenger in your vehicle are injured in an accident caused by an uninsured driver.
  • Uninsured motorist bodily injury insurance provides coverage when an accident is the fault of an uninsured driver. This provision will cover both you and any passengers in your vehicle. It covers medical expenses, lost wages, and even pain and suffering. It’s especially valuable coverage if you’re involved in a hit-and-run accident.
  • Underinsured motorist coverage protects you if you’re involved in an accident caused by someone who doesn’t have sufficient insurance coverage. If so, this provision covers medical expenses that exceed the at-fault driver’s policy limits.
  • Uninsured motorist property damage insurance covers damage to your car from an accident caused by an uninsured driver.

16 Best Auto Insurance Companies

Hundreds of local, regional and national insurance companies sell auto policies. Some companies also offer car insurance discounts for military members. I recommend shoppers check with the following auto insurers first.

Our list of the best auto insurance companies includes 16 providers. We have not ranked them since the quality and premium level will be different based on any or all of the following criteria:

  • Where you live
  • The type of vehicle you drive
  • Your driving record
  • Your age and how long you’ve been driving
  • Mileage driven annually
  • The use of your car (pleasure, commuting, or use in the production of income)
  • Credit history
  • Gender and marital status
  • Optional coverages
  • Your claim history, if any

Based on these criteria, the best auto insurance company for you could be any one of these 13 companies.

Be sure to get quotes from several companies and make a precise side-by-side comparison.

Commonly, one company will be lower in price than others because certain coverage options of been excluded.

There’s one other very important factor about auto insurance. One of the primary reasons for having it is to protect your assets in case of a claim. You can get by with state minimum mandated coverage levels if you’re young and have no assets.

But if you’re older, own a home, and have considerable savings, you’ll want a higher coverage. It’s about protecting those assets.

With that information in mind, here is our list of the best auto insurance companies.

Amica Insurance

amico logo

This fast-growing company specializes in quality coverage and quality customer service. You can find lower rates, but you’ll have a harder time finding better auto protection.

In most states, Amica doesn’t factor in your car’s depreciation during the first year. This means you may be able to avoid paying extra for gap insurance.

Amica offers online tools, including an app that tracks claims and even calls for roadside assistance if you opt-in to the service.

If you’re the kind of customer who likes to talk about your coverage on the phone, you’ll probably like the company’s customer service agents even better.

Amica Discounts

Amica offers a discount of up to 25% on a multi-vehicle policy and up to 15% if you bundle your auto policy with your homeowner’s insurance. They also have a Legacy discount.

If you’re under age 30 and your parents have had a policy with the company for at least five years.
Their claim-free discount applies if you’ve had no claims within the past three years.

There’s also a loyalty discount if you’ve been with the company for at least two years.

Other discounts are available for autopay, emailing policy documents, and homeownership (even if you don’t have your homeowner’s policy through Amica).

You can also choose a dividend policy. This can save you between 5% and 20% of your annual premium. This kind of policy costs a bit more than standard coverage.

A.M. Best gives Amica a rating of A+ (superior). The Better Business Bureau gives a rating of A+.

Amica Pros

  • Top-notch customer satisfaction
  • Customer-friendly terms and claims process

Amica Cons

  • Fewer discounts than other carriers
  • Few local offices

USAA Property & Casualty

USAA started a century ago after 25 U.S. Army officers couldn’t find affordable auto coverage. They decided to pool their resources and insure each other.

USAA serves almost 13 million members, all of whom have ties to the military. If you aren’t a veteran or on active duty (or if you aren’t a military family member), you can’t join USAA.

If you can join, you’ll have access to excellent auto coverage at a great price. I’m a lifelong member.

As USAA has grown, some members have reported customer service concerns. Still, USAA knows the military life, and they have special benefits just for those who are active military or veterans.

In most states, you’ll be able to save up to 60 percent if you store your car when deployed. (This feature isn’t available in California, North Carolina, or Virginia.)

USAA Auto Insurance Discounts

USAA offers a variety of auto insurance discounts, including Safe Driver discounts, Defensive Driving, Good Student, Multi-vehicle, low annual mileage, family discounts, discounts based on length of membership, and more.

You can save up to 10% on your homeowner’s or renter’s premium when you bundle it with auto insurance.

A.M. Best gives USAA a rating of A++(Superior). The Better Business Bureau gives a rating of A+.

