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Free Car Insurance Quotes

Find out how to shop for free car insurance quotes from top providers

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09/20/2023 01:36 PM

Compare Car Insurance Rates

Answer a few simple questions to save money on your policy


The first step when shopping for car insurance is to compare quotes from several top insurers. There are a few ways you can get car insurance quotes, which we’ll explain in this article. The fastest way to compare auto insurance quotes is to use an online comparison tool that shows you multiple options at once.

Our review team researched and ranked several of the best car insurance companies, and these insurers are a good place to start when reaching out for quotes. Our experts will cover how to compare car insurance quotes and help you understand the factors that impact your car insurance premiums. We’ll also list average rates by state to give you a better idea of how much an auto insurance policy might cost you.

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What Is A Car Insurance Quote?

Car insurance quotes are estimates of what you can expect to pay for a policy. You can get quotes from an auto insurer to see how much a policy would cost before signing up for coverage. Most online quotes are instant unless you shop for coverage through a smaller provider. To request a quote, you’ll typically need to provide the following information:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Marital status
  • Driving history
  • Credit history
  • Vehicle details such as year, make, and model
  • Address

You’ll also need to decide what auto insurance coverage you wish to purchase, as your quote will likely break down different coverage options. The standard types of auto insurance include:

Liability Bodily injury liability insurance covers other drivers in accidents that you cause. Property damage liability insurance pays for damages to other drivers’ vehicles in an accident in which you are at fault.
Collision This type of insurance covers your vehicle no matter who is at fault in an accident.
Comprehensive This insurance pays for any damages to your vehicle resulting from environmental factors, such as floods and fires, and incidents like vandalism and theft.
Personal injury protection (PIP) This insurance covers medical expenses, lost wages, and death benefits for you and your passengers, no matter who is at fault in an accident.
Medical payments (MedPay) This insurance coverage pays for medical expenses for you and your passengers when you’re in an accident.
Uninsured/underinsured motorist This type of insurance covers you when you are in an accident with a driver with little to no insurance or too little insurance. In some states, this insurance also pays for hit-and-runs.

Additionally, most car insurance companies will also offer add-on coverage options such as roadside assistance, rental car reimbursement coverage, and mechanical breakdown insurance.

How To Get Car Insurance Quotes

When starting your search for auto insurance, you have a few options for getting quotes. The fastest option to get quotes is to use an online quote comparison tool or get direct online quotes from providers. You can also go through an insurance agent or deal with a company directly through a phone call or in-person, though this takes more time. Here are some more details on the different ways to shop for car insurance: 

  • Quote comparison tool: Using a quote comparison tool allows you to enter your information and compare car insurance quotes from leading providers all at once. Our 2022 car insurance survey which polled 1,000 respondents found 30 percent of those surveyed used a quote comparison tool, making it the most popular way to shop and compare coverage.
  • Direct online quote: Most car insurance providers offer free, instant quotes directly on their websites. However, you will have to visit each company one by one. Our survey found just over 24 percent of the 1,000 respondents reached out to providers directly for quotes.
  • Quotes by phone: If you’re looking for a more personalized shopping experience, calling car insurance providers can help you test the company’s customer service. Insurance agents can also help you pick out your policy and answer any questions you have. Nearly 20 percent of the 1,000 people polled in our survey called car insurance companies directly for a quote.
  • In-person quotes: You can get in-person quotes by visiting your local insurance office or working with a broker. This is a more time-consuming process and there are certain constraints, as most insurance offices only operate during normal business hours. Around 16 percent of respondents in our survey mentioned they preferred talking with an insurance agency or using a broker when shopping for car insurance.

When Should You Shop for Car Insurance Quotes?

While you can shop for insurance quotes at any time, we recommend getting quotes when your auto policy is up for renewal or if you experience a life-changing event. You may be able to find a better price with your current provider or a new company.

Consider shopping for car insurance quotes if any of the following occur:

  • You get married
  • You turn a year older
  • You move in with family members
  • You move to a new zip code
  • You raise your credit score
  • You start a new job and will be driving less

Our car insurance survey found that 28 percent of the 1,000 respondents surveyed shopped for car insurance less frequently than once a year. Nearly 26 percent stated they shopped for car insurance quotes every six months.

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Factors That Impact Your Car Insurance Quotes

While not all auto insurance companies rate every factor equally, most consider the same variables when setting car insurance rates. When you’re comparing car insurance quotes, keep in mind that the following will be used to determine your premiums.

  • Age: Teen drivers typically receive higher rates.
  • Gender: Except where prohibited (California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Montana, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania), female drivers typically pay less than male drivers.
  • Marital status: Married drivers tend to pay lower car insurance rates.
  • Driving history: A recent (within the last three years) at-fault accident, traffic violation, or DUI will increase your rates.
  • Credit score: Except where prohibited (California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Michigan, and Washington), drivers with high credit scores typically receive lower rates.
  • City and state: Drivers in rural areas with lower theft and accident rates will generally pay less for insurance.
  • Car (age, mileage, model): Newer vehicles with fewer miles and more safety and anti-theft features typically receive lower rates.
  • Coverage choices: The more coverage you purchase and the lower your deductible, the more expensive your policy will be.
  • Discount eligibility: Most car insurance providers offer auto insurance discounts for things such as safe driving, safety features, and bundling your auto and homeowners insurance.

Average Car Insurance Rates By State

Every state sets its own standards and regulations for car insurance. As a result, costs can vary greatly from state to state. When comparing car insurance quotes, consider the average costs in your state to get an idea of what you should pay.

The table below shows average rate estimates in each state for a 35-year-old driver with a clean driving record and good credit.

