A Quick Guide to Progressive Snapshot

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Cars driving on the highway

For safe drivers, Progressive Snapshot could be the ticket to more affordable car insurance rates. Instead of guessing about a customer’s driving habits, the program allows for transparency regarding how you are on the road. Based on your habits, Progressive can adjust your car insurance rates appropriately. 

Is Progressive Snapshot worth it? Let’s take a closer look at this program that could lead to significant car insurance savings. 

What is Progressive Snapshot?

Safe drivers present less of a risk to car insurance companies. So, it’s only fair when you drive safely you should pay less for your insurance. But in the past, insurance companies had no way of really knowing which drivers were practicing safe habits outside of their claims filing history.

But Progressive Snapshot provides a solution. 

The telematics program allows Progressive to track enrolled drivers through a device that plugs into the car or a mobile app. With the information collected through this usage-based program, they can offer customized rates to drivers. 

As a safe driver, you can expect to save money. But drivers with poor driving habits may end up paying more for car insurance after participating in Progressive’s Snapshot program. 

How Does Snapshot Work?

As a Progressive driver, it’s free to sign up for the Snapshot program. Plus, there’s an automatic discount applied to your plan just for signing up. 

If you aren’t a Progressive customer yet, you can give Snapshot a try with a ‘Road Test.’ Essentially, this gives you the option to see what kind of discount you could receive. After 30 days of using the Progressive app to track your driving, they will let you know what kind of savings you unlocked. If you like what you see, you can move forward with a quote – if not, you can make a different choice. 

Depending on where you live, Progressive offers the Snapshot program through a mobile app or a vehicle plug-in device. The plug-in device is inserted into the OBD-II port, which is usually right under the steering wheel for a quick and easy installation. 

Whether Progressive offers the Snapshot device or Snapshot app in your state, they will monitor your driving habits for the duration of your policy. The usage-based program offers discounts to safe drivers. But not so safe drivers could see a hike in their insurance premiums. 

Where Is Progressive Snapshot Available?

Progressive Snapshot is available in every state except for California and North Carolina. 

If you live in Alaska, Hawaii, or New York, there is no participation discount available just for signing up. 

What Does Progressive Snapshot Track?

man and woman smiling in the car

If you sign up for Progressive Snapshot, you are agreeing to allow the device or app to track your driving activities. Here’s what the company is most interested in.

  • How you drive: You think you’re a safe driver, but Snapshot may agree or disagree. The device/app tracks every time you hit the gas or the brake pedal too hard. Maybe you have a good reason — you have to merge onto the highway at speed, for instance, or you have to slam on the brakes because someone cut you off. But context doesn’t matter.
  • Phone usage: If you sign up with the mobile app option, the company will track your phone usage behind the wheel. So, texting or accepting calls while driving could hurt your shot at savings in some states. 
  • How much you drive: Snapshot may track your mileage, the time you spend behind the wheel, and the frequency of certain trips. Drivers that don’t drive as many miles could receive a discount. 
  • When you drive: If you drive during high-risk times — especially between midnight and 4 a.m. on weekends — that will hurt your driving score.
  • Where you live: Every state has its own insurance rules. So the info Snapshot collects, and the way Progressive can use that data to set your rates depend on the state you live in. Some states allow the company to raise your rates for less-safe driving, and others don’t. Look up your state on Progressive’s state details page to find out.

When using Progressive Snapshot, you’ll receive tips on how to improve your driving. If you follow the tips, you could earn a bigger discount. 

What If You Aren’t the Driver?

It’s likely there will be times when you and your phone are in a vehicle, but you’re not the driver. The mobile app makes it easy to recategorize trips. With that, you’ll never be penalized for another driver’s habits.

However, if you share a policy with someone else, like a spouse, you both have to sign up for the program to receive a discount. With that, the savings offered by the good driving habits of one spouse could be canceled out by the bad driving habits of the other. 

Is Progressive Snapshot Worth It?

Can Snapshot actually save you money? That depends on a few factors: how you drive, when you drive, and where you live.

So what’s the upshot of Snapshot? How much money can you save?

The first chance to save is through the automatic sign-up discount. You’ll receive this automatic discount just for signing up. The discount is credited to your first policy period and will expire when your policy renews. But at renewal, you’ll be paying a premium based on your actual driving, so that could mean big savings. 

