Everything You Need To Know About Car Insurance in USA (Guide 2023)

In this guide, we will learn Everything You Need To Know About Car Insurance in USA (Guide 2023)

It is mandatory for all vehicles to have at least third-party insurance. This type of insurance covers damages or injuries that you may cause to another person or their property while operating your vehicle. There are also more comprehensive car insurance policies that cover damages to your own vehicle as well as third-party damages. These policies may include additional coverage for things like theft, fire, and natural disasters. It is important to compare different car insurance policies and understand the coverage they provide before choosing one. You can obtain car insurance from a variety of sources, including through an insurance broker, directly from an insurance company, or through a comparison website.

Show Summary

  • What Is Car Insurance?
  • Different types of Car Insurances
  • Why is car insurance mandatory
  • What does car insurance covers?
  • Best Car Insurance Policy
  • What is the cost of car insurance?
  • What is the cost of a basic Car insurance Policy?
  • The Best Car Insurance Companies
  • Summary: Car Insurance Company Ratings
  • How Much Does Car Insurance Cost?
  • Car Insurance Cost by Driving Profile
  • Car Insurance Costs by Age
  • Cost of Car Insurance by Coverage Type
  • Cheapest Auto Insurance Companies by State
  • Most and Least Affordable States for Auto Insurance
  • Factors That Impact the Cost of Car Insurance
  • How Can I Find the Best Price on Car Insurance?
  • What Types of Car Insurance Are Required?
  • Most Drivers Confused About Car Insurance
  • Other Types of Auto Insurance to Consider
  • Most Car Owners Currently Happy With Their Insurance
  • Complaints Against Auto Insurance Companies
  • More About Allstate Car Insurance
  • More About American Family Car Insurance
  • More About Auto-Owners Car Insurance
  • More About Erie Car Insurance
  • More About Geico Car Insurance
  • More About Nationwide Auto Insurance
  • More About Progressive Car Insurance
  • More About State Farm Car Insurance
  • More About Travelers Car Insurance
  • More About USAA Car Insurance
  • More About Westfield Car Insurance
  • States With the Most Confrontational Drivers
  • Use of Mobile Apps in Auto Insurance Claims
  • 2023 Outlook for Car Insurance
  • Ratings Methodology
  • Best Car Insurance Companies FAQs

What Is Car Insurance?

Car insurance is a contract between you and the insurance company that provides you with specific coverage in exchange for your premium payments. Your car insurance policy is the contract that outlines what you can make claims for.

The best car insurance policies cover your liability (meaning damage and injuries you cause to others), damage to your own vehicle, and car accident injuries to you and your passengers.

If you fail to pay your car insurance bill, coverage lapses and any claims you make can be denied.

Different types of Car Insurances

There are several types of car insurance policies available, each offering different levels of coverage. Here are some common types of car insurance policies:

  1. Third party: This is the minimum level of insurance required by law in USA. It covers damages or injuries that you may cause to another person or their property while operating your vehicle.
  2. Third party, fire and theft: In addition to third party coverage, this policy also covers damages to your vehicle resulting from fire or theft.
  3. Comprehensive: This is the most comprehensive type of car insurance policy. It covers damages to your own vehicle as well as third party damages, and may also include additional coverage for things like theft, fire, and natural disasters.
  4. Pay-per-mile insurance: This type of policy charges you based on the number of miles you drive, rather than a fixed premium. It may be a good option for people who do not drive frequently.
  5. Usage-based insurance: This type of policy uses technology (such as a telematics device) to track your driving habits and determine your premium. It may offer discounts to safe drivers.

It is important to compare different car insurance policies and understand the coverage they provide before choosing one.

Why is car insurance mandatory

Car insurance is mandatory in many countries, including USA, because it provides financial protection in the event of a car accident. If you are found to be at fault in an accident, car insurance can cover the cost of damages or injuries to the other party, as well as your own legal expenses. Without car insurance, you would be responsible for paying these costs out of pocket, which could be financially devastating.

In addition to providing financial protection, car insurance is also required by law in order to operate a vehicle on public roads. This helps to ensure that there is a way to cover the costs of accidents and other incidents involving vehicles.

Overall, car insurance is mandatory in order to protect both yourself and others on the road, and to ensure that there is a way to cover the costs of any damages or injuries that may occur as a result of a car accident.

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Why is car insurance mandatory

What does car insurance covers?

The coverage provided by a car insurance policy can vary depending on the specific policy and the type of coverage you choose. However, some common things that car insurance may cover include:

  • Damages to your own vehicle: If your vehicle is damaged in an accident, car insurance can cover the cost of repairs or replacements.
  • Damages to other people’s vehicles or property: If you are found to be at fault in an accident, your car insurance can cover the cost of damages or injuries to the other party, as well as your own legal expenses.
  • Medical expenses: Some car insurance policies may cover medical expenses for you and your passengers resulting from a car accident.
  • Liability: If you are sued as a result of an accident, your car insurance can cover your legal expenses.
  • Uninsured motorist coverage: This type of coverage can protect you if you are in an accident with an uninsured driver or a hit-and-run driver.
  • Personal property: Some car insurance policies may cover personal items that are damaged or stolen from your vehicle.

It is important to carefully review the terms of your car insurance policy to understand what is and is not covered.

Best Car Insurance Policy

It can be difficult to determine the “best” car insurance policy, as what may be the best option for one person may not necessarily be the best option for another. The best car insurance policy for you will depend on your individual needs and circumstances. Here are some things to consider when choosing a car insurance policy:

  1. Type of coverage: Consider what level of coverage you need based on the value of your vehicle and your personal circumstances. You may want to consider a more comprehensive policy if you have a newer or more expensive vehicle, or if you live in an area with a high risk of natural disasters.
  2. Cost: Compare the premiums and deductible amounts of different policies to find one that fits your budget.
  3. Reputation of the insurance company: Look for an insurance company with a good reputation for paying out claims and providing good customer service.
  4. Policy exclusions: Carefully review the exclusions in each policy to make sure you are not paying for coverage you do not need or that does not meet your needs.
  5. Discounts: Look for an insurance company that offers discounts for things like having multiple vehicles, a good driving record, and safety features on your vehicle.

It is also a good idea to get quotes from multiple insurance companies and compare the policies and coverage they offer before making a decision.

Car Insurance Tips for Beginners

What is the cost of car insurance?

The cost of car insurance can vary widely depending on a number of factors, including the type of coverage you choose, the make and model of your vehicle, your age and driving history, and where you live. Some other factors that can affect the cost of car insurance include your marital status, the level of education you have completed, and the type of job you have.

In general, car insurance tends to be more expensive for younger drivers and for drivers with a history of accidents or traffic violations. It may also be more expensive for drivers of high-performance or luxury vehicles. On the other hand, car insurance may be less expensive for drivers who have a good driving record, who live in a low-crime area, and who have safety features on their vehicle.

It is a good idea to shop around and get quotes from multiple insurance companies to find the best car insurance policy for your needs at a price that fits your budget.

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What is the cost of a basic Car insurance Policy?

It is difficult to provide an average cost for car insurance in the United States, as the cost can vary widely depending on a number of factors such as the type of coverage you choose, the make and model of your vehicle, your age and driving history, and where you live. However, according to data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), the average cost of car insurance in the United States in 2020 was $1,470 per year for a single policy and $3,057 per year for a multi-car policy. These averages are based on all types of coverage, including liability, collision, and comprehensive.

Keep in mind that these figures are just estimates, and the actual cost of car insurance for you may be higher or lower depending on your individual circumstances. It is a good idea to shop around and get quotes from multiple insurance companies to find the best car insurance policy for your needs at a price that fits your budget.

What is the cost of basic Car insurance Policy

Car insurance differs for different brands.

The cost of car insurance can vary depending on the make and model of your vehicle. In general, car insurance may be more expensive for high-performance or luxury vehicles, as they tend to be more expensive to repair or replace. Insurance companies may also consider the safety record and theft rate of a particular make and model when determining the premium for a car insurance policy.

Additionally, the cost of car insurance can vary depending on the age and condition of the vehicle. Older vehicles may be cheaper to insure because they are less valuable, while newer vehicles may be more expensive to insure because they are more expensive to repair or replace.

