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

Wondering if AAA or Root is the best car insurance carrier for you, your vehicle, and your wallet? We've broken down all the rates and discounts for both companies to help you make a more informed decision. Read on to learn more.
Newly insured car driving down the road
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Quick Facts

  • Looking at the national averages for insurance, Root offers significantly cheaper premiums than AAA
  • AAA may help you save more money -- they offer more discounts than Root Insurance
  • Root offers more affordable average prices for residents of suburban areas

AAA or Root: Which Company has the Cheapest Car Insurance?

So, you're considering switching to a new insurance policy. You've probably seen commercials and billboards from companies offering considerable savings, but exactly how much money can you save by switching?

You might have narrowed your search down to AAA or Root, but which carrier will save you the most?

AAA Root

Looking at nationwide averages, AAA has average rates that are around 80% a month more expensive than those from Root.

That being said, Root may not be the lowest or best option for every driver out there. Auto insurance carriers vary their premiums depending on things like how clean your driving record is, where you live, how good your credit score is, how old you are, and all sorts of other factors, so rates could change drastically from person to person.

Luckily, we've broken down average prices from both AAA and Root by several different rate factors, so read on to find out which company is the best for you.

AAA vs. Root: Average Car Insurance Rates by State

State AAA Root

AAA and Root only compete against each other in Arizona, where Root offers the cheaper average premiums. Root drivers tend to pay about $284 per month less on average compared to drivers who use AAA for their insurance.

There's a lot more that goes into your car insurance bill than just the state you live in. Continue reading to see how other variables will affect your rates.

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Which is the Best Company For Young Drivers?

AAA Root
18-year-old drivers$689$136
25-year-old drivers$276$52

You might already know that teen drivers typically pay a lot more for auto insurance than any group out there on the road. That's because teen drivers are statistically much more likely to get into an accident that results in an auto insurance claim, making them much riskier to insure.

However, that doesn't mean teen drivers can't still save money on their car insurance. Just look at the table above -- where 18-year-old drivers who have Root for their insurance pay over 80% less than those who use AAA.

Even so, both companies will offer you dramatically lower prices once you turn 25. For example, average rates for AAA policyholders decrease almost 60% and Root's premiums drop more than 60% over that time.

Which is the Best Company for Retired Drivers?

AAA Root
65+-year-old drivers$238$57

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

When looking at AAA and Root specifically, which carrier is best for retired drivers? Root gets the edge, with prices for drivers 65 and older $181 less expensive than the national average for AAA.

Which is the Best Company for Married Drivers?

AAA Root

You may not be aware, but auto insurance premiums tend to be more affordable for married couples than they are for those who are single. This usually boils down to married policyholders having more than one vehicle on their policy -- something several insurance carriers will reward with discounts.

For single drivers, the difference in average prices between these two companies is significant, with Root rates coming in at about a quarter of AAA's. The advantage for married drivers with Root is also obvious, where drivers save around $200 a month.

AAA or Root: Average Rates by Gender

AAA Root

You may not know, but car insurance is generally more expensive for men than for women. This is because men are statistically more likely than women to get pulled over for speeding or get into a collision, which leads to increased risk for insurers and, therefore, higher premiums.

Women usually pay over 10% per month less than men with AAA, but with Root, the difference is closer to 3% a month.

Looking at the data for each company specifically, Root offers the most affordable average rates for both men and women, with average prices 80% less for men and 78% cheaper for women.

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AAA vs. Root: Compare State Minimum vs. Full Coverage Rates

AAA Root
State Minimum*$169$46
Full Coverage**$459$84

*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.

Auto insurance can be a complicated subject for most people. There are so many different limits and terms that it can make it pretty confusing to find the right policy for you.

But most policies end up falling into two different types of coverage -- liability coverage (which provides property damage and bodily injury coverage for other drivers and passengers if you cause an accident) and full coverage (which normally refers to having collision and comprehensive coverages alongside what you get with a liability policy).

Looking specifically at state minimum liability insurance, Root has the significant edge, with average monthly rates coming in at $46. If you want a full coverage policy with the same state minimum limits, Root again has the edge, with policies averaging about $84 per month to AAA's $459.

Is AAA or Root Better for Drivers with Spotty Records?

You've probably seen plenty of commercials from insurance carriers offering great premiums for good drivers, but that doesn't mean people with less-than-perfect driving records can't save money, too.

It's no secret secret that speeding tickets and at-fault collisions lead to higher prices, but which carrier -- AAA or Root -- has the lowest rates for drivers with less-than-ideal driving records?

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Speeding Tickets?

AAA Root
Clean Record$213$57
1 Speeding Ticket$299$67

Policyholders who use AAA for their car insurance can typically expect their monthly bill to go up around 29% after getting a speeding ticket. Root policyholders can expect a less drastic increase of about 15%.

Even so, Root tends to offer the best prices for drivers both with clean records and with a ticket, offering premiums that are 73% and 78% cheaper, respectively, compared to AAA Insurance.

Which Company is Best for Drivers After an Accident?

AAA Root
Clean Record$213$57
1 At-Fault Accident$339$79

After an accident, drivers who have their auto insurance through AAA can expect to see around an $126 -- or about 37% -- rise in their insurance prices. Drivers who use Root for their auto insurance will see a monthly bill around $22 (or 28%) more expensive after reporting a collision to their car insurance company.

At the end of the day, drivers who use Root end up with the cheaper prices after an accident, with average rates coming in at $79 compared to AAA Insurance's $339.

Which Company is Best for Drivers with a DUI?

