Cheapest Full Coverage Car Insurance Companies of 2023
Before we begin handing out commendations to companies offering the cheapest full-coverage car insurance in America, let’s quickly establish working definitions for the two major terms in our article: “cheapest” and “full coverage.”
Cheapest many people equate the word “cheap” with low quality. However, that’s not how we’re using it in this context. When we say “cheap,” we mean least expensive. All of the auto insurance companies we have evaluated are of the highest quality; the only thing cheap about them is their rates for car insurance.
However, it's important to remember that price is not the only factor to consider when choosing an insurance policy. Coverage levels and customer service are also essential factors to consider.
Full coverage car insurance is a general term many agents use to describe a car insurance policy that includes:
- Liability (usually bodily injury and property damage).
It may also include other coverages, such as:
- Uninsured motorists.
- Gap insurance.
- 24-your roadside assistance.
Cheapest Car Insurance Companies Overall
Using a national average of $1,270 per year, an analysis of the largest car insurance companies conducting business in all 50 states found the five insurers offering the cheapest full coverage were:
|Company||Annual Average Rate|
The prices quoted here are subject to change and are national averages. The cheapest coverage for you personally will depend on your location, age, driving history, credit history, and other factors.
Although USAA had a lower rate than GEICO, we didn’t recognize them as the cheapest overall because they only offer coverage to drivers and their immediate families with military backgrounds.
To determine the national average, costs were based on full coverage (liability coverage of 50/100/50, uninsured motorist coverage, and collision and comprehensive insurance with a $500 deductible) auto insurance for a 30-year-old female driver with a good driving record.
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Cheapest Car Insurance for Seniors
The average cost nationally of full coverage car insurance for drivers ages 60-80 and older is $1,335.
Evaluating companies that offer full coverage to seniors nationwide, the top companies were:
|Company||Average full coverage cost for senior drivers|
Prices are based on full coverage with liability limits of 100/300/100 for drivers ages 60-80.
Though USAA had a lower rate than GEICO, we didn’t recognize them as the cheapest for seniors because they only offer coverage to drivers and their immediate families with military backgrounds.
Senior drivers will often discover the company that had the cheapest rates for them in their 40s and 50s will not necessarily be the same in their 60s and 70s.
Cheapest Car Insurance Companies by Age
Auto insurance rates are notoriously high for teens due to the sizeable risk new drivers pose to car insurance companies. Adding a teen driver living at home to a parent’s policy averages an additional $2,120, which typically doubles the premium paid.
These rates were calculated for drivers on their own policy (not bundled with a parent’s policy) with a $1,000 deductible and coverage limits of 100/300/25.
Cheapest Car Insurance After an Accident or Ticket
Having an accident or getting a ticket strikes fear into the hearts of most people paying auto insurance premiums because of the steep rise in rates that often accompanies such events. These insurers offered the cheapest full coverage car insurance rates after:
- An accident with property damage
- An accident with injuries
- A speeding ticket
|Company||Annual cost after accident with property damage||Annual cost after accident with injuries||Annual cost after a speeding ticket|
Average annual costs based on full coverage of the liability limits of 100/300/100 for a 30-year-old female driver.
USAA had a lower rate than State Farm but was not ranked because it is open only to military members, veterans, and their families.
Nationwide: Cheapest Full Coverage Car Insurance Overall
When it comes to full coverage car insurance, Nationwide offers some of the most competitive rates in the market.
Nationwide is regularly ranked as one of the top providers in terms of price.
Nationwide Car Insurance Pros & Cons
- High marks for customer loyalty.
- Above-average scores for claims handling and customer service.
- Higher rates for minimum coverage than many competitors.
- Above-average premiums for drivers with a DUI.
|J.D. Power (out of 1,000)||787|
|A.M. Best - Financial Strength Rating||A+|
|NAIC Complaint Index||2.37|
GEICO: Cheapest Full Coverage Car Insurance for Seniors
GEICO offers the cheapest full-coverage car insurance for seniors. GEICO's rates are up to 20% cheaper than the average for full coverage car insurance.
GEICO also offers various discounts for seniors, including a discount for being a retired military member.
Read a full GEICO car insurance editor's review.
GEICO Car Insurance Pros & Cons
- Second-lowest average rates compared to other companies in the study.
- Lowest rates for drivers with poor credit.
