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When looking for the cheapest car insurance, you might start with USAA, Erie Insurance, Root Insurance, Geico, and State Farm – which, based on our in-depth research, all offer competitive prices. In the article below, we take a look at average rates and coverage options to help you find the best auto insurance provider for your needs.

If you're ever wondering how to get cheap car insurance, we recommend seeking 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, and driving history can affect your premium, so what’s best for your neighbor might not be best for you.

 

In this article: 

Best Cheap Car Insurance Providers

In our study of the cheapest auto insurance companies, we found several companies that provide relatively low rates. While there are other car insurance companies that provide cheap auto insurance, we are going to focus our attention on the five mentioned above. These providers have the best rates for minimum car insurance coverage, as well as the cheapest full coverage insurance.

Best Cheap Car Insurance Motor1 Star Rating Usage-Based Insurance Accident Forgiveness Our Annual Cost Estimate

1. USAA Auto Insurance

5.0

$990

2. Erie Auto Insurance

4.0

$1,183

3. Root Insurance

4.0

 

N/A

4. Geico Auto Insurance

4.5

$1,356

5. State Farm Auto Insurance

4.5

 

$1,312

 

USAA Insurance logo

#1 USAA: Cheapest Car Insurance For Military Families

Not only does USAA provide some of the cheapest liability insurance, but it also offers full coverage. According to our rate estimates, USAA costs about $990 per year for the average 35-year-old driver.

The organization also made it to the top of our other charts. The only trouble with USAA is that not everyone will qualify for coverage. In fact, USAA is designed to cover only military members, veterans, and their families.

USAA also provides perks such as roadside assistance, accident forgiveness, rental car coverage, and car replacement assistance (CRA). USAA also offers other types of insurance, including life insurance, homeowners/renters insurance, health insurance, and more.

We are fond of the USAA mobile app, which makes filing a claim simple. In addition, the organization is known for its superior customer satisfaction. Throughout our research, we found two studies on auto insurance, both done by J.D. Power. Both the Insurance Shopping Study and the 2021 Auto Insurance Study indicate this provider is among the best.

USAA auto insurance might be right for you if:

  • You are part of the military, a veteran, or a military family member
  • You want the cheapest car insurance available
Pros Cons

Affordable rates and numerous discounts

Only available for military and their families

Good option for military members and young drivers

 

Superior financial rating from AM Best

 

Nationwide availability

 

To learn more about this affordable car insurance provider, check out our USAA auto insurance review.


Erie Insurance logo

#2 Erie: Cheapest Car Insurance For Bundling Discounts

Another provider that shows up in three out of our four lists is Erie Insurance. This company provides cheap car insurance quotes online and is also known for customer service. The average 35-year-old driver pays about $1,183 per year, according to our rate estimates. The downside with Erie Insurance is that the coverage isn’t available in every state. You can only get an auto insurance policy if you live in these regions.

Looking at the Better Business Bureau (BBB) ratings for Erie Insurance, you'll find this provider has an A+ rating. Furthermore, the J.D. Power 2021 Auto Insurance Study suggest Erie is a leader wherever coverage is sold.

Erie Insurance might be right for you if:

  • You live in a covered state
  • You have had an at-fault accident
  • Your credit score is excellent
Pros Cons
A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau and A+ rating in financial strength from AM Best

Only available in 12 states and Washington, D.C.

High customer satisfaction

Mixed customer service reviews during claims process

Comprehensive insurance options

 

Variety of auto insurance discounts available

 

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


Root Insurance logo

#3 Root Insurance: Best Usage-Based Insurance

Root Insurance is a little different from other insurance providers. Instead of basing your auto insurance premium mainly on your driving record, it weighs your driving behavior first. That means that in order to get a quote from Root Insurance, your driving behavior first has to be recorded through the Root mobile app, which can take a couple of weeks.

Since Root provides coverage only to good drivers, it pays out less often, which makes it one of the cheapest car insurance providers. However, that means Root can deny coverage if you aren’t a good driver. 

