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Whether you’re a new driver or on the hunt for a new company, you’re probably asking: Who has the cheapest car insurance? Finding cheap car insurance is a balancing act between getting what you need and staying within your budget. Though a lower price does not always mean less coverage, it’s important to understand the whole picture so you know how to save the most money in the long run, not just on your premium.

That said, we know that the premiums are often the deal breakers for many customers. So, who has the best and cheapest car insurance? Our team analyzed more than 30 of the best car insurance companies today, taking costs, discounts, customer reviews, coverage, and industry reputation into account.

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Who Has The Cheapest Auto Insurance?

USAA generally offers the cheapest auto insurance policy according to our cost analysis. However, USAA auto insurance coverage is only available to military personnel and their immediate family members, so not all drivers are eligible.

If USAA is not right for you, see a full breakdown of our top five cheapest auto insurance providers below:

Cheapest Car InsuranceMotor1 RatingBest ForDiscountsCost RatingState AvailabilityDetails
1. USAA Auto Insurance$5Military10+550For military members and their families
2. Erie Insurance$5Multi-car homes8+512Rate-lock program available
3. Root Auto Insurance$4Infrequent driversUsage-based4.329Final rate determined after six months based on driving habits
4. Geico Car Insurance$5Good drivers16+4.750Affordable rates and usage-based driving discounts
5. State Farm Car Insurance$5Students11+4.548Plenty of discounts, especially for students

While many small car insurance companies could be worth your while, a company with experience, a transparent website, and strong customer reviews is always your best bet in the long run. When it comes down to who has the cheapest auto insurance, we factored in the following points:

  • Cost
  • Number of discounts
  • Nationwide availability
  • Coverage plan details

We also noted the group that benefits most from discounts in some cases.

#1 USAA: Cheapest Car Insurance For Military

USAA is reserved for military members and their immediate family members. The company receives some of the highest ratings and customer satisfaction reviews in the auto insurance industry, and it has a range of great discounts including:

  • Military installation: Receive a 15-percent discount when you park your car at a military base.
  • Usage-Based: This discount calculates your car insurance rates based on the number of miles driven in a year for drivers over 19 years old.
  • Good driver: This premier discount program is available for drivers who have been accident-free for the past five years.
  • Defensive driving or education: Customers can take pre-approved driving courses that cut premium costs.
  • Good student: Full-time students who maintain a grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 or higher are eligible for discounted car insurance rates from USAA.
  • New vehicle: If your car is less than three years old, it could qualify for this discount.
  • Auto payments: Enroll in automatic payments to get up to three percent off of your insurance bill.
  • Family: When you add more family members to your USAA policy, you can save on car insurance.

The extensive list of discounts above is a sure sign that premiums greatly vary. Here is an example of the monthly cost of USAA for the following driver profile:

  • 25-year-old single woman
  • Drives a 2016 Honda Fit with 50,000 miles
  • Lives in Raleigh, N.C. and hasn’t moved recently
  • No accidents or traffic violations
6-Month Premium$424.70
Monthly Payment for a 6-Month Policy$71

To learn more about this cheap auto insurance provider, check out our complete USAA insurance review.

#2 Erie: Cheapest Auto Insurance For Multi-Car Homes

Erie Insurance provides cheap car insurance quotes online and is also known for having a positive customer service track record. The downside with Erie Insurance is that coverage isn’t available in every state. You can only get a policy if you live in these regions:

Erie Insurance offers a variety of discounts to help you save more on your auto insurance policy.

  • Safe driver discount: This discount is available for safe drivers with good driving records.
  • Care safety equipment discount: Receive this discount if your car is equipped with safety features like factory-installed airbags and anti-theft devices.
  • Multi-car discount: Insure two or more cars on the same policy to get a cheaper car insurance rate.
  • Multi-policy discount: When you bundle life or home insurance with your auto insurance policy, get a discount on both.
  • Reduced usage discount: Receive discounted rates if you don’t use your car for at least 90 consecutive days (not available in Kentucky).
  • Young drivers: Drivers that are under the age of 21 and unmarried get a discount (not available in North Carolina).
  • Annual payment plan: If you pay for your policy annually instead of monthly, you qualify for savings.

