If you drive a vehicle, you’re likely required by your state government to have a minimum amount of car insurance. But knowing how much car insurance coverage you need and where to buy it can get confusing. This is especially true if your driving record isn’t clean, as your options to get car insurance could be limited or the cost of your premiums might be higher.
There are insurance companies that specialize in offering policies for drivers who might be considered high risk, though. And drivers with clean driving records could also compare policies with these companies and may potentially qualify for different discounts. One of these companies was Viking Auto Insurance.
Viking Auto Insurance is no longer in business, but we’ll still discuss how they worked, what they offered, and what alternatives you might have today. This can help you understand whether a specialized insurance company would be the right fit for you.
Viking Insurance: Is it worth it?
|Our verdict: While you can no longer purchase insurance directly from Viking, Dairyland could be a good fit if you are a higher-risk driver.|
What is Viking Insurance?
|Year founded||1971, merged with Dairyland Insurance in 2005 after it was acquired by parent company Sentry Insurance Group.|
|Types of coverage||
|Where you can use it||Mobile app (Android, iOS), and desktop portal|
|Customer support||Dairyland customer service phone number:
(800) 334-0090 available 24/7 daily
|Availability||Dairyland Insurance is licensed in 49 states and the District of Columbia. It is not licensed in California, where Viking Insurance Company is the underwriter.|
Viking Insurance Company was founded in 1971 in Wisconsin as a multiple-line insurance company, which means it bundled different types of coverage together into a single contract. Viking was acquired by Sentry Insurance in 2005. This acquisition saw Viking merge with Dairyland, another insurance company that was started in Wisconsin and acquired by Sentry in 1966.
Both Dairyland and Viking specialized in non-standard auto insurance, which is likely why the merger made sense. Non-standard policies typically included coverage for high-risk drivers, or drivers that may have had major traffic violations on their record and could have been more likely to file an insurance claim moving forward.
Both Dairyland and Viking had been in business for decades, while their parent company, Sentry, was founded over a century ago. This resulted in the two companies having helped customers with their auto insurance policies in most states nationwide and having provided jobs for hundreds of employees. Since the merger, Viking Auto Insurance is no longer in business, though Viking Insurance Company of Wisconsin continues to underwrite insurance policies as part of the Sentry Insurance Group.
How did Viking Insurance work?
Viking Insurance offered multiple types of insurance policies, including car insurance. Viking Auto Insurance provided different coverage options for your vehicle depending on what you were looking for. The types of policies available weren’t necessarily different from what you could find from most major insurance companies, but not every driver can qualify for an auto policy from the well-known names.
Traditional insurance companies might deny you the opportunity to get one of their policies if you’re a high-risk driver. Since Viking Auto Insurance focused on non-standard policies, it was likely easier to get coverage with them if you hadn’t had luck elsewhere. This could have been because you had major car accidents in the past, lapses in your car insurance, DUI convictions, or a high number of traffic tickets.
Non-standard policies typically cost more than standard policies, but having an option to get car insurance is better than no option at all.
What insurance did Viking Insurance offer?
Most states require you to have liability insurance as a bare minimum, but there’s a lot more coverage available. The types of car insurance you get may depend on where you live in the country, your financial situation, and what you feel you need.
The best car insurance companies offer a wide range of policies to choose from. The types of car insurance coverage you might expect include:
- Liability: Liability insurance coverage includes both bodily injury and property damage coverage and a minimum amount is required in most states.
- Personal injury protection: Covers medical expenses for injuries resulting from a car accident, regardless of who is at fault. This could also include expenses for lost wages or funerals.
- Medical reimbursement: Secondary type of health insurance coverage for injuries related to car accidents. You might consider this coverage if your health insurance doesn’t provide enough coverage.
- Collision: Collision insurance covers damages due to car accidents, regardless of who is at fault. This could include accidents with other cars or an object, like a neighbor’s fence or a telephone pole.
- Comprehensive: Covers damages due to events not related to collisions. Comprehensive insurance may include coverage of fire, water, vandalism, theft, and more.
- Underinsured motorist: Comes into play if another party involved in an accident with you doesn’t have enough insurance coverage to pay for damages.
- Uninsured motorist: Covers eligible damages if you’re not at fault for an accident and the person who is at fault doesn’t have any car insurance.
- Rental reimbursement: Reimburses you for a rental vehicle if your car is getting repaired because of an accident.
