AAA vs. GEICO: Which Is the Best? (2024)

GEICO offers cheaper rates and more discounts than AAA.

Elizabeth Rivelli
Elizabeth Rivelli
  • 5+ years writing insurance and personal finance topics

  • Auto, home, health, and life insurance expertise

Elizabeth has extensive insurance industry experience, having written for Insureon, Rate Retriever, and Insurify. She’s also finance and insurance editor for Car and Driver.

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Danny Smith
Edited byDanny Smith
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Danny Smith
  • Licensed auto and home insurance agent

  • 4+ years in content creation and marketing

As Insurify’s home and pet insurance editor, Danny also specializes in auto insurance. His goal is to help consumers navigate the complex world of insurance buying.

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Konstantin Halachev
Data reviewed byKonstantin Halachev
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Konstantin HalachevVice President of Engineering
  • 7+ years experience in data analysis

  • Ph.D. in Computational Biology

Konstantin has led data teams across multiple industries, including insurance, travel, and biology. He’s led Insurify’s engineering team for more than three years.

Updated April 22, 2024

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AAA and GEICO are two of the largest car insurance companies on the market.[1] Both companies sell car insurance and other insurance products nationwide. Any driver can purchase car insurance from GEICO, but you must have an AAA membership to get AAA car insurance.

While AAA and GEICO are two of the best car insurance companies, each one has strengths and weaknesses. Before choosing an insurance company, it’s important to compare rates as well as coverage options, discounts, customer service, and prices.

Quick Facts
  • GEICO has cheaper average car insurance rates than AAA.

  • GEICO has a better financial strength rating than AAA’s affiliates.

  • Both companies offer a few endorsements for additional coverage.

AAA vs. GEICO: The verdict

Based on Insurify’s review, GEICO is the better overall insurance company. GEICO’s average rate for liability-only insurance is $54 per month, which is much lower than AAA’s average rate of $90 per month.

Both AAA and GEICO offer a variety of discounts for potential savings. However, GEICO offers a bigger selection of discounts, including savings for military personnel and federal employees. Neither company offers many optional endorsements, so you have few opportunities to customize your policy with these insurers.

Both AAA and GEICO have fewer complaints than expected from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) for private passenger car insurance.[2] However, GEICO has a better AM Best financial strength rating of A++ (Superior) than AAA’s regional insurance companies, most of which have an average AM Best rating of A (Excellent).[3]

FactorAAAGEICO
Insurify Quality (IQ) Score3.54.2
J.D. Power customer satisfaction score820 out of 1,000818 out of 1,000
Average quote: liability only$90$54
Number of available discounts1016
Number of states where it operates2450
Disclaimer: Table data sourced from real-time quotes from Insurify's 50-plus partner insurance providers. Actual quotes may vary based on the policy buyer's unique driver profile.

AAA

AAA auto insurance is exclusively available to AAA members who have a roadside assistance program membership. AAA sells auto insurance through regional insurance companies, like CSAA and The Auto Club Group, so you don’t get to choose which insurer underwrites your policy.

AAA’s insurance underwriters have excellent financial strength and fewer complaints than expected. But when it comes to policyholder satisfaction, AAA’s affiliates get mixed ratings based on location.[4]

Compare personalized, real-time quotes
IQ Score
The Insurify Quality (IQ) Score uses more than 15 criteria to objectively rate insurance companies on a one-to-five scale. The Insurify editorial team researches insurer data to determine the final scores.
JD Power
J.D. Power data measures overall customer satisfaction and claims satisfaction based on a 1,000-point scale.
830
A.M. Best
A.M. Best analyzes an insurer’s financials, operating performance, business profile, and other factors to generate an opinion-based rating of a company’s financial and credit strength. Ratings range from A++ (exceptional) to D (poor).
Not rated

The American Automobile Association (AAA) is a members-only organization known for roadside assistance — the not-for-profit company partners with regional insurance companies to offer auto insurance coverage. You must have an AAA membership to qualify for coverage, but AAA doesn’t underwrite its policies.

AAA membership perks include travel discounts, extensive roadside help, and access to exclusive DMV locations. But membership perks aren’t a selling point for AAA insurance since you can become a member without buying insurance coverage.

Pros
  • Unique membership perks

  • Standard extra coverage

  • High customer satisfaction

Cons
  • Can’t choose a company

  • Must buy membership

  • Different coverage based on location

GEICO

GEICO, which is owned by Berkshire Hathaway, is the third-largest car insurance company in the United States based on market share.[1] GEICO has superior financial strength and is rated above average for overall customer satisfaction by J.D. Power in most U.S. regions.[4]

The company stands out for its affordable rates and excellent discounts. However, GEICO offers few endorsements for customized coverage.