It is a good idea to shop around and get quotes from multiple insurance companies to find the best car insurance policy for your needs at a price that fits your budget.

The Best Car Insurance Companies


BEST FOR LOW LEVEL OF COMPLAINTS

COMPANYRATINGCOLLISION REPAIR GRADECOMPLAINT LEVELLEARN MORE

American Family
5.0
 
C+Very lowwebsite

Auto-Owners
5.0
 
B+Lowwebsite

Nationwide
5.0
 
CVery lowwebsite

USAA
5.0
 
CAveragewebsite

Geico
4.5
 
C-Averagewebsite

Travelers
4.5
 
C+Very lowwebsite

Westfield
4.5
 
BVery lowwebsite

Erie
4.0
 
B+Higher than the industry averagewebsite

Progressive
4.0
 
CLowwebsite

State Farm
4.0
 
C-Lowwebsite

Farmers
3.5
 
CLowwebsite

Allstate
3.0
 
D+Lowwebsite

Safe Auto
2.0
 
C-Much higher than the industry averagewebsite

How Much Does Car Insurance Cost?

Car insurance costs an average of $2,067 a year, based on Forbes Advisor’s analysis of rates from large car insurance companies. That’s $172 per month, on average.

CoverageAverage annual car insurance cost for good driversAverage monthly car insurance cost for good drivers
USAA$1,412$118
Auto-Owners$1,628$136
Geico$1,716$143
Westfield$1,759$147
Travelers$1,852$154
State Farm$1,959$163
Nationwide$2,041$170
Erie$2,144$179
Progressive$2,157$180
American Family$2,176$181
Farmers$2,381$198
Safe Auto$2,647$221
Allstate$3,000$250
Rates are based on a female driver, age 45, insuring a Toyota RAV4 with liability coverage of 100/300/100 ($100,000 in bodily injury liability per person, $300,000 per accident, and $100,000 in property damage liability) and collision and comprehensive insurance.
How Much Does Car Insurance Cost?

Car Insurance Cost by Driving Profile 2023

Here’s a look at average car insurance costs for the largest insurance companies.

Driver typeAverage annual car insurance cost
Good driver$2,067
Driver who caused an accident with property damage$2,844
Driver who caused an accident with an injury$2,897
Driver with one DUI$3,454
Driver with one speeding ticket$2,502
Driver with poor credit$3,629
Driver caught without insurance$2,584
Rates are based on a female driver, age 45, insuring a Toyota RAV4 with liability coverage of 100/300/100 ($100,000 in bodily injury liability per person, $300,000 per accident, and $100,000 in property damage liability) and collision and comprehensive insurance. Averages are based on rates from 13 large auto insurance companies.
Car Insurance Cost by Driving Profile 2023

(Car Insurance Costs by Age (2023

Young, inexperienced drivers will pay the most for auto insurance. Around age 25, car insurance costs start to steadily decline. Prices start to creep back up once you hit your 70s.

Here are annual rates based on national averages from some of the largest car insurance companies.

AgeAverage annual car insurance cost
18$6,148
20$4,500
25$2,461
30$2,189
40$2,110
50$1,971
60$1,915
70$2,099
80$2,574
Source: Quadrant Information Services. Rates are based on insuring a RAV4 with full coverage with liability coverage of 100/300/100, uninsured motorist coverage and collision and comprehensive coverage with a $500 deductible.
(Car Insurance Costs by Age (2023

Cost of Car Insurance by Coverage Type

Forbes Advisor analyzed auto insurance costs and broke down the cost for full coverage car insurance to see how much each component costs.

The main parts of a full coverage car insurance policy are liability insurance (bodily injury and property damage), collision coverage and comprehensive coverage. We found the national annual averages to be:

  • $424 for bodily injury liability
  • $259 for property damage liability
  • $339 for comprehensive coverage
  • $788 for collision coverage

Louisiana has by far the highest bodily injury liability car insurance cost at $1,263 a year. Louisiana’s high bodily injury liability costs are due to its much higher rate of bodily injury claims and lawsuits than the national average. More frequent and higher claim payouts will increase car insurance costs for all drivers in a state, not just the drivers who made claims.

Cost of Car Insurance by Coverage Type

StateCheapest company for good driversAverage annual cost for a good driver
AlabamaTravelers$1,176
AlaskaState Farm$1,699
ArizonaRoot$876
ArkansasNationwide$1,357
CaliforniaWawanesa$1,470
ColoradoColorado Farm Bureau$1,531
ConnecticutTravelers$1,399
DelawareTravelers$1,525
FloridaGeico$2,771
GeorgiaAuto-Owners$1,439
HawaiiState Farm$1,207
IdahoAmerican National$422
IllinoisMercury$1,388
IndianaPekin Insurance$808
IowaHastings Mutual$604
KansasGeico$1,022
KentuckyAuto-Owners$1,406
LouisianaGeico$2,484
MaineConcord Group$852
MarylandTravelers$1,930
MassachusettsState Farm$1,283
MichiganSecura Insurance$988
MinnesotaAmerican Family$1,597
MississippiDirect General$1,002
MissouriState Farm$1,699
MontanaProgressive$1,234
NebraskaGeico$898
NevadaGeico$1,776
New HampshireMMG Insurance$828
New JerseyNJM$1,370
New MexicoNationwide$1,370
New YorkNYCM Insurance$2,986
North CarolinaNorth Carolina Farm Bureau$930
North DakotaNodak Mutual$748
OhioHastings Mutual$512
OklahomaOklahoma Farmers Union$1,686
OregonQBE$922
PennsylvaniaTravelers$1,916
Rhode IslandState Farm$1,233
South CarolinaTravelers$1,472
South DakotaAllied$1,148
TennesseePenn National Insurance$1,048
TexasGeico$1,861
UtahGeico$1,230
VermontGeico$660
VirginiaPenn National Insurance$944
WashingtonPemco$1,129
West VirginiaNationwide$1,196
WisconsinSecura Insurance$1,006
WyomingAmerican National$546
Source: Quadrant Information Services. The average annual rate is based on large insurers in each state for liability coverage of 100/300/100, uninsured motorist coverage, and collision and comprehensive insurance for a 45-year-old female insuring a Toyota RAV4. In some cases USAA is the cheapest company but membership is limited to military personnel, veterans and their families.
Cost of Car Insurance by Coverage Type

Most and Least Affordable States for Auto Insurance 2023

The Insurance Research Council (IRC), an industry-funded research group, recently determined car insurance affordability by state. IRC’s auto insurance affordability study calculated the percentage of median household income going toward auto insurance in each state. The average household expenditure nationwide for car insurance is 1.6%.

Cost of Car Insurance by Coverage Type

RankingStatePercentage of household income going toward car insurance
1Hawaii0.95%
2New Hampshire0.99%
3North Dakota1.00%
4Maine1.10%
5Vermont1.10%

Least affordable states for car insurance 2023

RankingStatePercentage of household income going toward car insurance
1Louisiana3.01%
2Florida2.42%
3Michigan2.33%
4Georgia2.20%
5Mississippi2.20%
Cost of Car Insurance by Coverage Type

Louisiana is the least affordable state for car insurance, with the cost there three times as much as Hawaii, the most affordable state. The IRC notes that underlying factors that drive up car insurance prices need to be addressed to improve affordability. Key items that affect auto insurance costs and affordability include:

  • Accident frequency
  • Repair costs
  • Injury claim frequency
  • Injury claim severity
  • Medical costs
  • Claim abuse
  • Attorney involvement in claims
  • Litigation climate (a high or low tendency for lawsuits)
  • Uninsured motorists

For example, Louisiana’s litigation climate for car insurance claims is quite high and contributes to the high cost of auto insurance there.


Factors That Impact the Cost of Car Insurance 2023

Your car insurance cost will vary depending on several factors that typically include:

  • Your driving record
  • Your age and years of driving experience
  • Where you live
  • Car insurance coverage selections
  • Deductible amount (if you buy collision and comprehensive coverage)
  • Vehicle model
  • Your car insurance history, such as whether you’ve had continuous coverage or lapses
  • Your credit-based insurance score

State legislation to ban credit in auto insurance rates proving unsuccessful

Car insurance companies regularly use your credit as a major factor in setting auto insurance rates. In fact, a Forbes Advisor analysis has found that a driver with poor credit pays an average of 76% more than the same driver with good credit.

