Cheap Auto Insurance Quotes in Columbia, SC (January 2022)

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Last Updated: January 2022

No one wants to look behind them and see flashing lights. But if you’re at Congaree National Park, they may just be…wait for it…fireflies! Waiting around for your insurance rates to go down? It’s easier to take the bull by the horns and go shopping online for better rates yourself.

It’s certainly a treat if you ever get a chance to see this asynchronous light show, but if you aren’t at the park and you see lights behind you, you should probably pull over. Always having proof of registration with you is a good practice, but being without a car insurance policy at all is never a good thing.

Car Insurance in Columbia, SC

The average cost of South Carolina car insurance will vary from city to city and between insurance companies. Insurify analyzed the latest insurance rates in Columbia, SC to find you the cheapest quotes in the area.
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Cheapest Car Insurance in Columbia, SC

The cost of car insurance can vary depending on the insurance provider. That’s because every insurance provider values information like your driving history and your credit score a little bit differently. Although the following car insurance companies offer the cheapest auto insurance premiums on average, it’s always important to compare quotes. Use Insurify to find your best rate today!

Best Car Insurance in Columbia, SC

The Insurify Composite Score is calculated by analyzing multiple factors that indicate the quality, reliability, and health of an insurance company. Inputs to the score include financial strength ratings from A.M. Best, Standard & Poor’s, Moody’s, and Fitch; J.D. Power ratings, Consumer Reports customer satisfaction surveys, mobile app reviews, and user-generated company reviews. The following are the top rated companies that offer car insurance in Columbia. For the complete list, see Insurify's best car insurance companies.

Average Car Insurance Cost

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Columbia, SC Driving Facts


Minimum Car Insurance Requirements in SC

All motor vehicles operated or parked on South Carolina roadways are required to be insured. Proof of insurance must be carried in your car at all times and must available when:

  • Requested by law enforcement
  • Renewing vehicle registration
  • The vehicle is involved in a car accident

The minimum liability car insurance requirements for private passenger vehicles in South Carolina are as follows:

  • $25,000 per person/$50,000 per accident for Bodily Injury (BI)

Bodily injury liability coverage protects drivers if their car is involved in an accident that harms another individual. The minimum limits required by South Carolina state law are $25,000 for the death or injury of a single victim as a result of a car accident and $50,000 for the deaths or injuries of multiple victims. Insurance companies list this type of coverage as 25/50, referring to the dollar limitations of each minimum. If you’re in an accident, liability coverage will cover the cost of a legal proceeding as a result of a crash. Bodily injury coverage is part of the minimum coverage required by South Carolina law.

  • $25,000 per accident for Property Damage (PD)

The state minimum amount of property damage liability coverage required in the state of South Carolina is $25,000. If an insured driver is determined to be at fault and held liable in a motor vehicle accident, this coverage pays for damage repair to another individual’s property. Property damage coverage will also pay for legal costs if an insured driver is involved in a lawsuit following an accident.

Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage are required in South Carolina. This coverage protects drivers who might incur damages from an accident caused by an uninsured or underinsured driver. If involved in an accident with an individual without sufficient coverage, insured drivers will still be covered. In South Carolina, the legally required level of Uninsured Motorist coverage is:

  • $25,000 per person/$50,000 per accident for Bodily Injury
  • $25,000 per accident for Property Damage

Columbia Car Insurance Rates by Driver Age

What you pay to insure your ride depends on many factors. As the average car insurance rates in Columbia demonstrate, age is obviously one of them. Premiums for teen drivers here average out to $597, more than twice the average cost for drivers in their 60s. Though the rate increase between drivers in their 60s and 70s is not as striking, older drivers in Columbia do pay more because they tend to have more accidents than drivers in their prime.

Driving History
No Violation$314
Speeding Ticket$410
At-Fault Accident$407
Failure to Stop for Red Light / Stop Sign$395

Columbia Car Insurance Rates by Driving and Accident History

Columbia drivers can enjoy their best insurance rates if they keep their record clear of accidents and other driving offenses (like running a red light or speeding). In fact, Columbia’s clean-record crowd pays an average of $313 a month for car insurance. Compare this to a Columbia driver with an at-fault accident on their record, and average monthly insurance rates skyrocket by 30 percent. This is one reason why drivers sometimes seek insurance companies that offer accident forgiveness—a program that ignores the first accident and prevents a spike in insurance rates.

