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Graduating from a learner’s permit to a driver’s license is a right of passage for many teens and young drivers. It means freedom and the ability to navigate the open road on your own — but it also comes with higher rates for auto insurance.
Since teen drivers are the most expensive age group to insure, finding cheap car insurance may be top of mind for inexperienced drivers and their parents. We compared rates from dozens of insurance companies nationwide to help you find the best car insurance for your teen.
- GEICO offers the cheapest monthly rates for many teen drivers.
- Adding a teen to their parents’ policy is usually the most affordable option.
- Teen drivers must meet the same state-minimum coverage requirements as their parents.
The Best Car Insurance Companies for Teen Drivers
Whether you need full coverage or just basic liability, knowing which auto insurance companies are best for teens can help make shopping for car insurance easier. You’ll have cheaper options if you have a clean driving record, but there are still affordable options if you don’t.
We searched for coverage options, available discounts, and other programs to find the best insurers for different types of teen drivers.
Get Cheaper Auto Insurance for Teens in Minutes
Safeco: Best for teens with a speeding ticket
If you’re a teen with a recent speeding ticket on your record, consider Safeco. If you agree to install a plug-in device to track your driving behaviors, Safeco’s Rewind program will forgive the ticket.
Not only can you save with the Rewind program, but Safeco also offers accident forgiveness, a diminishing deductible (your deductible decreases if you maintain a clean driving record), and cash back for every policy period you go without filing a claim.
Safeco’s average monthly rates are $241 for adding a teen to an existing policy and $259 for a teen’s separate auto policy, according to Compare.com data.
- Multiple ways to save and protect rates
- Teen drivers are eligible for the Rewind program
- Rates might not be the cheapest
- Rewind program is not available in all states
State Farm: Best for teens after an accident
State Farm has the second-cheapest average monthly rates of for a teen on their parents’ car insurance ($174) and for teen drivers with their own policy ($186). But after an accident, your rates could skyrocket.
Luckily, State Farm offers multiple ways to keep rates low, like its Steer Clear and Drive Safe & Save programs. Teens can also get a discount for completing an approved defensive driving course and being a good student.
- Affordable rates for teen drivers
- Multiple ways to save before and after an accident
- Safe driver programs must be completed before an accident
- Rate increases after an accident could be expensive
GEICO: Best for budget-focused teens
If budget is your primary focus, GEICO might offer the best teen auto insurance for you. GEICO’s average monthly rate is the cheapest, at just $153 monthly on a parent’s policy and $164 for teens with their own policy.
GEICO offers teens multiple ways to save on car insurance, like driver training, driving history, and student discounts. You might also be eligible for additional savings if you belong to a student organization.
- Cheapest average car insurance for teens
- Customizable coverage options
- No teen driving programs available
- Might not be the cheapest for all teen drivers
Nationwide: Best for teens looking for better coverage
Some teens only need basic liability insurance, which includes bodily injury and property damage. But if you need the added protection of full coverage for your new car or just want greater protection, consider Nationwide. Teens pay an average of $202 per month on their parents’ policy and $217 per month for their own.
Besides the standard full-coverage options, Nationwide has extra coverages, such as rental car reimbursement, gap coverage, and roadside assistance. You could also save with accident forgiveness, vanishing deductibles (also known as a diminishing deductible), and a total loss deductible waiver.
- Multiple coverage add-ons to customize your policy
- Discounts and telematics programs can provide additional savings
- You may have to qualify for optional coverage
- Not all optional features are available in all states
Hugo: Best for students without a car
Just because you don’t have your own car doesn’t mean you don’t need insurance coverage. In cases where you drive someone else’s car or rent one, you might need temporary insurance.
Hugo offers on-demand auto insurance, meaning you can turn coverage on only when needed. This flexible coverage option may be ideal for young drivers who only need coverage for a few days. And if you need full coverage, Hugo has options available.
- Flexible liability coverage when you need it
- Full-coverage options are available
- No full-coverage flex plans
- Only available in 13 states
Cheapest Car Insurance for Teen Drivers
The cost of car insurance for teen drivers can vary by insurer, as well as whether you’re being added to your parents’ car insurance or getting a separate policy. Young drivers are more expensive to insure because they lack driving experience and make riskier driving decisions, like speeding and driving distracted, according to the CDC.
The riskier you are to insure, the more you pay for auto insurance. In the table below, we compared quotes from different insurance companies to show the average cost of insuring a teen on their own policy and how it differs from adding them to their parents’.
|Cost of Adding Teen to Policy
|Cost of Teen on Their Own Policy
GEICO offers the cheapest overall rates to teen drivers, with the average policy running just $153 per month if you’re on your parents’ plan or $164 if you have your own policy. That’s 12% cheaper than the next closest company.
