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

If you're in the market for a new car insurance policy, you might be wondering how Southern and Progressive compare when it comes to the most affordable rates 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

  • Based on national averages for auto insurance, Progressive offers significantly more affordable prices than Southern
  • Progressive offers more affordable premiums for residents of rural areas
  • Southern offers more affordable prices for residents in Alabama, Georgia, and Tennessee

Progressive vs. Southern: Which Company has the Cheapest Car Insurance?

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

You might have narrowed your search down to Progressive or Southern as potential options, but which carrier will offer you less expensive rates?

Progressive Southern

Looking at nationwide averages, Progressive has average rates that are about 45% per month cheaper than those from Southern.

Even so, Progressive may not be the cheapest or best option for every single driver out there. Insurance companies use a variety of complex algorithms to calculate premiums, so depending on how clean your driving record is or how old you are (among quite a few other factors), you could see wildly different prices from the ones above.

Luckily, we've broken down average rates from both Progressive and Southern by multiple different rate factors, so read on to find out which company is the best for you.

Progressive or Southern: Average Car Insurance Rates by State

State Progressive Southern

Progressive and Southern only compete against each other in three states, with Progressive offering more affordable premiums to the average driver in all of them. Georgia has the most noticable difference, where Progressive prices are over 70% cheaper than auto insurance rates at Southern.

But there's more to car insurance than just where you call home. As we mentioned above, there's a lot of things that go into how auto insurance carriers determine your premiums. Continue reading to see how other factors will affect your rates.

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Which is the Best Company For Young Drivers?

Progressive Southern
18-year-old drivers$451$707
25-year-old drivers$142$269

You might already know that teen drivers normally pay a lot more for car insurance than any other group of drivers out there on the road. That's because young, inexperienced drivers are statistically much more likely to get into accidents since they have less experience on the roads.

That being said, that doesn't mean teen drivers can't still save money on their insurance. As you can see above, teens who use Progressive save more than $250 a month compared to those who use Southern. It's worth noting that Progressive offers auto insurance in 44 different states compared to Southern's three, which can skew the average prices a bit, but the difference here is still considerable.

However, both companies will lower rates once you turn 25. For example, average premiums for Progressive policyholders reduce nearly 70% and Southern's prices drop over 60% over that time.

Which is the Best Company for Retired Drivers?

Progressive Southern
65+-year-old drivers$131$254

Once you approach retirement age, you'll usually enjoy the lowest 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 rates for insurance.

When looking at Progressive and Southern specifically, which carrier is best for retired drivers? Progressive gets the edge, with premiums for drivers 65 and older $123 less expensive than the national average for Southern.

Which is the Best Company for Married Drivers?

Progressive Southern

You may not be aware, but auto insurance rates tend to be more expensive for those who are single than they are for married couples. That's generally because married drivers tend to own and insure more than one car, which can often earn you a discount.

When it comes to relationship status, Progressive is the clear winner for single drivers, with prices around $160 per month cheaper than Southern, on average. The advantage is also clear for married policyholders - Progressive offers the most affordable average premiums.

Progressive vs. Southern: Average Rates by Gender

Progressive Southern

Men tend to pay more for insurance than women. This is because women are less likely to get tickets and get into accidents, which lowers the chances of an insurance claim.

Men typically pay about 3% more a month than women with Progressive, and around 11% more with Southern.

Looking at the data for each company specifically, Progressive comes out as the cheapest option for both genders. On average, male drivers save about $157 per month and women save about $126 with Progressive compared to the average Southern policyholder.

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Progressive or Southern: Compare State Minimum vs. Full Coverage Rates

Progressive Southern
State Minimum*$111$192
Full Coverage**$250$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.

Car insurance isn't the easiest topic to understand. There are so many different limits and terms that it can make it pretty confusing to find the right policy.

But the most common policies that many drivers look at fall into two categories -- liability only (which provides bodily injury and property damage coverage for other drivers and passengers if you cause an accident) and full coverage (which usually refers to having comprehensive and collision coverages in addition to what you get with a liability policy).

If you're looking for state minimum limits for liability insurance, Progressive normally offers significantly less expensive rates of $111 compared to Southern's $192. When it comes to full coverage policies with similar limits, Progressive again has the edge, with policies around $200 a month more affordable than Southern, on average.

Is Progressive or Southern Better for Drivers with Spotty Records?

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

Tickets and at-fault accidents will most likely raise your premiums, but is Progressive or Southern less expensive for drivers with spotty records?

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Speeding Tickets?

Progressive Southern
Clean Record$149$216
1 Speeding Ticket$180$233

Progressive policyholders can expect their prices to go up an average of $31 per month if they get a ticket, while Southern generally raises rates about $17 a month, on average.

However, Progressive has cheaper premiums for drivers in both categories, offering rates that are 31% and 23% more affordable, respectively, compared to Southern Insurance Company of Virginia.

Which Company is Best for Drivers After an Accident?

Progressive Southern
Clean Record$149$216
1 At-Fault Accident$214$293

After an accident, drivers who have their car insurance through Progressive can expect to see around an $65 -- or about 30% -- increase 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 insurance carrier.

Overall, drivers who use Progressive end up with the cheaper prices after an accident, with monthly rates averaging $214 compared to Southern Insurance Company of Virginia's $293.

