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

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Olivia Oksenhorn

By: Olivia Oksenhorn

Edited by Tanveen Vohra | Reviewed by licensed insurance agent, Amber Benka

Last Updated February 4, 2022

Why you can trust Insurify

Insurify partners with top insurance companies and is a licensed agent in all 50 states. However, the insurance experts writing our content operate independently of our partners. Check out reviews from over 3,000 satisfied customers, how we make money, our data methodology, and our editorial standards.

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.

Quick Facts

  • The average cost of car insurance in Columbia is $290 per month, or $3480 annually.
  • Car insurance in Columbia is $31 more than the average cost of car insurance in South Carolina.
  • The cheapest car insurance provider in Columbia on average is Kemper Preferred, but you should always compare quotes to find your best personal rate.

Quotes by Top Companies

Direct Auto
$93
Allstate
$114
State Farm
$114
Progressive
$145
Nationwide
$154

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!
Insurance Provider in ColumbiaQuotes
Direct Auto$93 /mo
Allstate$114 /mo
State Farm$114 /mo
Progressive$145 /mo
Nationwide$154 /mo

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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.
Best CompaniesScoreQuotes
American Family89$269 /mo
Safeco86$235 /mo
Liberty Mutual82$282 /mo
Travelers80$176 /mo

Average Car Insurance Cost

South Carolina Cities
Charleston$132/mo
North Charleston$125/mo
Mount Pleasant$139/mo
Rock Hill$139/mo
Columbia$154/mo
South Carolina$138/mo
North Charleston
$125
Charleston
$132
Average for SC
$138
Mount Pleasant
$139
Rock Hill
$139
Columbia
$154
Click here to learn about car insurance quotes and save on your current policy.

Minimum Car Insurance Requirements in South Carolina

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 be available when:

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

The minimum liability insurance requirements for private passenger vehicles in South Carolina[1] are:

  • $25,000 per person for bodily injury
  • $50,000 per accident for bodily injury

As a major part of your liability insurance, bodily injury coverage covers medical bills for people other than the policyholder who are injured during an accident. South Carolina is an at-fault state, meaning the driver who is responsible for the collision is also responsible for paying for any resulting expenses, either through their car insurance provider or out of pocket.

  • $25,000 per accident for property damage

If it’s determined that an insured driver is at fault for an accident, this coverage pays for repairs to the property of the other involved parties. Additionally, property damage coverage can cover legal costs if the insured driver is involved in a lawsuit following the accident.

  • $25,000 per person for uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury
  • $50,000 per accident for uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury
  • $25,000 per accident for uninsured/underinsured motorist property damage

Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage pays for costs caused by a driver with little or no insurance after a car accident. In South Carolina, drivers are requred to purchase this coverage for both bodily injury and 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.

Driver's AgeAvg. Monthly Cost
teens$598
20s$409
30s$312
40s$331
50s$274
60s$266
70s$286
80s$257

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.

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

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.

Credit TierAvg. Monthly Cost
Excellent$295
Good$359
Average$351
Poor$353

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
View more

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.

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

  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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).

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Methodology

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.

Insurify Insights

How Columbia Drivers Measure Up

While most drivers know that car insurance quotes are determined in part by your personal driving history, many may be unaware that rates are also impacted by the average risk of the drivers around you as well. Check out Insurify's latest analysis of driving records in Columbia, South Carolina below:

Methodology

Drawing from an internal database of over 4 million car insurance applications, the research team at Insurify analyzes patterns in car ownership and driver behavior - including how Columbia drivers measure up to their fellow motorists across South Carolina in areas including speeding, DUIs, and more.
Insurify Insights publishes data-driven articles, trend analyses, and national rankings each week on all factors related to cars and those who drive them.

nissan

Nissan Altima

Most Popular Car in Columbia

#14

City with the Most Speeding Tickets Rank in South Carolina

#13

City with the Most Moving Violations Rank in South Carolina

#53

City with the Most DUIs Rank in South Carolina

#26

City with the Most Suspended Licenses in South Carolina

  • 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 pay on average 37.5% more than drivers with a clean record
  • 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 pay on average 35.71% more than drivers with a clean record
  • 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 pay on average 26.79% more than drivers with a clean record
  • 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 pay on average 38.57% more than drivers with a clean record.
  • 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%
  • 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 pay on average 2900% more than drivers with a clean record
  • 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%
  • 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.

Insurify Insights

Insurify's team of data scientists and content specialists presents Insurify Insights, a series of automotive, home, and health studies focusing on the topics that impact us all. through expert analysis of over 4 million car insurance applications and an array of top data sources, the Insurify Insights team produces new data-driven articles, trend analyses, regional superlatives, and national rankings every week. See Insurify Insights as featured in Forbes, Fox News, USA Today, NPR, and more.

Olivia Oksenhorn
Olivia Oksenhorn
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Content Specialist at Insurify

Olivia Oksenhorn is a content specialist at Insurify. With a special focus in auto insurance and personal finance, Olivia works to help policyholders make informed decisions about their insurance. She received a bachelor's degree from the University of Colorado. Before starting at Insurify, she worked as a writer and in newsrooms and nonprofits across Colorado, including Aspen Public Radio and the Aspen Sojourner. You can connect with Olivia on LinkedIn.

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Sources

  1. South Carolina Department of Insurance . "State Minimum Car Insurance Requirements." Accessed May 28, 2022