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North Carolina has a vast pool of car insurance providers as diverse as the state’s landscapes. With so many options, finding the best North Carolina car insurance can be overwhelming. To give you a head start, we’ve researched the best car insurance companies and explained our favorites below.

By shopping around, you should be able to find a reliable and trustworthy provider that also offers affordable car insurance rates in North Carolina. Enter your zip code below to start comparing quotes.

 

In this article:

Cheapest Car Insurance In North Carolina

According to our rate estimates, Erie is the cheapest car insurance in North Carolina with an average annual rate of $927 for full coverage. North Carolina Farm Bureau, Nationwide, and Geico are also affordable providers in the state. 

Car Insurance Provider Average Annual Cost Estimate
Erie Insurance $927
North Carolina Farm Bureau $976
Nationwide $1,056
Geico $1,118
National General Insurance $1,151
Travelers $1,262
State Farm $1,323
Progressive $1,398
 

How Much Does North Carolina Car Insurance Cost?

According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), the cost of North Carolina car insurance was $734 in 2018, while the national average was $1,057. This makes North Carolina the 6th least expensive state in respect to average car insurance rates.

Here’s a breakdown of the coverage costs that year based on data from the Insurance Information Institute (III):

Type of Coverage Average Annual Expenditure in 2018
Liability coverage

$391

Collision coverage $342
Comprehensive coverage $137
Total cost $734
 

*Most drivers carry liability coverage but not necessarily other types of auto insurance. Total average annual expenditure measures what North Carolina drivers actually spent on auto insurance in 2018.

Annual North Carolina Car Insurance Estimates By Gender

According to our rate estimates, women pay just a few dollars more on average for full coverage car insurance in North Carolina than men. In our research, the difference was seven dollars annually.

Gender North Carolina Annual Car Insurance
Female $1,281
Male $1,276
 

Annual North Carolina Car Insurance Estimates For Drivers With Bad Credit

Having a fair credit score in North Carolina can increase your rates by 12 percent, and having a poor score can increase them by 46 percent. While that might sound like a big increase, drivers in other states can pay double or even triple for having poor credit. 

Credit Rating North Carolina Annual Car Insurance
Good $1,278
Fair $1,432
Poor $1,863
 

Annual North Carolina Car Insurance Estimates For Bad Drivers

In North Carolina, you'll pay more for car insurance if you have points on your driving record. A speeding ticket can raise your rates by 50 percent and an accident can raise them by 88 percent. If you have a DUI, you could pay a whopping 307 percent more for car insurance in North Carolina.

Driving Record North Carolina Annual Car Insurance
Clean $1,278
Speeding Ticket $1,922
At-Fault Accident $2,406
DUI $5,203
 

What Affects Car Insurance Quotes In NC?

Car insurance companies take many factors into account when determining the price of your motor vehicle insurance premium and quotes. Some of these factors include:

  • Your age, gender, and marital status
  • Your driving record
  • Your zip code
  • Type of vehicle you want to insure
  • Annual amount of miles you drive

 


 

The 5 Best North Carolina Car Insurance Providers

In our search to find the best car insurance companies, we found several that offer cheap rates to North Carolina drivers. But to pick the best overall, we have to look beyond the price. It’s also important to consider the company’s reputation, customer reviews, and independent rankings.

We also took the time to evaluate the available car insurance discounts and additional benefits each provider offers. After doing this, we feel confident that these five companies have insurance policies to meet most needs.

Best North Carolina Car Insurance Motor1 Rating Average Annual Cost

1. Geico Car Insurance

4.5

$1,118

2. USAA Car Insurance

5.0

N/A

3. Erie Insurance

4.0

$927

4. North Carolina Farm Bureau

4.0

$976

5. Progressive Car Insurance 

4.5

$1,398

*Not all providers were included in our estimates for each state. Also, you may notice that some car insurance companies are listed above those with higher star ratings. This is because our ratings take into account nationwide factors, while our ranking for this article looks specifically at what insurance providers are best for North Carolina car insurance.

