The Zebra Insurance Review: Is The Zebra Legit?

You’ve seen the commercials, but how does The Zebra work? Is it the best place to compare car insurance? Read on to find out.

by Nick Versaw Updated October 4th, 2021

In This Article:

What is The Zebra Insurance?

Originally founded in 2012 by Adam Lyons and Joshua Dziabiak, The Zebra is a car insurance comparison site that allows you to compare and shop for quotes from major insurance companies. Like similar sites and other quote comparison tools, it aims to help you find the best car insurance coverage at your desired price using the latest technologies.

Using The Zebra, you can quickly compare auto insurance quotes from hundreds of car insurance companies completely online. According to The Zebra, they have helped customers compare more than 6 million quotes since then, but are their services actually worth it?

How Does The Zebra Insurance Work? Is The Zebra Legit?

So, you want to start researching your next car insurance policy and head over to The Zebra to get a quote. What can you expect? How does it work? Where do you begin? Screenshot of The Zebra's home page

Beginning with a ZIP code, The Zebra uses your personal information and driving history to identify your risk profile, which then matches you with potential insurers for your vehicle. To start using The Zebra to compare car insurance quotes, you’ll need to initially enter some personal information and driving history. From there, you will be shown a number of different car insurance quotes that might fit your needs.

The questions The Zebra will ask you are pretty standard. You can expect to answer questions about important factors such as:

Vehicle

  • The year, make and model of your car
  • If you own or lease it
  • Your vehicle’s primary use (personal, commuting, pleasure, farm, business/rideshare) and estimated yearly miles

Drivers

  • Name
  • Birthdate
  • Address
  • Gender
  • Marital Status
  • Living situation (own or rent)
  • Credit score (excellent, good, average, or poor)
  • Education
  • If you are currently insured, by which company, and for how long

*For our sample quote, we used the profile of a 30-year-old female with average credit and a 2017 Honda Accord LX sedan with a CVT transmission. This hypothetical customer has one accident on their record, a high school diploma and is employed full-time.

All in all, it took about 10 minutes from the time we entered our ZIP code to when we were sent to The Zebra’s quote results page.

The Zebra Insurance Quotes: What Should You Expect?

After about 15 seconds of waiting for our car insurance quotes to populate (your experience may vary), we were asked to “build our policy.”  Here, were able to choose from three levels of coverage.

For the sake of our test, we chose the suggested option, which includes $25k/$50k bodily injury limits, $1,000 deductibles for both collision and comprehensive coverage, as well as $25k of property damage protection.

After another brief wait on a loading screen, we reached our results page, where we were finally able to compare our car insurance quotes. Screenshot of The Zebra's results page

Upon receiving our results, we were a bit disappointed to only about half of the quotes shown had prices – three of the six visible results all had buttons that simply said “Get quote” with no dollar figures attached. These appeared to be just ads, not actual results.­

After clicking “Show more quotes,” we found a handful of other results (that had actual quotes), but all of them had prices that were more than double the offer shown by Clearcover for $152/mo. (two of them were nearly three times as much!). Screenshot of Clearcover quote for $152.

From here, we were given the option to purchase our car insurance policy through The Zebra, but only if we selected one of the quotes with prices attached. After selecting Clearcover (the cheapest quote in our sample results) we were shown a brief outline of the plan and given the choice to “Buy Online Now” or call an 800 number to complete the process by phone.

After choosing to buy our policy online, we were taken to Clearcover’s own website, where a lot of our information was already filled in. But we still had to answer a handful of additional questions after clicking “Buy Online Now,” including a couple, such as accident history, that we had already given answers to on The Zebra’s own site.

Once we answered these questions, which took another five minutes or so, we landed on a page that showed our final rate. Screenshot of final Clearcover quote for $393 per month.

After being quoted at $152 per month on The Zebra’s results page, we were shocked to find our final premium cost to be more than 2.5 times­ that amount – a whopping $393.48 per month.

The possibility of such a huge increase in rates will definitely catch a lot of shoppers off-guard.

Because of this, we decided to go back to the quotes page on The Zebra and try one of the other choices. This time, we clicked the “Get Quote” button from Allstate, and instead of finding our information prefilled on their site like we did with Clearcover, we had to start the process over from scratch, once again asked to enter our ZIP code to get a quote.

Between the drastic jump in costs from the cheapest quote and having to start from scratch with the “Get Quote” results, we were a bit disappointed.

The Zebra claims its process is “fast, secure and free,” and while that may be true, for us, it left a lot to be desired.

The Zebra Reviews: What do Customers have to Say?

