Mercury vs. Southern: Which Company is the Best Fit for You?

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

  • Looking at the national averages for insurance, Mercury offers slightly more affordable prices than Southern
  • Mercury offers cheaper average premiums for policyholders who drive fewer than 6,000 miles every year
  • Southern has less expensive prices for policyholders who haven't received any speeding tickets or been in a collision in the last few years

Mercury or Southern: Which Company has the Cheapest Car Insurance?

Are you in the market for a new insurance policy? After all, you've seen ads from all sorts of companies offering large savings. But exactly how much can you save by switching?

You might be considering Mercury or Southern for your next policy, but between the two, which one will save you the most?

Mercury Southern

As you can see, Southern is around $27 more a month than Mercury when looking at the national average rates for car insurance.

However, Mercury may not be the most affordable or best option for each driver out there. Insurance carriers use a ton of complex algorithms to determine rates, so depending on how old you are or how clean your driving record is (among quite a few other factors), you could see wildly different premiums from the ones above.

Luckily, we've broken down average prices from both Mercury and Southern by a variety of different rate factors, so read on to find out which carrier is the best for you.

Mercury vs. Southern: Average Car Insurance Rates by State

State Mercury Southern

Mercury and Southern only compete against each other in one states, with Mercury offering cheaper rates to the average driver in all of them. Georgia has the most noticable difference, where Mercury premiums are $228 less expensive than auto insurance prices at Southern.

That being said, there are plenty of other factors that go into your 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?

Mercury Southern
18-year-old drivers$729$707
25-year-old drivers$230$269

Teen drivers will almost always have the most expensive car insurance premiums of any other group of drivers out there on the road. It's normally because teen drivers are statistically much more likely to get into an accident that results in an insurance claim, making them much riskier to insure.

Even so, that doesn't mean that teen drivers have to just accept sky-high auto insurance rates. For example, 18-year-old drivers pay an average of over 3% less per month by choosing Southern over Mercury.

That being said, both companies will drop premiums by the time drivers turn 25. For example, average prices for Mercury policyholders decrease almost 70% and Southern's rates reduce more than 60% over that time.

Which is the Best Company for Retired Drivers?

Mercury Southern
65+-year-old drivers$219$254

Drivers around retirement age generally enjoy some of the cheapest insurance premiums you'll ever see. After all, they've likely been driving for quite some time, which typically decreases their chances of collisions and other infractions that can raise rates.

When looking at Mercury and Southern specifically, which company is best for retired drivers? Mercury gets the edge, with prices for drivers 65 and older $35 more affordable than the national average for Southern.

Which is the Best Company for Married Drivers?

Mercury Southern

Did you know that car insurance premiums are usually more expensive for single policyholders than they are for married policyholders? That's because policies for married drivers generally cover more than one vehicle, which several carriers will give you a discount for.

For those who are single, the difference in average rates between these two companies is not very significant, with Mercury prices coming in at about 6% less than Southern's. The advantage for married couples is more obvious, where drivers who use Mercury save around $35 a month.

Mercury or Southern: Average Rates by Gender

Mercury Southern

Men are statistically more likely than women to get pulled over for speeding or get into an accident, which means they'll usually end up paying more for auto insurance than women.

Men typically pay about $15 per month more than women with Mercury, and around $35 with Southern.

Looking at overall affordability, Mercury offers the lowest average premiums for both men and women, with average prices $38 less for men and $16 cheaper for women.

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Mercury vs. Southern: Compare State Minimum vs. Full Coverage Rates

Mercury Southern
State Minimum*$184$192
Full Coverage**$406$452

*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, insurance can be pretty complicated. There are a bunch of different coverages that account for many different things. Some protect you and your car, while others only provide coverage for other people's property and health if you cause a collision.

The two most common policies that drivers look at fall into two categories -- liability coverage (which covers the other party's property damage and injuries if you cause an accident) and full coverage (which normally refers to having collision and comprehensive coverages in addition to what you get with liability coverage).