 


 

Geico Insurance logo

#1 Geico Car Insurance: Top Pick

Geico (Government Employees Insurance Company) started in 1936 as a way to provide cheap auto insurance to government employees. Since then, the provider has morphed into one of the largest in the industry and now insures just about anyone.

Our research shows that Geico car insurance has some of the lowest rates for North Carolina car insurance. The company also has an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB). Here’s what one customer wrote on Trustpilot about his claims experience with Geico:

“Affordable insurance rate. I previously have used Geico for my three different autos at low price. They did [pay] all my medical bills after I got in an accident in 2016.”

–Cody Pomeroy

Aside from a solid reputation, Geico offers some unique policy add-ons. You can choose from:

  • Glass coverage: Opt for full glass protection in the event that a storm, road debris, or other object causes damage to glass.
  • Belongings protection: If your vehicle is broken into, you can receive additional compensation for the items that were inside.
  • Roadside assistance: This coverage provides towing, lockout services, fuel delivery, jump-starts, and other emergency services.
  • Accident forgiveness: After an at-fault accident, you can keep your current rate in place.
  • Rental car coverage: If your vehicle is in the shop because of a covered repair, your coverage will provide or reimburse you for a rental car.
Pros Cons
Superior financial strength rating and A+ rating from the BBB Average quotes experience
Many choices for coverage  
High level of customer satisfaction  
Available in 50 states  

To learn more about the car insurance provider, check out our review of Geico car insurance.

 


 

USAA Insurance logo

#2 USAA Car Insurance: Best For Military

No matter how you look at it, USAA tends to be the cheapest car insurance around. If you can qualify for USAA car insurance, you could end up paying well below the average for North Carolina car insurance.  

There is one downside to USAA – its membership is selective. You can qualify for USAA if you are a military member or veteran or if you have immediate family in the service.

USAA received a score of 890 out of 1,000 in the J.D. Power 2021 U.S. Auto Insurance StudySM for the Southeast region (which includes Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee).

What that means is that USAA does a great job of responding to claims, communicating with customers throughout the process, and returning customers’ cars quickly. We think a strong claims process is the most important thing to find in an auto insurance company – that’s what you’re really paying them to do, after all. 

We also like that USAA car insurance has a few extra coverage options like roadside assistance and gap insurance – which not all providers have.  

Pros Cons
Affordable rates and numerous discounts Only available for military and their families
Good option for military members and young drivers  
Superior financial strength rating and A- rating from the BBB  

To learn more about insurance coverage in North Carolina, check out our review of USAA car insurance.

 


 

Erie Insurance logo

#3 Erie Insurance: Excellent Service In North Carolina

Erie Insurance has been in business since 1925 and has set numerous industry standards.

We rate Erie highly for its low cost and strong customer service reputation. Erie customers are able to save through numerous discount opportunities, including:

  • Safe driving discount
  • Car safety equipment discounts
  • Multi-car discount
  • Multi-policy discount
  • Reduced usage discount
  • Annual payment plan discount

Erie has an A+ rating from the BBB as well as an A+ financial strength rating from AM Best. In the 2021 J.D. Power Auto Insurance Satisfaction Study, Erie scored 874 out of 1,000 points, placing it in second for the Southeast region.

Pros Cons
A+ rating from the BBB and A+ rating in financial strength from AM Best Mixed customer service reviews during claims process
High customer satisfaction  
Comprehensive coverage options  
Variety of auto insurance discounts  

To learn more, read our complete Erie Insurance review.

 


 

North Carolina Farm Bureau Insurance logo

#4 North Carolina Farm Bureau: Cheap Option For North Carolina Drivers

North Carolina Farm Bureau (NCFB) is one of the largest auto insurance companies in the state of North Carolina. It has locations in every county and an extensive network of local agents who specialize in North Carolina car insurance.