State Average Annual Cost Estimate State Average Annual Cost Estimate
Alabama $1,478 Alaska $1,315
Arizona $1,658 Arkansas $1,462
California $2,519 Colorado $1,688
Connecticut $1,900 Delaware $1,943
District of Columbia $1,812 Florida $2,927
Georgia $1,587 Hawaii $1,255
Idaho $1,113 Illinois $1,494
Indiana $1,106 Iowa $1,121
Kansas $1,364 Kentucky $1,843
Louisiana $3,867 Maine $1,013
Maryland $1,970 Massachusetts $2,632
Michigan $4,430 Minnesota $1,515
Mississippi $1,379 Missouri $1,763
Montana $2,243 Nebraska $1,394
Nevada $2,354 New Hampshire $1,190
New Jersey $2,132 New Mexico $1,385
New York $4,048 North Carolina $1,278
North Dakota $1,341 Ohio $939
Oklahoma $1,652 Oregon $1,302
Pennsylvania $1,447 Rhode Island $1,947
South Carolina $1,610 South Dakota $1,348
Tennessee $1,237 Texas $2,094
Utah $1,463 Vermont $1,029
Virginia $1,109 Washington $1,286
West Virginia $1,418 Wisconsin $970
Wyoming $1,542

Your auto insurance rates may be significantly higher or lower than the averages listed above. For example, you can expect to pay a lot more for car insurance if you have a recent DUI. Your car insurance quotes are likely to be lower if you are an older driver with good credit and a clean driving record.

Recommendations For Car Insurance

When you’re ready to start comparing free car insurance quotes, we recommend getting quotes from multiple top-rated companies to find the best price and coverage for your needs. Two companies we recommend drivers consider are USAA and Geico. Both insurance providers offer comprehensive and reliable coverage and low average rates.

USAA: Best For Military Members

USAA is a great choice for low-cost auto insurance, but it isn’t available for every driver. You can only sign up for insurance with USAA if you are a member of the U.S. armed services or you have a parent or spouse who has an account with USAA. For those who are eligible for a car insurance policy with USAA, it’s often the provider with the cheapest car insurance rates.

Through USAA, drivers can purchase the following types of auto insurance coverage:

  • Liability coverage
  • Collision coverage
  • Comprehensive coverage
  • Medical payments
  • Personal injury protection
  • Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage
  • Rideshare coverage

USAA has an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and an A++ financial strength rating from AM Best.

Learn more about this auto insurance provider in our complete USAA insurance review.

Geico: Best Overall Provider

Geico is another great choice for cheap car insurance. Unlike USAA, this insurer is available to everyone, though military and government employees are eligible for special Geico car insurance discounts.

Geico offers the following auto insurance policies:

  • Liability coverage
  • Collision coverage
  • Comprehensive coverage
  • Medical payments
  • Personal injury protection
  • Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage
  • Mechanical breakdown insurance

Geico maintains an A+ rating from the BBB and an A++ financial strength rating from AM Best.

For more information about the company’s car insurance coverage, read our full Geico insurance review.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Who has the cheapest car insurance?

While the cheapest car insurance provider will be different for every driver, we found that USAA, Erie, Auto-Owners, State Farm, and Geico offer some of the cheapest average insurance costs based on our annual rate estimates. It’s best to compare quotes from multiple providers to find the cheapest option for you.

What is the best way to get car insurance quotes?

One of the quickest ways to get car insurance quotes is by using an online quote tool. This will provide multiple options at once to help you compare cost and coverage choices. You can also visit a local insurance agent, use a specific provider’s online quote tool, or contact a provider directly by phone.

How can I get the cheapest car insurance rates?

When you’re searching for car insurance, we recommend getting personalized quotes from multiple providers to find the cheapest rate based on your driver profile. You can also take advantage of any policy discounts or safe driving programs that insurers offer to lower your rates.

What is an auto insurance premium?

An auto insurance premium is the amount of money you will pay an insurer when you purchase a policy from them. Car insurance costs are based on several different factors along with the type of coverage you choose.

Who has the best car insurance coverage?

In our industry-wide review of the best car insurance companies, we named Geico, USAA, Progressive, State Farm, and Allstate as leading providers in the industry. We chose these companies based on their cost, coverage, reliability, and service. We recommend getting quotes from these providers when you start shopping for car insurance.

Do most car insurance companies offer other insurance coverage?

Yes, most car insurance providers offer additional insurance options such as home insurance and life insurance coverage. Some companies may also offer renters insurance and other types of specialty insurance.

How We Rate Insurers

Our review process aims to deliver consistent and unbiased assessments of car insurance providers. While there are multiple qualities that make an auto insurance company successful, our review team focuses on those we believe are the most important for consumers:

  • Cost: Cost can be difficult to compare between insurers because so many factors impact annual premiums. The cheapest insurer for one driver may not be the cheapest for another. To determine our cost score, we look at insurance rate estimates generated by Quadrant Information Services, discount opportunities, and consumer reports.
  • Coverage: To determine our coverage score, we look at the number of coverage options available as well as coverage limits and deductible options. Our ratings also take into account additional services and benefits like roadside assistance.
  • Reliability: It’s important that an auto insurer is able to meet its claims obligations. Companies with a strong financial strength rating from AM Best score best in this category. Established insurers with a long history of reliable service also receive positive marks.
  • Service: We comb through customer reviews on sites like the BBB to learn about customer experiences. Insurers with a low volume of complaints score well in this area. We also consider the claims process, giving higher ratings to car insurance providers that offer easy-to-use claims apps.

*Data accurate at time of publication.