AAA vs. Nationwide: Which Company is the Best Fit for You?

Want to know if AAA or Nationwide is the better choice for car insurance? You're probably wondering which company offers the best rates or the most discounts. Check out our latest guide below to find out which of these two companies is the best for you.
Newly insured car driving down the road
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Quick Facts

  • Looking at the national averages for insurance, Nationwide offers significantly less expensive prices than AAA
  • AAA offers more discounts than Nationwide
  • Nationwide tends to be a much cheaper option for drivers who have received a ticket within the last few years


AAA vs. Nationwide: Which Company has the Cheapest Car Insurance?

So, you're considering switching your auto insurance. With so many ads from all sorts of companies offering hefty discounts, you're probably wondering exactly how much you might be able to save.

You've maybe even narrowed it down to AAA or Nationwide as potential options, but which company will offer you less expensive premiums?

AAA Nationwide
$314$170

As you can see, Nationwide has average rates that are about 45% per month more affordable than those from AAA when looking at the national average rates for auto insurance.

But that doesn't mean Nationwide will necessarily be cheaper than AAA for every single driver. Insurance companies vary their prices depending on things like how clean your driving record is, how old you are, where you live, how good your credit score is, and a ton of other factors. So, at the end of the day, rates from each carrier will differ quite a bit from person to person.

So, if you want to find out which of AAA or Nationwide is really the best for you, keep reading to see average premiums for each company broken down by a range of different rate factors.

AAA or Nationwide: Average Car Insurance Rates by State

State AAA Nationwide
AR$212$186
AZ$349$170
CA$215$219
IL$279$198
MO$376$200
NE$346$138
TX$179$156
WI$246$131

AAA and Nationwide compete against each other in eight states, with Nationwide offering less expensive rates to the average driver in all of them. Nebraska has the most noticable difference, where Nationwide prices are over 70% cheaper than car insurance premiums at AAA.

There's a lot more that goes into your auto insurance cost than just the state you live in. Read on to learn more.


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Which is the Best Company For Young Drivers?

AAA Nationwide
18-year-old drivers$689$380
25-year-old drivers$276$148

Young drivers -- especially teens -- normally pay a lot for car insurance compared to older drivers. It's because young, inexperienced drivers are statistically much more likely to cause collisions and other accidents that will result in an insurance claim.

But still, even with seemingly sky-high prices, teen drivers can still find ways to save money. Just look at the table above -- where 18-year-old drivers who have Nationwide for their insurance pay more than $300 less than those who use AAA.

Even so, both carriers will offer you dramatically lower rates once you turn 25. Nationwide offers the steepest drop, with 25-year-olds paying less than a third of what 18-year-old drivers are charged. AAA's average premiums lower nearly 60% during that same period.

Which is the Best Company for Retired Drivers?

AAA Nationwide
65+-year-old drivers$238$125

When it comes to auto insurance, patience and experience pay off, with drivers around retirement age paying some of the most affordable rates you can find.

But who has the best prices for retired drivers between AAA and Nationwide? Nationwide gets the edge here, with average premiums coming in at around $125 per month compared to AAA's $238.

Which is the Best Company for Married Drivers?

AAA Nationwide
Single$369$201
Married$239$129

Single drivers tend to get offered slightly more expensive insurance rates than married drivers. This usually boils down to married couples having more than one car on their policy -- something several car insurance companies will reward with discounts.

When it comes to relationship status, Nationwide is the clear winner for single policyholders, with premiums about $168 a month more affordable than AAA, on average. For married policyholders, the advantage is clear again - Nationwide has the edge when it comes to average prices.

AAA vs. Nationwide: Average Rates by Gender

AAA Nationwide
Male$331$176
Female$297$164

Because men are more likely to get into collisions and get speeding tickets, they have a higher chance of filing a claim with insurance. Therefore, insurance carriers will often charge men more than women.

On average, women see rates over 10% per month less with AAA, and around 7% less with Nationwide when compared to their male counterparts.

When it comes to the cheapest premiums for each gender, Nationwide comes out as the lowest option for both genders. On average, women save about $133 a month and men save about $155 with Nationwide compared to the average AAA policyholder.


