INSURANCE - CAR INSURANCE

Best Car Insurance Companies for July 2024

Updated June 10, 2024
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Every insurance company wants your business, but how can you tell which to go with for your car insurance? If you want to find the best car insurance, it may take a little research and careful consideration.

In this guide, we’ll discuss the best car insurance companies, factors that can affect your auto insurance quotes, how to compare and find the best rates, and the current average rates of insurance in each state.

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Our picks for the best car insurance companies:

1. Best for military discounts: USAA (tie)

1. Best for affordable rates: Geico (tie)

3. Best for an easy claims experience: Travelers

4. Best for discounts: State Farm

5. Best for customer service: Amica

6. Best for bundling: Progressive

7. Best for low mileage drivers: Nationwide

8. Best for teens and new drivers: Allstate

9. Best for Midwest drivers: Erie Insurance

10. Best for working with an agent: Auto-Owners Insurance

  • You could save up to $600 with some companies
  • Compare dozens of providers in under 5 minutes
  • Fast, free and easy way to shop for insurance
  • Quickly find the perfect rate for you

In this article

The best car insurance companies for 2024

Best for… AM Best rating JD Power claims ranking (based on a 1,000-point scale) BBB rating Availability
USAA Military discounts A++ 890 Not rated All 50 states, but only for military members, veterans, and their families
Geico Affordable rates A++ 871 A+ All 50 states
Travelers Easy claims experience A++ 871 A Available in all states except Alaska, Hawaii, Louisiana, North Dakota, South Dakota, West Virginia, and Wyoming
State Farm Discounts A++ 891 C- 48 states except for Rhode Island and Massachusetts
Amica Good customer service A+ 909 A+ All states, with some add-ons not available in all states
Progressive Bundling A+ 870 A All 50 states
Nationwide Low mileage drivers A+ 875 A+ All states except Alaska, Massachusetts, and Louisiana
Allstate Teens and new drivers A+ 882 A+ All 50 states
Erie Mid-Atlantic and Midwest drivers A+ 902 A+ Operates in 12 states
Auto-Owners Working with an agent A++ 888 A+ Operates in 26 states

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1. Best for military discounts: USAA (Tie)

Pros Cons
High customer satisfaction and financial strength reviews Only military personnel and their families will qualify for insurance through USAA
Affordable premiums, compared to competitors
Many coverage options for a variety of vehicles

USAA is a military-only insurance company that offers affordable premiums to active-duty military, veterans, and military family members. For those who qualify, USAA may be a good option, as its members save $725 per year on average, according to USAA.

Since USAA is designed around the needs of military members, it offers unique discounts tailor-made for them. These include discounts such as the military on-base discount that gives you up to 15% when you have your car in your garage on base. There’s also the MyUSAA Legacy discount which saves you up to 10% on your policy if your parents also have a USAA policy.

Learn more in our USAA review.

1. Best for affordable rates: Geico (Tie)

Pros Cons
There are cheap options available Few in-person branches
High customer service and AM Best scores
Many discount options available

There’s a lot more to Geico than a talking gecko. As its commercials hint, it's a company built around saving drivers money. Not only does it offer numerous discounts, but it's not afraid to offer cheap options that still come with the protection you need.

Geico offers affordable options that you can customize to your needs. It comes with the basics like online claim filing, 24/7 customer service, flexible payment plans, and a mobile app.

Learn more in our Geico review.

3. Best for an easy claim experience: Travelers

Pros Cons
High AM Best and BBB ratings You may need to go through an agent to get a quote in some states
Decent list of discount options Not all coverage options are available in all states

Travelers has been offering insurance for over 165 years through its independent agents. Since its agents are independent, which means they represent multiple insurance companies, they’re there to help you choose a policy that’s truly right for you rather than just selling you products to get a commission.

In addition to high ratings for customer service, Travelers offers savings through discounts such as multi-policy, safe driver, electric car, new car, good student, and more. You can also enroll in Travelers’ IntelliDrive program, which monitors your driving through a smartphone app and earns you a discount if you’ve been a safe driver.

Learn more in our Travelers review.

4. Best for discounts: State Farm

Pros Cons
Long list of discounts Not available in Rhode Island or Massachusetts
Large network of insurance agents Very low BBB rating
Easily personalize your insurance policy

Young drivers and others looking for discounts should pay special attention to State Farm. It offers numerous programs that can help you save money, many of which are concentrated on newer drivers.

