How to Get the Best Car Insurance for Millennials and Young Adults

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Despite wild stereotypes about Millennials, they probably need a great deal on car insurance more than anyone else. 

Why do Millennials need great car insurance?

Thanks to the skyrocketing costs of college education, Millennials are carrying debt like no other generation in history. They’re also facing steeper rises in the cost of living and health insurance, and it’s no wonder they’re delaying home purchasing by almost ten years longer than the previous generation.

Changes in career paths and even career choices have made paths to financial security a lot less straightforward than previous generations. And, because Millennials came of age during the Great Recession, their wealth is 34 percent below where they would have been if the crisis hadn’t occurred.

Bottom line: Millennials need creative ways to save money. Making smart decisions when it comes to car insurance is a great place to start. Below is a list of the best discounts and the best car insurance companies for Millennials and young adults.

While Insurify can’t solve every financial problem, it can help you save hundreds on car insurance. Compare quotes and find your lowest rate in less than two minutes!


Consider how many competitive, real quotes Insurify was able to generate for the following driver profile: a 30-year-old female living in Houston, Texas, who owns and drives a 2012 Nissan Sentra, elects for state minimum coverage and no collision and comprehensive coverage, is not currently insured, has poor credit, and is a safe driver. This real and recent Insurify comparison shopper does not have the most sterling background to an insurance company, but affordable and flexible insurance is available to anyone if they know where to find it.

Read on to learn more about how to find the right discounts, deals, and customer experience befitting of you and your personal needs.

Top insurance discounts available to Millennials

Car insurance for young adults is notoriously more expensive than that of older drivers. And many popular car insurance discounts, like multi-car, can often be out of reach for new drivers.

However, there are some general discounts that Millennials, even teen drivers, are eligible to receive, and so they should be aware of when shopping for car insurance.

Below is a list of the most popular discounts of which Millennials can take advantage. Bear in mind that not all discounts are available with every insurance provider.

Good Driver

Good driver discounts are typically made available to drivers with no accidents and/or no driving infractions in their driving history in the last three to five years. Every company that offers this discount will have slightly different requirements for eligibility.

Good Student

If you’re buying car insurance as a college student with good grades, you will likely find some discounts. Typically, full-time students with a B average and higher can receive a discount. While it may seem that discounts are to encourage academic achievement, it stems from statistical information showing that good students tend to be safer than other young drivers.

Telematics

Telematic programs often receive a trademarked name, like the Snapshot® program offered through Progressive. If you enroll in a telematics program, you will receive a transponder that plugs into your car and relays your driving information back to your auto insurance company. Your insurance company will use this information to determine your risk.

Driving habits that are analyzed include:

  • Mileage
  • Time of day
  • Hard braking
  • Speed

Driving Training

Did you know that if you sign up for a defensive driving course, you may be eligible for big discounts? These courses may set you back a couple hundred bucks, but for many, the courses can be worth the investment. Not only will you become an even better driver, but you will receive a discount anywhere from five to 20 percent! Just be sure that you take the course with an approved instructor.

A list of approved instructors can typically be found on the insurance company’s website or by speaking with your agent. Many courses are offered online, and you may be eligible for a tuition discount based on your affiliated insurance company.

Vehicle Safety Features

Anti-lock brakes, passenger and side curtain airbags, daytime running lights: these can save you as much as 15 percent on insurance premiums. Discounts will vary by company and by safety feature. Be sure to inform your insurance company of all the safety features on your vehicle.

Anti-Theft Device

If your car has an alarm system, you’re likely eligible for discounts up to 20 percent. This is only applicable to drivers who purchase comprehensive coverage. Also, low-tech anti-theft devices, like The Club, often don’t earn discounts for drivers.

Low-Mileage

If you drive less than the average driver, you are likely eligible for a low-mileage discount. The typical threshold is around fewer than 7,000 miles in a calendar year. Often determined through the use of telematics, the average discount is two percent.

Top 13 Best Car Insurance Companies for Millennials

Allstate

Insurify Composite Score: 87

Pros: Good technology and access to personalized service

Cons: Higher rates for drivers with poor or bad credit

Allstate is one of the heavy hitters in the insurance market. As such, it’s put a lot into developing an easy-to-use app and host a team of customer service representatives at the ready for your call. Additionally, Allstate has agents on the ground that you can meet with in person and lead more about insurance for your exact needs.