Root Insurance provides all of the standards types of coverage. On top of that, every plan comes with roadside assistance already included.

Root might be for you if:

  • You are a good driver
  • You prefer doing everything through a mobile app
Pros Cons
Great rates for good drivers

May deny coverage based on your driving behavior

Everything is done through a mobile app, making for a simple quotes and claims process

Only available in 29 states

Includes roadside assistance

No personal insurance agents assigned to your policy

A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau

A very young company compared to others in the industry

To discover more about this cheap car insurance provider, check out our Root car insurance review.


Geico Insurance logo

#4 Geico: Cheapest Car Insurance For Good Drivers

Geico isn’t just well-known because of its commercials, but it's also one of the cheapest auto insurance providers you can choose. According to our rate estimates, Geico costs about $1,356 per year for the average 35-year-old.

While Geico might not be the best choice for someone with a spotty driving record, safe drivers find a lot of benefits in using the provider. Perks offered by Geico include roadside assistance, ridesharing insurance, and mechanical breakdown coverage.

In addition, the company has an A+ rating from the BBB, plus it scored highly on the 2021 Auto Insurance Study. When you use the organization’s website, you will also find the quote process is simple and that you can track claims with ease. You can find a variety of plans covering property damage liability and bodily injury liability coverage, as well as comprehensive plans. No matter what type of coverage you opt for, you are likely to get one of the lowest rates through Geico.

Geico might be for you if:

  • You want to customize coverage
  • You don’t have infractions on your driving record
Pros Cons
Many choices for coverage

Average quotes experience

A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau and A++ financial strength rating from AM Best

 

High level of customer satisfaction

 

Available in all 50 states  

To get to know this cheap auto insurance provider a bit better, check out our Geico auto insurance review.


State Farm Insurance logo

#5 State Farm: Cheapest Car Insurance For Students

State Farm is another one of the cheapest car insurance company options and is especially well-suited for students and teen drivers. According to our rate estimates, the average 35-year-old pays about $1,312 for State Farm annually. Furthermore, the company boasts an A+ rating from the BBB.

State Farm offers Drive Safe & Save Discounts to help you keep more money in your pocket. By participating in the program, you can save up to 30 percent. The program is simple to use and can be performed from OnStar or your smartphone.

In addition, State Farm is a provider that shows up on both the J.D. Power 2021 Insurance Shopping Study and the 2021 Auto Insurance Study, although some regions rank it slightly lower than others.

State Farm might be a good fit for you if:

  • You want to participate in the safe driving program
  • You have poor credit
  • You are an inexperienced driver
  • Your driving record shows an accident
Pros Cons
Comprehensive coverage offerings

Reported errors with autopay

An extensive selection of discounts

Not available for new customers in Massachusetts or Rhode Island

Positive online quotes process  
A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau  

For more on this cheap car insurance provider, read our State Farm auto insurance review.

 

Average Full Coverage Car Insurance Prices By State

Average car insurance rates can vary greatly from state to state. In fact, the cheapest car insurance company in one state might not be the cheapest in another. Below, you will find average full coverage car insurance estimates by state, the cheapest provider in each state, and that same provider's average cost in the state. These 2021 estimates apply to 35-year-old drivers with good driving records and credit.