USAA Pros

  • Great military-specific discounts in most states
  • Industry-leading apps and online tools

USAA Cons

  • Fewer discounts overall
  • Few brick-and-mortar locations

Farmers Auto

farmers insurance logo

Farmers Insurance has become more of a household name because of its national ad campaigns in recent years.

The company’s auto coverage offers solid protection for your auto investment and your liability after a wreck. You can customize your coverage with add-ons such as rideshare coverage and built-in gap coverage for new cars.

And if you like working with an in-person agent, Farmers has locations throughout the country.

Farmers Insurance Discounts

Farmers offers discounts for homeowners, mature drivers, safety equipment, and distant student discounts for parents whose kids go to school away from home. They also provide a discount if you bundle your auto policy with other Farmers insurance policies.

Farmers offers both accident forgiveness and incident forgiveness. Under accident forgiveness, they will forgive one accident for every three years you drive without one.

Incident forgiveness means your premium won’t be increased if you get a speeding ticket and no claim is filed.

A.M. Best gives Farmers a rating of A (excellent). The Better Business Bureau gives a rating of A+.

Farmers Auto Insurance Pros

  • Flexible coverage options
  • Higher-than-average claims satisfaction

Farmers Auto Insurance Cons

  • Customer service can vary regionally

Cincinnati Insurance Company

Now for a different approach: Auto coverage from Cincinnati Insurance, which you can buy from independent insurance agents nationwide.

Independent agents offer policies from dozens of insurance companies because they don’t work for only one insurer. They have more freedom to choose a policy that best fits your needs.

More and more independent agents choose to offer coverage from Cincinnati Insurance.

This coverage is beneficial for policyholders who regularly rent cars because of the company’s enhanced coverage for rentals which does not require a deductible.

Cincinnati Insurance Pros

  • Flexible coverage options
  • Enhanced rental coverage

Cincinnati Insurance Cons

  • Sold by third-party, independent agents
  • Phone-based customer service

GEICO

Before its big ad budget made GEICO a household name, the company had humble beginnings. GEICO started as a government agency serving government employees.

Now anyone can be a GEICO customer. Overall, GEICO performs well with auto coverage — both in quality and price.

Digital natives will feel at home shopping for coverage on GEICO’s site or apps. More traditional shoppers can now find local GEICO agents in many cities nationwide.

GEICO Discounts

GEICO offers Accident Forgiveness in all states except California, Connecticut, and Massachusetts. It is earned or purchased.

Your premium will not go up due to your first at-fault accident. What’s more, it applies to multiple drivers on the same policy.

Other discounts are offered for drivers over 50 years old, federal employees, members of the military, good student discounts, safety equipment, five years of accident-free driving, and multi-car policies.

A.M. Best gives GEICO a rating of A++ (superior). The Better Business Bureau gives a rating of A-.

GEICO Pros:

  • Military discount
  • In-person agents available in many areas
  • Top-notch customer service

GEICO Cons

  • Recent customer service problems
  • Online tools not as comprehensive as competitors

Progressive Auto

Another national carrier with household name recognition, Progressive also holds up pretty well as an auto insurance provider.

If you’re trying to save on premiums while maintaining adequate coverage, Progressive should be one of your first stops.

Though you can save with Progressive without putting your financial life in danger, you won’t always get the best coverage in the marketplace. Progressive has higher-than-average instances of customer service complaints.

Progressive Discounts

Progressive is particularly strong on discounts. You can save up to 5% when you combine your auto policy with your home, renters, or condo policy and motorcycle and boat coverage.

They also advertise you can save about 7% when you start your quote online, 31% as a safe driver (no tickets or claims within three years), a 10% multi-car discount, 7% for signing docs online, and other discounts for a good student driver, automatic bill pay, and paying your policy in full upfront.

They also offer their Name Your Price Tool. You tell them what you want to pay, and they match coverage to meet that premium level. Then there’s the frequently advertised Snapshot option.

You plug the device into your car and monitor your driving habits, and they may offer you a discount.
In my personal experience, this much-hyped discount option is unlikely to work in your favor.

The device beeps in disapproval just about any time you tap your brakes.

A.M. Best gives Progressive a rating of A+ (superior). The Better Business Bureau gives a rating of B-.

Progressive Pros

  • Excellent process for shopping
  • Great online tools
  • Low rates for a national carrier

Progressive Cons

  • The claims process can be cumbersome
  • Higher-than-average customer service complaints

Esurance

Allstate, another leader in the auto insurance industry, underwrites policies for Esurance, a provider specializing in simple online coverage.