The Steer Clear program allows drivers who are under 25 and who have no at-fault accidents within the last three years to save up to 20% on their monthly premiums. Additionally, teen drivers can save up to 25% if they maintain good grades in school.

Drivers looking to bundle their home and auto insurance could also save with State Farm. On average, customers save $1,073 each year on home and auto when they decide to bundle with State Farm, according to its website.

Learn more in our State Farm review.

5. Best for customer service: Amica

Pros Cons
Personal customer service with in-house representatives Some complaints cite a slow claims process and poor customer service
Clearly explained coverage options
Numerous discount options

Amica strives to offer quality service. It has a 24/7 claims service where you can talk to an in-house representative who knows the ins and outs of Amica’s offerings. Plus, Amica’s online and mobile apps allow you to report and track your claims and manage your bill.

As far as coverage goes, Amica provides a clear explanation of all of its options with helpful badges saying whether it’s necessary coverage or whether it’s just an added perk. If you see a plan that works for you, you can get a quote online or by calling an agent.

6. Best for bundling: Progressive

Pros Cons
Name Your Price tool allows you to tell Progressive what you want to pay, and it will match you with a policy Poor customer service record
AutoQuote Explorer helps you compare quotes from other companies
Snapshot lets you choose a usage-based plan

Progressive helps potential customers explore policies with other companies so you can compare options. And if you have a price in mind you’re looking to pay, Progressive’s Name Your Price tool allows you to tell Progressive how much you want to pay, and it will customize a policy that may work for you.

Progressive also rewards safe drivers, as seen from its Snapshot option. Snapshot is a usage-based plan that may lower your rate if you’re a good driver. If you don’t drive often and you have a squeaky clean record, you could save an average of $231 a year just by using Snapshot, according to Progressive.

Learn more in our Progressive review.

7. Best for low mileage drivers: Nationwide

Pros Cons
Multiple usage-based insurance options that could save you money Accident forgiveness is only available in select states
Accident forgiveness could allow you to avoid a rate increase after your first accident Not available in all states
Generous bundling discounts

Nationwide has plans for many types of drivers, but its low-mileage driving programs are especially impressive. SmartRide, a usage-based program, could save you up to 40% if you’re a safe driver. You can get a 10% rate decrease just for signing up. SmartMiles® is Nationwide’s pay-per-mile option. You’ll pay a low base rate and then a per-mile rate on top of that. If you only drive every so often, you could end up paying less than you would for a traditional policy.

Nationwide also offers a competitive range of discounts. There are discounts for bundling policies, going paperless, being a good student, making automatic payments, and more.

Learn more in our full Nationwide review

8. Best for teens and new drivers: Allstate

Pros Cons
Local agents are all over the country, even in rural locations Thousands of customer complaints in the last few years
Offers teenSMART program for teens

Another agent-centric insurance agency, Allstate has thousands of agents you can find, even in rural communities. These agents are there to help you file a claim, answer any questions, and secure discounts. They could also be a good resource for choosing the right coverage for a new driver in your household.

Allstate offers many policy options, including the ability to purchase roadside assistance as a standalone policy or add the coverage to an existing policy. New drivers will appreciate the discount options available, including teenSMART, a program that educates teens on safe and defensive driving in exchange for a discount.

Learn more in our Allstate review.

9. Best for Midwest drivers: Erie Insurance

Pros Cons
Many positive customer reviews Very limited availability, only in 12 states
Unique coverage options such as pet, auto glass repair, locksmith services, and more Many discounts are not available in all states
More than 13,000 agents

While only available in 12 states in the Midwest and mid-Atlantic, Erie offers those who qualify some unique perks. Its base policy, in some states, comes with more than just basic state minimum coverage. You could get protection for your pet in the event that you’re in an accident when they’re in the car. You may also get personal item coverage for your belongings inside your car, auto glass repair coverage, locksmith services, and roadside assistance.

Erie has 13,000 agents for their small coverage area, making them a good option for drivers looking for a more personal touch to their insurance. On top of this perk, Erie offers a unique feature called ERIE Rate Lock. With Rate Lock, your rates will only increase if you add additional drivers to your policy or change the address where your car resides.

Learn more in our Erie review.

10. Best for working with an agent: Auto-Owners Insurance

Pros Cons
Large network of independent agents Must contact an agent to get an accurate quote
Superior AM best rating Only available in 26 states

Auto-Owners is another agent-based insurer that focuses on building relationships between independent insurance agents and customers. Since agents are local, you can meet with someone in-person when you need to.