State

Average Cost

Cheapest Provider

Cheapest Provider Cost

Alabama

$1,448

USAA $809
Alaska $1,287 USAA $893
Arizona $1,625 Geico $1,099
Arkansas $1,449 USAA $869
California $2,339 USAA $1,425
Colorado $1,672 USAA $1,070
Connecticut $1,885 Geico $972
Delaware $1,921 State Farm $1,094
District of Columbia $1,787 USAA $812
Florida $2,894 Geico $1,565
Georgia $1,548 USAA $1,107
Hawaii $1,238 Geico $851
Idaho $1,089 USAA $657
Illinois $1,474 Country Financial $1,044
Indiana $1,087 USAA $695
Iowa $1,095 State Farm $740
Kansas $1,364 USAA $776
Kentucky $1,817 Geico $922
Louisiana $3,828 Farm Bureau $1,482
Maine $995 Auto-Owners $535
Maryland $1,941 USAA $845
Massachusetts $2,568 Geico $1,589
Michigan $4,390 Progressive $1,682
Minnesota $1,487 USAA $942
Mississippi $1,357 USAA $825
Missouri $1,741 USAA $719
Montana $2,214 USAA $813
Nebraska $1,372 Nationwide $929
Nevada $2,332 USAA $1,357
New Hampshire $1,181 Auto-Owners $602
New Jersey $2,108 Progressive $1,326
New Mexico $1,356 USAA $874
New York $3,964 Progressive $1,310
North Carolina $1,277 Erie Insurance $927
North Dakota $1,310 USAA $671
Ohio $923 USAA $662
Oklahoma $1,630 USAA $893
Oregon $1,284 State Farm $961
Pennsylvania $1,405 Geico $1,135
Rhode Island $1,923 USAA $1,057
South Carolina $1,592 USAA $1,016
South Dakota $1,331 Nationwide $968
Tennessee $1,217 USAA $755
Texas $2,067 Texas Farm Bureau $1,010
Utah $1,446 USAA $872
Vermont $1,013 USAA $782
Virginia $1,079 USAA $782
Washington $1,271 USAA $760
West Virginia $1,390 USAA $903
Wisconsin $946 USAA $602
Wyoming $1,499 American National $809
 

What Determines The Cost Of Car Insurance?

The Insurance Information Institute (III) details all of the factors that go into determining your rates. While a few of these seem obvious, it might come as a shock to see a couple of them.

  • Driving record: If you drive well and have a clean driving record, you will generally find lower your car insurance rates. If you have had serious traffic violations or accidents, received a DUI, or are considered a high-risk driver, you will pay more. 
  • Use of vehicle: The more you drive, the more you will pay because your risk is increased. If you do a lot of commuting or traveling, insurance companies will give you a higher rate. If you don’t spend a lot of time driving, you can sign up for what’s known as a “pleasure” rate.
  • Age: Once you hit 25 years old, you will notice your car insurance premiums begin to decrease. That’s because you aren’t considered as much of a risk as a young driver. As you become a senior, the rates will once again start to rise.
  • Location: Urban drivers can expect to pay more because of the increase in vandalism, accidents, and theft. Furthermore, where you park your car can have an impact on the bottom line as well. Parking in a garage might lower your car insurance rates
  • Vehicle type: Some cars are known to be expensive to insure, while others are rated as the cheapest. The companies consider the cost of your vehicle as well as the likelihood of theft, the price of repairs, and the overall safety record.
  • Credit history: Credit scores designed specifically for insurance purposes are usually always taken into account as a way to examine your reliability. A poor credit history indicates a higher likelihood of filing a claim.
  • Gender: Statistics by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety show that women get into fewer car accidents than men. As a result, women will pay less for car insurance than men, on average.
  • Auto insurance coverage: The limits you choose, the amount of your deductible, and policy options affect the price you pay for coverage.

You Can Keep Car Insurance Rates Low By...

If you have speeding tickets or accidents on your record, or you suffer from poor credit, you might need to pay a higher insurance premium. Still, there are some ways to save money on your insurance costs, according to the Insurance Information Institute.

  • Consider what car you buy: Before you buy a car, get a quote on insurance. You might be surprised at what models raise your rates.
  • Reduce comprehensive car insurance: If you have an older car, you might consider removing the collision coverage or comprehensive coverage. Just make sure you have the money to replace the vehicle if something should happen. Not every state requires you to carry personal injury protection, either. Play with the plans to see what works for your financial situation.
  • Increase deductibles: If you have some money in your savings, you can increase the deductible to lower the premium.
  • Maintain a good credit score: This is an automatic way to get bigger savings.
  • Ask about the discounts: You might find a lower rate for safe driving, bundling your car insurance policies, or taking a defensive driving course. Many insurers also offer good student discounts for those with high grades.
  • Look for low-income car insurance: Some states have government-sponsored programs that help low-income families afford car insurance. While not everyone qualifies, it might be something to look into if you are struggling to make ends meet.