However, for the many Millennials still building credit, Allstate may not be the best option. Its rates tend to be more dependent on credit scores than most. If your credit is suffering, other insurers will likely be a better fit.

Discounts available to Millennials

  • Safe driving club
  • Anti-theft devices
  • Smart student discount
  • Auto-pay discount

American National

Pros: Great discounts and customer service

Cons: Technology and website are outdated

American National may seem a little behind the times. Its website is outdated. The app, which is in its second version, still has some issues. However, American National gets all the gold stars for personalized service. Local agents are in all 50 states, so chances are you’re close to one. And your agent can help you take advantage of all its discounts.

One thing to take note of, however, is that American National does not offer SR-22 coverage. Nor does it currently offer discounts to members of the military. On a positive note, American National does have a generous cashback program if you stay with it for the long run and bundle your insurance.

Discounts available to Millennials

  • Good student
  • Defensive driver training
  • Anti-theft devices
  • Auto safety equipment

Amica

Insurify Composite Score: 93

Pros: High customer satisfaction and rare perks

Cons: Low technology satisfaction and more expensive the first year

Amica has received consistent praise for its customer service and benefits. As a mutual insurance company, it also offers a dividend program (available in most states) where policyholders can receive up to 20 percent of their premium. This dividend can be applied to future payments to lower costs in the long run.

Amica also offers perks that other companies charge for. Bonus perks include:

  • Free lock replacement if you lose your keys
  • Free airbag repair after it deploys
  • Reimbursement for lost wages if you appear in court upon Amica’s request
  • In the first year of ownership, in some states, depreciation won’t be taken into account to replace your car after it is totaled

However, Amica is a bit behind the times when it comes to technology. While potential customers can fill out applications online, a quote must be purchased over the phone. And the smartphone app doesn’t perform well. Customers have recently reviewed it for being glitchy, crashing, and limited in what customers can do through the app.

Discounts available to Millennials

  • Good student
  • Defensive driver training
  • Anti-theft devices
  • Auto safety equipment
  • Paperless
  • Auto-pay

Erie Insurance

Pros: Great customer service and affordable rates

Cons: Limited availability nationwide and limited technology

Though Erie Insurance is only available in twelve states and some parts of the District of Columbia, it’s received high marks from its customers. Notably, Erie has won the J.D. Power and Associates award for “Highest in Customer Satisfaction with the Auto Insurance Purchase Experience” and the award for “Highest in Auto Claims Satisfaction.”

Those twelve states include:

On the other hand, Erie has no smartphone app for managing your auto insurance policy. However, Erie does have an app for telematics available to drivers between the ages of 16 and 23. The app incentivizes drivers to operate their vehicles without distraction, avoid hard braking, and speeding, among other high-risk behaviors.

Discounts available to Millennials

  • Safe-driver
  • Young drivers and students
  • Anti-theft devices
  • Auto safety equipment
  • Reduced usage

Esurance

Insurify Composite Score: 91

Pros: Excellent technology and good reviews for its call center

Cons: Limited human-to-human contact and poor reviews on the claims process

Esurance is part of the Allstate family, so it has the backing of an insurance giant. At its inception, it was a technological gamechanger: Esurance was one of the first companies to operate almost entirely online and over the phone. And it’s remained a leader in insurance technology.

However, Esurance often can’t beat the prices of its larger competitors. Worse, Esurance has a low review score from the Better Business Bureau. The main sources of complaints appear to be the billing and claims processes. Customers claim about increases due to clerical errors and long waits on reimbursements.

Discounts available to Millennials

  • Auto safety equipment
  • Renters Plus®
  • Drive Sense®
  • Good student

GEICO

Insurify Composite Score: 88

Pros: Great technology and many discounts available

Cons: Limited human-to-human contact and higher cost for drivers with an at-fault accident

GEICO has one of the best apps on the market. It also has one of the easiest online experiences for quoting and purchasing insurance. Despite the lack of real human contact, GEICO still receives high marks for customer satisfaction—probably due to its technological prowess and hefty discounts. It also tends to have lower car insurance rates than the other large companies for good drivers with poor credit.

Where GEICO falters is with its penalties given to drivers with an at-fault accident. Additionally, some of the negative reviews suggest that the lack of human-to-human contact, make some situations ripe for misunderstanding.