Auto-Owners is currently only available in 26 states, but it provides superior service to its customers in those states and has a strong financial history, as demonstrated by its AM Best rating. It also includes additional perks with its policies such as accident forgiveness and rental car insurance.

Learn more in our Auto-Owners Insurance review.

How to find the best auto insurance companies and rates

To get the cheapest car insurance with the coverage you need, you should compare auto insurance companies and rates. There are different ways to go about this, and each strategy may offer varying results. What used to work in the past may not be the most efficient method anymore.

Here are a few ways you can compare auto insurers and their rates:

1. Research individual insurance providers

Pulling up an individual insurance provider’s website is typically easy to do on your phone, computer, or other device. You can browse through the coverage options it provides, get online quotes, and get a feel for the cost of car insurance. Once you’ve finished looking at one provider’s website, you can move on to the next and do more research with them.

2. Go to an insurance agent

Insurance agents can be a useful resource for car insurance information since they’re the professionals on the subject, right? It’s true, they should know what they’re talking about, but that doesn’t mean you’re going to have an unbiased interaction with an agent.

For example, an insurance agent who works with a specific company will most likely push you to get a car insurance policy with that company. It’s in their best interest to do so because that’s who they work for. This won’t help you if you’re trying to compare all the available options.

If you meet with an independent insurance agent, you’ll at least get a look at rates from multiple insurance companies. However, the agent will still be motivated to sell you something from their partners because that’s how they make money. So while the specific company may not matter as much to an independent agent, they may still pressure you to buy from them, even if you may not feel ready to do so.

3. Use an auto insurance comparison site

Another option is to use an auto insurance comparison tool, such as The Zebra or QuoteWizard. These “aggregator” sites gather data from an assortment of companies based on the information you provide. You can then look at the different offers and compare them.

How to compare auto insurance quotes

Regardless of how you get quotes, when you start getting quotes, make sure to shop around. Make sure you have the personal and vehicle information you’ll need on hand. Most insurance sites will ask you for some specifics like your zip code, name, address, driver's license number, and the car's make, model, vehicle identification number (VIN), and year of the vehicle you need insurance on.

When comparing car insurance prices, it’s essential you compare the exact same car insurance coverage limits between different providers. For example, you’ll want to make sure the collision coverage is for the same amount and has the same deductible. This is important because one company may look like it’s offering cheap car insurance, but if it doesn't provide the same amount of coverage, it’s not a fair comparison.

To fully understand the quote you’re offered, it’s also important to know how car insurance works and the different coverage types. Here are the key things to consider when you’re looking at an auto insurance policy:

  • Car insurance deductible: The amount you pay out of pocket before insurance kicks in.
  • Collision coverage: Covers you if your vehicle is in a car accident, including with another vehicle, an object, or by itself (such as a rollover).
  • Comprehensive coverage: Covers theft, vandalism, or damage to your car that isn’t covered by collision insurance.
  • Liability insurance: Covers you financially if you’re at fault in an accident. Property damage liability coverage may handle expenses from property damage. If your policy includes bodily injury liability coverage, it could pay for expenses associated with bodily injury as well.
  • Uninsured motorist coverage: Protects you financially if you’re involved in an accident and the other person doesn’t have liability insurance. If they have insurance, but it’s not enough to cover damages, it’s covered by underinsured motorist coverage.
  • Personal injury protection: Covers your medical bills if you’re injured in an accident, no matter who’s at fault. May cover rehabilitation costs and lost wages as well.
  • Medical payments: This coverage covers medical expenses for you and your passengers, even if you're found to be at fault in an accident. 
  • Gap insurance: May also be called other things by the provider, but it typically means insuring the difference or some portion of the difference between what you owe on a car loan and what your car is actually worth.
  • Roadside assistance and rental reimbursement coverage: Typically covers any costs needed if you break down, such as towing, battery jump-start, flat tire change, and more. Rental reimbursement coverage covers the cost of a rental car if your car is getting repaired or replaced.
  • Rideshare insurance: This additional coverage is offered by some insurance companies to cover drivers who use their vehicles to drive for services like Lyft and Uber
  • New car replacement coverage: If you have a brand new vehicle, new car replacement coverage will pay for a new vehicle of the same make and model if your vehicle is totaled within a few years of when you purchased the vehicle. Otherwise, you'd be paid the depreciated value of the vehicle, which is typically significantly less than the cost to purchase a new vehicle. 

Depending on your personal preferences, you may also want to investigate any perks or benefits that come with an insurance policy from a particular company. For example, some companies have great mobile apps, while others do not.