As a side note: Esurance says it will help military members save money when they’re deployed. Like USAA and GEICO, Esurance understands you won’t be driving when you’re deployed and shouldn’t have to pay full auto coverage rates.

Esurance doesn’t always advertise this flexibility online, so be sure to ask about it if you’re considering this company.

Esurance Discounts

Esurance offers discounts for multiple policies, paying your premium in full (up to 10%), getting an online quote (5%), Switch & Save (save up to 5% when you switch from another company), claim free ( 10% – 25% when you go at least five years without a moving violation or accident claim), homeownership (and even certain rental situations), and a discount of up to 15% if you attend or are an alumnus of a PAC 12 college.

A.M. Best gives Esurance a rating of A+ (superior) due to being part of the Allstate family. The Better Business Bureau gives a rating of A+.

Esurance Pros:

  • Great online tools
  • Competitive rates
  • Wide variety of discount options

Esurance Cons:

  • Doesn’t accept mailed-in payments
  • The simple approach lacks nuance for complex situations

Auto-Owners Insurance Group

Auto-Owners offers great coverage, and the company tends to have higher-than-average customer satisfaction rates.

Auto-Owners would likely appear higher on this list if it were available nationally. Auto-Owners has coverage in only 26 states, mainly in the Southeast, mid-Atlantic, Midwest, Central Plains, and much of the Mountain Time Zone.

If you live in an Auto-Owners state, ask a local independent agent about the company. If you like shopping and accessing coverage online, you may not like Auto-Owners’ approach.

Auto-Owners Insurance Pros

  • Personalized approach to service
  • Dependable coverage

Auto-Owners Insurance Cons

  • Not available on the west coast or in the Northeast
  • Does not offer up-to-date apps

Erie Insurance Group

Erie Insurance offers coverage in only 12 states in the mid-Atlantic (including New York, Pennsylvania, and Washington, D.C.), the Midwest, and the upper South.

Yet the company makes a lot of top-10 lists — including this one — because of its excellent and detailed coverage which even offers protection for your pet after an accident.

The company’s customer satisfaction rate is higher than the industry average. Although you can do a lot online to manage your account, Erie does not have a dedicated app.

Erie Insurance Pros

  • Detailed and flexible coverage
  • Low level of customer dissatisfaction

Erie Insurance Cons

  • Not available nationally
  • No dedicated app

AAA Auto Insurance

People join AAA for its roadside assistance, its car care centers and its discounts on hotels and attractions.

Club members can also access solid insurance at discounted rates. If you’re already an AAA member, you can call the number on your card to ask about insurance coverage.

Even though it’s nationally known, AAA operates as a series of regional clubs, and your insurance options will depend on your local chapter’s insurance affiliations.

Larger chapters such as AAA Southern California, may offer their own coverage. In comparison, smaller chapters often connect customers with third-party carriers such as CSAA Insurance Group or Auto Club Enterprises Group.

AAA Auto Insurance Pros

  • Personalized approach
  • Discounted rates with AAA membership

AAA Auto Insurance Cons

  • Coverage varies regionally
  • Not a good value for non-AAA members

Allstate

Allstate has standard coverage for liability, medical payments, uninsured and underinsured motorists, collision, and comprehensive.

Optional coverage includes rental reimbursement, sound system coverage, roadside assistance, personal injury protection, personal umbrella, and property protection coverage.

They also offer Ridesharing Coverage for as little as $15-$20 per year and coverage for classic cars.

Allstate Discounts

Allstate provides discounts on multi-vehicle policies, intelligent students, and new cars (up to 15%).

You can save up to 10% each for anti-lock brakes or an anti-theft device.

You can save up to 5% with automatic withdrawals and up to 10% for both the upfront payment of your premium and their eSmart for email policy documents.

There is even a savings of up to 10% if you sign your policy seven days before it becomes effective.

Single, full-time students under 25 and getting good grades can receive a discount of up to 35%.

A.M. Best gives Allstate a rating of A+ (superior). The Better Business Bureau gives a rating of A.

Liberty Mutual

Liberty Mutual’s basic policies include bodily injury liability, property damage, and medical payments. They also offer a 12-month rate guarantee, which can be a serious benefit if you select a policy that runs for six months or less.

You can also get optional coverage for towing and labor, rental car coverage, collision, and comprehensive. They offer Better Car Replacement enables you to replace a totaled car with a replacement car that’s one model year newer with up to 15,000 fewer miles than your current car.