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AAA or Nationwide: Compare State Minimum vs. Full Coverage Rates

AAA Nationwide
State Minimum*$169$112
Full Coverage**$459$229

*State minimum value indicates liability-only policies at each state's minimum bodily injury and property damage (BI/PD) limits

**Full coverage indicates state minimum BI/PD limits with collision and comprehensive coverages added to policy.

For most people, auto insurance isn't the easiest topic to understand. There are a variety of different coverages that account for a bunch of different things. Some protect you and your vehicle, while others only provide coverage for other people's property and health if you cause an accident.

That being said, most policies that many drivers look at fall into two categories -- liability only (that covers property damage and bodily injury for other drivers if you cause a collision) and full coverage (which includes two additional coverages -- comprehensive and collision -- in addition to what you get with liability).

If you're looking for state minimum liability insurance, Nationwide typically offers significantly cheaper prices of $112 compared to AAA's $169. When it comes to full coverage policies with similar limits, Nationwide again has the edge, with policies around $250 per month less expensive than AAA, on average.

Is AAA or Nationwide Better for Drivers with Spotty Records?

It's no big secret that drivers who are accident-free get better deals on their car insurance. But even if you have a spotty record, you can still find plenty of ways to save some cash on your monthly bill.

You'll probably end up paying more with at-fault accidents and tickets on your record, but which of these two companies offers the cheapest premiums to drivers with less-than-perfect records?

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Speeding Tickets?

AAA Nationwide
Clean Record$213$125
1 Speeding Ticket$299$149

AAA policyholders can expect their prices to go up an average of $86 a month if they get a ticket, while Nationwide usually raises rates about $24 per month, on average.

However, Nationwide has more affordable prices for drivers in both categories -- their rates are around 41% less expensive for drivers with clean records and 50% cheaper for those with a ticket.

Which Company is Best for Drivers After an Accident?

AAA Nationwide
Clean Record$213$125
1 At-Fault Accident$339$178

AAA drivers who get in an accident can expect to see their premiums increase by just under $150, while those who have insurance through Nationwide will see around a $55 increase.

Overall, the more affordable rates come from Nationwide, with monthly prices averaging $178 compared to AAA Insurance's $339.

Which Company is Best for Drivers with a DUI?

AAA Nationwide
Clean Record$213$125
1 DUI$403$230

If you get a DUI charge on your record, it's probably going to cost you more than a simple speeding ticket or even a collision. On average, AAA will increase your rates about 47% after a DUI, while Nationwide's average premiums climb by over 45%.


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How does Credit Score Impact AAA and Nationwide Rates?

You may not realized it, but your credit score can come into play when carriers calculate your monthly bill. This isn't always the case (Massachusetts, for example, has banned the use of credit score as a rating factor) but it might come into play for quite a few policyholders.

Insurance companies argue that someone with good credit is more likely to pay their bills on time, which makes them less risky to insure. Because of that, drivers with good credit will often be rewarded with cheaper rates.

So, which carrier offers the best prices for policyholders with poor, average, or good credit?

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Good Credit?

AAA Nationwide
Excellent Credit Score$185$133
Good Credit Score$247$153

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Bad Credit?

AAA Nationwide
Fair Credit Score$304$179
Poor Credit Score$539$215

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Is AAA or Nationwide Better for Drivers who Work from Home or Have Short Commutes?

AAA Nationwide
6,000 Annual Miles$307$170
12,000 Annual Miles$320$171

Did you know that the amount of time you spend in your car have a pretty big impact on how much auto insurance carriers will charge for coverage? Generally, those who drive less will end up with less expensive premiums since there's less of a chance of getting into an accident and causing an insurance claim.

Nationwide tends to be the more affordable option for both drivers who put 6,000 miles on their vehicles every year, as well as those who average twice that figure. AAA's average prices for drivers with 6,000 annual miles come in just under 45% more expensive than Nationwide. Those who drive 12,000 miles yearly can expect to pay more than 45% more with AAA over Nationwide.

AAA vs. Nationwide: Compare Rates for Urban, Suburban, and Rural Drivers

Where you live can have a big impact on your monthly car insurance bill. Normally, if you live in an urban area with more cars on the road, you'll pay a little more for auto insurance, while the opposite is true for people in rural areas.

AAA Nationwide
Urban Areas$384$199
Suburban Areas$301$159
Rural Areas$256$151

When comparing these two companies side-by-side, Nationwide typically comes out as the lowest option for drivers in every type of area, no matter if it's urban, suburban, or rural.