Finally, as part of your research, be sure to look at consumer insurance reviews and customer satisfaction ratings of any provider you’re considering. You may find that high customer satisfaction is an important factor for you. Consider looking at an insurer's J.D. Power and A.M. Best ratings, which measure customer satisfaction and financial strength. You can also find information on a large number of providers on the National Association of Insurance Commissioners website.

Factors that can impact your car insurance rate

Different car insurance companies may offer very different premium pricing, but it’s also important to take into consideration how big of an impact your insurance profile and driving habits have on your auto insurance rates. If you feel like all the car insurance quotes you’re getting are high, then you may want to start working on the things you can change to get more affordable car insurance next time around.

Here are some of the major factors that affect car insurance rates:

  • Driving history or driving record: Those with a good driving record may get a lower rate. At-fault accidents, DUIs, speeding tickets, and other traffic violations will increase your rates because insurance companies will consider you to be a high-risk driver. Good driver discounts and a clean driving record could lower your premium.
  • Type of car/age of car: The more expensive your car, the higher your rates will be. A new car will also typically have higher insurance premiums than an older car.
  • Car safety features: Certain safety features like electronic stability control or anti-theft devices may save you money.
  • Your age: Young drivers and teen drivers may be viewed as high-risk and tend to pay higher rates due to their driving inexperience.
  • Your gender: Women tend to have lower rates than men.
  • Bundling with other insurance coverage: Purchasing auto insurance alongside homeowners insurance, renters insurance, or life insurance may save you a huge chunk on your policies.
  • Safe driver courses: Safe driving and defensive driving courses can get you car insurance discounts.
  • Your credit score: Your insurance credit score is a bit different than your regular credit score, but it works similarly. A good credit score and credit history will help you get lower rates, while a poor credit score could increase them.
  • Annual mileage: If you drive more, your rates may be higher.
  • Good student discount: Certain providers offer a discount for students who earn good grades or maintain a certain GPA.
  • Military discount: Military members can receive special discounts on their rates.
  • Senior discount: Many providers offer exclusive discounts for policyholders who are senior citizens.

Average car insurance costs in each state per mile driven

Where you live can make a huge impact on how much you pay for auto insurance. States have different requirements, plus insurance companies factor where you live into their rates. For example, if you live in an area prone to floods or wildfires, your rates might be higher. Insurers also look at how many drivers are in your area. Generally, the more driver density, the more you could pay.

Another variable that impacts your insurance is the number of miles you drive annually. If you drive infrequently, you could be eligible for lower rates. Below you can compare how much drivers in each state pay for car insurance per mile driven. We collected data on the average insurance premiums and average miles driven to calculate insurance cost per mile.4

Drivers in New York and Michigan pay the most in car insurance premiums per mile – A driver can expect to pay $0.31 per mile on average. Drivers in Rhode Island fall in a distant third place, paying $0.22 per mile on average.

When looking at drivers who pay the least, Wyoming, North Dakota, Indiana, Idaho, Maine, and Mississippi come out on top. In Wyoming, drivers pay just $0.06 in insurance premiums per mile driven on average, while drivers in the other five states pay $0.07 per mile.

State-by-state analysis: Cost of auto insurance per mile driven

average car insurance premiums per mile driven in each state


State Average annual mileage Average cost of full coverage Insurance cost per mile (full coverage)
Alabama 16,800 $1,276 $0.08
Alaska 10,226 $1,167 $0.11
Arizona 11,574 $1,414 $0.12
Arkansas 15,748 $1,546 $0.10
California 11,102 $1,633 $0.15
Colorado 11,314 $1,699 $0.15
Connecticut 11,897 $1,829 $0.15
Delaware 10,064 $1,836 $0.18
Florida 13,240 $2,683 $0.20
Georgia 15,418 $1,555 $0.10
Hawaii 9,533 $1,338 $0.14
Idaho 13,542 $923 $0.07
Illinois 11,443 $1,516 $0.13
Indiana 16,901 $1,160 $0.07
Iowa 13,112 $1,129 $0.09
Kansas 13,897 $1,540 $0.11
Kentucky 16,016 $1,764 $0.11
Louisiana 14,158 $2,586 $0.18
Maine 12,488 $920 $0.07
Maryland 11,424 $1,717 $0.15
Massachusetts 10,956 $1,550 $0.14
Michigan 12,317 $3,817 $0.31
Minnesota 12,620 $1,391 $0.11
Mississippi 19,664 $1,359 $0.07
Missouri 17,090 $1,901 $0.11
Montana 14,640 $1,375 $0.09
Nebraska 13,506 $1,360 $0.10
Nevada 12,270 $1,829 $0.15
New Hampshire 11,275 $1,194 $0.11
New Jersey 10,647 $2,080 $0.20
New Mexico 16,125 $1,345 $0.08
New York 8,404 $2,634 $0.31
North Carolina 13,924 $1,275 $0.09
North Dakota 16,267 $1,202 $0.07
Ohio 12,730 $1,014 $0.08
Oklahoma 16,467 $1,610 $0.10
Oregon 10,968 $1,594 $0.15
Pennsylvania 9,852 $1,747 $0.18
Rhode Island 9,381 $2,020 $0.22
South Carolina 13,818 $2,132 $0.15
South Dakota 14,805 $1,284 $0.09
Tennessee 15,663 $1,205 $0.08
Texas 14,750 $1,467 $0.10
Utah 14,072 $1,361 $0.10
Vermont 13,034 $1,274 $0.10
Virginia 12,879 $1,490 $0.12
Washington 9,231 $1,177 $0.13
West Virginia 14,571 $1,387 $0.10
Wisconsin 13,346 $1,087 $0.08
Wyoming 22,938 $1,349 $0.06