Currently only California, Hawaii, Massachusetts and Michigan have laws that ban the use of credit-based insurance scores in car insurance rates. So far this year, further state efforts to ban the use of credit in auto insurance have failed. The American Property Casualty Insurance Association (APCIA), a trade group for property/casualty insurers, has been tracking bills that would ban credit in insurance rates. It reports that none of the bills have been enacted, nine have failed and five are still pending.

States where legislation failedStates where legislation is still pending
• Georgia
• Kansas
• Louisiana
• Minnesota
• Maryland
• South Carolina
• Virginia
• Washington
• West Virginia
• Illinois
• Michigan
• New Jersey
• New York
• Rhode Island
Source: American Property Casualty Insurance Association

Jeffrey Brewer of the APCIA says, “Not all companies use the same underwriting and rating factors, but we support the right of companies to decide which factors work best for them and their customers. Insurers have collected auto loss experience data for decades and many have determined that credit information, marital status, age, gender, and education level are among the most effective variables in terms of predicting the likelihood and severity of insurance claims. By using a variety of rating factors, insurers can assess drivers’ risks more accurately and price their product more equitably.”

If credit is banned from insurance rates, auto insurance companies would likely redistribute costs. Drivers with good credit could see their rates go up if these costs are redistributed.

While some consumers view insurers’ use of credit as fundamentally discriminatory, Brewer expresses the industry’s view that “consumers significantly benefit when insurers can use accurate predictors of loss and to compete on underwriting. This provides for more consumer choices and lower costs.”


How Can I Find the Best Price on Car Insurance? 2023

Once you decide how much car insurance you need, it’s time to start shopping for a policy. Rates often vary widely among companies for the exact same coverage, so it’s smart to compare car insurance quotes from multiple insurers. For example, in California, rates for a good driver range from $1,668 (Wawanesa) to $3,940 (The Hartford)—a range of about $2,270 for the exact same driver.

Here’s what you should do to find the cheapest car insurance.

1. Shop around

If you don’t shop around, you won’t know if your rates are on the high end or the cheapest. Getting multiple quotes will help you find the cheapest car insurance company. You can find free quotes online or by working with an auto insurance agent. Independent insurance agents can provide quotes from multiple companies. Insurance quotes are always free.

2. Ask about discounts

Ask about car insurance discounts when you’re getting car insurance quotes. You can typically knock down your car insurance costs with discounts for:

  • By “bundling” multiple insurance policies from the same company, such as auto and home insurance.
  • Insuring more than one vehicle with the same company.
  • Qualifying for a good driver discount.
  • If you have a student on the policy, getting a discount if they’re a good student.
  • If you have a college student on the policy, snagging a discount if they’re away at school without a car (usually must be at least 100 miles away).
  • Taking a defensive driving class if you are age 55 or older.
  • Paying your car insurance bill in full for the term rather than monthly.

Asking for discounts is the most popular action taken to reduce car insurance costs, according to a December 2022 Forbes Advisor survey: 45% of car owners have given it a try. Switching car insurance companies is the second favorite way to cut costs: 27% have changed auto insurance companies to get a better rate.

Paying a bill in full rather than monthly can also earn you a price break: 21% paid in full to get lower car insurance prices. If you cannot pay upfront, another way to save is to choose a higher deductible, as 15% of surveyed drivers did.

Have you taken any of the following actions to lower your monthly car insurance bill? (Select all that apply)

Actions taken to lower car insurance costs% of respondents
Asked about discounts (i.e. good driver, discount, college student discount, etc.)45%
Switched car insurance providers27%
Paid insurance in full for the term rather than monthly21%
Opted for a higher deductible15%
Asked about a pay-per-mile or usage-based policy11%
Acquired a different vehicle with lower insurance costs9%
Taken a defensive driving course8%

3. Choose a higher deductible

Collision and comprehensive coverage have a deductible. The deductible is the amount of money a car insurance company deducts from an insurance claims check.

The higher your deductible, the less you’ll pay for insurance.

Here’s an example. Let’s say you get into an accident and your car suffers $2,000 worth of damage. If your collision deductible is $500, the insurer will deduct that from the settlement amount, so you’d get a $1,500 check to cover the repairs.

Drivers who raise their insurance deductibles can save between 7% to 28% a year on average, according to a Forbes Advisor analysis of car insurance costs with varying deductible amounts.

While $500 is the most common deductible, you can pick higher deductible amounts and receive a lower car insurance bill because the insurance company will pay out a bit less if you make a claim.

Average savings for increasing a $500 deductible

CompanyAnnual savings by increasing deductible to $1,000Annual savings by increasing deductible to $1,500Annual savings by increasing deductible to $2,000
Allstate$323$489$608
American Family$125$178$218
Auto-Owners$207$336$336
Erie$234$365$465
Farmers$202$305$446
Geico$147$195$237
Mercury$178$285$300
Nationwide$97$155$200
Progressive$193$309$384
State Farm$121$262$269
Travelers$127$215$336
USAA$145$148$149
Westfield$246$246$607

It’s wise to compare car insurance quotes for varying deductible amounts to see if it’s worth taking on a higher deductible. For instance, with USAA, if you bump up to a $2,000 deductible, you’re only saving $4 over what you would save by raising the deductible to only $1,000. With Westfield, you save the same amount, $246, if you increase your deductible to $1,000 or $1,500, so the smart move is to only go to a $1,000 deductible.

4. Ask about pay-per-mile policy if you don’t drive much

If you own a car but take public transportation to work and don’t drive your vehicle much, check out pay-per-mile auto insurance policies.

These policies charge a monthly base rate and also a per-mile rate. They can be a more affordable option if you don’t spend much time behind the wheel.

Let’s say your pay-per-mile insurance has a base rate of $40 a month and a 5-cent per mile rate. If you drive 500 miles in a month, your monthly bill would be $65 ($40 plus 500 miles times $.05).

5. Ask about usage-based car insurance

Usage-based insurance (UBI), also called telematics, may sound like pay-per-mile, but it’s quite different. With a usage-based insurance policy, the car insurance company tracks your driving closely and creates a driving score.

For instance, a usage-based insurance program might track your speed, braking, acceleration, miles driven and time of day. The program will use a smartphone app or a device attached to the vehicle to track your driving.

These programs often come with an initial discount and then you may save more based on your driving. Most drivers in UBI programs do not save money because their driving scores aren’t high enough. These programs are best suited for excellent drivers.


What Types of Car Insurance Are Required?

Here are the main types of car insurance generally required by states.

Liability insurance

Required in all states when you buy car insurance. Car liability insurance is the foundation of an auto insurance policy. Liability insurance pays for injuries and property damage you accidentally cause to others in an auto accident.

Liability insurance comes with limits per person and per accident for bodily injury and per accident for property damage. A good rule of thumb is to buy enough liability insurance to cover what can be taken from you in a lawsuit.

Uninsured motorist coverage

Mandatory in some states and optional in others. Uninsured motorist insurance (UM) pays for you and your passengers’ medical bills and other expenses if someone crashes into you and they don’t have any liability insurance.

A related coverage, underinsured motorist coverage (UIM), pays for the medical bills of you and your passengers if a driver with insufficient liability insurance causes an accident resulting in your injuries. Uninsured motorist and underinsured motorist coverage are bundled together in some states.

Uninsured motorist coverage does not pay anything to the driver who was uninsured.

Personal injury protection

Required in some states. Some states use a no-fault car insurance system. In these states, you’ll use your own personal injury protection (PIP) for the medical expenses of you and your passengers, no matter who was to blame for the auto accident. PIP also pays for other expenses, such as lost wages and replacement services. PIP is required in no-fault states and is optional in others.

Medical payments (MedPay)

Required in a few states. Medical payments coverage is similar to PIP as both cover medical bills for you and your passengers after an auto accident, regardless of fault. But MedPay does not pay for lost wages or other expenses that PIP includes in its coverage.