Discounts available to Millennials

  • Auto safety equipment
  • Anti-theft
  • Driver’s education courses
  • Good student

Liberty Mutual

Insurify Composite Score: 83

Pros: Many different coverage options

Cons: Typically higher premiums 

If you’re looking for a ton of coverage options for your car, you’ve come to the right company. Beyond the typical options, Liberty Mutual offers a host of supplemental insurance. These include:

As one might expect, all the bells and whistles add to the bottom line, meaning Liberty Mutual tends to cost more than its competitors. If finding cheap car insurance is your number one goal, this shouldn’t be your top pick. For others, the added features could be worth the extra cost.

Additionally, Liberty has a great app, an easy-to-navigate website, and an emu for a mascot. Okay, that last one isn’t as important, but still.

Discounts available to Millennials

  • Good student discount
  • Vehicle safety features
  • Alternative energy discount
  • Anti-theft
  • RightTrack discount
  • Accident-free
  • Violation free
  • Online purchase discount
  • Paperless

Mercury

Pros: Good for drivers with a poor driving record

Cons: Low customer service ratings for claims and typically higher rates

Mercury makes the list solely based on the options it provides for drivers with a troubled record. SR-22 insurance, multiple driving infractions, even people with a history of suspensions can typically find coverage here. And around 8,000 agents are ready to help you.

But brace yourself for the downsides. Not only is there currently no app to speak of, but customers complain that the website is difficult to navigate. According to the Better Business Bureau, Mercury garners just over one star (out of five) for customer satisfaction. Most of the poor reviews and complaints filed cite issues with the claims process.

Mercury is currently only available in eleven states. These are:

Discounts available to Millennials

  • Bundle
  • Good student
  • Anti-theft

Metromile

Pros: Great for low-mileage drivers

Cons: Only available in eight states and a limited discount program

Metromile can be truly advantageous for people who drive fewer than 10,000 miles a year. It works differently from other companies in that drivers pay a low monthly rate along with a small charge per mile, up to 250 miles per day (150 miles in New Jersey).

You do need to install a tracking device, however. But, this tracking device does allow you to find where you parked your car, get alerts about alternate side parking, and it will even update you as to your vehicle’s health.

On the downside, due to the way the company bills its customers, there are essentially no discounts beyond the low mileage. And while Metromile gets fairly high reviews with the Better Business Bureau, it isn’t available nationwide. Currently, you can only purchase a policy if you live in:

Discounts available to Millennials

  • Low mileage

Nationwide

Insurify Composite Score: 85

Pros: Superior technology and exclusive members resources

Cons: May not cover drivers with a poor driving 

Nationwide has one of the best websites out there. You can review your coverage during any major life changes and your agent will ensure you’re getting the benefit of any available discounts or programs. This review is also helpful to ensure you are as covered as you need to be.

With programs like the vanishing deductible, there is a lot of potential money-saving in the long run. In the short run, Nationwide does tend to have higher premiums. And though agents tend to get sparkling reviews, it can be a game of chance if you get a great agent or not. Luckily, you can request a different agent if you’re unhappy.

On a final note, Nationwide offers several discounts and perks to farmers. If you’re the rare Millennial developing a career in family farming, you should check out Nationwide.

Discounts available to Millennials

  • SmartRide® discount
  • Good student
  • Paperless
  • Accident-free

Progressive

Insurify Composite Score: 80

Pros: Ease of service and great technology

Cons: Longest policy is six months

Progressive is well known in the insurance industry as one of the four largest companies in the U.S. Available in all 50 states, it offers competitive pricing, multiple discount programs, and getting in touch is very easy. Not only does Progressive have a 24/7 customer service team, but also some of the best tech in the business. The app and website make it very easy to review coverage, make payments, and even file a claim.

One downside of using Progressive is that, for the most part, the longest policy term you can get is six months. This may not seem like a big deal, but consider that a twelve-month policy locks your rate twice as long. Progressive also gets a lower-than-average score of “B-” from the Better Business Bureau.