FAQs

What types of car insurance are you required to purchase?

The types of car insurance you're required to purchase can vary from state to state, though most states require minimum coverage levels, typically for liability coverage. For instance, California typically requires that motorists purchase property damage and bodily injury liability coverage. Some states have additional requirements. For example, Florida requires that drivers purchase personal injury protection in addition to property damage liability coverage. 

If you are shopping around for insurance coverage, it's a good idea to research your state's requirements before you compare quotes.  

What is full coverage car insurance?

Typically, full coverage car insurance includes three different types of coverage:

  • Liability insurance: If you're at fault in an accident, liability insurance may cover the cost of property damage and medical bills, depending on the type of coverage you have.
  • Collision insurance: May cover car repair or replacement costs if you're in an accident.
  • Comprehensive insurance: May cover repairs for events that are beyond your control, like theft and vandalism.

Which car insurers offer accident forgiveness?

Several car insurers offer accident forgiveness coverage, though it may not be available in every U.S. state and it typically only covers drivers for their first at-fault accident. For instance, Geico offers its customers the opportunity to earn or purchase this type of coverage in states where it's offered. It may protect drivers from increased rates as a result of their first at-fault accident.

Bottom line

While nobody looks forward to filing an auto claim or having to go through the claims process, purchasing at least the minimum coverage required in your state can turn out to be a valuable investment. But since there are so many car insurance companies out there, do your best to research different rates and compare quotes between providers to find the insurance that best suits what you need.

For the quickest and most efficient way of finding the best rates, use a car insurance comparison site. This will take the hassle out of searching through different insurance products and spending a lot of time to find your answers.

Methodology

In determining our ranking of the best car insurance companies, we looked at popular companies and ranked them according to a series of weighted factors that we consider critical to the consumer. We did not evaluate all companies in the category.

FinanceBuzz ranking criteria include:

  • NAIC complaint index score: This score is correlated with customer satisfaction. It measures total complaints to state regulators relative to total policies issued.
  • AM Best rating: AM Best is an independent credit rating company that measures the financial stability of insurance companies. AM Best calculates financial strength ratings for companies based on creditworthiness and ability to pay customer claims and other debts in a timely fashion.
  • J.D. Power claims satisfaction ranking: J.D. Power is an independent rating company that collects data on customer service satisfaction.
  • Ease of use: How simple the claims and application processes are.
  • Customer service options: Whether they offered online access, a mobile app, chat, or other options for getting in touch.

  • You could save up to $600 with some companies
  • Compare dozens of providers in under 5 minutes
  • Fast, free and easy way to shop for insurance
  • Quickly find the perfect rate for you

Author Details

Ben Walker, CEPF, CFEI® Ben Walker, CEPF, CFEI®, is credit cards specialist. For over a decade, he's leveraged credit card points and miles to travel the world. His expertise extends to other areas of personal finance — including loans, insurance, investing, and real estate — and you can find his insights on The Washington Post, Debt.com, Yahoo! Finance, and Fox Business.
Christopher Murray Christopher Murray is a seasoned personal finance writer with a passion for empowering individuals to achieve financial independence while embracing sustainable practices. Over the last few years, he has focused on various facets of personal finance—specifically saving, budgeting, investing (with an emphasis on alternative investments), credit building, and sustainability.