The company is a good choice for North Carolina drivers seeking cheap car insurance. Customers do need to be NCFB members to qualify for a policy, and this costs $25 per year. However, drivers can more than make up for these dues by taking advantage of the many NCFB discount offers, which include:

  • Multiple policy discount
  • Multiple vehicle discount
  • Experienced driver discount
  • Pay-in-full discount
  • Discount for married couples
  • Discount for vehicle safety devices

NCFB also offers home, life, health, and business insurance. Customers can bundle these policies to save even more in North Carolina.

Pros Cons
Local agents and customizable coverage

Must be a Farm Bureau member

Lower-than-average rates

D- rating from the BBB

Overall positive reviews

Some complaints regarding the claims process

For more information, check out our North Carolina Farm Bureau review.

 


 

Progressive Insurance logo

#5 Progressive Car Insurance: Best For High-Risk Drivers

It’s typical to consider Progressive car insurance when thinking about industry leaders. While the company is one of the major players in the industry, it also provides some of the lowest rates for good drivers in North Carolina.

For the most part, you will pay more to go with Progressive over Geico, but many motorists prefer the company and the service. Also, the only way to know for sure is to get quotes from both providers.

The BBB rating for Progressive is an A+. On the other hand, it didn’t score as high as Geico or our other recommendations in J.D. Power’s Auto Insurance Satisfaction Study. Still, customer reviews are largely positive, such as the one below:

“My parked car was hit by a hit-and-run driver. A person who witnessed the accident got the license plate of the fleeing vehicle. They had Progressive Insurance, and the agent came to my house, looked over the damage and wrote me out a check on the spot. I was very pleased and impressed with the amount and the promptness of Progressive to respond.”

–via BBB

As far as additional coverage is concerned, you have several options available from Progressive, including:

  • Gap insurance: If your vehicle is considered a total loss, Progressive will cover up to an additional 25 percent of the current value of the vehicle to help you pay off the loan or lease.
  • Roadside assistance: This plan provides towing, flat tire changes, lockout services, fuel delivery, and similar emergency services.
  • Rideshare coverage: Most apps only cover the driver while in the process of transporting passengers with Uber or Lyft, leaving them vulnerable while waiting for a job. Progressive covers the interim for complete protection.
  • Rental car reimbursement: Rental vehicles are partially covered when your car is in the shop because of a covered loss.
  • Custom parts and equipment: If you have aftermarket components on your vehicle, Progressive will pay for the damaged equipment if it occurred during a covered incident.
Pros Cons
One of the top auto insurers in the United States Average claims process
Superior financial strength rating and A- rating from the BBB Mixed customer service reviews
Great choice for high-risk drivers Higher rates than some competitors
Several money-saving features  

To learn more about the car insurance provider, check out our review of Progressive car insuranceEnter your zip code below to start comparing quotes for car insurance in North Carolina.

 

 


 

Minimum North Carolina Car Insurance Coverage

Each state dictates the required auto insurance coverage for drivers. Typically, if you don’t have the state minimum, you could find yourself in hot water if you’re in an accident or pulled over by the police. The minimum required by states usually includes some combination of bodily injury liability and property damage liability insurance.

In a few states, uninsured motorist coverage, underinsured motorist coverage, and personal injury protection (PIP) are also required. After choosing the state-required insurance coverage, you have the option to add on additional protections.

The North Carolina Department of Transportation dictates the required coverage limits of drivers in the state.

  • Bodily injury liability: $30,000 per person/$60,000 per accident
  • Property damage liability: $25,000 per accident
  • Uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury: $30,000 per person/$60,000 per accident
  • Uninsured/underinsured motorist property damage: $25,000 per accident

The first two North Carolina auto insurance state limits relate to the damage caused to others and their property during an accident where you’re at fault. The other two cover damage done to your vehicle by an uninsured motorist.