Compare personalized, real-time quotes
IQ Score
The Insurify Quality (IQ) Score uses more than 15 criteria to objectively rate insurance companies on a one-to-five scale. The Insurify editorial team researches insurer data to determine the final scores.
4.3
JD Power
J.D. Power data measures overall customer satisfaction and claims satisfaction based on a 1,000-point scale.
835
Liability Only
Liability-only insurance, sometimes called minimum-coverage insurance, pays for bodily injury and property damage to others in an accident the policyholder causes. It does not pay for the insured’s own damages.
$54/mo
Full Coverage
Full-coverage car insurance generally includes liability, collision, and comprehensive coverage, and may include other optional coverages such as uninsured motorist coverage. Collision covers a policyholder’s repair or replacement costs in case of an accident. Comprehensive covers damages caused by non-accident events. The average quote displayed here reflects policies with the following coverage limits: $50,000 bodily injury liability per person; $100,000 bodily injury liability per accident; $50,00 property damage liability per accident; $1,000 collision deductible; and a $1,000 comprehensive deductible.
$119/mo

A highly recognizable name in car insurance, GEICO is a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway. The company started out as the Government Employees Insurance Company, serving U.S. government workers and military personnel. In addition to auto insurance, GEICO also sells homeowner, flood insurance, life insurance, business insurance, and identity protection, among other products. A.M. Best gives GEICO its highest rating for financial stability and credit. However, GEICO has nearly twice as many complaints as expected in the National Association of Insurance Commissioner’s Consumer Complaints Index.

Pros
  • Good rates for good drivers, seniors, and young drivers

  • Accident forgiveness available

Cons
  • High rates for drivers with certain violations, like DUIs

  • No rideshare or new car replacement coverage available

Read our GEICO review
Rosita - April 22, 2024
Verified

Happy One Day, Sad the Next

One year, my policy was nice and low, but the next year they jacked it up. I didn't even do anything wrong. This really upset me. I never even got a reason why.

Gloria - April 22, 2024
Verified

Poor

Find another insurance company. Geico is too expensive and doesn't live up to their promises.

Louis - April 20, 2024
Verified

Excellent

Good service, good price.

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AAA SMARTtrek vs. GEICO DriveEasy

AAA and GEICO both offer telematics-based safe driver programs. You’ll download a mobile app on your smartphone, and every time you drive, the app tracks your behaviors, like brake force, acceleration, and distracted driving. The insurer then calculates a score based on your driving habits. If you score well, you may qualify for a lower car insurance rate.

When you enroll in AAA’s SMARTtrek program, you can get a 10% participation discount during your initial policy term.[5] GEICO doesn’t advertise its DriveEasy discount percentage online, but an insurance agent can tell you how much you can save in your state.[6]

AAA vs. GEICO: Which is the cheapest?

GEICO is the most affordable option, based on Insurify’s proprietary rate data. The average liability-only insurance rate from GEICO is $54 per month, while AAA’s average rate is $90 per month.

However, the cost of car insurance depends on many factors besides your insurance company. Your location, ZIP code, age, claim history, driving record, and your vehicle’s safety features will also affect your premium. It’s a good idea to get quotes from both companies to see which one will be the cheapest for your situation.

GEICO: Cheapest for drivers with a clean driving record

GEICO has cheaper car insurance rates than AAA for a good driver with a clean driving record and no recent incidents or violations.

Driver TypeAAAGEICO
Clean driving record$90$54
Disclaimer: Table data sourced from real-time quotes from Insurify's 50-plus partner insurance providers and quote estimates from Quadrant Information Services. Actual quotes may vary based on the policy buyer's unique driver profile.

GEICO: Cheapest for drivers with a speeding ticket

If you have a speeding ticket on your record, GEICO has much cheaper rates on average than AAA.

Driver TypeAAAGEICO
Drivers with a speeding ticket$111$62
Disclaimer: Table data sourced from real-time quotes from Insurify's 50-plus partner insurance providers. Actual quotes may vary based on the policy buyer's unique driver profile.

GEICO: Cheapest for teen drivers

Teenage drivers generally pay the highest rates for car insurance. Based on Insurify’s rate data, GEICO has lower car insurance rates for teens.

Driver TypeAAAGEICO
18-year-old$143$75
Disclaimer: Table data sourced from real-time quotes from Insurify's 50-plus partner insurance providers and quote estimates from Quadrant Information Services. Actual quotes may vary based on the policy buyer's unique driver profile.

GEICO: Cheapest for drivers with bad credit

People with poor credit usually pay higher rates for car insurance. However, GEICO has lower rates than AAA for drivers with poor credit.