Looking specifically at state minimum liability insurance, Mercury has the slight edge, with average monthly rates coming in at $184. If you want a full coverage policy with the same state minimum limits, Mercury again has the edge, with policies averaging about $406 a month to Southern's $452.

Is Mercury or Southern Better for Drivers with Spotty Records?

It's no secret -- drivers with good records end up getting the best deals on their auto insurance. But that's not to say you can't save money if you don't have the best driving record, either.

It's no secret secret that speeding tickets and at-fault accidents lead to higher premiums, but which carrier -- Mercury or Southern -- has the cheapest rates for drivers with less-than-ideal driving records?

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Speeding Tickets?

Mercury Southern
Clean Record$237$216
1 Speeding Ticket$294$233

Policyholders who use Mercury for their car insurance can usually expect their monthly bill to go up around 19% after getting a speeding ticket. Southern policyholders can expect a less drastic increase of about 7%.

But Southern tends to offer the best prices for both drivers who have clean records and those with a recent ticket -- their rates are around 9% less expensive for drivers with clean records and 21% cheaper for those with a ticket.

Which Company is Best for Drivers After an Accident?

Mercury Southern
Clean Record$237$216
1 At-Fault Accident$346$293

After an accident, drivers who have their auto insurance through Mercury can expect to see around an $109 -- or about 32% -- rise in their insurance prices. Drivers who use Southern for their car insurance will see a monthly bill around $77 (or 26%) more expensive after reporting a collision to their auto insurance company.

At the end of the day, Southern offers the most affordable rates for drivers with an at-fault collision on their records, with average prices coming in at $293 compared to Mercury Insurance's $346.

Which Company is Best for Drivers with a DUI?

Mercury Southern
Clean Record$237$216
1 DUI$303$548

If you get a DUI charge, you can expect some pretty significant increases in your monthly car insurance bill -- generally a lot more than an accident or speeding ticket. On average, Southern will raise your premiums about 61% after a DUI, while Mercury's average prices climb by more than 20%.

But if you end up with a DUI charge and are looking for more affordable rates, Mercury tends to be more affordable for the average driver, with monthly premiums coming in at around $303 to Southern's $548.

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How does Credit Score Impact Mercury and Southern Rates?

You may not realized it, but your credit score can be used as one of the variables to calculate your monthly insurance premiums. This isn't true for everyone (Hawaii, for example, has banned the use of credit score as a car insurance factor) but it does affect lots of drivers out there.

Auto 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, policyholders with good credit will often be rewarded with less expensive prices.

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

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Good Credit?

Mercury Southern
Excellent Credit Score$223$219
Good Credit Score$266$261

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Bad Credit?

Mercury Southern
Fair Credit Score$302$329
Poor Credit Score$406$480

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Is Mercury or Southern Better for Drivers who Work from Home or Have Short Commutes?

Mercury Southern
6,000 Annual Miles$295$307
12,000 Annual Miles$295$337

How much you drive can have a substantial impact on your monthly premiums. Typically, those who drive fewer miles will end up with cheaper prices since there's less of a chance of causing a collision and filing an insurance claim.

As you can see in the table above, annual mileage doesn't have much of an impact on how much Mercury charges. However, there's a small difference in monthly premiums for Southern, with policyholders who drive 6,000 miles yearly paying about $30 less each month compared to those who drive 12,000 miles annually. Still, for drivers in both categories, Mercury is the more affordable company.

Mercury or Southern: Compare Rates for Urban, Suburban, and Rural Drivers

Where you park your car can play a big role in how much you pay for car insurance. Normally, policyholders who live in less densely populated rural areas will pay quite a bit less than urban drivers since there are a lot fewer vehicles on the roads where they live.

Mercury Southern
Urban Areas$401$390
Suburban Areas$275$279
Rural Areas$209$298

Looking at these companies side-by-side, Mercury boasts the most affordable average premiums in rural and suburban areas, while Southern wins in urban areas.