Which Company is Best for Drivers with a DUI?

Progressive Southern
Clean Record$149$216
1 DUI$177$548

If you get a DUI charge on your record, it's probably going to cost you more than a simple speeding ticket or even an accident. On average, Southern will climb your prices about 61% after a DUI, while Progressive's average premiums climb by over 15%.

Progressive has the overall lowest prices for drivers with a DUI on their records at $177 monthly, but it's worth noting that Progressive's average rates come from 44 states compared to just three for Southern, so the data may be skewed slightly.

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How does Credit Score Impact Progressive and Southern Rates?

In many cases, your credit score can be used as one of the variables to calculate your monthly auto insurance rates. This isn't always the case (California, for example, has banned the use of credit score as a rating factor) but it will come into play for several drivers.

Insurance companies argue that those with good credit scores are more likely to pay their bills on time each month, which reduces the risk involved on their end, while the opposite is true for those with bad credit.

Looking at Progressive and Southern specifically, which company has the most affordable premiums for policyholders at different credit levels?

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Good Credit?

Progressive Southern
Excellent Credit Score$136$219
Good Credit Score$157$261

If you have solid credit, you'll usually find a better deal with Progressive. Drivers with "excellent" credit can save just under 40% compared to Southern, and those with "good" scores can also expect to see savings -- around $104 or 40% less expensive every month.

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Bad Credit?

Progressive Southern
Fair Credit Score$181$329
Poor Credit Score$247$480

Progressive typically offers lower prices than Southern when it comes to drivers with bad credit. Drivers with "fair" credit pay about $148 per month less with Progressive compared to Southern, and those with "poor" scores typically save an average of around $233 per month.

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

Progressive Southern
6,000 Annual Miles$180$307
12,000 Annual Miles$180$337

The amount of time you spend behind the wheel of your car plays a big role in your monthly rates. Generally, those who drive less will end up with cheaper premiums since there's less of a chance of getting into a collision and causing an insurance claim.

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

Progressive vs. Southern: 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 large impact as well. Usually, those who live in urban areas will pay more than policyholders in rural areas because there are a lot more vehicles on the road in those areas, which increases the chances of an accident.

Progressive Southern
Urban Areas$207$390
Suburban Areas$179$279
Rural Areas$154$298

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

If you live in a rural area, you can expect to save around $144 with Progressive compared to Southern. Drivers in suburban ZIP codes pay about $100 less with Progressive compared to Southern. In urban areas, Progressive's average prices are around $183 less than Southern Insurance Company of Virginia.

Progressive vs. Southern Discounts

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

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

In the section below, we've compared all of the different discounts offered by Progressive and Southern so that you can find the one that has the most discounts and, therefore, the biggest savings.

Progressive Southern
ABS Discount
Advance Quote Discount
Advanced Safety Feature Discount 
Agency Transfer 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 
Education Discount 
EFT Discount 
Experienced Operator Discount 
Family Discount 
Good Driving Discount
Good Student Discount
Group Discount
Homeowner Discount

Progressive knocks Southern out of the park when it comes to the sheer number of discounts available, offering 34 different discounts to Southern's 20.

A couple of those are overlapping for things like advance quote discounts, discounts for being a defensive driver, discounts for being a good driver, and discounts for being a homeowner. Progressive also offers advanced safety feature discounts, agency transfer discounts, continuous insurance discounts, and more that Southern does not.

On the flip side, Southern has a couple unique discounts of its own -- discounts for getting driver training, experienced operator discounts, family discounts, and more.

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Final Thoughts: Is Progressive or Southern Best for You?

So, you've seen how different factors can affect your insurance rates. We've shown you all the discounts each carrier offers, too. That's all well and good, but when it comes down to it, is Progressive or Southern the best carrier for you and your specific needs?

Progressive might be best for you if....

  • Your driving record contains an at-fault accident.
  • You're looking for discounts -- Progressive has the most.
  • You are over 65 years old and want to save some money on your car insurance.

Southern might be best for you if...

  • You're looking for the best rates in AL, GA, and TN.

We hope this guide helps you get a better idea of the difference between Progressive and Southern and that you can now make a more informed decision when it comes to your auto insurance.

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

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Progressive vs. Southern FAQs

Is Progressive or Southern cheaper?

Looking just at the national average premiums, Progressive is the less expensive of the two carriers, offering average rates of $180 a month compared to $322 for Southern. But Progressive won't necessarily be the lowest company for every policyholder, since there are a variety of different variables that are considered when it comes to your auto insurance cost.

Who is better, Progressive or Southern?

Sadly, the real answer is "it depends.". No single carrier is "better" for each driver -- it all depends on the makeup of your unique insurance profile.

Why do Progressive and Southern offer me different rates?

Car insurance companies take a look at a lot of different factors when calculating the prices they charge drivers. Variables like age, your driving record, gender, where you park your car, and sometimes even things like your credit score can all be used. Both Progressive and Southern use different formulas, so each one will most likely offer different premiums. The only real way to see which company is the cheapest for you is by comparing personalized quotes from several different carriers.

How do I know if Progressive or Southern 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, 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 insurance carriers 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 Progressive or Southern 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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