Compare Car Insurance Rates Side-by-Side

Use The Zebra's insurance comparison tool to see rates from GEICO, Progressive, Nationwide, Liberty Mutual and Allstate (+100 other companies).

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Why you can trust The Zebra

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Ross Martin

Insurance Writer

  • 4+ years in the Insurance Industry

Ross joined The Zebra as a writer and researcher in 2019. He specializes in writing insurance content to help shoppers make informed decisions.

Ross h…

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Mark Friedlander

Director, Corporate Communications, Insurance Information Institute

Mark Friedlander has over 30 years of experience in the insurance industry. He is the Director, Corporate Communications, at the Insurance Informatio…

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Susan Meyer

Senior Editorial Manager

  • Licensed Insurance Agent — Property and Casualty

Susan is a licensed insurance agent and has worked as a writer and editor for over 10 years across a number of industries. She has worked at The Zebr…

How to compare car insurance

This unbiased guide — written by The Zebra's insurance experts — outlines the factors that comprise car insurance premiums and provides tips to help you compare quotes and find the right car insurance policy.

Key Takeaways

  • Car insurance rates vary by person and by company. Who you pick as your insurance provider can be just as impactful as your driving record.
  • It is recommended to compare auto insurance quotes from different companies every six months.
  • The fastest way to get multiple quotes is with independent agents or comparison websites. 
  • The Zebra is both an independent insurance agency and a comparison website. We offer unbiased recommendations and advice on home and auto insurance.

We search and compare car insurance so you don’t have to.

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Why insurance comparison shopping is important

Your driving record, your vehicle and where you live are major rating factors for car insurance. But who you trust to insure your vehicle is equally as important.

For example, below you can see the average rates for a 30-year-old male driver with full coverage.

Company Avg. 6 Mo. Premium
Allstate $1,206
Farmers $893
GEICO $771
Nationwide $738
Progressive $941
State Farm $785
USAA $683

Although the driving profile is the same, there's still hundreds of dollars in premium difference between the cheapest and most expensive company. This price difference shows why it is so important to compare multiple providers. Even if your driving profile or vehicle is the same, the rate a company charges for its services is not.


Comparing car insurance companies and their services

Of the companies listed above, USAA is one of the cheapest but it's also the most exclusive. USAA is only available to military members and their families – so while the lower premium is appealing, not everyone will qualify.

Although Allstate is more expensive, it does not have occupation restrictions and it's one of the best and largest insurance companies. For many customers, the peace of mind and availability of local agents is worth the additional cost.

Outside of its services, a company might be more expensive because of simple economics. If your current company paid out more claims than it earned in premium, it could account for that by increasing rates next year. 

Even if you didn't file a claim, your rate can still increase because your insurance company's cost of doing business increased. In fact, 39% of customers who use our product state they are paying too much with their current provider.

Zebra Tip: Price isn't everything – consider company reputation

Sometimes an insurance company is cheap for a reason. After an accident is not the time to wish you'd known about your provider's poor customer service and claims record. Before purchasing a policy, consult a company's ratings from trusted sources like The Zebra's Satisfaction Survey.

Best way to compare auto insurance

Regardless of how you get car insurance rates, you'll first need the following information handy:

  • Personal information — including date of birth, driver’s license number*, and address
  • Driving and insurance history of all drivers on the policy
  • Vehicle information of all vehicles including VIN*
  • Payment. If you’re getting a policy for the first time, the insurance company will likely require a down payment before the policy is bound (accepted)

*Note that you can get a quote without a VIN or driver license number, but you will not be able to buy your policy without it.

how to compare car insurance
Zebra Tip: Don't "forget" to mention that speeding ticket

It’s important to be as accurate as possible when requesting quotes. The more honest you are during this process, the more accurate your final rate will be. If you leave out a ticket or accident in your quote to try to get a cheaper premium, insurance companies eventually find out and update your rate when they finalize your policy.

Using insurance comparison sites

The benefit of using online insurance comparison sites is obvious: avoid the tedious task of going through the quoting process for many different companies.

But be careful, many of the popular sites aren't comparison tools — they're just ads. Lead aggregators who will sell your data to insurance companies who contact you relentlessly in pursuit of your business.

If you want to avoid spam emails, texts and phone calls, pay close attention to the website's privacy disclosures and how they earn money. We recommend looking for websites or companies that are independent agents of insurance providers. Independent agents are licensed and authorized to write policies for multiple insurance companies.

This is exactly what The Zebra is. Only with our comparison tool can you fill out 1 form to get multiple quotes — all on a single page. Our team of independent insurance agents partner with over 100 partnerships across the US. Together, we can help you compare policies by price and by how much car insurance coverage you want.

example of personalized quotes from The Zebra

Real image of The Zebra's product — individual results may vary.

