The best car insurance for college students is from AAA, Geico, and Travelers because they offer the lowest prices and good customer service, according to WalletHub’s 2021 analysis. The best car insurance companies for students can save young drivers up to $900 per year, compared to the worst options.
10 Best Car Insurance Companies for College Students
- AAA: $792
- Geico: $973
- Travelers: $879
- USAA: $879
- Esurance: $987
- Progressive: $1,004
- State Farm: $1,251
- Allstate: $1,268
- Liberty Mutual: $1,228
- The Hartford: $1,293
Students should also consider joining their parents’ policy if they share a permanent address, as this can be the cheapest option for many. Alternatively, students who do not drive frequently but need their own car insurance policy can opt for usage-based insurance, which could significantly reduce how much they pay for coverage.
Best Car Insurance Companies for College Students
The best car insurance for college students is AAA because it has the cheapest premiums and offers a variety of discounts, such as good student, student-away-at-school, and new young driver discounts. However, it’s worth noting that drivers must be AAA members to qualify for the company’s insurance coverage. Membership fees vary by region, but a basic plan costs around $38-$90 annually and includes the company’s flagship roadside assistance service.
Geico is one of the best car insurance companies for college students because of its competitive rates, easy-to-navigate website and app, and varied coverage options. College students can also qualify for good student and driver’s education discounts, among others.
Travelers is one of the cheapest insurers for college students, and the company offers good student, away-at-school, and driver training discounts, among others. Additionally, customers can choose an optional “Responsible Driver” plan from Travelers to keep an at-fault accident and/or minor moving violation from raising their rates.
USAA is only available to veterans, members of the military, and their families, but it’s an inexpensive choice for college students who qualify. Plus, USAA offers a variety of different types of insurance, making it easy for eligible college students to bundle car insurance with renters insurance or another type of coverage. USAA offers several discounts applicable to college students, too.
Esurance provides affordable coverage for college students, though it’s worth noting that the company does not write policies in every state. Esurance offers good student, on-time payment, and affiliation discounts, among others. For example, college students in the Pac-12 conference, as well as Pac-12 alumni, can save with specially discounted rates from Esurance.
Progressive frequently ranks well in WalletHub’s cheap car insurance surveys, and its premiums for college students are no exception. College students can also benefit from a variety of discounts, such as teen driver, distant student, and good student discounts. In addition, the company offers a Name Your Price tool, which can help college students find a budget-friendly policy.
State Farm offers competitive rates for college students along with a variety of optional add-ons, like rideshare insurance, travel expense coverage, and rental reimbursement. College students can also save with the company’s good student, student-away-at-school, and driver training discounts. State Farm is the nation’s biggest insurer and writes policies in all 50 states, so it’s a good choice for students who want to buy insurance from a large company.
Allstate offers reasonably priced premiums and the option of pay-per-mile insurance, which is a good choice for college students who don’t use their car for regular commuting. College drivers can also qualify for a “smart student” discount by having good grades or by completing the TeenSMART driver education program. In addition, it’s worth noting that Allstate earned a high score from WalletHub editors for its claim services, since drivers can file a claim online, via the app, or using a 24/7 claims support phone line.
Liberty Mutual offers low prices for college students as well as opportunities to save through good student and student-away-at-school discounts. College students can also take advantage of various add-on options, such as rental car reimbursement and roadside assistance. Another benefit of purchasing a Liberty Mutual policy is that the company’s website and claim systems are simple and easy to use.
Although The Hartford is well-known for its AARP auto insurance program, the company also provides competitively priced coverage to college students. College drivers can also save extra with the company’s good student discount.
Best Car Insurance Companies for College Students Compared
|Insurer||Average Annual Premium||WalletHub Editor Rating|
The average car insurance cost for a college student is $1,257. AAA is the best car insurance company for college students to get their own policy, because they tend to offer premiums that are below the national average. On the other hand, the best car insurance company for adding a college student to a parent’s existing policy is Geico.
The premium costs listed in the table above reflect the average of a series of quotes obtained by WalletHub for 22-year-old college students with their own policies. However, it’s important to note that prices vary due to individual characteristics, so the best way to find cheap car insurance for students is always to compare multiple quotes.
Car Insurance Discounts for College Students
College students can benefit from good student discounts, which are available from each of the 10 largest insurers. To qualify, drivers normally need to maintain a B average or better.
Additionally, certain insurers provide a “student away at school” discount for young drivers who keep their car more than 100 miles away from their college or university. College student discounts can also include savings for completing a driver’s education (or equivalent driver training) course.
Some universities, fraternities, and sororities are affiliated with certain insurance companies, too, which means members can receive discounts. And, like any other driver, college students should check for general discounts as well.
Tips for Finding Cheap Car Insurance for College Students
Comparing quotes is important for anyone buying car insurance, since premiums vary widely by company. However, it’s especially important for college students because they usually pay more due to their age.
Take advantage of discounts
College students should look for good-student and student-away-at-school discounts, as well as driver training discounts. Check for non-college-related discounts, too, and don’t be afraid to call your insurance company to ensure that you’re getting every discount you are eligible for.
Evaluate your coverage options
In many states, the minimum liability requirements are not enough to protect you from the financial consequences of a serious accident. But everyone’s circumstances differ, so do your research before selecting your coverage types and amounts. For example, if you drive an old car that’s not worth much, it might be better to save for a new car rather than spending extra for full coverage insurance.
Stay on your family policy when possible
Most college students are eligible to stay on their family’s car insurance, which is usually cheaper than getting your own policy. On the other hand, it might be cheaper to purchase your own policy if one of your family members has a bad driving record, or if you are going to college in an area with cheaper car insurance. In addition, you will need your own policy if you are no longer considered a dependent or if you move somewhere else permanently.
WalletHub editors ranked 17 car insurance companies to determine the best cheap car insurance for college students. The companies were evaluated based on:
- Number of available discounts specific to college students
- User rating on WalletHub
- WalletHub editor rating
Companies earned a maximum of 5 points for each category. WalletHub editors then ranked companies by total points to determine the best car insurance for college students. Price was used as a tiebreaker for companies that earned the same number of points.
The premiums used are an average of a series of quotes sourced from Quadrant Information Services for California ZIP codes based on a 22-year-old college student driver. The following coverage limits were applied:
- $50,000 bodily injury liability coverage per person
- $100,000 bodily injury liability coverage per accident
- $25,000 property damage liability coverage per accident
- $50,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury coverage per person
- $100,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury coverage per accident
- $25,000 uninsured motorist property damage coverage per accident