- Towing and labor: Covers certain expenses related to towing and labor if you’re in an emergency situation.
- Non-owner: Covers property damages and injuries you cause while driving someone else’s vehicle.
Viking Insurance: How cheap is it?
Car insurance can get expensive for high-risk drivers. Dairyland Insurance, which merged with Viking Insurance in 2005, claims it offers affordable rates, regardless of your driving record, financial circumstances, age, or even if you have no prior insurance coverage.
Dairyland Insurance offers several discounts to help you save money on your premiums. Those discounts include:
- Multi-car discount: You can get a break on insuring your car if you have other cars on your insurance policy.
- Advance quote discount: Dairyland Insurance rewards those who plan ahead and request a quote for car insurance at least a week before they need coverage.
- Transfer discount: If you transfer your car insurance from another insurer you’ve been with for six months or more, Dairyland Insurance will give you a discount. You may even qualify for this discount if you’ve had a lapse in coverage, depending on which state you live in.
- Payment frequency discount: You may get a discount on your premiums depending on frequency with which you pay your bill, whether quarterly, every six months, or annually.
- Homeowners discount: Dairyland Insurance will give you a discount if you own your home and have homeowners insurance.
- Defensive driving discount: You can qualify for a discount on your car insurance if you take a defensive driver course and provide proof that you passed the course.
- Anti-theft discount: If you install an anti-theft device in your vehicle, Dairyland Insurance may give you a discount on your car insurance.
How to get an insurance quote
The easiest way to get quick, free quotes on insurance rates from multiple insurance companies is to use an online comparison tool. You typically start the process by putting in your zip code and then filling out any relevant personal and vehicle information. Alternatively, you could call and speak with an insurance agent, but the online process is likely quicker and easier, often only taking a few minutes.
Keep in mind that online insurance marketplaces are designed to help you comparison shop. This means you typically use them to get auto insurance quotes from different providers in your area so you can see what everyone has to offer. Once you find a few policies, look them over to see which companies have the best reviews and prices. This will give you a good idea of the value they offer and point you in the right direction.
Viking Auto Insurance FAQs
Is Viking insurance the same as Dairyland Insurance?
Viking Insurance Company and Dairyland Insurance merged in 2005 as part of an acquisition deal by parent company Sentry. Viking is now part of Dairyland, which specializes in non-standard auto insurance policies for high-risk drivers. Dairyland provides options for drivers who may not have clean driving records, but can’t get insured from many traditional insurers.
Is Dairyland Insurance any good?
Dairyland Insurance advertises fast and free car insurance quotes to get you set up with affordable coverage options. Dairyland specializes in non-standard car insurance policies, which can be helpful if you have a bad driving record and are having difficulty getting insured from a traditional insurance company.
What is non-standard insurance?
Non-standard car insurance policies are typically for people labeled as high-risk drivers. You could be a high-risk driver if you have a bad driving record because of multiple major car accidents, loads of traffic tickets, DUI convictions, and more. Or you might have a high-performance vehicle or live in a high-risk neighborhood. There are companies that specialize in non-standard car insurance policies for high-risk drivers.
Who owns Viking Insurance Company?
Sentry Insurance owns Viking Insurance Company. Sentry bought Viking Insurance in 2005 and merged it with Dairyland Insurance, another company that falls under the Sentry umbrella of insurance companies. The merger doubled the size of Dairyland Insurance’s specialty auto insurance business.
Today, Viking Insurance no longer exists as a separate insurance company. Instead, it is an underwriter of Sentry auto insurance policies in California.
Paying for car insurance is basically a fact of life for most Americans. But that doesn’t mean it’s a bad thing. Having a proper amount of car insurance could protect you from the financial devastation caused by many car accidents. In most cases, it’s a good idea to get the amount of car insurance required or recommended by your state.
But past driving violations or other unique circumstances could make it difficult to find, and in some cases, qualify for a car insurance policy. In these cases, specialized companies and the independent insurance agencies that work with them might be able to help you.
If you’re not sure if a specialized insurer would be the right company for you, then do some comparison shopping on our list of the best auto insurance companies.
FinanceBuzz researches a number of factors in each auto insurance provider to create our reviews. These factors include cost and discounts, complaints and customer satisfaction, coverage, and ease of use. We also gather information from sources such as J.D. Power, AM Best, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), and the Better Business Bureau to ensure we provide the most useful information to our readers.