Drivers in rural ZIP codes see the most affordable rates from both carriers, but Nationwide comes out on top with average prices around $151 a month. Nationwide also has less expensive average premiums for policyholders in urban and suburban ZIP codes -- a $185 and $142 a month respective difference when compared to AAA drivers in similar areas.

AAA vs. Nationwide Discounts

Regardless of why you might be in the market for a new insurance policy, you're always going to want to save as much money as possible. That's where car insurance discounts comes into play.

But where do you even start? With what seems like a million different discounts out there, it may be difficult to find all the ones you're eligible for.

In the section below, we've taken a look at all of the different discounts AAA and Nationwide offer their customers so that you can easily see which company offers the most discounts and see which ones you might be able to take advantage of.

AAA Nationwide
AAA Discount 
Academic Discount 
Advance Quote Discount
Agency Transfer Discount 
Anti-Theft Discount
Covid-19 Relief Discount 
Defensive Driver Discount
Distant Student Discount
Driver Training Discount
DriveSharp Discount 
EFT Discount
Employee Discount
Garage Discount 
Good Driving Discount
Good Student Discount
Group Discount
Homeowner Discount
Hybrid Vehicle Discount 
Intra-Agency Transfer Discount 
Life Policy Discount 

AAA blows Nationwide away when it comes to the sheer amount of discounts available, offering 11 more discounts than Nationwide.

There are a couple discounts both companies offer, but AAA also offers AAA discounts, academic discounts, COVID-19 relief discount, and more that Nationwide does not.

On the flip side, Nationwide has a couple unique discounts of its own -- agency transfer discounts, intra-agency transfer discounts, life policy discounts, and more.


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Final Thoughts: Is AAA or Nationwide Best for You?

So, we've broken down the average prices for many of the factors auto insurance carriers look at, and walked through the different discounts each carrier offers, too. That's all well and good, but when it comes down to it, which insurance company is the best carrier for you and your specific profile and needs?

Nationwide might be best for you if....

  • You haven't received any speeding tickets or been in a collision in the last few years.
  • You want basic insurance coverage at the state minimum limits.
  • You're buying auto insurance for a teen and looking for a wallet-friendly option.


AAA might be best for you if...

  • You're looking for the carrier with the most discounts.

We hope this guide helps you get a better idea of the difference between AAA and Nationwide. We also hope we've given you the information you need to make the best decision about your insurance.

But, at the end of the day, there's only one way to know for sure that you're getting the best possible deal on car insurance -- comparing quotes from several companies, not just AAA and Nationwide. Luckily, Compare.com makes it easy for you to do just that. Just enter your ZIP code below and get multiple quotes from some of the best insurance carriers in your area, all for free.


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AAA vs. Nationwide FAQs

Is AAA or Nationwide cheaper?

Looking just at the national average rates, Nationwide is the cheaper of the two companies, offering average rates of $170 per month compared to $314 for AAA. Even so, Nationwide won't necessarily be the cheapest company for each policyholder, since there are multiple different variables (things like age, driving record, gender, etc.) that play a role in how much you pay.

Who is better, AAA or Nationwide?

Sadly, the answer truly is "it depends.". Neither carrier is "better" for everyone -- it all depends on the makeup of your unique auto insurance profile.

Why do AAA and Nationwide offer me different rates?

Car insurance carriers take a look at lots of different factors when calculating the premiums they charge policyholders. Variables such as where you call home, age, where your home is, gender, and sometimes even things like your credit score can all come into play. Both AAA and Nationwide calculate rates using different factors, so each one will most likely offer different prices. The only real way to see which company is the lowest for you is by comparing personalized quotes from lots of different companies.

How do I know if AAA or Nationwide is right for me?

The only way to find the insurance carrier that's right for you is by getting quotes from multiple carriers and finding the one best suited for your individual budget. Luckily, sites like Compare.com make it easy for you to do just that. Just enter your area information and you'll get free quotes from dozens of the best car insurance companies in your area. That way, you can guarantee you're getting the best price. And who knows, the best company for you might not be AAA or Nationwide at all!


Methodology

All of the data referenced in this article has been gathered in collaboration with Quadrant Information Services. We analyzed more than 2.5 million rows of carrier-reported data to calculate the average rates referenced above. All rates are based on an insurance profile of a single-vehicle policy for a driver that owns a 2016 Honda Accord. For more information on how we calculate rates, please reference our data methodology.

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