Allstate Drivewise Review: Will It Lower Car Insurance?

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Updated September 13, 2022

Allstate Drivewise: elderly man driving a car

It can be frustrating when your insurance premiums go up for seemingly no reason — especially when having cheap car insurance rates helps keep your monthly budget in line. If you haven’t gotten a speeding ticket or been in any accidents, why doesn’t your insurance company think you’re a safe driver?

Some auto insurance companies now allow you to demonstrate your safe driving behavior using telematics, where a tiny device is installed in your car to monitor your driving habits. In some cases, you don’t even need to plug in a device — you can sign up simply by downloading a smartphone app.

One such program is the Allstate Drivewise app. Allstate Insurance advertises that their program can potentially save users up to 40% on their auto insurance.

Here’s our Allstate Drivewise review and a look at how the program works.


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What Is Allstate Drivewise?

Allstate Drivewise is a mobile app that rewards policyholders with deals and discounts based on their actual driving behavior. Allstate claims its customers can get up to 40% off their car insurance policy for practicing good driving habits

But first, some context: The car insurance business is built on calculating risk. Car insurance companies base your car insurance premiums on how much of a risk they think you are behind the wheel. High-risk drivers pay more, and drivers with good driving habits can expect to pay less.

Most factors that determine your car insurance rates are things you can’t control, such as your gender and age. Other factors include income and education level.

One study by the Consumer Federation of America found that insurance premiums are significantly lower if a woman is married, owns a home, has a college degree, and has a professional job. If a woman is single, a renter, has earned a high school diploma, and has a clerical job, then her premiums are higher.

Do these factors have anything to do with your driving ability? No. Is that fair? Many drivers would say no. And in states like California, the law prohibits or limits insurers from using non-driving factors such as your credit score to set premiums.

What Are Telematics Programs?

Enter telematics programs like Allstate Drivewise, Progressive Snapshot, and State Farm’s Drive Safe & Save, which give car insurance companies a way to measure how risky a driver you are by monitoring your driving habits.

At first, these insurance programs started by monitoring how much you drive. After all, your chances of getting into an accident increase the more often you’re on the road. This is known as usage-based insurance and may result in discounts for low-mileage drivers who don’t spend much time behind the wheel.

But as telematics technology improved, they started measuring other aspects of your driving performance, such as:

  • Speed
  • Acceleration
  • Hard turns
  • Hard braking
  • Trip duration
  • Time of day
  • Phone use while driving

All of this helps insurers identify good drivers and risky drivers. In return for sharing your driving data with them, they may offer steep discounts on your auto insurance policy.

How Does Allstate Drivewise Work?

Allstate Drivewise: woman putting on a seatbelt

The Allstate Drivewise program works a lot like other telematics programs: It tracks your driving habits via a mobile app or a small device installed in your car and then sends the data to Allstate. What do you get in return? Allstate promises a car insurance discount just for signing up and a “policy credit every six months for safe driving.”

Allstate customers can also sign up for the Allstate Rewards program, which offers gift cards and deals for completing safe driving challenges. For example, making “10 safe trips with no high speeds or sudden braking” can earn you 200 reward points.

You don’t have to be an Allstate customer to use Drivewise, but of course, you won’t benefit from discounts if you don’t have Allstate auto insurance. If you’re an infrequent driver, you might want to look at Allstate’s Milewise program, which bases your rates on the miles you drive in each policy period.

Other features include Crash Detection, which automatically detects if you’ve been in an accident and prompts you to call 911 or roadside assistance, and Phone Activity, which shows you how often you use your phone while driving.

How Does Drivewise Protect Your Data?

As with any telematics app, you’ll need to be comfortable sharing your driving data with your insurance provider. To use the Allstate mobile app, set your location services to “Always On” on your Apple or Android device.

Allstate’s privacy disclaimer states that the data used to assess your safe driving habits may be “viewable to you, your Allstate agent, and customer service representatives who help service your policy,” but your exact location won’t be shared.

If your Drivewise device accidentally records another driver’s trip, you can delete it from your record without it affecting your policy.

Here’s a comprehensive list of everything Drivewise records, including hard braking, high-speed driving, and the hours you’re behind the wheel. Drivewise defines “high speed” driving as exceeding 80 mph, and high acceleration as 8 mph per second.

You’ll need to complete at least 50 trips before you’re eligible for discounts. You can look at the data collected on Allstate’s website to analyze your driving habits, look for problem areas, and see how much you’re saving.

Allstate says that using Drivewise will not increase your rates and could help you save up to 40% on your premiums.

Allstate Drivewise Reviews

Is Allstate Drivewise worth it? That depends on what you’re expecting. Most Drivewise reviews agree that you shouldn’t expect the full 40% discount on your auto insurance rates unless you only use your car to drive to the grocery store in the morning.

Most drivers use their cars during the “moderate risk” hours of 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. and occasionally during the “high risk” hours of 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. Most drivers will also have some “extreme braking events,” defined as slowing down 10 or more miles per hour over a one-second time interval.

Snow and icy conditions may cause the device to record hard-braking events when none occurred, some users report. Another user says Allstate was willing to remove some of his braking events when he complained.

Some drivers simply aren’t comfortable with the way Drivewise monitors their driving behavior. If that’s you, you may want to look for a car insurance discount based on your actual driving record and not on your real-time driving habits.

However, you will save money using Drivewise, at least at first. Allstate offers a 10% discount just for signing up, so it could be worth a shot.

Choose the Right Telematics Program for You

Man happily driving a car

The Allstate Drivewise app can help you save money if you have Allstate car insurance and practice good driving habits. Even if you think you’re a bad driver, it can serve as a good reminder to drive at safe speeds and put your phone down while driving.

But Allstate Drivewise isn’t the only telematics app out there, and other programs may offer better discounts or more functionality for your situation. Liberty Mutual, Travelers Insurance, AAA, and Nationwide all offer telematics programs of their own.

Before signing up for usage-based insurance coverage, compare car insurance quotes at Compare.com. We show you multiple, real-time auto insurance quotes side-by-side so you can make the best choice for your budget and lifestyle.


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