Sometimes required

Collision and comprehensive insurance: Required by lenders if you have a car loan or lease. Collision and comprehensive insurance pay for your vehicle repair bills or the value of your vehicle due to certain problems. These are two separate coverage types usually sold together.

Collision insurance covers car accidents with other vehicles or objects, such as a building or pole, and pays regardless of fault. Comprehensive auto insurance covers car theft, fires, damage from severe weather, floods, hail, falling objects, vandalism and striking an animal.


Most Drivers Confused About Car Insurance

March 2022 Forbes Advisor survey found that most drivers do not understand their own auto insurance coverage. They cannot correctly identify the car insurance types that would cover common situations.

Liability insurance is among the most misunderstood coverage types. Here’s a look at how much drivers don’t know about auto insurance.

QuestionCorrect answerPercent of drivers giving a wrong answer
What type of car insurance pays if someone else crashes into you and they are injured but they don’t have car insurance?None of the above (choices were liability, collision, comprehensive and uninsured motorist coverage)85% got it wrong
What type of car insurance pays for someone else’s car damage if you cause an accident?Liability coverage62% got it wrong
What type of car insurance pays for fence repairs if you accidentally crash into a neighbor’s fence?Liability coverage60% got it wrong
What type of car insurance pays for vehicle repairs if a tree crushes your car roof?Comprehensive coverage59% got it wrong
What type of car insurance pays for vehicle damage if you back into a pole?Collision coverage57% got it wrong
What type of car insurance pays if your car is damaged by a flood?Comprehensive coverage56% got it wrong

Many drivers also think they have car insurance coverage that isn’t actually available. For example:

  • 50% of respondents said accidental death and dismemberment (AD&D) coverage is part of their car insurance policies. AD&D coverage is not included in car insurance.
  • 49% believe they currently have “extended crash protection,” which does not exist.
  • 41% believe their auto insurance covers “vehicle emissions,” which it does not.

Even the best car insurance won’t pay off if you don’t understand the coverage you have purchased.


Other Types of Auto Insurance to Consider

Sometimes getting the best car insurance means adding extra coverage in order to get more protection or guard against unexpected out-of-pocket expenses. Here are some other auto insurance types to consider.

Accident forgiveness

Raising your car insurance rates after you cause an accident is standard operating procedure for car insurance companies. If you get “accident forgiveness” coverage from your insurer, you can escape a rate increase after your first at-fault accident. Some insurers go a step further and also “forgive” a moving violation, such as a speeding ticket.

Gap insurance

Do you have a large car loan balance or lease? If your car is totaled, the insurance payout for the vehicle could be much less than your balance. Gap insurance pays the difference.

New car replacement coverage

If you’re the unlikely driver who totals your new car, this coverage can help. It will pay to replace your car with a similar new car, rather than compensating you only for the depreciated value of your car. New car replacement coverage rules can vary among insurers for what qualifies as a “new” car so check the details.

Vanishing deductible

If you have a collision or comprehensive insurance claim, your insurance check will be reduced by your deductible. Some auto insurers take the sting out of deductibles by offering a vanishing deductible. Generally this means a set reduction (such as $100) for every year you don’t make a claim.

Pay-per-mile insurance

If you drive very little, pay-per-mile auto insurance could be a good bet for you. Part of your premium hinges on exactly how many miles you drive each month. The other part, called the base rate, doesn’t change from month to month.

Usage-based insurance

This type of policy has the potential to reduce your car insurance bill if you’re a really good driver. This typically means no speeding, hard braking, hard cornering and other factors. Usage-based insurance (UBI) programs use either an app or a device that plugs into your car to track your driving habits.

But don’t count on savings from usage-based insurance. Less than half (48%) of drivers who opt into a usage-based insurance program actually see savings, according to TransUnion’s 2022 Insurance Trends and Outlook Report. Premiums stayed the same for 30% of drivers using UBI.

Even though there’s no guarantee that usage-based insurance will save you money, a majority of drivers are OK with being monitored by auto insurers, according to a December 2022 Forbes Advisor survey of 1,000 adults who own or lease cars and have car insurance.

Over half (56%) of drivers said they were comfortable being monitored by a car insurance company if it allowed them to snag reduced rates for good driving, according to our survey. Only a quarter of those surveyed said they were uncomfortable having their driving monitored.

How comfortable or uncomfortable are you with allowing a car insurance company to monitor your driving  (e.g. through a cell phone app or with a piece of equipment installed in our car) if it allowed you to receive lower insurance rates for good driving?

Level of comfort% of respondents
Very comfortable28%
Somewhat comfortable28%
Neither comfortable nor uncomfortable19%
Somewhat uncomfortable12%
Very uncomfortable13%

Drivers ages 18 to 25 are the most at ease being tracked by their auto insurance company: 70% say they’re comfortable having their driving monitored. That compares to just 35% of drivers ages 58 to 76 who are comfortable having an insurance company monitor their driving.


Most Car Owners Currently Happy With Their Insurance

A majority of car owners (78%) are happy with their current auto insurance companies and coverage, according to our December 2022 survey. A slim 7% of policyholders say they are displeased with their current car insurance companies.

These findings come at a time when inflation, supply shortages and more expensive car insurance claims are conspiring to keep car insurance rates increasing in 2023.

How satisfied or dissatisfied are you with your current car insurance provider/policy?

Level of satisfaction% of respondents
Very satisfied41%
Somewhat satisfied37%
Neither satisfied nor dissatisfied15%
Somewhat dissatisfied6%
Very dissatisfied1%

With car insurance costs expected to keep climbing, it’s wise to shop around to be sure you’re getting the coverage that best fits your driver profile, even if you’re happy with your current coverage and company.

Switch car insurance companies if unhappy

If you’re dissatisfied with the coverage or service you’re receiving with your current insurance company, you can look for a better company for your needs and switch companies at any time. Or you can switch insurers just because you want to pay less.

Despite high levels of satisfaction, over a third (37%) of car owners we surveyed said they are likely to switch car insurance companies. An equal portion (37%) said they are unlikely to switch.

How likely or unlikely are you to switch to a different car insurance provider after your current car insurance policy expires?

How likely to switch car insurance companies% of respondents
Very likely12%
Somewhat likely25%
Neither likely nor unlikely26%
Somewhat unlikely17%
Very unlikely20%

A March 2022 Forbes Advisor survey of 2,000 drivers asked what would motivate them to shop for a new car insurance policy. More than half said any of these three reasons would get them to shop around:

  • A bad experience with a car insurance claim (55%)
  • Looking for a better price (54%)
  • Current company doesn’t have the coverage types I want (52%)

Older drivers (ages 58 to 76) chose price as the No. 1 reason to shop around, while bad claims experiences and coverage types were tops for younger drivers (ages 18 to 25).

Car insurance bills have increased in the past 12 months for 40% of respondents in our December 2022 Forbes Advisor survey.

Has the cost of your car insurance bill increased or decreased in the past 12 months?

Response% of respondents
My bill increased40%
No change37%
My bill decreased18%
I’m not sure5%

Complaints Against Auto Insurance Companies

Complaints collected nationwide against car insurance companies reveal problem spots for some insurers. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners calculates a complaint ratio for each company that reflects the number of complaints in relation to the insurer’s business size.

The industry average is 1.00, so companies with a ratio below 1.00 have lower levels of complaints. In our analysis, Safe Auto had the highest level of complaints—more than four times the industry average.


More About Allstate Car Insurance

Allstate sells vehicle insurance for cars, motorcycles, classic cars and boats. For those that enjoy the outdoors and adventure, Allstate also offers coverage for ATVs and RVs.

Optional coverage that can be added to an Allstate policy include roadside assistance, rental reimbursement and sound system insurance. Allstate also offers add-on coverage of gap insurance, new car replacement and diminishing deductible.

Gap insurance helps if your car is totaled in an accident and you owe more than the vehicle’s value. Alllstate’s new car replacement coverage will pay to replace your car with a new car of the same make and model if it is two model years old or less and totaled in an accident covered by your policy. And enrolling in the diminishing deductible gets you $100 off your collision deductible immediately, and if you remain claim-free you can continue to reduce your deductible each year, up to a maximum of $500 off.

