Full coverage isn’t a single type of car insurance. It’s actually a combination of liability, collision and comprehensive coverage (plus other types of insurance in some cases). State minimum insurance only covers injuries and property damage for other drivers and their cars if you’re at fault for an accident, but full coverage protects you and your car in almost any situation.
In this guide, we’ll explain what full coverage is and how even the cheapest full-coverage car insurance can protect you better than liability insurance alone. We’ll also recommend some of the best car insurance companies for affordable full coverage.
Cheapest Full-Coverage Car Insurance Companies
Based on our research, USAA offers the cheapest full-coverage car insurance. The company charges policyholders an average of $88 per month or $1,054 per year. Bear in mind that USAA is only available to active members of the military, veterans, and their families.
If we take USAA out of the equation, regional provider Erie Insurance is the cheapest option, coming in at an average of $103 per month or $1,238 per year. Nationwide tends to be the cheapest option that’s available in most of the country, with monthly rates averaging $107 and yearly rates averaging $1,281.
The table below lists the average monthly and annual full-coverage rates for the top car insurance companies. These averages are based on a married 35-year-old with good credit and a clean driving record.
In the next sections, we’ll break down the cheapest full-coverage car insurance companies by state and driver age. We’ll also look at the companies with the most affordable car insurance for people with violations on their driving records.
Factors That Affect Auto Insurance Rates
As you shop for car insurance, keep in mind that rates aren’t the same for every driver or type of vehicle. To calculate your auto insurance quote, a provider will usually look at the factors below. But laws in some states don’t allow insurance companies to consider certain information–like your credit history, gender, or marital status–when setting rates.
- Location: You’ll pay more for coverage if you live in an area with higher rates of property crime and car accidents.
- Age: Younger and elderly drivers tend to pay more for car insurance. Rates generally begin to decrease after 25 but rise again after 55.
- Driving record: If you have recent speeding tickets, at-fault accidents, or DUI convictions, your auto insurance will be more expensive.
- Credit history: The higher your credit score, the lower your insurance premium will likely be.
- Marital status: Married drivers tend to pay less for insurance than single drivers.
- Gender: Male drivers are statistically more likely to get into car accidents, so they generally pay more for auto coverage.
- Vehicle: Luxury vehicles and sports cars are more expensive to repair and replace, so they cost more to insure.
Cheapest Full-Coverage Car Insurance By State
Each state has its own regulations for car insurance, so the average cost of car insurance varies by location. We’ll show average costs from the cheapest provider of full coverage in each state. We used the profile of a married 35-year-old driver with clean driving history and good credit for this section.
Big national insurers often have affordable rates, but you may find that a smaller or regional company has the cheapest coverage in your state. We encourage you to compare many providers to find the best rates and coverage for your needs.
¹We didn’t include USAA in this table. It’s often the cheapest insurer in most states, but it’s only available to members of the military, veterans, and their spouses and children.
Cheapest Full-Coverage Auto Insurance By Age
Your age plays an important role in the cost of full-coverage car insurance. Younger drivers tend to get into more car accidents, so they often pay much more for auto insurance. Our research shows Geico is typically the national provider with the cheapest full-coverage policies for drivers of almost every age.
For drivers in Washington, D.C., and the 12 states Erie Insurance serves, the company is commonly the cheapest regional provider for ages 16 to 18 and 40 to 65.
² Not including USAA
Cheapest Full-Coverage Car Insurance After Accidents And Violations
If you have accidents or speeding tickets or other violations on your driving record, you can expect your car insurance rates to be higher. Depending on where you live, your rates may stay high for three to five years.
The tables below show average full-coverage rates for a 35-year-old male driver after accidents or traffic violations.
If you have a speeding ticket on your record, you’ll likely find the cheapest full-coverage car insurance from USAA ($117 per month or $1,413 annually on average) or Erie ($129 per month or $1,549 per year on average).
These averages apply to tickets issued for speeding 16 to 20 mph over the limit. We found this type of speeding ticket raises rates by an average of $583 per year.
Cheapest Full Coverage After A Stop-Sign Violation
Running a stop sign is dangerous and can raise your car insurance rate quite a bit if you get a ticket for it. Based on the data we collected, this type of violation can increase your premium by an average of $550 per year. Nationwide is the cheapest mass-market provider for drivers with a stop-sign violation, with average rates of $137 per month or $1,650 per year.
Cheapest Full Coverage After A DUI
Having a DUI conviction on your record can cause your insurance premium to skyrocket. Our research shows drivers with a DUI pay an average of about $1,547 per year more than people with clean driving history.