Columbia Car Insurance Rates by Credit Tier

Car insurance companies use data to determine how much you should pay in monthly premiums. While you’re probably aware of the most common information they comb through (your age, gender, and the type of car you drive), you may not realize that many insurance companies are leaning on your credit score as well. In Columbia, your creditworthiness can go a long way in getting you a good rate. Rates for drivers with an excellent credit score average out to $294 monthly, while drivers with only a good score pay $64 more for the same coverage.

Columbia, SC DMV Information

Though you can still find a warm body to talk to inside any South Carolina DMV office, South Carolina’s DMV website is one of the easiest to use and could save you a lot of time and frustration. To get around online, you can start at the top with the kind of vehicle you drive or jump down to a section defining who you are—whether you are moving to the state, a person with a disability, in the military, or looking to schedule an appointment. It doesn’t matter where you start; in just a few clicks, this sweet site will get you to the right place.

Public Transportation in Columbia, SC

Want to catch a ride around town in Columbia? Look around for the brightly colored buses. Nothing’s boring about being inside one of these buses—also known as the COMET bus system. Looking for something a little less loud? A courtesy shuttle called the E-Rover can also take you through 36 blocks of the downtown area. Uber, Lyft, and traditional taxis also operate in the city. If you want a little more wind in your hair, you can try the city’s bikeshare program called Blue Bike SC. Just find one of the on-street kiosk locations and follow the subscription steps.

Find local Columbia agents

Adams Eaddy & Associates 
2230 Devine St, Columbia, SC 29205-2402
Davenport Ins Solutions, LLC
9367 Two Notch Rd Ste F2A, Columbia, SC 29223-6442
Russell Massey & Company 
1320 Elmwood Ave, Columbia, SC 29201
Farrell Ins Agency 
214 Outlet Pointe Blvd, Columbia, SC 29210
Affordable Insurance Group
6168 Saint Andrews Rd, Columbia, SC 29212-3122
Clark Farley Insurance Agency 
8313 Two Notch Rd, Columbia, SC 29223
Choice Flood Insurance LLC 
, Columbia, SC 29229
Smoak Insurance Agency Inc 
1534 Leesburg Road, Columbia, SC 29209
The Robinson-Burgess Agency LLC 
6000 Garners Ferry Road, Columbia, SC 29209
Bailout Insurance Group, LLC 
1030 St. Andrews Rd, Columbia, SC 29210

Insurify Insights: How Columbia Drivers Measure Up

Nissan Altima
Most Popular Car in
Columbia, SC
suspended licenses
Cities with Most
Suspended Licenses Rank

Drawing from their database of over 4 million car insurance shopper applications, the data scientists at Insurify have published various reports on driver behavior and car ownership — including how Columbia drivers measure up to their fellow South Carolina motorists in the rankings above.

From driver performance across different geographical locations and demographics to patterns in motor vehicle ownership and auto insurance coverage, Insurify Insights publishes data-driven articles, trend analyses, and national and local rankings each week on all factors related to cars and those who drive them.

Accidents in Columbia

While car accidents are a sadly unavoidable feature of time spent on the road, rates of accidents do vary from city to city and from state to state. Columbia drivers rank 13 in the number of car accidents per driver across all cities in South Carolina.

  • Rank within state: #13
  • Percent of drivers in Columbia with an accident: 15.15%
  • Drivers in Columbia, SC with an accident in their driving history paid on average 37.5% more than drivers with a clean record

Speeding in Columbia

Exceeding the speed limit can endanger others and leave a permanent stain on your driving record. When compared to other cities in South Carolina, Columbia drivers rank 14 in the number of speeding infractions per driver.

  • Rank within state: #14
  • Percent of drivers in Columbia with a speeding ticket: 15.23%
  • Drivers in Columbia, SC with a speeding ticket in their driving history paid on average 35.71% more than drivers with a clean record

DUI/DWIs in Columbia

While driving while intoxicated is never acceptable, it’s a more common offense than many assume. Columbia drivers rank 53 in the number of DUI’s per driver across all cities in South Carolina.

  • Rank within state: #53
  • Percent of drivers in Columbia with a DUI: 1.01%
  • Drivers in Columbia, SC with a DUI in their driving history paid on average 26.79% more than drivers with a clean record

Rude in Columbia

The Insurify team classifies rude drivers as those who commit the following driving offenses: failure to yield or failure to stop, improper backing, passing where prohibited, tailgating, street racing, or hit-and-runs. Among all cities in South Carolina, Columbia drivers rank 15 in rude driving infractions.