Allstate Auto Insurance Discounts

Allstate offers a variety of car insurance discounts, particularly for safe drivers. Teen drivers and their parents can take advantage of discounts such as the smart student discount and teenSMART driver education program. Car features like anti-lock brakes and anti-theft devices can also result in discounts. Other discounts include:

  • Early signing discount: If you sign up for your policy seven or more days before the start date, you could receive a discount.
  • Responsible payer discount: You can qualify for a reduction if you haven’t received a cancellation notice within the past year.
  • Multiple policy discount: You’re eligible if you have more than one Allstate policy, such as auto and homeowners insurance.
  • New car discount: If you’re the first owner of a current model year car or one year prior, you can receive this discount.
  • Anti-lock brake discount: Driving a car with anti-lock brakes can save you money on your auto insurance.
  • Anti-theft discount: The discount may be applied if you have an anti-theft device in your car.
  • Allstate eSmart discount: Save by signing up for an ePolicy and going paperless.
  • FullPay discount: Receive a discount when you pay your annual premium in full.
  • EZ plan pay discount: Receive a discount by setting up an automatic payment plan.
  • Safe driving club discount: Your driving may qualify you for the safe driving club and earn you a discount.

More: Allstate Car Insurance Review


More About American Family Car Insurance

American Family sells vehicle insurance for cars, classic cars, motorcycles, ATVs, snowmobiles and boats. American Family offers insurance for motorhomes, trailers and campers for those that like to explore the great outdoors.

Optional add-on coverages you can include on an American Family car insurance policy include:

  • Gap insurance
  • New car replacement
  • Original equipment manufacturer (OEM) parts coverage
  • Rental reimbursement
  • Rideshare insurance
  • Roadside assistance

If you own a new car, American Family also offers new car replacement, which pays for a new car of the same make and model if your vehicle is deemed a total loss. Accident forgiveness is another option you can add on for a fee or earn. With accident forgiveness, your car insurance costs won’t increase if you cause an auto accident.

American Family car insurance discounts

American Family offers a variety of auto insurance discounts for different drivers. If you don’t mind your driving being monitored, you can try out KnowYourDrive, American Family’s usage-based insurance program. With the program, you can earn a decent discount if you exhibit safe driving habits. They also offer a mileage-based car insurance program (MilesMyWay) where you can save if you drive fewer miles. Other discounts offered by American Family include:

  • Autopay discount: Enroll in automatic or electronic recurring payments to qualify for a discount.
  • Auto safety equipment discount: Save based on your vehicle’s built-in safety features, like factory-installed air bags.
  • Away at school discount: You can save if you have a student under age 25 attending school more than 100 miles away and their car is parked at home.
  • Customer full pay discount: Pay your premium in full when you sign up or renew your policy to receive a discount.
  • Defensive driver discount: You can save if you’re age 55 or older and have taken a defensive driving course.
  • Early bird discount: You can get a discount if you’re with another insurance company and obtain an auto insurance quote from American Family Insurance at least seven days before the policy goes into effect.
  • Generational discount: Ask for this discount if your mom or dad is an American Family Insurance customer and you’re starting your own policy.
  • Good driving discount: You could receive a discount if you have a driving record clear of traffic violations, accidents or claims.
  • Good student discount: If your student driver gets good grades, ask about this discount.
  • Low mileage discount: Car owners who drive less than 7,500 miles per year can save.
  • Loyalty discount: Once American Family insures you for a certain number of years, you may receive a reduced rate.
  • Multi-policy discount: You’re eligible to save if you buy more than one type of American Family insurance policy, such as home and auto policies. You can also bundle auto insurance with renters insurance or a life insurance policy.
  • Multi-vehicle discount: Insuring two or more vehicles on the same policy will get you a discount.
  • Paperless discount: Simply switch to electronic policy documents and online billing to see savings.
  • Steer into savings discount: Switching to American Family Insurance after having a policy with a competitor can earn you this discount.
  • TeenSafeDriver discount: Teens who practice safe-driving habits can reduce their auto insurance costs.
  • Young volunteer discount: Does your teen like to volunteer and give back? If so, you could save on their car insurance costs if they are under age 25 and complete 40 hours of volunteer work per year for a non-profit.

More: American Family Car Insurance Review


More About Auto-Owners Car Insurance

Auto-Owners sells vehicle insurance for cars, ATVs and off-road vehicles, motorcycles, trailers, and boats. For those who enjoy exploring the nation in a motorhome, Auto-Owners sells motorhome and RV coverage.

Optional add-ons include roadside assistance coverage, additional expense coverage, and lease or loan gap coverage. If you choose to purchase the Personal Automobile Plus Package from Auto-Owners, you’ll receive 10 other coverage add-ons including identity theft protection, re-keying locks and cell phone replacement.

Auto-Owners also sells “diminished value” coverage. With this coverage, you receive compensation if you’re in an accident and the damage depreciates the value of the vehicle even after it’s repaired.

Auto-Owners Insurance customers may be eligible for a few additional benefits, including “collision coverage advantage.” With this benefit, your collision deductible is waived if you’re in an accident with another vehicle insured by Auto-Owners Insurance.

Auto-Owners car insurance discounts

Auto-Owners offers several discounts, especially for students. If you have a young driver who’s in school, look for Auto-Owners discounts for good students and students away at school. If you’re passionate about saving the environment, you can benefit from the green discount. Other discounts include:

  • Advance quote discount: This discount is for new customers who request a quote before the effective date of their policy.
  • Good student discount: You may be eligible for up to a 20% discount if your high school or college-age driver maintains at least a “B” average.
  • Green discount: You’ll be eligible for this discount if you go paperless and pay your bill online.
  • Life multi-policy discount: You can receive this discount if you bundle a qualified life insurance policy with your auto policy.
  • Multi-car policies: You can get a discount if you insure two or more cars under the same policy.
  • Multi-policy discount: If you have other policies (such as a home insurance policy) with Auto-Owners, you can qualify for a discount on your auto policy.
  • Paid-in-full discount: You’ll be eligible for this discount if you pay your annual premium in full and on time.
  • Payment history discount: You can receive a discount if you paid your policy on time for the last 36 months.
  • Safety features discounts: You could qualify for a discount if you have safety features installed in your car like airbags or anti-lock brakes.
  • Student away at school discount: You may qualify for a discount if your student is attending a school at least 100 miles from home and without a vehicle.
  • Teen driver monitoring discount: Ask about this if your car has a permanently installed GPS.

More: Auto-Owners Car Insurance Review


More About Erie Car Insurance

Erie’s vehicle insurance is available for cars, motorcycles, recreational vehicles, classic cars and boats. You can also purchase insurance for snowmobiles, RVs, ATVs and golf carts. Optional add-ons include:

  • Roadside service
  • Transportation expenses and rental car coverage
  • Lease loan protection
  • Ridesharing coverage

For drivers who recently purchased a new car, Erie sells new car protection. With this coverage, your car will be replaced with the latest model if it’s deemed a total loss due to an accident covered by your policy. Erie also offers “better car protection” that pays to replace your vehicle with a car two years newer.

Erie auto insurance discounts

Erie offers several auto insurance discounts, especially for safe drivers. If you have a driver under age 21 on your policy, look for Erie’s discount for young drivers. If you don’t use your car for an extended amount of time, you could benefit from the reduced usage discount. Other discounts include:

  • Annual payment plan: Look for savings if you pay your annual auto premium in one lump sum.
  • Car safety equipment discount: You can get a discount if your car has safety features like factory-installed airbags, passive restraint or anti-theft devices.
  • College credit: If your college driver is away at school without access to your car, you may be eligible for a discount.
  • Multi-car discount: Drivers who insure two or more vehicles under the same policy may be eligible for this discount.
  • Multi-policy discount: Look for this if you bundle other insurance types (like homeowners insurance) with your Erie auto insurance.
  • Reduced usage discount: If you don’t use your car for at least 90 consecutive days during your policy period, you could be eligible for this discount.
  • Safe driving discount: This is for safe drivers with a clean driving record.
  • Young driver discount: Do you have a driver who is under age 21, unmarried and lives with you? If so, you could save on your auto insurance policy.