Liberty Mutual offers Accident Forgiveness at an additional fee. To qualify, you must be accident-free and violation-free for five years with Liberty Mutual or your previous insurance carrier.

Liberty Mutual Discounts

Other discounts include bundling your auto insurance with homeowners or other policies with the company, and a savings of up to 30% for good driving habits, based on their Right Track app (similar to Progressive’s Snapshot).

A.M. Best gives Liberty Mutual a rating of A (excellent). The Better Business Bureau gives a rating of A.

Travelers

Travelers basic policy coverage includes liability, personal injury, comprehensive and collision, medical payments, and uninsured and underinsured motorists.

Optional provisions include loan or lease gap insurance, rental reimbursement, roadside assistance, ridesharing coverage (in Colorado and Illinois only), and new car replacement if a claim needs to be paid within the first five years.

Travelers Discounts

You can save up to 13% when you bundle your car and homeowners insurance with Travelers. They also have their Premier Responsible Driver Plan.

It includes a Decreasing Deductible provision where you’ll earn a $50 credit to reduce your deductible every six months without accidents or major traffic violations.

The total credit can be up to $500. Also included in the plan is a total loss deductible waiver. It means you won’t have to pay a deductible if your car is totaled.

Travelers also offers accident forgiveness. You must have had no accidents or major violations within the past three years to qualify.

A.M. Best gives Travelers a rating of A++ (superior). The Better Business Bureau gives a rating of A+.

Nationwide

Nationwide policies include liability, collision and comprehensive, uninsured and underinsured motorist, medical payments, and personal injury protection.

Policy options include roadside assistance, rental reimbursement, and classic car insurance.

Nationwide Discounts

You can save up to 10% if you go at least five years without an at-fault accident. You can save up to 20% if you insure more than one car on the same policy.

Other discounts include paperless documents, good students, anti-theft equipment, and paperless billing. Nationwide also offers their SmartRide plug-in device that will provide a discount for good driving habits.

They offer accident forgiveness in select states. They also offer their Vanishing Deductible discount. You can earn $100 off your deductible for every year of safe driving, up to a maximum of $500.

A.M. Best gives Nationwide a rating of A+ (superior). The Better Business Bureau gives a rating of A+.

State Farm

State Farm provides liability, collision and comprehensive, uninsured and underinsured motorists, and medical payments.

Optional coverages include car rental and travel expenses, emergency road service, and rideshare driver coverage. They also provide policies for sports cars, antique and classic cars, and business vehicles.

State Farm Discounts

State Farm offers discounts for accident-free driving for at least three years, taking a defensive driving course, student away at school, good driving (no at-fault accidents or violations within three years), good student driver discount, safety equipment including airbags, antitheft equipment, multi-vehicle policies (save as much as 20%) and up to 17% if you bundle with other State Farm policies.

They also offer their Steer Clear discount for safe drivers under 25. You have to have no at-fault accidents or violations in the past three years and complete the program either through your agent, online or on your mobile device.

Then there’s the Drive Safe & Save program. If your vehicle has OnStar service, the device can retrieve information indicating your driving habits. It could result in a discount on your premium.

A.M. Best gives State Farm a rating of A++ (superior). The Better Business Bureau gives a rating of B+.

American Family Insurance

American Family Insurance offers property damage, bodily injury liability, medical expense, personal injury, collision and comprehensive coverage, and uninsured and underinsured motorist protection.

Optional coverages include gap coverage (when you owe more in your vehicle than it’s worth), rental reimbursement, emergency road service, and accidental death and dismemberment.

American Family Insurance Discounts

American Family offers discounts for multi-vehicle coverage, loyalty, bundling of auto and home policies, auto safety equipment (which can save up to 30%), 55 or older (up to 10%), good driving, low mileage, good student, and away from home discounts. You can also save by going with auto pay, full payment, or paperless communication.

You can also save up to 40% with their KnowYourDrive Discount. Similar to other insurance companies, you install a tracking device on your car and it sends information back to the company.

You get an automatic 5% discount for participating, but it can go as high as 40% for good driving habits.

A.M. Best gives American Family a rating of A (excellent). The Better Business Bureau gives a rating of A+.

Our Criteria for Selecting the Best Auto Insurance Companies

Though the price is usually the most critical consideration when shopping for car insurance, that doesn’t always indicate the best coverage.