For policyholders in urban ZIP codes, Southern Insurance Company of Virginia's average prices are around 3% less than Mercury Insurance. People who live in suburban areas pay about 1% less with Mercury compared to Southern. Those in rural areas can expect to save around 30% with Mercury compared to Southern.

Mercury vs. Southern Discounts

No matter why you might be in the market for a new 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 utilizing as many auto insurance discounts as possible.

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 qualify for.

Luckily, we did the hard work for you and compared all of the different discounts offered by Mercury and Southern so that you can easily see which company offers the most discounts and, therefore, the largest savings.

Mercury Southern
ABS Discount
Advance Quote Discount
Anti-Theft Discount
Continuous Insurance Discount 
Covid-19 Relief Discount 
Defensive Driver Discount
Distant Student Discount 
Driver Training Discount 
DRL Discount 
E-Signature Discount 
Electric Vehicle Discount 
Employee Discount 
Experienced Operator Discount 
Family Discount 
Good Driving Discount
Good Payer Discount 
Good Student Discount
Group Discount
Homeowner Discount
Hybrid Vehicle Discount 

Mercury knocks Southern out of the park when it comes to the sheer number of discounts available, offering seven more discounts than Southern.

Both carriers offer a lot of the same discounts -- like advance quote discounts, discounts for being a defensive driver, discounts for being a good driver, and discounts for being a homeowner -- but Mercury also offers discounts for continuous insurance, COVID-19 relief, distant student, and more.

On the other hand, Southern has a few proprietary discounts of their own for things like driver training discounts, experienced operator discounts, family discounts, and more.

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Final Thoughts: Is Mercury or Southern Best for You?

You've seen the role certain factors have on your insurance and the different discounts companies offer. But, at the end of the day, is Mercury or Southern the right carrier for you and your specific driver profile?

Mercury might be best for you if....

  • You will be the only person on the car insurance policy.
  • Your neighborhood is in a rural area.
  • You drive often but have a short commute.

Southern might be best for you if...

  • You have a speeding ticket on your driving record.
  • You already have a great credit score.
  • You want to save money while purchasing auto insurance for a teenager.

Hopefully, this guide helps you get a good idea of the differences between Mercury and Southern. We also hope we've given you the information you need to make the best 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 insurance -- comparing quotes from multiple carriers, not just Mercury and Southern. Luckily, does all the hard work for you. Simply enter your ZIP codes below and get multiple free quotes from some of the best car insurance companies in your area, all in just a few minutes.

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Mercury vs. Southern FAQs

Is Mercury or Southern cheaper?

Mercury is the less expensive of the two carriers when looking at national average rates, with policies averaging $295 per month with Mercury and $322 for Southern. Even so, that doesn't mean Mercury will be the lowest company for every policyholder, since there are a range of different variables that are considered when it comes to your insurance bill.

Who is better, Mercury or Southern?

Sadly, the only answer we can give you is "it depends.". One carrier is not necessarily "better" for everyone -- it all depends on what your unique auto insurance profile looks like. For example, Southern is more affordable for drivers with excellent credit, while Mercury offers cheaper premiums for drivers with a recent DUI.

Why do Mercury and Southern offer me different rates?

Insurance companies use a lot of different factors when determining the rates they charge. Variables like age, where your home is, your driving record, gender, and sometimes even things like your credit score can all be used. Both Mercury and Southern calculate prices using different formulas, so it's likely they'll offer different premiums. The best way to determine which company is the most affordable for you is by comparing personalized quotes from several different carriers.

How do I know if Mercury or Southern is right for me?

The only way to find the car 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 information once and you'll get quotes from dozens of your local top auto insurance carriers for free. That way, you can guarantee you're getting the cheapest price. And maybe you'll find that the best company for you isn't Mercury or Southern 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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