Discounts available to Millennials

  • Snapshot® discount
  • Good student
  • Online quote
  • E-sign
  • Safe driver
  • Auto-pay
  • Bundling

State Farm

Insurify Composite Score: 84

Pros: Huge selection and reliable

Cons: Some aggressive selling tactics and higher premiums than others

State Farm is the number one choice for car insurance in the United States. It’s also top ranking when it comes to homeowners insurance. One of the reasons it made it to the top tier is the local offices filled with agents who personalize insurance packages for customers. If you’re looking for a little extra in service, this is the company for you.

However, expect to pay more than you would with other insurance companies. You can also expect to be pitched add-on services. But, hey, you can’t capture nearly a fifth of the market share without some strategic selling techniques.

Discounts available to Millennials

  • Accident-free
  • Defensive driving
  • Good driver
  • Good student
  • Vehicle safety features
  • Anti-theft

USAA

Insurify Composite Score: 95

Pros: Best choice for military members and very competitive rates

Cons: Only available to military members and their families

USAA gets top marks for customer service and low insurance rates. J.D. Power gives USAA a five out of five rating. Other insurance products offered by USAA get equally high marks, making it a great idea to bundle insurance. Additionally, USAA is one of the few companies on this list that has positive reviews when it comes to making a claim.

One of the downfalls of USAA is that it’s hard to get in if you’re not enlisted or a veteran of the military. Siblings of military members are not eligible, though children and grandchildren are. But here’s the kicker: the military member in your family must have an account with USAA. So, even if Grandpa did serve, if he didn’t have an account with USAA, you won’t either.

Discounts available to Millennials

  • Low mileage
  • Good driver
  • Driver training
  • Driving research (telematics)

Honorable Mentions

21st Century Insurance is a great option for Millennials in California and Hawaii. It has a user-friendly app and website, though claims must be filed over the phone. It also offers highly competitive rates for drivers with low credit scores.

Clearcover Insurance is a new car insurance company only available in California. Its business model largely depends on AI and an online marketplace, meaning that it has great technology, but limited human-to-human interaction.

New Jersey Manufacturers (NJM) Insurance Group didn’t quite make the cut due to its limited availability. However, it is a great option for drivers in Pennsylvania and New Jersey—if you’re an employee of a specific organization. If you can get insurance through NJM, you will receive a great rate and customer service. Additionally, NJM has fairly lenient penalties for low credit and an at-fault accident.

6 Best Car Insurance Savings Tips

Compare quotes

Always be sure to do some comparison shopping before you buy. It’s hands-down the best way to find affordable car insurance. The more you compare, the more likely you are to receive a low-cost policy.

With Insurify, you can compare car insurance quotes from up to 20 companies in less than two minutes.

Research insurance before you purchase your vehicle

If you’re purchasing a new or used car, it’s a great idea to check out how much your car will cost to insure it before you buy. You may have your heart set on a zippy sports car, but you may not be able to work the insurance into your budget.

Check the numbers at least every six months

Auto insurance rates change and change often. I highly recommend checking you have the best rate at least every six months. And don’t forget that it’s often easy to switch your insurance company even in the middle of that policy. With Insurify, you can also receive alerts when a lower policy is made available.

Maintain good credit

In every state except California, insurance companies can use your credit score to judge your risk. This may not be the fairest practice, but it is legal in most states. Many banks, credit cards, and start-ups offer free credit monitoring. Additionally, things like auto-pay and a handy calendar app can keep you on top of your bills.

Look for affiliation and employer discounts

This is by far one of the easiest ways to get a discount as a young adult. Be sure to investigate discounts you can receive through your employer or affiliation with any of your associations. Your employee handbook or HR representative should provide you with this information.

Bundle your insurance

Often, if you purchase multiple lines of insurance through the same company, you will receive a discount. Renters and homeowners insurance can commonly be bundled with your car insurance policy.

Final Words

Finding insurance coverage at the best price is an important part of financial wellness. Getting familiar with the kinds of discounts and tradeoffs you can make to keep insurance costs low can help you save a lot of money over your lifetime. Even better, scheduling times in the year to review your insurance costs will ensure you’re always getting the cheapest car insurance for the services you desire.

Don’t forget that Insurify’s quotes comparison and rate alerts can help you save time and money when it comes to all kinds of insurance.

Happy trails, Millennials.

J.J. Starr is a financial copywriter and enjoys helping readers find the information they need. In addition to her background in banking and financial advising, she is also a poet with an MFA from New York University. She lives in Amherst, Massachusetts. You can learn more at jjstarrwrites.com.