State Farm also offers the average teen car insurance policy for less than $200 per month, but rates get pretty expensive after that.
At the end of the day, there’s not one company that’s the cheapest for every type of teen driver. Several factors go into how much you pay for car insurance — including your driving record, where you live, how much you drive, and many unique characteristics — so it’s important to compare quotes from as many companies as possible to ensure you’re getting the best deal.
Find the Best Rates for Your Teen in Minutes
Should Teens Be Added to Their Parents’ Policy or Have Their Own?
Adding a teen driver to their parents’ car insurance is usually the most affordable option compared to having their own policy.
Your parents already have an established relationship with the insurance company and may have valuable discounts that make it less expensive to add a new driver. Plus, if you live in a multi-vehicle household, you can drive all the vehicles insured on the policy.
On the other hand, it might make sense to get your own insurance policy in these scenarios:
- You (legally) own your car, and your insurance company will allow you to sign the insurance contract as a minor.
- A separate policy would be cheaper because your parent has several traffic violations, accidents, or driving offenses on their driving record.
- Your parents own an expensive luxury or sports car you won’t drive.
The best way to know if getting your own policy or being added to your parents’ existing policy is the right choice is to speak with your insurance agent. They can discuss the options available to you and compare costs.
Cost of Teen Car Insurance by Age and Gender
Teen drivers pay different insurance premiums based on their age and gender. A newly licensed 16-year-old driver is about 1.5 times more likely to be involved in a car accident than an 18- or 19-year-old driver, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).
Males are also more likely to be involved in crashes than female drivers, making them riskier to insure and increasing insurance costs. But as you age and gain driving experience, you’ll typically pay less for car insurance.
We compared average insurance premiums for 18- and 19-year-old male and female drivers in the table below.
The Cost of Teenage Car Insurance by State
The state you live in is one factor that determines teen car insurance costs. Insurance coverage requirements, types and levels of coverage, and state-specific automobile laws are other factors that affect insurance premiums in each state, according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.
The table below shows the average monthly cost of car insurance for teens by state.
The Best Discounts for Teen Drivers
One of the best ways to save on car insurance for teens is to add discounts to your insurance policy. Here are five discounts young drivers may be eligible for and how to qualify:
- Good driver discount: If you haven’t had any tickets or at-fault accidents in the last three to five years, you could be eligible for a good driving discount.
- Good student discount: Getting good grades in school is another way to get cheaper car insurance rates. Most insurers will apply a good student discount if you have a B average or better.
- Telematics program discount: Practicing safe driving habits can lead to savings if you allow your insurance company to track how you drive.
- Student away at school discount: College students who go to school at least 100 miles away from home and don’t take a car with them are eligible for this discount.
- Multi-policy discount: Insuring your vehicle with the same insurance company as your parents could qualify you for a multi-policy discount. Bundling your car, renters, or home insurance with the same company could also make you eligible.
Teen Driver FAQs
Although insuring teen drivers can be expensive, you can find ways to make it more affordable. We answered the most frequently asked questions about teen car insurance.
Who has the cheapest car insurance for a teen driver?
GEICO has the cheapest car insurance for a teen driver, according to Compare.com data. The average cost of adding a teen to their parents’ policy is $153 per month. Insuring a teen driver on their own policy through GEICO costs an average of $164 per month.
What is the cheapest insurance for a 16-year-old?
The cheapest insurance for a 16-year-old depends on coverage levels, discount eligibility, and other factors, like your driving record and ZIP code. GEICO, State Farm, Nationwide, Allstate, and Safeco are among the cheapest car insurance companies for a 16-year-old driver, according to Compare.com data. Teen drivers typically save more money when added to their parents’ auto insurance policy instead of getting their own policy.
What are the minimum car insurance requirements for teen drivers?
Teen drivers have the same minimum car insurance requirements as adult drivers. Each state has its own minimum coverage requirements all drivers must meet, but liability insurance is the minimum requirement in most states. In addition to that, some states may also require personal injury protection (PIP), medical payments, or uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.
Can you get your own car insurance at 16?
You might be able to get your own car insurance at 16, but keep in mind that minors can’t legally sign a contract. If you’re 16 and have your own vehicle, you might have to purchase an auto insurance policy with one of your parents listed on the policy. Comparing insurance quotes can help you find the best insurance coverage at the cheapest price.
Data scientists at Compare.com analyzed more than 50 million real-time auto insurance rates from more than 75 partner insurance providers in order to compile the quotes and statistics seen in this article. Compare.com’s auto insurance data includes coverage analysis and details on drivers’ vehicles, driving records, insurance histories, and demographic information.
All the quotes listed in this article have been gathered from a combination of real Compare.com quotes and external insurance rate data gathered in collaboration with Insurify. Compare.com uses these observations to provide drivers with insight into how auto insurance companies determine their premiums.
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