More: Erie Car Insurance Review


More About Geico Car Insurance

Geico sells insurance for cars, motorcycles and classic cars. For those who enjoy a little more adventure, Geico also sells insurance for RVs, ATVs and boats.

Optional coverage types for auto insurance includes emergency road service, rental reimbursement and mechanical breakdown insurance.

If you’re concerned about a rate increase after an accident, Geico offers accident forgiveness insurance, which you can pay to add to your policy or earn by maintaining a clean driving record. Geico will waive the first at-fault accident caused by an eligible driver listed on your policy.

Geico also sells Mexico auto insurance if you plan to drive south of the border.

Geico car insurance discounts

Geico offers many discounts, especially for drivers who practice safe driving habits. If you’re in the military or are part of an emergency deployment, you could receive between 15% and 25% off your policy. And, if you’re a loyal customer, you can benefit from the multi-vehicle discount or the multiple policy discount. Other auto insurance discounts include:

  • Discounts for driving history and habits: If you have a good driving record and are accident-free for five years, you can receive up to 26% off most coverages. Also, if you and your passengers wear seat belts, you can save up to 15% off the medical payments or personal injury protection portion of your policy.
  • Drivers education discount: If you have a young driver on your policy who completes a driver’s education course, you may be eligible for discounts on most of your coverage types.
  • Driving course discounts: If you complete a defensive driving course, you can save on your premium.
  • Federal employee discount: Whether you’re an active or retired federal employee, you can receive up to 8% off of your auto insurance premium.
  • Good student discount: For drivers who are between age 16 and 24 and enrolled in school full-time, you might be able to receive a discount if they get a B average or better.
  • Membership and employee discounts: Geico has partnered with more than 500 alumni associations, fraternities and sororities and professional organizations to offer discounts to its members.
  • Military discount: For those who are on active duty, retired from the military, or a member of the National Guard or Reserves, you might be eligible for a discount of up to 15% on your total car insurance premium.
  • Multi-car discount: You can save when you insure two or more vehicles with Geico.
  • Multi-policy discount: You can save when you bundle your auto insurance with other types of insurance you buy through Geico, such as homeowners, condo, renters or mobile home insurance. While Geico itself does not underwrite these other insurance types, they are available through the Geico agency.
  • Vehicle equipment discounts: Does your car have some of the latest safety features, such as side airbags or full front-seat airbags, anti-lock brakes or an anti-theft system? If so, you could save up to 40% off the medical payments or personal injury protection portion of your policy.

More: Geico Car Insurance Review


More About Nationwide Auto Insurance

Nationwide sells insurance for cars, classic cars, RVs, motorcycles, ATVs, scooters, golf carts and boats. For winter-fun enthusiasts, Nationwide sells insurance for snowmobiles.

For drivers concerned about paying a high deductible in the event of an accident, Nationwide offers a vanishing deductible. Every year you go without an accident, you can earn $100 off your deductible, up to $500 total.

Nationwide also offers accident forgiveness, which helps drivers avoid a rate increase due to an at-fault accident. While you have to pay to add this coverage to your policy, it can help offset the premium increase that typically applies after an at-fault accident.

Nationwide’s Pay-Per-Mile and Usage-Based Auto Insurance

Nationwide has two options for customers looking to reduce their car insurance bills through low mileage or superior driving skills.

For low-mileage drivers, Nationwide offers SmartMiles, which provides the same coverage as a traditional Nationwide auto insurance policy but largely bases your premium on the actual mileage driven. Your rate consists of two components: a base rate and a variable rate (the cost per mile). Since your variable rate is determined by how much you drive, your monthly rate will vary month-to-month.

Nationwide also offers savings potential with its SmartRide usage-based insurance program. When you sign up you can earn up to 10%. Then, if your driving habits are good enough, you could earn up to 40% off your auto insurance.

Nationwide’s auto insurance discounts

Nationwide offers several discounts, especially for drivers with safe driving habits. If you have a driver in high school or college, look for Nationwide’s discounts for good students.

Other car insurance discounts from Nationwide include:

  • Accident-free and safe driver discounts: Drivers with a clean driving record can receive a discount.
  • Anti-theft discount: Ask about this discount if your vehicle is equipped with certain anti-theft devices.
  • Defensive driving discount: This is a discount for completing a state-approved safety course.
  • Easy pay sign-up discount: This is a one-time discount for setting up an automatic payment from your bank.
  • Good student discount: You could be eligible for savings if you have a young driver between the age 16 to 24 who has a “B” average or better in high school or college.
  • Multi-policy discount: You can save on both your home and auto insurance policies when you bundle them together.
  • Paperless discount: You can get a discount for receiving your insurance documents and bills electronically.

More: Nationwide Car Insurance Review


More About Progressive Car Insurance

Progressive sells vehicle insurance for your car, plus classic cars, motorcycles, golf cars, ATVs and snowmobiles. If you enjoy driving our nation’s roads in an RV, trailer or motorhome, Progressive can also help you with insurance for your needs.

Progressive offers gap insurance that can be useful to new car owners who owe more on the car than its present value. Progressive also provides non-owners car insurance for those who want liability insurance but don’t currently own a car. Progressive can file SR-22s for drivers in need.

Progressive offers three types of accident forgiveness:

  • Small accident forgiveness comes with your policy and keeps your prices from rising after an accident claim of $500 or less.
  • Large accident forgiveness you can obtain after five years of being with Progressive and maintaining a clean driving record. With large accident forgiveness, you won’t see a price increase after an accident with claims over $500.
  • You can also buy additional accident forgiveness coverage.

Progressive’s usage-based auto insurance

Progressive’s usage-based car insurance program is called Snapshot. With Snapshot, your driving is monitored through a mobile app or plug-in device. Your driving score determines whether you will earn a discount for good driving. You get an automatic discount for participating, but if you have a bad driving score you can find yourself with a price increase instead of a discount.

Progressive car insurance discounts

Progressive offers many discounts, especially for drivers who practice safe driving habits. If you have a teen driver, look for Progressive’s discounts for teen drivers, good students and students away at school.

Here are Progressive auto insurance discounts you may qualify for:

  • Automatic payments: You can set up automatic payments from your checking account and receive a discount. Unfortunately, you cannot combine the pay in full discount and automatic payment discount.
  • Continuous insurance: You may receive a discount if you’ve continuously had an auto insurance policy with no gaps or cancellations, whether with Progressive or another insurance company.
  • Distant student (student away at school) discount: Ask for this discount if you have a driver age 22 or younger on your policy who goes to school 100 miles or more away from home and doesn’t have a car with them.
  • Good student discount: Ask about this 10% discount if you have a student on your policy and they maintain a “B” average or better.
  • Homeowner discount: You could receive up to 10% off your policy for being a homeowner (and you don’t even have to insure your home through Progressive).
  • Multi-car discount: Insure more than one vehicle on your Progressive auto insurance policy and save up to 4%.
  • Multi-policy discount: Do you have multiple policies with Progressives, such as home and auto insurance? If so, this discount can save you up to 5%.
  • Online quote discount: By getting a quote online for a Progressive policy, you could get up to 7% off your policy.
  • Paperless discount. You automatically receive a discount if you opt for paperless statements.
  • Pay in full discount: You get a discount for paying your full car insurance bill upfront.
  • Sign online discount: Progressive will give you a discount of up to 9% if you sign your policy documents online.
  • Teen driver discount: Progressive offers a discount for teen drivers to help offset the cost of adding the inexperienced driver to your policy.

More: Progressive car insurance review


More About State Farm Car Insurance

State Farm is currently the largest auto and home insurer in the U.S. It sells vehicle insurance for cars, motorcycles, RVs, off-road vehicles and boats. For those who have antique and classic cars, State Farm provides coverage for vintage vehicles.

State Farm auto insurance discounts

Whether you’re a safe driver or have multiple vehicles under one policy, you might be able to save on State Farm auto insurance rates.

