Columbia vs. Travelers: Which Company is the Best Fit for You?

You've probably seen ads offering big savings on auto insurance, but are Columbia or Travelers right for you? Which company offers the lowest rates, or the most discounts? Read on to see how Columbia and Travelers compare, and to find out which carrier is the best one for you, your vehicle, and your budget.
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Quick Facts

  • In general, Columbia offers cheaper premiums than Travelers
  • Columbia offers more affordable prices for policyholders who drive fewer than 12,000 miles yearly
  • Travelers tends to be a much less expensive option for drivers with a DUI charge on their record

Columbia vs. Travelers: Which Company has the Cheapest Car Insurance?

So, you're thinking about switching your auto insurance. After all, you've seen ads from all sorts of companies offering substantial discounts. But exactly how much can you save by switching?

You might have narrowed your search down to Columbia or Travelers, but between the two, which company will save you the most?

Columbia Travelers

Looking at the national average rates for both companies, Travelers has average rates that are about 10% per month more expensive than those from Columbia.

That being said, that doesn't mean Columbia will necessarily be more affordable than Travelers for every single driver. After all, car insurance carriers can offer drastically different rates to each driver depending on rating factors like where you call home, your driving record, your age, or even your credit score (among other things). So, at the end of the day, rates from every company will differ quite a bit from person to person.

Wanting to know if Columbia or Travelers is really the right carrier for you? Keep on reading to see how average premiums can change based on all of the factors we've mentioned above.

Columbia or Travelers: Average Car Insurance Rates by State

State Columbia Travelers

Columbia and Travelers only compete against each other in two states, with Travelers offering less expensive prices to the average driver in all of them. Missouri has the most noticable difference, where Travelers premiums are over 20% more affordable than insurance rates at Columbia.

That being said, there are plenty of other factors that go into your auto insurance payment than just where you live. Read on to learn more.

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Which is the Best Company For Young Drivers?

Columbia Travelers
18-year-old drivers$324$353
25-year-old drivers$145$141

Young drivers -- especially teens -- generally pay a lot for insurance compared to older drivers. The reason is that young, inexperienced drivers are statistically much more likely to get into an accident that results in an insurance claim, making them much riskier to insure.

But still, even with seemingly sky-high prices, teen drivers can still find ways to save money. As you can see above, teens who use Columbia save nearly $30 a month compared to those who use Travelers.

However, both companies will offer you dramatically lower premiums once you turn 25. Travelers offers the steepest reduction, with 25-year-olds paying less than a third of what 18-year-old drivers are charged. Columbia's average prices reduce more than 55% during that same period.

Which is the Best Company for Retired Drivers?

Columbia Travelers
65+-year-old drivers$109$132

Once you approach retirement age, you'll usually enjoy the cheapest car insurance rates you'll ever see. You've been on the road for years, and all that experience pays off when it comes to your monthly prices for insurance.

So, which company offers the best rates to retired drivers? Columbia gets the edge, with premiums for drivers 65 and older over 15% cheaper than the national average for Travelers.

Which is the Best Company for Married Drivers?

Columbia Travelers

You may not be aware, but car insurance prices tend to be less expensive for married couples than they are for single policyholders. That's because policies for married drivers typically cover multiple cars, which a lot of carriers will offer you a discount for.

When it comes to relationship status, the two companies are comparable for single drivers, with rates only differing around $13 per month, on average. But for married policyholders, the advantage is clear - Columbia offers the most affordable average premiums.

Columbia vs. Travelers: Average Rates by Gender

Columbia Travelers

Because men are more likely to get tickets and get into accidents, they have a higher chance of filing a claim with insurance. Therefore, insurance carriers will tend to offer men more expensive rates.

Men normally pay almost 10% more a month than women with Columbia, and about 6% with Travelers.

When it comes to the lowest prices for each gender, Columbia comes out on top for both men and women. On average, women save about $17 per month and men save around $16 with Columbia compared to the average Travelers policyholder.