- Higher-than-average rates for drivers with a DUI.
|J.D. Power (out of 1,000)||824|
|A.M. Best - Financial Strength Rating||A++|
State Farm: Cheapest Full Coverage Car Insurance for Under 25 Years Old
Some polls list GEICO as the cheapest overall for ages 16-25; however, we chose State Farm as the best cheapest overall because of the amount of money they save young drivers and their parents between the ages of 16-18, which are the most expensive years for teen drivers.
State Farm Car Insurance Pros & Cons
- Strong overall policy renewal and customer service scores.
- Below-average rates for most drivers.
- Higher rates for drivers with poor credit.
|J.D. Power (out of 1,000)||814|
|A.M. Best - Financial Strength Rating||A++|
|NAIC Complaint Index||4.29|
USAA: Cheapest Full Coverage Car Insurance After an Accident or Ticket
USAA is the cheapest full coverage car insurance company after an accident or ticket, according to our analysis. USAA is available only to active military members, veterans, and their families.
USAA offers the best rates and discounts of any company we studied, including a safe driver discount, a discount for taking a defensive driving course, and discounts for good students and drivers with low mileage.
USAA Car Insurance Pros & Cons
- Lower-than-average rates across the board for eligible drivers.
- Top-rated for customer service among car insurers.
- Only available to USAA members.
Is Full Coverage Car Insurance Worth It?
Considering that a full-coverage car insurance policy is more than twice as expensive as a liability-only policy (which is the minimum required coverage in some states), many people consider foregoing full coverage.
Most auto insurance agents highly recommend full car insurance because it includes comprehensive and collision coverage. And if your car is leased or financed, lenders usually require you to carry full coverage, just in case the car is damaged or totaled before you pay off the loan.
If you own your car outright and opt to only go with liability insurance, be aware that liability insurance won’t pay to get your car repaired or replaced if it’s damaged in an accident. Losses due to theft, fire, or weather aren’t covered by liability insurance, but if you have a full coverage policy with comprehensive and collision.
If your car is paid off, ask yourself if you can pay for repairs or replace your car if it is in an accident, totaled, or stolen. How you answer that question may help you decide if shopping for the cheapest full-coverage car insurance is for you.
Factors That Affect the Cost of the Cheapest Full-Coverage Car Insurance
Auto insurance companies use various methods when determining rates, but they will all typically look at these rating factors:
Where you live
Heavier populated areas like cities and suburbs tend to have more accidents, which leads to drivers in urban areas having higher rates. Also, areas with more severe weather (tornadoes, hurricanes, blizzards, etc.), higher crime rates, or higher repair costs will also have higher than average rates.
Your driving record
The cleaner your driving record, the less you’ll pay for car insurance. Particularly when compared to a driver with an accident or ticket on their record.
Young drivers and seniors typically pay more for full coverage than younger adults and middle-aged drivers.
Teens pay higher rates because they are inexperienced and tend to take more risks, while seniors who are still driving experience more rate increases as their driving skills and reaction times decline.
Your gender (in states that allow it, and most do)
Young men are considered riskier drivers than young women, which results in them paying higher rates. As male and female drivers age, rates become nearly equal until they become seniors. At that point, rates for women may again become cheaper than men, who are seen as being riskier behind the wheel.
Years of driving experience
Less experienced drivers pose a higher risk of being in an accident statistically, so they pay more. For example, a 30-year-old who has only been driving for one year will pay higher rates than someone the same age who got their driver’s license when they were seventeen years old.
Car insurance history
If you’ve made car insurance claims in the past, or have had gaps in coverage, insures may charge you a higher premium.
If you have a low credit-based insurance score, it can result in higher rates. Several states have banned the use of a credit-based insurance score (California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, and Michigan) in the calculation of auto insurance rates.
Insurers keep mountains of statistics, and they use their claims history for your make and model vehicle. Your car’s value and the cost to repair it also affect how much you pay for full coverage.
You can save by increasing your car insurance deductible for comprehensive and collision coverages. Depending on where you live, you may also be able to raise your deductible for other types of coverage, like personal injury protection or property damage coverage.
How to Find Cheap Full-Coverage Car Insurance
Determine coverage limits
To get the absolute cheapest full-coverage car insurance, you can choose low liability limits, which are set by your state. However, raising your limits and getting much better protection usually won’t cost you much more. For instance, in Indiana, it’s only $35 per year to raise liability coverage limits from 50/100/50 to 100/300/100.