The Zebra does not partner with any lead generation sites. We do not ask for your phone number at any point in our product and never sell your information. We earn money by helping you get insured, but we will not sell you a policy if you already have the appropriate coverage at the best price.

Start the process online or reach out by phone to speak to one of our agents. Our in-house agency is licensed to write policies for many top insurance companies.

Don't just take our word for it

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Personal factors that impact car insurance rates

We've talked about the big reasons why you should compare, but now we'll talk about who you are and how that impacts what you'll pay for car insurance.

We will outline in more detail the impact your age, driving history, and credit score impact your rates. It is worth noting there are other factors you should keep in mind:

Car insurance comparison by age

Insurance companies equate age to years of driving experience. Younger drivers lack experience behind the wheel and are seen as riskier and more expensive customers. As you can see below, insuring a teen driver can double your premium.

Age Avg. 6 Mo. Premium
16-19 $2,520
20s $1,142
30s $872
40s $834
50s $777
60s $785
70s $903

Rates change as drivers age. If you're looking for more information about how your age can impact your car insurance, check out our guides below:

Zebra Tip: Seek out other coverage types to be fully covered

  • While property damage and bodily injury liability coverage are required in most states, it always pays to look into the optional coverage options 
  • Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverages provide a great way to protect yourself against drivers without enough coverage
  • Comprehensive and collision coverage, together known as “full coverage,” should be added to any leased, financed or new/moderately new vehicle. Around 70% of our customers insure their vehicle with full coverage

Car insurance comparison by driving history

Insurance companies use your previous driving history as a predictor for future driving behavior. Speeding tickets, DUIs, and at-faults accidents can be “chargeable” offenses on your driving record for 3-10 years (depending on your state). If you have any of these or similar driving violations, shopping around as often as possible is pivotal.

Violation Avg. 6 Mo. Premium
None $816
Speeding Ticket $1,003
At-Fault Accidents $1,119
DUI $1,413

Driving infractions can have a serious impact on your car insurance. The Zebra has put together the following handy guides on how your insurance is impacted by certain driving violations.

Car insurance comparison by credit score

More and more states are banning credit scores as a rating factor for auto insurance. However, it’s still a pretty common practice. Historical claims data tells insurance companies that drivers with poor credit tend to file costlier claims more frequently. 

As you can see below, drivers with “Poor” credit pay almost twice as much for car insurance than drivers with “Excellent” credit.

Credit Tier Avg. 6 Mo. Premium
Excellent $701
Very Good $756
Good $817
Average $891
Fair $966
Poor $1,417

Comparing car insurance: frequently asked questions

The best way to compare auto insurance is to use an insurance comparison site such as The Zebra, which gathers rates from multiple companies simultaneously. Our online app makes insurance less complicated, allowing consumers to find the prices and information needed to make an informed decision.

Getting multiple auto insurance quotes will not impact your credit score. Although most insurers do use credit as a rating factor, companies only run a soft pull on your credit — which does not impact your score. It also will not impact your premium with your current provider or future premium with a different company.

To start comparing quotes, you'll need personal information like date of birth, driver's license number and address. You should also know the driving and insurance history of all drivers on the policy, as well as the vehicle information (including the VIN) for the car(s) that will be listed.

You fill out one standard car insurance quote in our app and our comparison tool gathers personalized rates from more than 100 top insurance companies. Then we put all carriers, coverages and costs all on a single page for you to compare based on your needs. We even have licensed agents available via chat or phone to answer any questions you might have.

The Zebra earns money via the carriers we use to find you the best insurance coverage. Our services – regardless if you purchase a policy with us online or consult one of our insurance agents by phone – are entirely free. Unlike many insurance comparison sites, we never call your phone or sell your information.

Customer Questions & Answers

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Does my son-in-law's military status (Marine) qualify me as USAA member?

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Am I covered while I'm moving to a new state?

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Can I get a refund if I was double insured?

Thanks for reaching out to The Zebra! I can see how this is confusing for you.Now, it's normal for other drivers to be listed on a policy if they live in the same house as the insured and could possibly drive their car, but insurance laws prohibit someone from having duplicate car insurance co…
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About The Zebra

The Zebra is not an insurance company. We publish data-backed, expert-reviewed resources to help consumers make more informed insurance decisions.

  • The Zebra’s insurance content is written and reviewed for accuracy by licensed insurance agents.
  • The Zebra’s insurance editorial content is not subject to review or alteration by insurance companies or partners.
  • The Zebra’s editorial team operates independently of the company’s partnerships and commercialization interests, publishing unbiased information for consumer benefit.
  • The auto insurance rates published on The Zebra’s pages are based on a comprehensive analysis of car insurance pricing data, evaluating more than 83 million insurance rates from across the United States.