To come up with a list of the best auto insurance companies, we considered several factors, including:

Company size

Scores of insurance companies provide auto insurance, often in very specialized categories. We chose companies that cover most or all of the country.

In addition, larger companies are more likely to have the financial wherewithal to pay claims.

Optional coverages

We’ve provided a list of the most common coverage options in the next section. The insurance companies included in this list have been considered based on the number of those different options they provide.

Discounts

Some companies offer low base rates compared to others. But discounts can change the entire premium picture. We considered the number and quality of discounts offered by each provider.

Financial Strength Rating

We included only insurance companies considered “Secure” based on Financial Strength Ratings (FSR) by A.M. Best, the insurance industry’s primary rating service. A.M.

Best’s Secure ratings are as follows:

  • Superior – A++, A+
  • Excellent – A, A-
  • Good – B++, B+

All companies on this list are “A” rated, with nine being “superior”, and three “excellent”.

Company Reputation

For this, we turn to ratings of each company by the Better Business Bureau. They rate companies on a scale of A+ to F, with A+ being those with the best reputations.

11 of the 13 companies on this list received ratings in the A range, including seven rated A+. Two were in the B range.

We did not consider price as a criterion since that will vary within the same company from one state to another and between individual drivers.

What to Look For in an Auto Insurance Company

Auto insurance is one type of coverage that doesn’t have as much flexibility as others. This is because auto insurance requirements are established by state law.

Except for New Hampshire, all states in the US have minimum mandatory auto insurance coverage levels. You can get a general idea of the minimum coverage in your state by checking out the list of all 50 states on the website Insure.com.

The coverage requirements vary by state, and the amounts required are only the minimum. In most cases, you’ll need more than the minimum level of coverage.

Most states require three types of coverage within an auto insurance policy:

Liability: Your insurance policy will pay a claim if you’re involved in an incident resulting in damages determined to be your fault. There are two parts to liability coverage.

Bodily injury liability covers injuries to people, and property damage liability covers damage to the other driver’s vehicle.

Collision: This coverage is for damage to your own vehicle. Collision coverage applies regardless of who is determined to be at fault.

It will pay for repairs to your car and is typically required by lenders if you have a loan. However, it’s often not included for older vehicles since the cost of the coverage doesn’t justify the amount the insurance company will pay on a claim.

Comprehensive: This is coverage for non-automotive claims, like theft and vandalism. It also covers damage from falling trees or other natural events.

Average Car Insurance Costs by State

To get a good idea of what you can expect for car insurance expenses depending on where you live, check out this state-by-state comparison for 2022.

Which Car Insurance Company has the Highest Customer Satisfaction?

It’s one thing to buy car insurance and quite another to be happy with the product, customer service, and claim service if you ever need to use the policy. In addition to A.M. Best and the Better Business Bureau, rankings vary depending on which industry authority you look at.

Here are three lists we like, but you should also dig deeper on your own before buying a policy.

According to US News and World Report, the highest rated company in 2022 is USAA, followed by State Farm and Farmers Insurance.

Wallethub lists Geico at the top of their 2022 rankings, followed by The Hartford and Progressive.

Forbes lists Geico, Nationwide, and Travelers as its top three picks.

What Company Has the Cheapest Car Insurance?

While price is only one variable to consider when buying car insurance, the cost is always important for a significant purchase.

Geico is the cheapest major auto insurance company in the nation, according to NerdWallet’s most recent analysis of minimum coverage rates.

However, there are many other insurance policies offered by regional providers or smaller carriers that you may not have heard about yet.

Also, remember that because a carrier is the cheapest in one state or region, that does not mean it will necessarily be the cheapest in every instance.

Do your homework and then analyze which option works best for you.

Eight Ways to Lower Car Insurance Rates

Along with protecting the value of your car, your auto insurance should protect your liability in a wreck.

If you caused a wreck and got sued for damages, for example, the right kind of car insurance could protect your assets from seizure.

So it’s just not smart to cut corners by opting only for the cheapest rates. You should, however, look for ways to save money on your quality coverage.

For example, to keep insurance rates lower, you should:

1. Maintain a Good Credit Score

Insurers now consider your insurance credit score when setting premiums.

Why?

Because your tendency to take financial risks can indicate you also take risks when you drive. The higher the risk, the higher your premiums.

2. Claim Available Discounts

Many insurers offer a dozen or more ways you can lower your rate.