Increase your deductibles
Collision and comprehensive coverage each come with a separate deductible, which is the initial amount deducted from your claim payout.
Car insurance deductibles typically start at $250 and can be as high as $2,500. Similar to lowering your health insurance premiums by choosing a higher deductible, you can lower your full coverage car insurance premiums by choosing a higher deductible.
Ask for discounts
Many car insurance carriers offer discounts for going paperless, paying your policy in full, and bundling your car and homeowners insurance policies. But. It never hurts to ask if you’re eligible for more discounts so you can get the absolute cheapest full-coverage car insurance.
The best way to get cheap full coverage insurance is to get quotes from multiple auto insurance companies. Get pricing for the same coverages, deductibles, and limits, so you’re getting an apples-to-apples comparison and can determine which company is giving you the cheapest full coverage car insurance price.
Is Full Coverage Car Insurance Mandatory?
Full coverage car insurance is not required by states, like liability insurance is. However, lenders will typically require you to carry full coverage car insurance if your car is leased or financed.
Even if you own your vehicle outright, it’s wise to carry full coverage on newer vehicles.
Collision and comprehensive coverage payout for problems like theft, vandalism, severe weather damage, fire, falling objects, striking an animal, and collisions with objects, such as light or telephone poles.
Does Full Coverage Car Insurance Replace Your Vehicle?
Full coverage car insurance includes collision and comprehensive coverages that pay the value of your vehicle if it is stolen or a total loss from a problem like an auto accident.
You can take the claim settlement for your vehicle to replace it, but your payout will be for the amount your car was worth the moment before the crash, not what you originally paid for it.
Many car insurance companies also offer new car replacement coverage, which you can add to your full coverage policy.
This add-on gives you money for a brand new car of the same make and model as your car that was totaled, not the depreciated amount that is typically paid out for a total loss claim.
Is the Cost of Full Car Coverage Higher Than Liability Coverage?
Full coverage costs around twice as much as a liability-only policy with most insurers.
Car insurance policies that have only minimal coverage requirements like liability coverage are cheaper but woefully inadequate on coverage.
For example, California only requires $15,000 per person and $30,000 per accident for bodily injury liability, and $5,000 for property damage per accident.
An accident could easily exceed those limits—leaving you personally responsible for the remainder. Also, only liability coverage provides zero coverage for damage to your car.
If you’re not sure you can afford full coverage, get quotes from multiple insurers to find out. You may be surprised to find that you can add on collision and comprehensive coverage—to make a full coverage policy—and stay within your budget.
Is Comprehensive Insurance the Same as Full Coverage?
Comprehensive coverage is not the same thing as full coverage, but it is a component of a full-coverage car insurance policy.
“Full coverage” refers to a car insurance policy with liability coverage (and any other state-required car insurance coverages) plus collision and comprehensive coverage. It’s “full coverage” because the liability portion covers others when you cause an accident, and the comprehensive and collision coverage applies to your car.
Comprehensive and collision coverage pay to repair your car or pay the value of your car if it’s beyond repair after an incident.
Comprehensive insurance covers your vehicle for:
- Damage from striking an animal
- Falling objects
- Floods or severe weather such as hail or a tornado
Collision coverage is usually paired with comprehensive coverage. Collision coverage protects your car if it hits an object like a pole.
Should you Have Full Coverage on a Car That’s Paid Off?
The value of full coverage on a car that’s paid off depends on the age and value of the vehicle, your ability to pay for the cost of repairs or a vehicle replacement, and the amount of protection you want.
If you want insurance protection that pays for damage to your car from an auto accident- regardless of fault—and for situations such as theft, vandalism, fire, and damage from natural disasters like tornadoes and hurricanes, it makes sense to have the cheapest full coverage car insurance you can find even if your car is paid off.
If you want to continue having full coverage car insurance but think you’re overpaying, compare car insurance rates with multiple companies to see if you can find more affordable coverage.
How We Picked the Cheapest Car Insurance Companies
Our selection criteria for the cheapest full-coverage car insurance in the categories listed was based solely on price.
We did not factor in other variables which consumers should also consider when choosing an insurer, such as financial stability, customer service ratings, and the proximity of the nearest agent and claims office.