Overall, reviews on The Zebra are mixed, depending on where you look. Sites such as Clearsurance and the Better Business Bureau both have The Zebra hovering around the 4 out of 5-star mark, while others, such as Site Jabber and Shopper Approved, paint very different pictures. Screenshot of reviews of The Zebra on Site Jabber

On Site Jabber, many of the recent reviews are flooded with single-star ratings. The common trend between these seems to be the lack of actual quotes (which goes along with our own experience) and the selling of customers’ personal information. Screenshot of BBB complaints against The Zebra

Similar issues could be found on the BBB’s customer complaint section. It looks like, as of late 2019, The Zebra has stopped asking customers for their phone numbers, but reviews as recent as March 2021 still complain about users being bombarded by spam, no matter what the company’s “Privacy Pledge” might say.

(In our sample quote, we received around 10 emails from both The Zebra and its partners over the course of the month immediately following our initial quote. Again, your results may vary.) Screenshot of positive reviews of The Zebra on Shopper Approved

On sites like Shopper Approved, the feedback for The Zebra was overwhelmingly positive, with the Texas-based company boasting an impressive 4.8/5 rating. It appears this is the platform The Zebra promotes to its customers who have purchased a policy through its site, as the total is more than 2,000 customer reviews. Screenshot of one star review of The Zebra on Clearsurance Screenshot of a five star review of The Zebra on Clearsurance

Clearsurance – a website dedicated specifically to reviewing insurance providers and similar companies – painted perhaps the most realistic picture. Here, ratings ranged from several 1-star reviews to a number of perfect 5s.

Some common complaints on the negative reviews echo what we found above, while many of the positive reviews, much like Shopper Approved, raved of a great customer service experience.

Platform Rating Total Reviews
Clearsurance 3.86/5 422
Shopper Approved 4.8/5 2,184
BBB 4.37/5 116
Site Jabber 3.84/5 126
Consumer Advocate 3.8/5 N/A
Indeed 3.4/5 7
Glassdoor 4.1/5 73
Total 4.6/5 2,848

The Zebra Employee Reviews: What’s it Like to Work at The Zebra?

Employees seemed to be equally split. While some happy employees on Glassdoor encouraged would-be applicants to “Get on this rocket ship,” others warned to “stay away.”

Overall, the company scored a mixed review, at 4.1 out of 5 stars on the popular employee review site.

On Indeed, it was much of the same. Many employees raved about the perks, but cautioned potential recruits about high-stress situations and a “sink or swim” atmosphere. While there were only seven reviews on Indeed, The Zebra only scored a mediocre 3.4 out of 5 stars.

Who is The Zebra Good For?

The Zebra might be a good place to start if you find yourself looking for a new car insurance policy. Its process is relatively quick, and you can see a few displayed quotes on the result page after a few minutes. Unfortunately, you will need to navigate to other websites to view most of their “results” no matter how accurate your information may be. And sometimes, the quote itself will be way off from what you’ll end up paying.

Who is The Zebra Bad For?

The Zebra is not great for those who want a simple and straightforward way to compare many different quotes quickly and from the same site. Users who don’t want to enter the same information over and over again on individual car insurer’s websites to generate their quotes will find it potentially frustrating and slow when compared to other insurance comparison sites, like Compare.com.

Is The Zebra Insurance Free?

You won’t pay anything to use The Zebra to shop for car insurance coverage. According to The Zebra, they make money a couple of different ways, both include commissions from insurance companies when a customer buys a policy through The Zebra. This allows them to provide their service free of charge.

Will You Get Cheaper Rates with The Zebra?

No matter how you answer their questionnaire, the way The Zebra decides to advertise your monthly payments is unclear. In some cases, the advertised rate on The Zebra is only temporary. For example, you can get a $79 monthly premium for up to six months and then be expected to pay more in order to keep the policy. In other cases, the advertised rate is purely promotional and “one-time,” meaning you will pay a slightly different rate than you might have initially thought.

Either way, there’s no guarantee you’ll save money by using The Zebra.

The Zebra Insurance Claims

The Zebra provides no information on their quote result page about the process of making claims or the impact they may have on your premiums going forward if you need to make one. Because you don’t actually purchase a policy through The Zebra, but instead through one of their partners, any and all insurance claims are made through your insurance company, not The Zebra itself.

The Zebra Insurance Discounts

money

The Zebra says they account for at least five discounts on its initial questionnaire, but they are pretty basic and not at all-inclusive. You can factor in possible discounts for full-time employment, pay-in-full, autopay, and paperless billing, as well as being a veteran or active military member.

Of course, there are countless other opportunities for you to save on your car insurance through discounts that The Zebra will not be able to calculate in its quotes. The expectation seems to be that if you need or want to save the most on your car insurance through discounts, you will need to do the work of discovering them with your preferred insurer on your own.

The Zebra Insurance Coverage Options

The Zebra lets you pick from very basic coverage options: “Basic,” “Better,” and “Best.” It’s not exactly certain how these categories are established for each driver, but they give a general idea of what to expect from more or less coverage for your car as you navigate the quote page.

Where is The Zebra Insurance Available?

The Zebra is not an insurer itself, but it can generate quotes from major national and regional car insurance companies across the United States. By entering your ZIP code, The Zebra will identify your location and serve up insurers who operate in your area.