With this initial discount, the average driver saves $47 on their policy. 

After program completion, the maximum discount available is around 30 percent. But according to Progressive, the average discount after program completion is $146 per year. That’s a worthwhile discount that could lead to some breathing room in your budget. 

But if you live in a state that permits insurance companies to penalize you for bad driving, your rates may go up. About 2 out of 10 drivers see an increase after participating in Snapshot. 

So, can you save by getting a personalized rate through Progressive Snapshot? The answer really depends on your driving habits. 

Take a minute to consider your driving habits honestly. If you think your driving habits are relatively good, then Progressive Snapshot could lead to savings. But if you know you have less than ideal driving habits, and aren’t willing to change, then Progressive Snapshot could lead to more expensive car insurance premiums. 

How To Maximize Your Snapshot Discount

man saving on his auto insurance

Regardless of where your driving habits stand now, it’s possible to score a bigger discount by practicing better driving habits. 

Here’s what you can do to maximize your Snapshot discount through Progressive Insurance:

  • Limit sudden speed changes: Instead of a hard brake, try easing to a stop. Plus, avoid fast accelerations. Specifically, you don’t want to increase or decrease your speed by more than 7 miles per hour per second. 
  • Avoid dangerous times: Late night driving, especially on the weekend, comes with more dangerous roads. With that, try to avoid driving anytime between 12 AM and 4 AM on the weekends. 
  • Limit driving, if possible: The number of miles you spend in the car will impact your discount. A driver with less frequent trips will enjoy more affordable rates. If possible, try to limit your time in the car. 
  • Don’t text and drive: If you sign up for the Snapshot app, it can monitor your phone usage while driving. Drivers that stay off the phone behind the wheel have a better chance of receiving a discount. 

Of course, following all of these rules might be easier said than done. But, if you want to unlock a big discount, do your best to be a safe driver. 

As you participate in the program, consider checking on your progress. You can check in with the app or log into your Progressive account to find specific tips on how to improve your driving. The direct feedback could be exactly what you need to unlock a great discount. 

Progressive Snapshot vs. Other Usage-Based Insurance Programs

How does Progressive Snapshot compare to other companies’ programs?

  • Allstate Drivewise runs with an app, and promises up to 10% cash back for signing up and then up to 25% cash back every six months for continued safe driving.
  • State Farm Drive Safe and Save offers up to a 50% insurance discount for safe driving, and runs via mobile app or OnStar device.
  • Travelers IntelliDrive uses an app to track your driving for 90 days. At renewal, you can save up to 20% for driving safely, or you might pay more for your riskier driving habits.
  • Liberty Mutual & SafeCo RightTrack – You could be saving 30% on your current policy by trying out RightTrack. There is no charge to sign up.

Keep in mind each of these programs reward drivers with good driving habits. But if you have driving habits that aren’t exactly the safest on the road, then you might end up with a more expensive car insurance bill by participating in any of these programs. 

How To Get The Best Car Insurance Rate

The only way to get the absolute best deal on car insurance is to shop around. Without extensive comparison shopping, it’s easy to overpay when it comes to car insurance. 

Luckily, it’s easier than ever to shop around for car insurance. We’ve made it easy to compare car insurance rates quickly. What are you waiting for? Move forward with the best car insurance rate today.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does Progressive Snapshot stay in your car?

Progressive wants to collect an extensive amount of data about your driving before committing to a particular discount. The exact amount of time you’ll need to keep using the device or mobile app ranges from 75 days to a full six-month car insurance policy term. 

Can Progressive Snapshot track your speed?

Yes, the mobile app can use GPS to calculate your speed. With that, speeding could be considered when determining your auto insurance policy discount. 

What is a hard brake for Progressive?

Progressive Snapshot considers a hard brake anytime when your vehicle decelerates at 7 MPH per second or faster. Unfortunately, this level of hard braking might not seem too extreme. But if you have too many hard barking incidents, you’ll likely receive a smaller discount. 

Can Progressive Snapshot raise rates?

Yes, drivers that participate in the Progressive Snapshot program can experience a rate hike based on their driving habits. According to Progressive, 2 in 10 drivers see a rate increase after participating in the program. 

You can avoid a rate increase by practicing safe driving habits. 


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