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Columbia or Travelers: Compare State Minimum vs. Full Coverage Rates

Columbia Travelers
State Minimum*$68$108
Full Coverage**$232$225

*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.

It's no secret that auto insurance can be pretty complicated. There are multiple different coverages that account for several 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.

Even so, the most common policies that many drivers look at fall into two categories -- liability only (that covers bodily injury and property damage for other drivers and their passengers if you cause a collision) and full coverage (which includes two additional coverages -- comprehensive and collision -- in addition to liability).

In this case, Columbia offers the most affordable average premiums for state minimum liability insurance, while Travelers has the edge for full coverage policies with similar coverage limits. Drivers looking for basic state minimum coverage can save around $40 with Columbia Insurance Group, while full coverage comes out to be about $7 more affordable with Travelers.

Is Columbia or Travelers Better for Drivers with Spotty Records?

It's no big secret that drivers who are accident-free get better deals on their 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 tickets and accidents on your record, but which of these two companies offers the cheapest prices to drivers with spotty records?

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Speeding Tickets?

Columbia Travelers
Clean Record$104$128
1 Speeding Ticket$118$160

Columbia policyholders can expect their premiums to go up an average of $14 a month if they get a ticket, while Travelers usually raises rates around $32 per month, on average.

But Columbia has cheaper prices for drivers in both categories. Drivers with a clean record can save about $24 a month and drivers with a speeding ticket can save around $42 per month with Columbia Insurance Group.

Which Company is Best for Drivers After an Accident?

Columbia Travelers
Clean Record$104$128
1 At-Fault Accident$142$173

After an accident, drivers who have their car insurance through Columbia can expect to see about an $38 -- or around 27% -- increase in their auto insurance premiums. Drivers who use Travelers for their car insurance will see a monthly bill about $45 (or 26%) more expensive after reporting an accident to their insurance carrier.

Overall, drivers who use Columbia end up with the cheaper prices after an accident, with monthly rates averaging $142 compared to Travelers's $173.

Which Company is Best for Drivers with a DUI?

Columbia Travelers
Clean Record$104$128
1 DUI$236$205

If you get a DUI charge, you can expect some pretty significant increases in your monthly auto insurance bill -- generally a lot more than a collision or ticket. On average, Columbia will increase your prices around 56% after a DUI, while Travelers's average rates rise by just under 40%.

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How does Credit Score Impact Columbia and Travelers Rates?

You may not have known, but your credit score can come into play when carriers calculate your monthly bill. Certain states and companies do not allow for credit score to be used as a rating factor, but it will come into play for lots of policyholders.

Insurance carriers 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 less expensive premiums.

Looking specifically at Columbia and Travelers, which carrier has the most affordable rates for policyholders at different credit levels?

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Good Credit?

Columbia Travelers
Excellent Credit Score$138$119
Good Credit Score$141$142

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Bad Credit?

Columbia Travelers
Fair Credit Score$147$173
Poor Credit Score$174$231

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Is Columbia or Travelers Better for Drivers who Work from Home or Have Short Commutes?

Columbia Travelers
6,000 Annual Miles$150$164
12,000 Annual Miles$150$169

Did you know that the amount of time you spend in your car have a large impact on how much auto insurance companies will charge for coverage? Normally, the more miles you drive, the more you can expect to pay for coverage.

As you can see in the table above, annual mileage doesn't have much of an impact on how much Columbia charges. However, there's a small difference in monthly premiums for Travelers, with policyholders who drive the least paying about $5 less each month compared to those who drive 12,000 miles every year. Still, Columbia is the cheaper option for drivers in both categories.

Columbia vs. Travelers: Compare Rates for Urban, Suburban, and Rural Drivers

We've already mentioned how your home state can play a role in how much you pay for car insurance, but the type of area you live in can have a pretty big impact as well. Typically, drivers who live in heavily-populated urban areas will pay quite a bit more than rural policyholders due to the number of vehicles that are on the roads in those areas.

Columbia Travelers
Urban Areas$169$204
Suburban Areas$152$160
Rural Areas$129$136

Columbia tends to offer the lowest rates for drivers in every type of area, no matter if it's urban, suburban, or rural.