To learn more about affordable car insurance coverage, check out our in-depth review of Erie Insurance.

#3 Root Insurance: Cheapest Usage-Based Car Insurance

Though you will miss out on things like gap insurance or the option to bundle with other plans, Root Insurance is one of the top providers who has the cheapest auto insurance because it offers usage-based plans. This means that your car insurance rates are calculated based on how much you drive.

Root auto insurance could be right for:

  • Drivers with a clean record
  • People who drive a low annual number of miles (less than 12,000 miles per year)

Root auto insurance is not right for you if you have a history of DUIs, reckless driving, accidents, or speeding tickets on your driving record. This is because Root Insurance can deny drivers coverage based on a negative driving record.

So how does Root Auto work? The Root Auto app calculates the cost of your car insurance premium based on your driving in the first six months. After the initial six months, your premium may go up. But Root claims that good drivers can save up to 52 percent compared to other leading companies.

Because your premium is based on your individual driving and offers overall cheap auto insurance rates, the company doesn’t offer any discounts.

Read our review of Root car insurance to learn more.

#4 Geico: Cheapest Auto Insurance For Good Drivers

Good drivers could save money for a long history of safe driving by signing up for auto insurance from Geico.

Though many companies on our list offer good driving car insurance discounts, Geico is one of the highest rated companies with some of the most cost-effective plans.

Here are a few of the discounts you can get with Geico:

    • Accident-free: Receive up to 26 percent off the cost of your car insurance from Geico for driving for 5 years accident-free.
    • Seat belt use: Get up to 15 percent off medical payments coverage or bodily injury liability insurance.
    • Defensive driving course: You are eligible for this discount when you complete state requirements for defensive driving courses.
    • Driver’s education course: This discount is available for teens and students who complete a pre-approved driver’s education course.
    • Usage-Based Safe Driving Discount: Download Geico’s DriveEasy® app to monitor your safe driving habits and qualify you for cheap auto insurance rates. Unlike Root Insurance, the DriveEasy app data will never work against you to raise your premiums.

Finally, we used the same profile as we did for USAA to determine how much Geico costs each year. Here is an example of the monthly cost of Geico for the following driver profile:

  • 25-year-old single woman
  • Drives a 2016 Honda Fit with 50,000 miles
  • Lives in Raleigh, N.C. and hasn’t moved recently
  • No accidents or traffic violations
6-Month Premium$294.39
6-Month Premium with Multi-Policy Discount$280

While the perks are useful, Geico’s positive industry reputation is another reason why this cheap auto insurance company made our list. Geico has an A++ financial strength rating from AM Best and an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau.

To learn more, check out our complete Geico review.

#5 State Farm: Cheapest Car Insurance For Students

State Farm looks out for young drivers just taking to the road. Since teen drivers traditionally pay more for car insurance, many companies including State Farm offer safe driving programs that can save young drivers money over time. State Farm has two programs to track good driving habits:

  • Drive Safe & Save™: Drive safely by accelerating and braking smoothly to qualify for up to 30 percent off.
  • Steer Clear®: Designed for students under 25 years old with 3 years of accident-free driving, the app is a driver training system with mentoring options and certification at the end of the program.

State Farm costs an average of $1,260.12 per year, according to U.S. News & World Report. That breaks down to $105.01 per month.

To learn more about this cheap auto insurance provider, read our State Farm insurance review.

Whenever you shop for car insurance, we recommend getting quotes from multiple providers so you can compare coverage and rates. In addition to the insurance company you choose, factors such as your age, vehicle make and model, and driving history can affect your premium, so what’s best for your neighbor might not be best for you.

Use our tool below or call (844) 246-8209 to start comparing personalized car insurance quotes:

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What Affects The Cost Of Auto Insurance?

Here are the top factors that determine the cost of car insurance:

  • Your driving record: This includes traffic violations or accidents.
  • Car usage: Some companies measure miles driven during a certain period of time.
  • Location: State laws and where you park your car can affect rates.
  • Age: Young and senior drivers are considered high-risk customers.
  • Gender: Men generally see higher rates than women, but this varies by age.
  • Type of car: Factors like vehicle age, mileage, and safety features can affect rates.
  • Your credit: Your credit-based insurance score calculates your probability of filing a claim.
  • Insurance type: Companies offer a wide range of coverage and add-ons with different limits.