  • Accident-free discount: If you drive three consecutive years without an accident, you may qualify for a discount.
  • Anti-theft discount: You could get a discount if your car has an alarm or other type of anti-theft device.
  • Defensive driving course discount: If you complete an approved defensive driving class, you could earn a discount around 10% to 15%.
  • Driver training discount: Ask about this if your young driver (under age 21) completes a driver training course.
  • Good student discount: Do you have a full-time student on your policy who has a B average or better? If so, you could save up to 25%. And the discount can stay with your student ever after graduation (until they reach age 25).
  • Loyal customer discounts. Customers who insure more than one vehicle or have other insurance types could land a loyalty discount. For example, drivers who insure at least two vehicles on the same policy could save as much as 20%, and drivers who bundle home, condo or life insurance with an auto insurance policy could save up to 17%.
  • Multi-policy discount: You can save by bundling other types of insurance with your auto insurance, such as homeowners, renters, condo or life insurance.
  • Multi-vehicle discount: Look for this if two or more cars in your household are insured by State Farm.
  • Safe driver discount: You could receive a discount if you maintain an accident-free driving record or educate yourself on best driving practices. For example, taking a defensive driving course or having gone three years without a moving violation or at-fault accident could be eligible for a discount.
  • Safe vehicle discounts: State Farm offers insurance rewards for drivers who have newer vehicles with the latest safety features. For example, if your vehicle was made in 1994 or after (depending on the make and model of the car), you could save up to 40% on medical-related coverage.
  • Student away at school discount: If a driver in your household is under age 25 and moves away to school, you could qualify for a discount.

More: State Farm Car Insurance Review


More About Travelers Car Insurance

Travelers sells car, boat and yacht insurance (for those who prefer traveling via water). Optional auto insurance add-ons include roadside assistance coverage and rental reimbursement coverage.

For drivers who want to protect a vehicle when it’s financed or leased, Travelers offers loan/lease gap insurance. If your vehicle is totaled, this coverage can pay your the difference between the actual cash value of the car and the remaining balance of your loan or lease.

Travelers car insurance discounts

Travelers offer many possible discounts. If you enjoy getting ahead of your bills, look for EFT and pay-in-full discounts. Travelers’ car insurance discounts include:

  • Continuous insurance discount: Drivers who have no gaps in auto insurance coverage could save up to 15%.
  • Driver training discount: In an effort to encourage young drivers to work on their driving skills, Travelers offers up to 8% off if your young driver takes a qualified training course.
  • Early quote discount: You could save between 3% and 10% if you get a Travelers auto insurance quote before your current policy with another company expires.
  • ETF, paid in full and good payer discounts: You could receive discounts up to 15% for setting up automatic payments, paying in full or always paying on time.
  • Good student discount: Do you have a high school or college student on your policy who maintains a “B” average or better? If so, you could qualify for an 8% insurance discount.
  • Homeownership discount: Do you own a home or condo? If so, you can save up to 5% off your auto insurance.
  • Hybrid or electric vehicle discount: Ask about this if you own or lease a hybrid or electric car.
  • Multi-car discount: This is a discount for customers who have multiple cars on one auto insurance policy.
  • Multi-policy discount: If you bundle your auto insurance with other types of insurance (like homeowners insurance), you can save up to 13% on your auto insurance policy.
  • New car discount: You could save up to 10% for owning a newer model car that’s three years old or less.
  • Safe driver discount: For drivers with no accidents, violations or major comprehensive claims for the past three years, you could save up to 10%, or up to 23% for the past five years.
  • Student away from home discount: If you have a college student on your policy who goes to school at least 100 miles away and won’t be driving your cars, you could save up to 7%.

More: Travelers Car Insurance Review


More About USAA Car Insurance

USAA sells insurance for cars, motorcycles, ATVs, motorhomes, boats and classic cars. And, for those who fly to their destinations, aviation insurance. Optional coverage types include roadside assistance and rental reimbursement.

Current and former U.S. military members, and spouses and children of U.S. military members are eligible for USAA insurance.

For drivers concerned about a rate increase after they cause an accident, USAA offers accident forgiveness insurance. If you remain accident-free for five years, your premium won’t go up after one at-fault accident.

USAA also offers rideshare coverage for drivers with Uber, Lyft and other services.

USAA auto insurance discounts

If you’ve had USAA auto insurance for a few years, you can benefit from “length of membership savings.” And if you add auto insurance to a USAA homeowners or renters insurance policy, you could save up to 10%. Other USAA car insurance discounts include:

  • Annual mileage: Based on the number of miles you drive per year, you may qualify for a discount.
  • Defensive driver discount: This is a discount for taking an approved course to improve your driving skills.
  • Driver training discount: Are you younger than age 21? Drivers under 21 can take a basic driving course and save money on their USAA auto insurance policies.
  • Family discount: If your parents have USAA insurance, you can save on your premium.
  • Good student discount: Ask about this discount if your high school or college-age child maintains good grades.
  • Length of membership savings: Look for this discount if you maintain coverage with USAA for several years.
  • Military installation discount: When you garage your car on the base, you could save up to 15% on comprehensive coverage.
  • Multi-vehicle discount: Look for this price break if you have two or more vehicles on a policy.
  • New vehicle discount: For cars that are three years old or newer, you can qualify for this discount.
  • Safe driver discount: Do you have a clean driving record for the past five years? If so, you could save money.
  • Vehicle storage: When you store your vehicle, you can save up to 60% on your auto insurance. This is especially useful for military members on deployment.

More: USAA Car Insurance Review


More About Westfield Car Insurance

Westfield sells insurance for cars, motorcycles, boats, recreational vehicles and campers. To be eligible for motorcycle or RV insurance you must have an auto insurance policy with Westfield.

Westfield started in 1848 as Ohio Farmers Insurance Co. but eventually changed its name to Westfield (it’s headquartered in Westfield, Ohio). Westfield offers auto insurance in 10 states:

  • Indiana
  • Illinois
  • Iowa
  • Kentucky
  • Ohio
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • Pennsylvania
  • Tennessee
  • West Virginia

Westfield offers Wespak, which bundles car insurance and home insurance. Wespak also comes with preferred coverage options automatically included, like roadside assistance for your car and replacement cost coverage for your home.

Westfield offers loan/lease or gap insurance, which is helpful for drivers who’ve financed a car and owe more than the vehicle’s value. Gap insurance will pay the difference between the actual cash value of the car and the remaining balance of your loan or lease if your car is totaled.

Westfield auto insurance discounts

Westfield offers usage-based insurance with MissionSafe that uses an app on your phone to track your driving behavior. If MissionSafe determines you’re a safe driver, you can earn a reward of up to 40% at renewal. Other discounts offered by Westfield include:

  • Anti-theft devices discount. You may receive a discount if your car has an alarm, vehicle recovery system or other approved anti-theft device.
  • Companion car discount. When you buy your own Westfield car insurance policy, and someone in your household already has their own policy, you can save due to the companion car discount.
  • Defensive driving discount. You may be eligible for a discount if, within the last 36 months, you’ve completed an approved course to improve your driving skills.
  • Family discount. Discount for a driver age 18 or under when the household’s policy has been in effect for three years and participates in Wespack or otherwise has multiple policies with Westfield.
  • Good student discount. If you have a full-time high school or college student under age 24 with good grades (3.0 GPA, dean’s list, honor roll or top 20% of class), you could be eligible for a discount.
  • Loyalty discount. You may see a savings if you’ve been with Westfield for a specific amount of time, typically over three years.
  • Multi-policy discount. If you buy both your auto and home insurance with Westfield, you’ll receive a bundling discount.
  • Next generation discount. You’re eligible for a discount if you’re age 22 to 29 and buy your own Westfield car insurance policy and your parents have had a Westfield car insurance policy for at least one year.
  • Preferred payment discount. You can save if you pay semi-annually or annually for your auto insurance policy.
  • Prior carrier discount. You may receive a discount if you’ve continuously had an auto insurance policy with your previous car insurance company for at least three consecutive years.
  • Resident student (student away discount). If a student on your policy is away at an educational institution over 100 miles from home and doesn’t have a car with them at school, you may receive a discount.
  • Safety equipment discount. You can save if your car is equipped with factory-installed certain safety features, such as anti-lock brakes.
    Senior driver discount. Drivers age 65 or older who drive less than 3,000 miles per year may receive a discount.

States With the Most Confrontational Drivers

Utah has the most confrontational drivers, according to a Forbes Advisor survey of 5,000 drivers.

