GEICO vs. Shelter: Which Company is the Best Fit for You?

If you're in the market for a new auto insurance policy, you might be wondering how Shelter and GEICO compare when it comes to the lowest premiums and biggest discounts. To find out which of these companies is the best fit for you and your wallet, check out our newest guide below.
Newly insured car driving down the road
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Quick Facts

  • Looking at the national averages for car insurance, GEICO offers more affordable prices than Shelter
  • GEICO has less expensive rates for drivers who have an at-fault accident on their record
  • Shelter offers more affordable premiums for residents in Arkansas, Kansas, Kentucky, Missouri, Mississippi, Nebraska, and Oklahoma

GEICO vs. Shelter: 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 large discounts, you're probably wondering exactly how much you might be able to save.

You might have narrowed it down to GEICO or Shelter, but between the two, which one will offer you cheaper prices?

GEICO Shelter

Looking at nationwide averages, Shelter has average rates that are about 11% per month more expensive than those from GEICO.

But that doesn't necessarily mean GEICO will be the more affordable option for every single driver. Auto insurance companies use all sorts of complex algorithms to calculate rates, so depending on how clean your driving record is or where you live (among a multitude of other factors), you could see wildly different premiums from the ones above.

Wanting to know if GEICO or Shelter is really the right company for you? Keep on reading to see how average prices can change based on all of the factors we've mentioned above.

GEICO or Shelter: Average Car Insurance Rates by State

State GEICO Shelter

GEICO and Shelter compete against each other in seven states, with GEICO offering cheaper rates to the average driver in all of them. If you live in Missouri, Shelter is the less expensive of the two carriers when looking at the overall average prices. GEICO is the more affordable option in Arkansas, Kansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, and Nebraska.

That being said, there are plenty of other factors that go into your insurance bill than just the state you live in. Read on to find out more.

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Which is the Best Company For Young Drivers?

GEICO Shelter
18-year-old drivers$369$444
25-year-old drivers$163$197

You might already know that teen drivers typically pay a lot more for car insurance than any group out there on the road. It's generally because young, inexperienced 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 that teen drivers have to just accept sky-high auto insurance rates. As you can see above, teens who use GEICO save $75 a month compared to those who use Shelter.

That being said, with both companies, you'll see your premiums reduce significantly by the time you turn 25. For example, average rates for GEICO policyholders lower more than 55% and Shelter's prices drop over 55% over that time.

Which is the Best Company for Retired Drivers?

GEICO Shelter
65+-year-old drivers$148$141

Once you approach retirement age, you'll normally enjoy the most affordable car insurance premiums you'll ever find. You've been on the road for years, and all that experience pays off when it comes to your monthly prices for insurance.

But who has the best rates for retired drivers between GEICO and Shelter? Shelter gets the slight edge here, with average premiums coming in at around $141 monthly compared to GEICO's $148. Even so, the difference is only about 5%, so other factors (such as where you live or your driving record) will likely come into play when determining which carrier has the cheapest prices for you.

Which is the Best Company for Married Drivers?

GEICO Shelter

Single policyholders tend to get offered slightly more expensive auto insurance rates than married couples. That's because policies for married policyholders usually cover more than one car, which quite a few carriers will offer you a discount for.

When it comes to relationship status, GEICO is the clear winner for single drivers, with premiums around $36 per month less expensive than Shelter, on average. But for married drivers, that advantage is much less clear - GEICO offers the lowest average prices , but the difference is less than $10.

GEICO vs. Shelter: Average Rates by Gender

GEICO Shelter

You may not know, but insurance is generally more expensive for men than for women. This is because men are statistically more likely than women to get tickets and get into collisions, which leads to increased risk for insurers and, therefore, higher premiums.

Women normally pay nearly $10 a month less than men with GEICO, while with Shelter, the difference is closer to $25 per month.

Looking at the data for each company specifically, GEICO offers the cheapest average rates for both men and women, with average premiums $32 less for men and $15 cheaper for women.