Driver TypeAAAGEICO
Drivers with bad credit$103$63
Disclaimer: Table data sourced from real-time quotes from Insurify's 50-plus partner insurance providers and quote estimates from Quadrant Information Services. Actual quotes may vary based on the policy buyer's unique driver profile.

GEICO: Cheapest for senior drivers

Senior drivers often pay higher car insurance rates than middle-aged drivers. For drivers older than 70, GEICO has cheaper car insurance rates than AAA.

Driver TypeAAAGEICO
Senior drivers$65$41
Disclaimer: Table data sourced from real-time quotes from Insurify's 50-plus partner insurance providers and quote estimates from Quadrant Information Services. Actual quotes may vary based on the policy buyer's unique driver profile.

Compare coverages: AAA vs. GEICO

GEICO and AAA both offer liability-only and full-coverage car insurance policies with bodily injury liability, property damage liability, personal injury protection (PIP), uninsured/underinsured motorist, collision insurance, and comprehensive coverage. However, neither company offers a big selection of add-ons.

Keep in mind that AAA’s coverage options vary by region. Depending on your exact location, you might have more coverage options available than members in other regions.

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Compare discounts: AAA vs. GEICO

When comparing AAA vs. GEICO, GEICO has a bigger selection of discounts, which could help you get a better rate. In addition, GEICO offers a discount to affinity group members, which includes AAA members.

Below, you can see which discounts each insurance company offers to policyholders.[7] [8]

DiscountAAAGEICO
Clean driving recordNoYes
Defensive driving courseYesYes
Multi-policyYesYes
Multi-carYesYes
Low mileageYesNo
Telematics (safe driving app)YesYes
Anti-theft deviceNoYes
New carNoYes
Military/affiliationNoYes
Advanced purchaseYesNo
Affinity groupYesYes
Good studentYesYes
LoyaltyYesNo
Auto payYesYes
GarageYesNo
Student away at schoolNoNo
HomeownerNoNo
Alternative fuelNoNo

AAA vs. GEICO FAQs

AAA and GEICO are both good auto insurance companies with their own pros and cons. Below, you’ll find more information that can help you decide which car insurance company is better for you.

  • Is AAA more expensive than GEICO?

    Yes. AAA is more expensive than GEICO, according to Insurify’s proprietary data. AAA’s average price is $90 for a minimum-coverage policy and $142 for a full-coverage policy.

    To compare, GEICO’s average rates are $54 for minimum coverage and $119 for full coverage.

    If you’re looking for cheap car insurance, GEICO is the best option out of the two companies.

  • What is the downside of AAA?

    Coverage with AAA comes with several downsides. First, you must be a AAA member to get car insurance. Memberships typically cost $65 per year but can vary depending on your location.[9] AAA car insurance is underwritten by regional insurers, so you don’t get to choose which company issues your policy. Additionally, the company’s rates are much higher than GEICO’s rates on average.

  • What are the main differences between AAA and GEICO’s car insurance policies?

    GEICO has cheaper rates than AAA. It also offers a wider selection of available discounts than AAA, and it has better third-party ratings overall. But if you’re comparing AAA vs. GEICO, it’s important to evaluate both companies closely and compare auto insurance quotes before making a final decision.

Sources

  1. NAIC. "2023 Market Share Report."
  2. NAIC. "Complaint Index."
  3. AM Best. "Financial Strength Ratings."
  4. Jdpower.com. "2023 U.S. Auto Insurance Study."
  5. AAA. "AAA Insurance with SMARTtrek."
  6. Geico. "DriveEasy."
  7. AAA. "Insurance Discounts."
  8. GEICO. "Car Insurance Discounts - Savings on Auto Insurance."
  9. AAA. "AAA Membership - Benefits, Plans, and Levels."
Elizabeth Rivelli
Elizabeth Rivelli

Elizabeth Rivelli is a freelance writer covering insurance and personal finance. She has extensive knowledge of various insurance lines, including property and casualty, health, and life insurance. Her byline has been featured in dozens of publications, including Investopedia, Forbes, Bankrate, NextAdvisor, and Insurance.com

Danny Smith
Edited byDanny Smith
Photo of an Insurify author
Danny Smith
  • Licensed auto and home insurance agent

  • 4+ years in content creation and marketing

As Insurify’s home and pet insurance editor, Danny also specializes in auto insurance. His goal is to help consumers navigate the complex world of insurance buying.

Featured in

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Konstantin Halachev
Data reviewed byKonstantin HalachevVice President of Engineering
Headshot of Konstantin Halachev, VP of Engineering at Insurify
Konstantin HalachevVice President of Engineering
  • 7+ years experience in data analysis

  • Ph.D. in Computational Biology

Konstantin has led data teams across multiple industries, including insurance, travel, and biology. He’s led Insurify’s engineering team for more than three years.

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