If you want additional protection for your vehicle, medical bills, and other related expenses, you will need to add that coverage to your policy. We recommend this approach if you’re financially able. Why?

Because North Carolina is an at-fault state, you’re responsible for any car accident you cause. If damages exceed the amount your insurance covers, you will be held personally liable. That’s one reason why it’s not always wise to have just the minimum coverage car insurance in North Carolina.

Consider carrying some of these coverages, as well:

  • Comprehensive
  • Collision
  • Medical payments
  • Gap insurance
  • Rental car reimbursement
  • Roadside assistance

What If I Can’t Afford The Minimum In North Carolina?

If you choose to drive without auto insurance in North Carolina, you could face serious consequences. You could have your license plates revoked, as well as deal with fines, civil penalties, and other fees under North Carolina state law.

Below is how the Tar Heel State handles motorists caught driving without insurance: 

First Offense

Second Offense

Third And Subsequent Offenses

$50 fine

$100 fine

$150 fine

License and registration suspension
for 30 days

License and registration suspension
for 30 days

License and registration suspension
for 30 days

Reinstatement fee of $50 to get license and registration returned

Reinstatement fee of $50 to get license and registration returned

Reinstatement fee of $50 to get license and registration returned

A probation period of 1 to 45 days

Jail time or 1- to 45-day probation period

Jail time or 1- to 45-day probation period

 

Alternative North Carolina Car Insurance

Some drivers can’t get typical North Carolina car insurance because of a poor driving record, DUIs, or poor credit. For these drivers, there’s still a chance to get behind the wheel with coverage from the North Carolina Reinsurance Facility.

While this organization will help high-risk drivers get behind the wheel of a car, it should be seen as a last resort. Policy premiums are incredibly high, and you can find better car insurance options in North Carolina if you do a little digging.

 


 

What To Know About Driving In North Carolina

The state ranks as having some of the best road conditions in the nation, according to a study by Reason Foundation. That may be part of the reason that the rates for car insurance in North Carolina are some of the most affordable in the country.

According to Statista, there are more than seven million licensed drivers on the roads in North Carolina. With numbers like this, it places eighth in most drivers among the fifty states.

Teen drivers in North Carolina can get a learner’s permit at the age of 15 through the North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles (NC DMV). Once the teen reaches 16 years old and has completed a driving course, he or she can receive a limited provisional license. With this license, the young driver may not operate a vehicle from 9:00 PM through 5:00 AM EST. In addition, there can’t be more than one passenger in the vehicle under the age of 21, unless the occupants are family members.

 


 

Final Thoughts

If you're looking for cheap car insurance in North Carolina, we recommend checking out Geico, USAA, and Erie for the best coverage. Car insurance prices vary depending on many factors, so compare multiple quotes to find the best option.

Enter your zip code below to compare rates for car insurance in North Carolina.

 

 


 

FAQ: Car Insurance In North Carolina

Why is car insurance so expensive in North Carolina?

According to the III, North Carolina is one of the cheapest states to insure a vehicle. It ranks as the sixth cheapest state in the country for auto insurance, clocking in at more than $300 below the national average.

What is the best auto insurance in North Carolina?

Even though Erie Insurance may offer cheaper premiums than other providers in North Carolina, our top pick is Geico. We choose Geico due to the company’s wide range of discounts and positive reviews from J.D. Power and the BBB.

What car insurance do I need in North Carolina?

The state minimum for is 30/60/25 coverage. That means bodily injury liability of $30,00 per person, $60,000 per accident, and $25,000 per accident in property damage liability. North Carolina also requires similar coverage for Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.

How much is full coverage auto insurance in North Carolina?

According to insurance estimates we obtained, full coverage car insurance in North Carolina can cost as little as $927 to $1,398 annually depending on the provider. Rates also vary on factors such as gender, driving record, location, and credit score.


 

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 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 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 like 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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