Pros and Cons of The Zebra Insurance

The Zebra shines in its simple appearance and easy way of collecting your personal information to show you a few personalized, promotional quotes on car insurance. It’s also easy to switch from the most basic insurance to higher levels of coverage with a click. Unfortunately, The Zebra blocks most quotes from view and forces you to engage the promised “match” on your own to see the additional quotes you want. It also seems that its ability to handle complexity like discounts or add-ons while generating quotes for users is rather limited.

How to Cancel a The Zebra Insurance Policy

Since The Zebra isn’t an insurer, you won’t need to cancel your policy with them. Instead, contact your car insurance company to cancel your policy if you feel you can find a better deal after using another car insurance comparison site like Compare.com.

Does The Zebra Have an App? Is their Site Mobile Friendly?

Much like you, we use our phones for everything, from sending texts and emails to shopping online or viewing social media. It’s only natural we use them to shop and compare car insurance quotes when we’re looking for our next policy, right?

So, how mobile-friendly is The Zebra?

The first place you may look for your shopping needs is probably the Google Play or Apple App Stores. Unfortunately, you won’t find a mobile app for The Zebra there, because they don’t have one.

However, when visiting The Zebra’s site on your mobile device, what you’ll find is an experience that largely resembles that on your Mac or PC.

In fact, in many ways, the mobile site is essentially a scaled-down version of The Zebra’s normal website. On the homepage, you’ll find the prompt to begin the insurance comparison process front-and-center.

After filling in your information and retrieving your quotes, you’ll also notice the experience largely resembles the desktop quote page, with each quote (or, in our experience, several ads mixed with actual quotes) listed from top to bottom in an easy-to-understand way.

To answer the original question, yes, The Zebra is mobile-friendly. They don’t have a mobile app, but their mobile website is easy to use and understand.

Your Car Insurance Journey Doesn’t have to End with The Zebra

Man considering his options

While The Zebra’s commercials and other marketing materials make it seem like they are the best and only car insurance comparison site around, your journey to find the best rates from multiple insurance companies shouldn’t stop there.

Sites like Compare.com also allow users to compare cheap car insurance, but with much more accurate results. We make sure to ask you the right questions – the ones the insurance companies want to know and the ones that will get you the most accurate quote.

We don’t want to leave you high and dry with your jaw on the floor when you end up looking at a bill that’s more than twice the cost of your original quote. Our goal is to provide the most results with the best accuracy of anyone in the business.

The Zebra vs. Compare.com: How do they stack up?

Compare.com The Zebra
Google Review Rating 4.8 stars 4.3 stars
BBB Accredited Yes No
Results with Actual Quotes* 15 out of 16 7 out of 11
Average Quote* $246.87 $300.86
Cheapest Quote* $138 $152

*Profile used for quotes: 30-year-old female, 2017 Honda Accord LX, 1 accident, proof of insurance, single and renting

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The Zebra Insurance FAQs

What is The Zebra?

The Zebra is a car insurance comparison site where customers can enter information about their vehicles and driving record to compare car insurance quotes side-by-side.

What is the best site to compare car insurance rates?

You can’t go wrong with Compare.com. With the most accurate quotes in the business, you’re sure to leave our page knowing you’re receiving the best possible savings on your next policy. Our business works just like The Zebra’s, only better.

How does The Zebra protect your personal information?

The Zebra boasts a “No Spam” policy on its site, but many reviews experienced quite the opposite. However, The Zebra doesn’t ask users for their telephone numbers, reducing the chance of follow-up calls immediately after submitting a quote.

How is The Zebra different from Compare.com?

While both sites let you compare rates from many of the nation’s top insurance providers, Compare.com produces the most accurate quotes by asking the right questions. In our study, we ended up with a bill more than twice the original quote when we quoted on The Zebra. On Compare.com, that difference was within just a few dollars. If you want to find the most accurate quotes on your next auto insurance policy, give Compare.com a try.

Is The Zebra an insurance company?

No, The Zebra simply allows users to compare car insurance quotes from other insurance companies. The Zebra does not actually offer policies of their own, it simply provides quotes so that car insurance customers do not have to spend as much time shopping around to compare prices.

Does The Zebra have physical offices?

The Zebra’s headquarters is in Austin, Texas, but it does not have physical offices like other insurance providers. If you are looking to use sites like The Zebra or Compare.com, you must access them online.

What are the pros and cons of The Zebra?

The Zebra, much like Compare.com, allows users to shop for the best rates on auto insurance in just one place instead of calling around to every carrier in town. This allows you to save both time and money on your next policy. Additionally, The Zebra offers quotes on home insurance and has dedicated customer service representatives you can talk to on the phone. Those are definitely positives. The downsides include that you may sometimes receive a quote that’s not accurate to your final bill since they don’t ask as many questions in their quote process. Several reviewers also complained of receiving little to no actual quotes, but rather ads, and some even said they received a lot of spam after submitting their information to The Zebra.

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