You can get a good sense of what you’ll pay by checking out your state car insurance averages before shopping around. These fluctuate due to state insurance laws, the details of each zip code, and the average cost of cars that people drive in your area.

How To Get The Cheapest Auto Insurance

Owning a car can be costly, but there are ways to make it work within your budget. Since car insurance is required in most states, finding who has the cheapest car insurance may be at the top of your list no matter a company’s ratings. Here are some ways to get good coverage from a reputable company:

1. Consider Minimum Coverage Vs. Full Coverage

Each state sets a minimum amount of coverage that typically includes bodily injury and property damage liability, and sometimes personal injury protection or uninsured motorist coverage. If you’re a confident driver and want to keep your premiums low, you can always choose to stick with the basic state-mandated coverage. This is not our recommendation, but it is possible.

Once you are able to add more coverage, you can expand to a company’s perks like roadside assistance and even accident forgiveness.

2. Adjust Your Limits And Deductibles

When setting up your plan with an auto insurance representative, be sure to ask for clarification about each plan’s limits and deductibles.

Limits are the maximum amount the car insurance company will pay for each type of accident or damage to your car. For example, some companies will only pay up to the vehicle’s current value.

A deductible is an amount you must pay before coverage kicks in, much like health insurance. If you have a deductible for comprehensive insurance and a tree branch damages your car, you may have to pay the first $500 of repairs – or whatever your deductible is – before your insurance company contributes.

3. Ask About Discounts

Before you assume that car insurance discounts are only for small communities, check out your insurer’s site for its offers. You’d be amazed at how many discounts you can get for simple factors like seatbelt use or staying with the same provider for several years.

Here are some common discounts that can get you cheap auto insurance:

Auto Insurance DiscountDetails
Good StudentDiscount for higher GPAs
Good DriverRewards for a clean driving record or mobile device that tracks good driving habits
SeniorDiscount for members over a certain age or members of senior organizations
Multiple PoliciesLower rates when you bundle a car insurance plan with other insurance or more than one car
Defensive DrivingLower costs when you take a state-approved or military-run defensive driving course
Military and Federal EmployeeDiscount for government employees and veterans
UsageDiscount for rarely using your car for great distances or for storing your car certain months
New or Safe VehicleDiscounted rates for a new car or vehicle with anti-theft or safety features

4. Try Usage-Based Auto Insurance

If you’re someone who tends to stay local or use your car only on occasion, usage-based car insurance may be for you. Some companies offer a tracker or mobile application that determines your premium based on how many miles you drive a year. This is also a great alternative to temporary car insurance if you only plan to use a car for several months.

5. Shop Around At Renewal Time

Most car insurance plans work on a six-month or annual contract. At the end of each renewal period, shop around for new rates to find who has the cheapest auto insurance, especially if your driving record has changed over the past term. For example, if points on your license expired in the past several months, you could qualify for lower rates from your current or new company.

It costs you nothing to submit your information for a free car insurance quote, so consider poking around for your best car insurance bet whenever you transition between companies. Use the tool below or call (844) 246-8209 to get started finding the cheapest car insurance rates.

Compare auto insurance rates
Enter your zip code to shop for the best rates in your area:


In an effort to provide accurate and unbiased information to consumers, our expert review team collects data from dozens of auto insurance providers to formulate rankings of the best insurers. Companies receive a score in each of the following categories, as well as an overall weighted score out of 5.0 stars.

  • Industry Standing: Insurers with strong financial ratings and customer-first business practices receive the highest scores in this category.
  • Availability: We consider availability by state as well as exclusions for specific groups of drivers.
  • Coverage: This rating is based on types of insurance available, maximum coverage limits, and add-on policies.
  • Cost and Discounts: Our research team reviews sample quotes for a variety of drivers in every state. Companies with lower prices and many car insurance discount opportunities receive the best scores.
  • Customer Service: We comb through customer reviews and consumer feedback studies from experts like J.D. Power.
  • Technology: Auto insurers with mobile apps, advanced online services and telematics are more likely to meet consumer needs.