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GEICO or Shelter: Compare State Minimum vs. Full Coverage Rates

GEICO Shelter
State Minimum*$101$129
Full Coverage**$269$288

*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.

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

The two most common policies that many drivers look at fall into two categories -- liability only (which provides property damage and bodily injury coverage for other drivers and passengers if you cause an accident) and full coverage (which includes comprehensive and collision coverages that protect your own vehicle, in addition to what you get with a liability policy).

If you're looking for state minimum limits for liability insurance, GEICO usually offers cheaper prices of $101 compared to Shelter's $129. When it comes to full coverage policies with similar limits, GEICO again has the edge, with policies about $20 a month more affordable than Shelter, on average.

Is GEICO or Shelter Better for Drivers with Spotty Records?

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

Tickets and accidents will most likely raise your rates, but is GEICO or Shelter less expensive for drivers with less-than-ideal driving records?

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Speeding Tickets?

GEICO Shelter
Clean Record$115$142
1 Speeding Ticket$150$181

GEICO policyholders can expect their premiums to go up an average of $35 per month if they get a ticket, while Shelter typically raises rates around $39 a month, on average.

But GEICO has cheaper prices for drivers in both categories. Drivers with a clean record can save about $27 per month and drivers with a speeding ticket can save around $31 a month with GEICO.

Which Company is Best for Drivers After an Accident?

GEICO Shelter
Clean Record$115$142
1 At-Fault Accident$200$234

After an accident, drivers who have their insurance through GEICO can expect to see about an $85 -- or around 43% -- increase in their car insurance premiums. Drivers who use Shelter for their auto insurance will see a monthly bill about $92 (or 39%) more expensive after reporting a collision to their insurance carrier.

Overall, GEICO offers the most affordable prices for drivers with an at-fault collision on their records, with monthly rates averaging $200 compared to Shelter Insurance's $234.

Which Company is Best for Drivers with a DUI?

GEICO Shelter
Clean Record$115$142
1 DUI$275$277

If you get a DUI charge on your record, it's probably going to cost you more than a simple ticket or even an accident. For example, GEICO increases average premiums by over $150 per month -- that's just under a 60% increase.

If you have a DUI on your record and are looking for more affordable prices, GEICO tends to be the much more affordable option with average rates of $275 a month compared to $277 from Shelter.

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How does Credit Score Impact GEICO and Shelter Rates?

In many cases, your credit score can come into play when companies determine your monthly bill. Certain states and carriers do not allow for credit score to be used as a rating factor, but it does affect lots of drivers out there.

The reasoning car insurance companies 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 less expensive premiums.

Looking specifically at GEICO and Shelter, which company has the best prices for drivers at different credit levels?

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Good Credit?

GEICO Shelter
Excellent Credit Score$131$164
Good Credit Score$164$187

If you have a great credit score, you'll usually find a better deal with GEICO. Policyholders with "excellent" credit can save over 20% compared to Shelter, and those with "good" scores can also expect to see savings -- around $23 or 12% cheaper each month.

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Bad Credit?

GEICO Shelter
Fair Credit Score$197$221
Poor Credit Score$253$261

GEICO typically offers lower rates than Shelter when it comes to drivers with a below average credit score. Drivers with "fair" credit pay about $24 a month less with GEICO compared to Shelter, and those with "poor" scores usually save an average of around $8 per month.

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Is GEICO or Shelter Better for Drivers who Work from Home or Have Short Commutes?

GEICO Shelter
6,000 Annual Miles$181$203
12,000 Annual Miles$189$214

How much you drive can have a big impact on your monthly insurance cost. That's because the more miles you put on your car, the more likely you are to get into a collision and cause an insurance claim.

For both drivers who put 6,000 miles on their vehicles every year, as well as those who average twice that figure, GEICO offers less expensive prices than Shelter. GEICO's average rates for drivers with 6,000 annual miles come in more than 10% cheaper than Shelter. Those who drive 12,000 miles yearly can expect to pay over 10% less with GEICO over Shelter.