  • Rank within state: #15
  • Percent of drivers in Columbia with a reckless driving violation: 1.8%
  • Drivers in Columbia, SC with a reckless driving violation in their driving history paid on average 38.57% more than drivers with a clean record.

Safest Drivers in Columbia

Having a squeaky-clean driving record is an accomplishment to be proud of. Some cities have safer drivers than others; Columbia drivers rank 22 in clean driving records across all cities in South Carolina.

  • Rank within state: #22
  • Percent of drivers in Columbia with clean record: 74.22%

Failure to Yield the Right of Way in Columbia

Failing to yield the right of way isn’t just frustrating for other drivers; it’s dangerous, too. Columbia drivers rank 8 in failure to yield violations per driver across all cities in South Carolina.

  • Rank within state: #8
  • Percent of drivers in Columbia with a failure to yield violation: 0.71%
  • Drivers in Columbia, SC with a failure to yield violation in their driving history paid on average 2900% more than drivers with a clean record

Reckless Drivers in Columbia

Reckless driving refers to a specific traffic violation: when drivers willfully act dangerously in spite of the risks they’re imposing on both themselves and others. Among all cities in South Carolina, Columbia drivers rank 10 in the number of reckless driving offenses per driver.

  • Rank within state: #10
  • Percent of drivers in Columbia with a reckless driving offense: 0.26%

Most Popular Vehicle in Columbia

Some car models are just more popular than others and trends can vary from place to place. The most popular vehicle in Columbia is the Nissan Altima.

How to get the best and cheapest car insurance in Columbia, SC

There are so many wonders to see at or near this capital city, including those fireflies that light up the night sky. But standing in awe of these critters is entirely different from wondering how your neighbor found a better insurance policy.

With Insurify, you never have to wonder whether you are getting a good rate. The more information you give its powerful AI engine, the more discounts you can unlock while watching your rates go lower and lower.

FAQs - Columbia, SC Car Insurance

I don’t know when my insurance is supposed to be renewed. Will anyone remind me?

By law, your insurance should be giving you notice 15 days prior. Most companies mail renewal notices 30–45 days before the policy renewal effective date. Many insurance companies automatically renew your policy, but you should never assume anything. The best way to be on top of things is to always know exactly when your coverage expires. You can find this date by looking at your insurance identification card under “expiration date.” If you don’t have your card (you should always carry it), some insurance websites let you print them out. You can also call your insurance agent and ask for another one. As a rule, insurance companies don’t offer any grace period on this date. If you’re late, you’re late. That’s another reason why committing it to memory or at least having your card on hand to remind you is so important.

Does SC require uninsured motorist coverage?

Yes, SC does require that uninsured motorist coverage (UM) be offered to you (not all states do). But it isn’t forced on you if you don’t want to take it. This kind of coverage pays for injuries and property damage if you get into an accident with a driver without insurance. The coverage required is a minimum of $25,000 for bodily injury to one person and $50,000 for bodily injury to multiple people in one accident. If you choose not to take it, you’ll be asked to sign a form stating so.

Why is SC car insurance so high?

South Carolina is among one of the most expensive states for car insurance. How does this even happen in a state that seems so much less crowded than places like NYC? A lot of factors go into calculating insurance rates, including the number of uninsured drivers in the state (9.4 percent), crime statistics, the number of claims people file, and the weather (think hurricanes).


The car insurance quotes displayed are based on an analysis of Insurify’s database of over 40 million quotes from 500 ZIP codes nationwide. To obtain representative rates, Insurify’s data science team performs frequent comprehensive analyses of the factors car insurance providers weigh to calculate rates including driver demographics, driving record, credit score, desired coverage level, and more.

Insurify’s analysis also incorporates the Insurify Composite Score (ICS) assigned to each insurance provider. The ICS is a proprietary rating that weighs multiple factors reflecting the quality, reliability, and health of an insurance company. Ratings used to calculate the ICS include Financial Strength Ratings from A.M. Best, Standard & Poor’s, Moody’s, and Fitch; J.D. Power ratings; Consumer Reports customer satisfaction surveys and customer complaints; mobile app reviews; and user-generated company reviews. 

With the above insights and ranking methods, Insurify is able to offer car insurance shoppers insight into how various insurance providers compare to one another in terms of both cost and quality. Note, actual quotes will vary based on unique attributes including the policyholder’s driver history and their garaging address.

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