Esurance, for example, has 18 ways you could save. Be sure to ask the agent for a list of discounts or do a thorough search online as you shop.

Common discounts include safe-driver and multi-policy discounts. Many companies give discounts to teens who maintain good grades.

3. Drive as Safely as Possible

Driving defensively can prevent wrecks. Preventing wrecks reduces the likelihood you’ll have to file a claim. Avoiding claims keeps your premiums lower.

Over time you can save a lot by staying claims-free.

4. Drive a Safer Car

Cars with modern safety features can qualify for lower rates because these vehicles can more easily avoid wrecks.

You can’t always keep a brand new car, but opting for more safety features can save on premiums for years down the line.

5. Customize Your Coverage

Buying coverage that fits but doesn’t exceed your needs will save money. For example, extra policy features like roadside assistance can be helpful.

But if you’ll never use the service, skip it.

6. Shop Around for Quotes

Try to get at least three different quotes on your coverage before opting into a policy. But make sure you can depend on the coverage.

A policy that won’t pay when you need it could cost you thousands of dollars more than the amount you would have saved on the lower premiums.

How can you tell? Independent rating agencies like A.M. Best and Moody’s issue grades for insurance companies.

Higher grades (A’s) usually indicate the insurance company stands on solid financial footing.

Every company on my list above has high ratings from A.M. Best. If you go with another company, check its rates before signing the policy.

7. Drive Fewer Cars

This is a no-brainer, but having fewer vehicles on your policy can save you a chunk of money.

If you’re holding onto a car for sentimental reasons or because you haven’t gotten around to selling it, consider removing the car from your primary policy.

Of course, if you haven’t insured the car, don’t drive it.

With many insurers, having fewer cars can save even more if you have a teenage driver who is not assigned as the primary driver of a vehicle.

8. Maintain Coverage

Canceling your coverage each time you’re deployed may seem like a good idea. But eventually, this will cost you.

Future insurers will see your gaps in coverage and charge higher rates.

If you’re on active duty, consider a company like USAA or GEICO which will let you suspend coverage for a lower rate while you’re deployed.

Quality Auto Coverage Doesn’t Have to Cost a Fortune

Ultimately, your car insurance has a simple mission: to protect your wallet if you have a wreck or if your vehicle gets stolen or damaged.

With many products, a higher price signifies better quality. With insurance, you can’t always tell. You could be paying more for an inferior product.

So insist on a quality insurance company but look for ways to save through policy discounts and by driving safely, maintaining your vehicle, and keeping your credit score in good shape.

If you don’t have the time to compare policies and are not too worried about the price, go with Amica or ask an independent insurance agent for the most reliable coverage.

If you’d rather make sure you’re getting the best deal, shop around and compare rates, but be sure you’re getting adequately covered.

The roads can be too dangerous and unpredictable to take chances.

Final Thoughts on the Best Auto Insurance Companies

There’s no one auto insurance company that’s the best for all drivers. Be sure to do a side-by-side comparison of several companies on this list.

Even with identical coverage options, you’ll probably find a wide difference in premium levels between providers.

That’s an expected outcome, since some companies move aggressively in certain markets, while others prefer a lower exposure.

Whatever you do – as mentioned earlier – make sure that your coverage level is adequate to your personal financial circumstances.

If you have substantial assets, you should have more than the minimum level of coverage required in your state.

While it may not be possible to get coverage for the entire value of your assets, the closer you can get to it, the better the coverage will be.

If your auto insurance provider doesn’t offer enough insurance to protect all your assets, you may consider an umbrella policy for additional protection.

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About Ryan Guina

Ryan Guina is The Military Wallet's founder. He is a writer, small business owner, and entrepreneur. He served over six years on active duty in the USAF and is a current member of the Illinois Air National Guard.

Ryan started The Military Wallet in 2007 after separating from active duty military service and has been writing about financial, small business, and military benefits topics since then. He also writes about personal finance and investing at Cash Money Life.

Ryan uses Personal Capital to track and manage his finances. Personal Capital is a free software program that allows him to track his net worth, balance his investment portfolio, track his income and expenses, and much more. You can open a free Personal Capital account here.

Featured In: Ryan's writing has been featured in the following publications: Forbes, Military.com, US News & World Report, Yahoo Finance, Reserve & National Guard Magazine (print and online editions), Military Influencer Magazine, Cash Money Life, The Military Guide, USAA, Go Banking Rates, and many other publications.

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