AAA Root
Clean Record$213$57
1 DUI$403$57

On average, a DUI offense is going to cost you much more than a single collision or speeding ticket when it comes to your insurance bill. For example, AAA increases average premiums by nearly $200 a month -- that's more than a 45% increase.

But if you end up with a DUI charge and are looking for more affordable prices, Root tends to be less expensive for the average driver, with monthly premiums coming in at about $57 to AAA's $403.

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How does Credit Score Impact AAA and Root Rates?

In many cases, your credit score can come into play when companies determine your monthly bill. This isn't true for everyone (for example, California and Massachusetts are two states that ban the practice entirely), but it does affect lots of drivers out there.

The reasoning auto insurance carriers use is that policyholders with bad credit will be less likely to pay their bills on time; so normally, they'll be asked to pay more, while those with good credit will be rewarded with more affordable premiums.

So, which carrier offers the best rates for drivers with good, average, or poor credit?

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Good Credit?

AAA Root
Excellent Credit Score$185$54
Good Credit Score$247$60

If you have great credit, Root will generally reward you the most. For policyholders with "excellent" credit scores, Root comes in over 70.81 less expensive. Drivers with "good" credit scores usually save around 76% with Root compared to average prices from AAA.

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Bad Credit?

AAA Root
Fair Credit Score$304$66
Poor Credit Score$539$79

Root typically offers lower premiums than AAA when it comes to drivers with less-than-stellar credit. Drivers with "fair" credit pay about 78% per month less with Root compared to AAA, and those with "poor" scores generally save an average of around 85% per month.

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

AAA Root
6,000 Annual Miles$307$65
12,000 Annual Miles$320$65

The amount of time you spend behind the wheel of your car plays a big role in how much insurance companies will charge for coverage. That's because the more milage you put on your car each year, the more likely you are to be in an accident and file an insurance claim.

As you can see in the table above, annual mileage doesn't have much of an impact on how much Root charges. However, there's a small difference in monthly prices for AAA, with policyholders who drive 6,000 miles every year paying about $13 less each month compared to those who drive 12,000 miles yearly. Still, for drivers in both categories, Root is the cheaper company.

AAA or Root: Compare Rates for Urban, Suburban, and Rural Drivers

Where you live can play a substantial role in how much you pay for car insurance. Usually, 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 Root
Urban Areas$384$77
Suburban Areas$301$60
Rural Areas$256$58

Root boasts the cheapest average premiums for drivers in every type of area, no matter if it's urban, suburban, or rural.

For drivers in urban ZIP codes, Root Insurance's average rates are around 80% less than AAA Insurance. People who live in suburban areas pay about 80% less with Root compared to AAA. Those in rural areas can expect to save around 77% with Root compared to AAA.

AAA vs. Root Discounts

No matter why you might be in the market for a new car insurance policy, you're always going to want to save as much money as you can, and the best way to do that is by taking advantage of as many insurance discounts as possible.

But with what seems like a million different discounts out there, it can be hard to nail down the company that has the most discounts for your unique driver profile and to find all the discounts you qualify for.

Luckily, we did the hard work for you and looked at all of the different discounts AAA and Root 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 Root
AAA Discount 
Academic Discount 
Advance Quote Discount 
Anti-Theft Discount 
Auto-Steer 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 
Mature Driver Discount 
Military Discount 

AAA blows Root away when it comes to the sheer amount of discounts available, offering 28 more discounts than Root.

There are a couple discounts both carriers offer, but AAA also offers discounts for AAA, academic, advance quote, and more.

On the other hand, Root has a proprietary discount of their own -- a auto-steer discounts.

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Final Thoughts: Is AAA or Root Best for You?

So, we've broken down the average prices for many of the factors auto insurance companies look at, and we've shown you all the discounts each carrier offers. But, at the end of the day, is AAA or Root the best one for you, your vehicle, and your wallet?

Root might be best for you if....

  • You have a speeding ticket on your driving record.
  • You're looking for the best premiums on liability only coverage.
  • You drive fewer than 12,000 miles annually.

AAA might be best for you if...

  • You want to save extra money with discounts.

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

At the end of the day, the sure-fire way to make sure you're getting the best deal on your car insurance policy is to compare quotes from multiple carriers, not just AAA and Root. Luckily, sites like make it easy for you to do just that. Just enter your ZIP code below and get free quotes from dozens of the top auto insurance companies in your area, all in just a few minutes.

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AAA vs. Root FAQs

Is AAA or Root cheaper?

Root is the more affordable of the two carriers when looking at national average prices, with policies averaging $65 a month with Root and $314 for AAA. But that doesn't mean Root will be the lowest company for every driver, since there are a bunch of different variables that are considered when it comes to your car insurance payment.

Who is better, AAA or Root?

Unfortunately, the real answer is "it depends.". No single carrier is necessarily "better" for everyone -- it all boils down to your unique insurance profile.

Why do AAA and Root offer me different rates?

Car insurance companies use a lot of different factors when determining the rates they charge. Variables like gender, your driving record, age, where you call home, and sometimes even things like your credit score can all come into play. Both AAA and Root calculate premiums differently, so it's likely they'll offer different rates. The best way to determine which company is the cheapest for you is by comparing personalized quotes from lots of different carriers.

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

The only way to find the auto insurance carrier that's right for you is by getting quotes from several companies and finding the one best suited for your individual budget. Luckily, makes it easy for you to do just that. Just enter your ZIP code and you'll get quotes from dozens of your local top insurance carriers for free. That way, you can guarantee you're getting the most affordable premium. And maybe you'll find that the best company for you isn't AAA or Root at all, but another you hadn't even thought of!


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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