Shopping For Cheap Auto Insurance

The main key to finding cheap auto insurance is knowing how to shop. Because of the many factors that are unique to you, what might be considered low-cost car insurance for you may not be the same for someone else. Here are a few tips that might help:

  • Shop: Don’t just go with the first company you land on. Instead, shop around. Each insurance company will have its own car insurance discounts and rates.
  • Don’t assume one company is the best: Just because you see a lot of commercials for a car insurance company doesn’t make it the cheapest car insurance provider. Do your own research to determine who deserves your business.
  • Check local insurers: While many of the big companies can provide low insurance costs, you don’t want to look past the local companies. Call a local broker to see what’s offered in your area.

Cheap Monthly Car Insurance

If you don’t drive a lot, you might consider pay-per-mile or usage-based insurance. There are many options, such as Allstate’s Drivewise and State Farm’s Drive Safe & Save. These let the insurer track how many miles you drive and how well you do on the road in exchange for a discount.

With a little work and some patience, you will find the auto insurers with the best car insurance rates for your situation.


Choosing The Best Car Insurance Coverage

While we all want to save money, it's important to remember that the cost of auto insurance isn’t the only factor to consider. After all, if you decide to go strictly with state minimum coverage and you cause an accident, you might be liable for the additional damages out of pocket. This expense is something to consider when trying to save a dollar on coverage long-term. Sometimes, paying more is better.

When choosing an auto insurance provider, you can’t strictly assess your options based on affordable auto insurance prices. You might get the lowest rate but have a company that drags its feet when it comes time to pay. In the meantime, you are left without a vehicle and in worse shape than if you had paid more for your auto insurance.

When you do your online comparison shopping among insurance providers, always consider:

  • Price
  • Customer satisfaction scores
  • Reliability ratings
  • Financial reputation
  • Ease of filing an auto insurance claim

All these factors put together will help you to find the provider that fits your needs, and you can save money in the process.

 

FAQ: Cheap Car Insurance

Who has the cheapest auto insurance?

We recommend USAA car insurance for those looking for the cheapest auto insurance. If you are not eligible for USAA, Erie Insurance and Root both provide cheap car insurance. As always, we suggest getting several car insurance quotes to find the most affordable auto insurance for you.

What do you do if you can’t afford auto insurance?

With limited income, it is sometimes difficult to make financial decisions, including those related to car insurance. Most states have basic car insurance requirements, which is why you should never drive without insurance. If you can't afford your current car insurance, consider reducing your premiums or switching to a cheaper car insurance provider. Learn more in our article: When You Can't Afford Auto Insurance.

How can I get cheaper car insurance?

Since car insurance rates are personalized to each customer, you’re not likely to see the same rates as your neighbor. Some common ways to lower insurance premiums include choosing a higher deductible, asking an insurance agent about discounts, and dropping unnecessary coverage.

How much is USAA car insurance?

Our data shows the average annual cost estimate for USAA customers is $1,013 per year. That comes down to about $84 per month. 

Is Geico really the cheapest insurance provider? 

Geico was among the cheapest providers that offer service nationwide, according to our rate estimates. We found that State Farm may offer a comparable rate, but USAA overall had some of the most affordable prices. Erie Insurance also had lower prices than some competitors but has limited availability.

What is an insurance quote?

An insurance quote is an estimate of the amount you will pay for car insurance with a particular insurer based on the details you provide. Your rate typically is not finalized until the insurer checks your credit score and verifies your identity and personal information.

Use insurance quotes as a way to gauge the cost of any potential car insurance policy.


Methodology

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 car insurance companies. 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 auto insurance rate estimates generated by Quadrant Information Services 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 such as J.D. Power.
  • Technology: Auto insurers with mobile apps, advanced online services, and telematics are more likely to meet consumer needs.

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