For drivers in urban ZIP codes, Columbia offers premiums around $169 a month compared to Travelers's $204. People who live in suburban ZIP codes can expect to pay about $152 a month for Columbia and $160 for Travelers. Lastly, those in rural areas tend to get the most affordable prices from both carriers, with average monthly premiums coming in at $129 and $136 for Columbia and Travelers respectively.

Columbia vs. Travelers Discounts

You want to save as much money as possible, right? The best way to do that is by utilizing as many insurance discounts as you can.

But where do you even start? With so many discounts out there, it may seem difficult to find all the of the ones you can take advantage of.

In the section below, we've broken down all of the different discounts offered by both Columbia and Travelers so that you can see which company can save you the most money each month.

Columbia Travelers
ABS Discount
Advance Quote Discount 
Alternative Fuel Discount 
Anti-Theft Discount
Continuous Insurance Discount 
Covid-19 Relief Discount 
Defensive Driver Discount
Distant Student Discount
Driver Training Discount
DRL Discount 
Education Discount 
EFT Discount 
Electric Vehicle Discount 
Employee Discount 
Good Driving Discount 
Good Payer Discount 
Good Student Discount
Group Discount 
Homeowner Discount 
Hybrid Vehicle Discount 

Travelers knocks Columbia out of the park when it comes to the sheer number of discounts available, offering 25 different discounts to Columbia's 25.

Both companies offer a lot of the same discounts -- like discounts for being a defensive driver, distant student discounts, and multi-policy discounts -- but Travelers also offers advance quote discounts, alternative fuel discounts, continuous insurance discounts, and more that Columbia does not.

On the flip side, Columbia has a couple unique discounts of its own -- education discounts, employee discounts, and discounts for being a homeowner.

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Final Thoughts: Is Columbia or Travelers Best for You?

You've seen the effect certain factors have on your auto insurance and the different discounts carriers offer. But, at the end of the day, which insurance carrier is the right carrier for you and your specific driver profile?

Columbia might be best for you if....

  • You haven't received any speeding tickets or been in an accident in the last few years.
  • Your neighborhood is in a rural area.
  • You drive fewer than 6,000 miles annually.

Travelers might be best for you if...

  • You have a DUI charge on your record.
  • You're looking for discounts -- Travelers has the most.
  • You're looking for more protection with "full coverage" car insurance.

We hope this guide helps you get a better idea of the difference between Columbia and Travelers. 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 best way to make sure you're getting the best deal on your car insurance policy is to compare quotes from multiple companies, not just Columbia and Travelers. Luckily, makes it easy for you to do just that. Just enter your ZIP code below and get free quotes from dozens of top auto insurance carriers in your area, all in just a few minutes.

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Columbia vs. Travelers FAQs

Is Columbia or Travelers cheaper?

Looking just at the national average rates, Columbia is the more affordable of the two companies, offering average rates of $150 per month compared to $167 for Travelers. However, Columbia won't necessarily be the cheapest company for each driver, since there are a bunch of different variables that come into play when it comes to your car insurance cost.

Who is better, Columbia or Travelers?

Unfortunately, the answer truly is "it depends.". One carrier is not "better" for everyone -- it all comes down to what your unique auto insurance profile looks like.

Why do Columbia and Travelers offer me different rates?

Insurance carriers take a look at many different factors when calculating the prices they charge policyholders. Things like your driving record, gender, where your home is, age, and sometimes even things like your credit score can all be taken into consideration. Both Columbia and Travelers calculate premiums using different variables, 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 a range of different companies.

How do I know if Columbia or Travelers is right for me?

The only way to find the car insurance carrier that's right for you is by getting quotes from a handful of carriers and finding the one best suited for your individual budget. Luckily, does all the hard work for you. Just enter your area information and you'll get free quotes from dozens of the best auto insurance companies in your area. That way, you can guarantee you're getting the best premium. And who knows, the best company for you might not be Columbia or Travelers at all!


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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