Utah has the highest percentage of drivers reporting being honked at in frustration (76%). Beehive State drivers were second most likely to report another driver had tailgated their cars (73%). And more than half of surveyed Utah drivers (58%) said they experienced other drivers in their home state making rude or offensive gestures at them while driving.

Missouri came in second for the most confrontational drivers. The most frequently reported confrontational incidents included being on the receiving end of offensive gestures (54%) and being cut off by another driver on purpose (54%).

Half of Missouri drivers said they had another driver yell, insult or curse at them while driving. Missourians also had the highest rate of drivers who said another driver pointed a gun or shot at them (8%).

Top 10 states with the most confrontational drivers

RankStateTotal score out of 100
1Utah100.00
2Missouri99.62
3Colorado94.74
4Oklahoma92.86
5New Mexico91.17
6Nevada89.66
7Maryland89.29
8Indiana89.10
9Washington88.91
10Delaware88.72

Overall, 85% of drivers reported they’d experienced at least one type of road rage. Some actions may seem harmless, like honking, but others may have serious consequences. Almost a quarter (22%) of surveyed drivers saw an accident instigated by confrontational driving.

If you cause a car accident, expect your auto insurance rates to go up. After an accident with injuries, the average rate increase nationally is 47% rate. Accidents that cause property damage increase rates by 45% on average. Accident is a key word here, as auto accidents are covered by car insurance while intentional acts are not.

To the best of your knowledge, have you ever witnessed the following? (select all that apply)

Type of incident witnessed% of respondents
I saw someone cause an accident due to road rage22%
I saw another driver lose control of their vehicle due to their own road rage19%
I saw a driver lose control of their vehicle due to another driver’s road rage16%
None of the above61%
Don’t know/prefer not to say5%

Use of Mobile Apps in Auto Insurance Claims

The last couple of years have pushed car insurance companies to streamline auto accident claims through more easily accessible means, such as mobile apps.

Tech-savvy drivers seem happy to engage with insurance companies and repair facilities via mobile apps in order to speed up their claims, but what about injury claims? CCC Information Services, a provider of data and technologies to the automotive industry, surveyed more than 500 drivers who had a minor injury from a low-impact auto accident within the last two years. CCC found that 91% of respondents used a mobile app during their auto insurance claims process. More than half of respondents (55%) used a car insurance app for the first time after their accidents.

Nearly three-quarters (72%) of the drivers had a positive impression of the claims process. A majority of respondents, 89%, said that they both would use a mobile app to submit claims and select an insurance company that offers an accelerated mobile payment option if these items would speed up the claims process.

While most injured drivers surveyed used a mobile app during some part of their claims process, only 37% submitted their injury claim using their auto insurance company’s mobile app.

If you’re injured in an accident, consider using your insurer’s mobile app to keep informed about your claim’s status and speed along the process.

Here are the mobile app features survey respondents used for their claims:

  • Took pictures of car damage (50%)
  • Contacted insurance company (46%)
  • Filed a claim (43%)
  • Researched what my policy covers (38%)
  • Reviewed my policy benefits (36%)
  • Scheduled an appointment at a repair shop (33%)
  • Updated personal contact information (31%)
  • Contacted the nearest repair shop (27%)
  • Initiated text or chat with an insurance representative (26%)
  • Found the nearest repair shop (26%)
  • Exchanged information with the other driver (23%)
  • Contacted a towing truck (20%)

2023 Outlook for Car Insurance

See our predictions


Ratings Methodology

December 2022 survey methodology

To identify the best car insurance companies we evaluated each company based on its average rates for a variety of drivers, the coverage options offered, complaints against the company and collision repair grades from auto body professionals.

Auto insurance rates (50% of score): We used data from Quadrant Information Services to find average rates from each company for good drivers, drivers who have caused an accident, drivers with a speeding ticket, drivers with a DUI, drivers with poor credit, drivers caught without insurance, adding a teen driver, senior drivers and young drivers.

Unless otherwise noted, rates are based on a 40-year-old female driver with a Toyota RAV4 and coverage of:

  • $100,000 for injuries to one person, $300,000 for injuries per accident and $100,000 of property damage (known as 100/300/100).
  • Uninsured motorist coverage of 100/300.
  • Collision and comprehensive insurance with a $500 deductible.

Car insurance coverage options (25% of score): Any auto insurance company can provide the basics of liability insurance, collision and comprehensive coverage and other standard offerings. But it’s also important to have access to additional coverage types that can provide greater protection or cost savings. In this category we gave points to companies that offer accident forgiveness, new car replacement, vanishing deductibles, usage-based or pay-per-mile insurance and SR-22s.

Complaints (20% of score): We used complaint data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. Each state’s department of insurance is in charge of logging and monitoring complaints against the companies that operate in their states. Most auto insurance complaints center on claims, including unsatisfactory settlements, delays and denials.

Collision repair (5% of score): If you’re lucky, you’ll have very little experience with collision repairs. That also means you won’t necessarily know if you’re getting superior claims service compared to other insurers.

Collision repair professionals have the advantage of dealing with insurers daily and seeing which companies try to cut corners on claims, and which companies have processes that slow down the repair process.

For this reason we incorporated grades of insurance companies from collision repair professionals, supplied by CRASH Network.

The best car insurance companies don’t apply pressure to cut costs or install lower-quality repair parts. Some insurers also have processes that help speed up repair and claims processes, making for more happy customers. We used data provided by CRASH Network, a weekly newsletter covering the collision repair and auto insurance market segments. CRASH Network’s Insurer Report Card used grades from more than 1,100 collision repair professionals to gauge auto insurers on the quality of their collision claims service.

“Drivers pay their auto insurance premiums every month, yet they only find out how well that insurer will take care of them when they file a claim—which happens about once a decade for the average driver,” says John Yoswick, editor of CRASH Network, which has a weekly newsletter covering the collision repair and auto insurance market segments.

“But auto body repair shops see every day which insurance companies prioritize cost-savings by pushing to use the cheapest parts and repair methods, and which insurers take better care of their policyholders by prioritizing repair quality and the use of automaker-recommended repair methods and parts,” he says.

“This knowledge gives body shops a unique perspective on which insurance companies consistently earn an ‘A’ when it comes to customer service and a proper repair for their policyholders, and which insurers deserve a ‘C’ or ‘D,’” says Yoswick.

Best Car Insurance Companies FAQ 2023

Which company has the best car insurance?

According to Forbes Advisor’s analysis, American Family, Auto-Owners, Nationwide and USAA have the best car insurance.

These companies score the highest based on low rates, coverage selections, collision repair, complaints and website readability.

How can I find the best price on car insurance?

The key to finding a good deal is to get car insurance quotes from multiple companies. That’s the only way you’ll know what companies are going to charge and which companies are coming in with the lowest rates.

Another good savings strategy is to bundle auto insurance with another policy, such as homeowners or renters insurance. Buying more than one policy from the same company typically results in a decent discount.

What car insurance discounts should I look for?

Discounts on vehicle safety equipment, such as airbags, are easy to get. Make sure to get a bundling discount by buying from the same company if you need more than one type of insurance policy.

Good driver car insurance discounts are common. If you have a teen or young adult driver, you may be able to get a good student discount. And you may be able to get a small discount for things you would do anyway, like going paperless by receiving insurance bills and policies electronically.

What types of car insurance are required?

Most states (except New Hampshire and Virginia) require liability auto insurance to pay for damage and injuries you cause to others.

Many states also require uninsured motorist coverage. This does not pay out to other motorists. It pays for medical bills to you and your passengers if you’re hit by someone who doesn’t have auto insurance—or not enough.

And states that have a no-fault car insurance system require that car owners buy personal injury protection (PIP). PIP pays your medical bills no matter who caused the accident.

SAKHRI Mohamed
SAKHRI Mohamed

I hold a bachelor's degree in political science and international relations as well as a Master's degree in international security studies, alongside a passion for web development. During my studies, I gained a strong understanding of key political concepts, theories in international relations, security and strategic studies, as well as the tools and research methods used in these fields.

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2 Comments

  1. Most drivers opt to carry additional coverage. For instance, collision coverage protects your vehicle if it is involved in an accident, and comprehensive coverage pays for damage to your vehicle due to weather events or animals.

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