Our cost data shows State Farm frequently offers the most affordable full-coverage policies for drivers with a DUI. American Family, Erie, Progressive, and Travelers may also offer high-risk drivers relatively cheap car insurance.
Cheapest Full Coverage After One Accident
We found that having an at-fault accident on your record can raise rates by about 55 percent on average. In this situation, State Farm tends to be the cheapest national provider, offering average monthly rates of $156 or average annual rates of $1,882.
Cheapest Full Coverage After Two Accidents
If you have two at-fault accidents on your record, insurance providers view you as a much higher risk to insure. Drivers with two at-fault accidents tend to pay around twice as much as those with clean records.
If you’re one of these drivers, you’re likely to find the cheapest full-coverage car insurance with State Farm, American Family, Erie, or USAA.
Cheapest Full Coverage After Three Accidents
You’ll probably have a difficult time finding cheap full-coverage car insurance if you’ve had three at-fault accidents. State Farm tends to offer the cheapest rates for these drivers, but its average rates of $195 per month or $2,341 per year are about 35 percent more expensive than the average cost for drivers with clean records.
What Is Full-Coverage Car Insurance?
A full-coverage auto insurance policy is often defined as a combination of liability insurance, collision insurance, and comprehensive insurance. Depending on where you live, full coverage might also include either medical payments coverage (MedPay) or personal injury protection (PIP), as well as uninsured motorist coverage (UM) and underinsured motorist coverage (UIM).
State minimum policies generally include liability car insurance, which covers injuries and property damage you cause. Full coverage handles those costs, as well as damage to your vehicle or property.
What Does A Full-Coverage Car Insurance Policy Include?
The table below outlines the standard types of insurance you’ll see in a full-coverage policy:
³MedPay is required in Pennsylvania for drivers who opt out of PIP. New Hampshire requires MedPay for any driver who chooses to carry auto insurance.
Additional Types Of Auto Insurance
Most auto insurance companies offer optional coverages you can add to your policy. Some of these coverages include:
- Roadside assistance: This might include towing, lock-out service, tire changes, fuel deliveries, and jump-starts.
- Rental car reimbursement: This helps cover rental car costs if your vehicle is in the shop for covered repairs.
- New car replacement: This pays for a replacement vehicle of the same make and model if your car is totaled.
- Gap insurance: Sometimes referred to as loan/lease insurance, this helps pay the difference between your car’s actual cash value and the remainder of your loan or lease in the event of a total loss.
What Is Minimum Coverage?
Minimum coverage refers to the minimum liability insurance limits your state requires. Virginia and New Hampshire are the only states that don’t require car insurance. To learn what your state’s minimum coverage includes, you can contact an insurance agent in your area or visit the website of your state’s insurance commission or department of motor vehicles.
If you decide to only carry your state’s minimum coverage, you’ll be responsible for any repairs or replacements your vehicle might require after an accident. If you cause an accident, minimum liability insurance won’t cover your injuries or your vehicle’s repairs. It only covers the other party’s property damage and bodily injuries.
Should I Carry Full-Coverage Car Insurance?
We recommend carrying full-coverage insurance unless your car has a low value and you can afford to repair or replace it. Opting for the state minimum can save you money in the short term, but if your car is seriously damaged or totaled, you could be left in a precarious financial spot.
If you can afford full-coverage insurance and your car is worth more than the cost of the policy, it can be beneficial for both your wallet and your peace of mind.
Recommendations For Full-Coverage Auto Insurance
We reviewed the best car insurance providers in the industry to help you find the right coverage. We recommend comparing car insurance quotes from a few companies before committing to a policy. That way, you’re more likely to find the best coverage at the lowest rates.
State Farm: Best Overall Provider
State Farm is the largest auto insurance provider in the country thanks to its reputation for low-cost coverage. The company offers the six standard types of insurance coverage as well as numerous add-on options. State Farm also offers a wide variety of car insurance discounts, including savings for good drivers and for bundling your homeowners or renters insurance with your auto coverage.
USAA: Best For Military Members
Our in-depth review found that, on average, USAA offers the cheapest full-coverage car insurance. The company often provides some of the most affordable coverage for those with spotty driving records. However, USAA insurance coverage is only available to active-duty military members, veterans, and their immediate families.
Cheapest Full-Coverage Car Insurance: FAQ
Below are frequently asked questions about full-coverage car 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 a car 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 Better Business Bureau (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.