The Best Car Insurance Virginia Drivers Can Get

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A road in Virginia curving through yellow trees in autumn

Virginia is a bit of an oddity in terms of auto insurance. It’s one of only two states — including New Hampshire — where car insurance isn’t mandatory. But just because it’s legal to drive without insurance doesn’t make the idea a good one.

Insurance is protection against the unexpected, and from that perspective, car insurance just makes sense. So what can you do to stay protected against other motorists, acts of God, or just a mishap where you’re at fault? Discover the best car insurance Virginia has to offer.

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Do I Need Car Insurance in Virginia?

A woman driving her car with another woman in the passenger seat

According to the Code of Virginia § 46.2-707, driving uninsured is legal, but only if you pay a $500 Uninsured Motor Vehicle fee. So, technically speaking, you do not need car insurance in Virginia, but you’re tempting fate by passing on it. 

Virginia drivers can pay this fee directly to the DMV if they choose not to have an auto insurance policy, but be warned. It does not provide any insurance protection and only allows you to drive at your own risk. If you’re involved in an accident where you’re at fault, you’re liable for any monetary compensation to the other motorist.

Moreover, driving without insurance can create a financial burden in the future. When you drive without an insurance policy, car insurance companies take that into account when you do opt for coverage. This may increase insurance rates, regardless of whether you’ve had any speeding tickets or been in an accident.

Considering the average rates of most affordable insurance policies, paying a bit more for auto insurance versus paying $500 for none is a no-brainer.

Minimum Insurance Requirements in Virginia

Due to the risk of driving without insurance, most Virginians choose to insure their vehicles. Like every other state, Virginia has minimum requirements for liability insurance, including both bodily injury liability and property damage liability. The current minimums are:

  • $30,000 for bodily injury liability per person
  • $60,000 for bodily injury liability per accident
  • $20,000 for property damage liability

However, recent laws passed in Virginia will increase these minimum amounts dramatically. Starting on January 1, 2025, minimum liability insurance is set to increase to:

  • $50,000 for bodily injury liability per person
  • $100,000 for bodily injury liability per accident
  • $25,000 for property damage liability

As a result, you may want to upgrade to these new coverage limits preemptively to avoid sticker shock when the law goes into effect in 2025.

When shopping for the best car insurance in Virginia — at least in terms of liability — note that these limits appear as three numbers: 50/100/25. These stand for dollar amounts in the thousands for bodily injury liability per person, bodily injury liability per accident, and property damage liability. It could get confusing if you didn’t know.

Note that Virginia is an at-fault accident state, which requires the person at-fault to pay for the damages to the other motorist. Virginia also does not require uninsured motorist coverage or underinsured motorist coverage, although you may want to include it in your policy, considering others can drive without insurance legally!

The Best Car Insurance Virginia Drivers Can Get

A happy woman behind the wheel of her convertible having the best car insurance Virginia drivers can get

Whether you need full coverage for a new car or the cheapest car insurance to keep you legal, you have plenty of options throughout Virginia. With regional and national auto insurance companies available, you can search for a mix of the best premium, peer reviews, and customer service. Here are five options for the best car insurance in Virginia.


GEICO is one of the best car insurance companies for thrifty drivers. Offering some of the lowest rates in the Old Dominion, GEICO isn’t stingy on the discounts either. Whether you’re a young driver or a wily veteran behind the wheel, GEICO offers discounts such as:

  • Good student discount
  • New vehicle discount
  • Defensive driving discount
  • Multi-vehicle discount
  • Anti-theft system discount
  • Military member discount

GEICO also carries an A++ rating from AM Best, along with an A+ accreditation from the Better Business Bureau (BBB).

Another perk of this insurance provider is its tech-first approach. For drivers who want to pay bills, file claims, or contact customer service via chat or the app, GEICO is an industry leader.

2. Nationwide

With A+ accreditation from the BBB and a 4-out-of-5 star rating on Clearsurance, Nationwide is a sound choice for your next Virginia auto insurance policy. One of the interesting aspects of this insurer is how they factor your car insurance rates. The company may reconsider your premium if you have a poor credit score due to divorce, a disaster, or military deployment.

But what Nationwide does better than any other insurer is offer the cheapest car insurance in Virginia. Compared to other major providers, Nationwide provides lower average costs for liability coverage, making them a cheap car insurance company that doesn’t skimp on customer service.

Suppose you love off-roading or just getting off the beaten path. In that case, Nationwide is also one of the only car insurance companies to offer roadside assistance with ditch extraction — something that can come in handy if you’re blazing new trails.

3. Erie Insurance

Boasting the highest ranking in customer satisfaction in the Mid-Atlantic from J.D. Power, Erie Insurance is a top choice for the best car insurance Virginia drivers can get. In addition, Erie’s cheapest rates are around $200 less per year compared to the national average, according to Clearsurance.

Beyond its stellar auto insurance rates, Erie Insurance includes some great perks, including accident forgiveness (not letting a car accident affect your rate), pet injury coverage, and a three-year rate lock in Virginia. 

If you need more thorough auto insurance coverage than the state minimum — such as full coverage car insurance, comprehensive coverage, or collision coverage — the Pennsylvania-based insurer also throws in a diminished deductible perk. This program lowers your deductible by $100 every year you’re accident-free, up to $500.

4. Travelers

If you’re a fan of discounts — and who isn’t — Travelers is another superb option. As one of the frontrunners for the best car insurance in Virginia, you can lower the cost of car insurance through these programs:

  • Homeowner discount, even if your policy is with another company
  • Bundling discounts
  • New car discount, even on cars that are up to three years old
  • Paid-in-full discounts or auto-pay discounts

While it’s not the cheapest car insurance company, it makes up for slightly higher rates with features such as gap insurance, a low number of complaints reported to the BBB with 100% complaint response, and optional accident forgiveness coverage.

5. Mercury Insurance

If you have bad credit, a DUI, or are deemed a high-risk driver, finding lower car insurance rates for minimum coverage or other car insurance requirements can seem foreboding. But that’s what makes Mercury Insurance an excellent option for your car insurance policy.

Although Mercury doesn’t work exclusively with high-risk drivers, they typically have lower average car insurance premiums for those who’ve fallen on tough times or had run-ins with the law.

The company also offers some of the best cheap car insurance for rideshare drivers, good student discounts for teen drivers, and even a discount for using an e-signature.

A final valuable feature is Mercury’s RealDrive pay-per-mile car insurance discount. Not only does this lower rates for some drivers, but you also get a 5% discount on your policy just for signing up.

Compare Virginia Car Insurance Rates Today

The Linn Cove Viaduct, a winding road in Virginia

The companies listed above are a solid jumping-off point in your search for the best car insurance Virginia drivers can get. And if you want to get the best rate possible from Richmond to Norfolk to Bristol, the only surefire way is to shop for car insurance quotes on

Just answer a few questions about your coverage needs and your vehicle and input your personal information, and you’ll soon find the right policy for you. It’s fast, easy, convenient, and saves you time.


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