GEICO vs. Shelter: Compare Rates for Urban, Suburban, and Rural Drivers

Where you call home can play a sizable role in how much you pay for car insurance. Generally, those who live in urban areas will pay more than drivers in rural areas because there are a lot more vehicles on the roads in those areas.

GEICO Shelter
Urban Areas$211$235
Suburban Areas$185$187
Rural Areas$159$203

GEICO tends to offer the lowest premiums for drivers in all areas, regardless of if they're urban, suburban, or rural.

In urban areas, GEICO's average rates are about 10% less than Shelter Insurance. Drivers in suburban ZIP codes pay around 1% less with GEICO compared to Shelter. If you live in a rural area, you can expect to save about 22% with GEICO compared to Shelter.

GEICO vs. Shelter Discounts

Regardless of why you might be in the market for a new auto insurance policy, you're always going to want to save as much money as possible, and the best way to do that is by taking advantage of as many car insurance discounts as you can.

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

In the section below, we've broken down all of the different discounts offered by both GEICO and Shelter so that you can see which carrier offers the most discounts and see which ones you might be able to take advantage of.

GEICO Shelter
ABS Discount 
Advance Quote Discount 
Anti-Theft Discount
Commercial Drivers License Discount 
Covid-19 Relief Discount 
Defensive Driver Discount
Deployed Driver Discount 
Distant Student Discount 
Driver Training Discount
DRL Discount 
EFT Discount 
Employee Discount 
Full Coverage Discount 
Good Driving Discount
Good Student Discount
Group Discount 
Mature Driver Discount 
Military Discount 
Multi-Car Discount
Multi-Policy Discount

GEICO knocks Shelter out of the park when it comes to the sheer number of discounts available, offering 28 different discounts to Shelter's 10.

A couple of those are overlapping for things like anti-theft discounts, discounts for getting driver training, discounts for being a good student, and paid in full discounts. GEICO also offers ABS discounts, commercial drivers license discounts, COVID-19 relief discount, and more that Shelter does not.

On the flip side, Shelter has a unique discount of its own -- a advance quote discounts.

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Final Thoughts: Is GEICO or Shelter Best for You?

So, you've seen how different variables can affect your insurance prices. We've shown you all the discounts each carrier offers, too. But, at the end of the day, is GEICO or Shelter the best one for you and your specific driver profile?

GEICO might be best for you if....

  • You have a DUI charge on your record.
  • You want basic auto insurance coverage at the state minimum limits.
  • You drive fewer than 6,000 miles annually.

Shelter might be best for you if...

  • You like the personalized touch of a small, regional company.
  • You are over 65 years old and want to save some money on your insurance.

We hope this guide helps you get a better idea of the difference between GEICO and Shelter and that it aids in making a more informed decision about your car 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 auto insurance -- comparing quotes from multiple carriers, not just GEICO and Shelter. Luckily, makes it easy for you to do just that. Just enter your ZIP code below and get free quotes from dozens of top insurance companies in your area, all in just a few minutes.

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GEICO vs. Shelter FAQs

Is GEICO or Shelter cheaper?

Looking just at the national average premiums, GEICO is the more affordable of the two carriers, offering average rates of $185 per month compared to $208 for Shelter. That being said, GEICO won't necessarily be the most affordable carrier for each driver, since there are many different factors (things like gender, age, driving record, etc.) that play a role in how much you pay.

Who is better, GEICO or Shelter?

Unfortunately, the real answer is "it depends.". One company is not "better" for every driver -- it all depends on the makeup of your unique car insurance profile. For example, GEICO offers cheaper prices for single policyholders, while Shelter is less expensive for drivers who have already retired.

Why do GEICO and Shelter offer me different rates?

Auto insurance companies take a look at a lot of different variables when calculating the rates they charge drivers. Factors such as where you park your car, age, where you live, gender, and sometimes even things like your credit score can all be used. Both GEICO and Shelter use different formulas, so each one will most likely offer different premiums. The only real way to see which carrier is the cheapest for you is by comparing personalized quotes from multiple different carriers.

How do I know if GEICO or Shelter is right for me?

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