List of best car insurance companies ranked by price and service

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List of best car insurance companies ranked by price and service

The pros and cons of the best car insurance companies.

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List of best car insurance companies ranked by price and service

When it comes to choosing the best car insurance company, there are plenty of factors to consider. Of course, price is always a concern, but other factors like customer service through the claims process and the availability of certain policies or types of coverage should be considered as well.

We know that finding the right car insurance provider can be a challenge, so we’ve compiled information, ratings, and rankings from a few different sources in order to come up with this list of the best car insurance companies.

While most of the companies covered in this article offer coverage nationwide, some of them serve a limited coverage area. We decided to include a few of these companies because they have excellent ratings and are worth considering if you live in their area of service.

Insurance Company BankRate Rating J.D. Power Customer Satisfaction Ranking (out of 1,000) AM Best Financial Strength Rating US News Ranking
USAA 4.92/5 900 A++ 1
NJM 4.85/5 - A+ -
Amica Mutual 4.60/5 961 A+ -
Geico 3.96/5 867 A++ 2
State Farm 3.93/5 860 A++ 4
Allstate 3.75/5 858 A+ 3
Farmers 3.93/5 849 A- 5
Progressive 3.76/5 848 A+ 6
The Hartford 3.76/5 895 A+ -
Erie 4.42/5 880 A+ -
Nationwide - 862 A+ 8
American Family 3.61/5 878 A 7
Travelers - 847 A++ 9

USAA

USAA is consistently rated or ranked as one of the best car insurance companies, but it’s important to point out that not everyone is eligible for coverage with USAA. In order to be eligible for a policy with USAA, you need to meet at least one of the following criteria:

  • Active, retired, or honorably separated with the U.S. military
  • Officer candidates in programs like ROTC
  • Widows or widowers of USAA members who had a policy with USAA
  • Adult children of USAA members who have or had a policy with USAA

Although policies with USAA are limited to military and families of USAA members, coverage does exist in all 50 states and Washington, DC.

USAA consistently earns high scores for customer satisfaction and they also offer excellent rates, in many cases. There are a number of potential discounts that are available through USAA.

For those who are eligible, USAA is an excellent choice.

USAA Pros:

  • Excellent customer satisfaction
  • Cheap rates
  • Available nationwide

USAA Cons:

  • Only for military members, veterans, and their families

NJM

NJM (New Jersey Manufacturers Insurance) is another insurance company that is not available to everyone.  Although the company only serves New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Connecticut, NJM is worthy of mentioning because of consistently high scores and rankings.

Customers of NJM can benefit from things like new car replacement, which covers replacement costs for new cars (fewer than 15,000 miles) that are totaled or stolen.

Both NerdWallet and BankRate rank NJM among the best auto insurance providers and they also have a reputation for great rates.

NJM Pros:

  • Excellent customer satisfaction
  • Good rates

NJM Cons:

  • Only available to customers in NJ, PA, and CT

Amica Mutual

Amica Mutual consistently ranks near the top in terms of customer satisfaction.

Depending on the policy that you select, you may earn “Advantage Points” for things like safe driving or referring friends. Those points can be used to avoid a rate increase if you’re in an accident.

Amica offers Platinum Choice Auto coverage, which includes a lot of perks like accident forgiveness, glass coverage, premium car rental coverage, and more.

Pros of Amica Mutual:

  • Excellent customer satisfaction (including claims satisfaction)
  • Plenty of perks in Platinum Choice Auto

Cons of Amica Mutual:

  • Not available in Hawaii
  • Very few local offices

Geico

Geico may be known for commercials more than anything else, but the company behind those commercials is very solid. They’ve earned a strong score of 867 in J.D. Power’s Customer Satisfaction and an A++ rating from AM Best, so customers can feel confident choosing Geico.

With a slogan like “15 minutes could save you 15% or more on car insurance”, you’d expect Geico to have great rates. While rates will always vary from one situation to another, in general, Geico is known for having some of the lowest rates in the industry.

The combination of low rates and high customer satisfaction make Geico an excellent choice.

Geico Pros:

  • Reputation for very low rates
  • Strong scores for customer satisfaction
  • Lots of discounts available
  • Available nationwide

Geico Cons:

  • Few local agents
  • Limited optional coverages

State Farm

State Farm has the largest market share in the industry, so it’s obviously a popular choice. Customers are able to get multi-policy discounts (like home and auto), and with many different types of policies offered by State Farm, customers are able to manage several policies in one place. State Farm also offers a wide variety of auto policies, some that not be found with many other insurance companies.

With a score of 860 in the J.D. Power Customer Satisfaction Rankings and other awards for customer satisfaction, State Farm has earned a strong reputation in the industry.

Being able to get access to a local State Farm agent is another major perk for many customers. With offices and agents throughout the country, dealing with a local agent is possible for most customers.

Pros of State Farm:

  • Good customer satisfaction ratings
  • Many different policies available
  • Available nationwide
  • Access to local agents

Cons of State Farm:

  • Average rates

Allstate

Allstate is another nationwide insurance provider, currently ranking 4th in market share (behind State Farm, Geico, and Progressive). Allstate ranks slightly below State Farm in the J.D. Power Customer Satisfaction and BankRate rankings.

Customers of Allstate are able to use a mobile app to track their driving habits and potentially earn discounts for safe driving. The usability of the mobile app and online tools put Allstate ahead of some competitors in that area. Allstate is also active on social media networks like Twitter and Facebook.

Pros of Allstate:

  • Available nationwide
  • Network of local agents
  • Good mobile app

Cons of Allstate

  • Rates aren’t the lowest

Farmers

Coming in at 7th in terms of market share, Farmers is another large company that offers coverage nationwide.

In terms of rankings and ratings, Farmers is somewhat middle of the pack. They score 849 in J.D. Power’s Customer Satisfaction Ranks and they are rated A- by AM Best for financial strength, which is actually the lowest grade of any company covered in this article.

What customers love about Farmers is the opportunity to earn discounts in many different ways. Those who provide essential services (like doctors, nurses, police officers, firefighters, and teachers) are eligible for discounts.

Farmers also offers a mobile app that will track your driving habits and offer discounts for safe driving.

If you’re interested in reducing your monthly premium as much as possible, Farmers offers policies with higher deductibles than many other insurance companies.

Pros of Farmers:

  • Available nationwide
  • Good mobile app

Cons of Farmers:

  • Average rankings and customer satisfaction

Progressive

Like Geico, Progressive is another insurance company that is well known for its advertisements. Many of those ads mention the ”name your price” tool, which is one of the standout features of Progressive. Customers are able to have a great deal of control over their monthly premiums by entering the price they want to pay and seeing the available options.

High-risk drivers may appreciate Progressive and the “name your price” tool because it can help to find options for minimum coverage that are affordable, which can be a challenge with other companies.

Progressive is also known for openly providing the rates of their competitors, so you can get an online quote from Progressive and know how it compares to your other options.

Although Progressive may be able to help customers save money, the company scores a little below average in terms of customer satisfaction.

Pros of Progressive:

  • “Name your price” tool helps you to find an affordable policy
  • Customers can easily get a quote from Progressive and competitors
  • Available nationwide
  • Rideshare coverage available for Uber or Lyft drivers

Cons of Progressive:

  • Below average customer satisfaction

The Hartford

After covering several options that are generally available to everyone nationwide, we’re back to another company that could be a good choice if you fall into a specific group. The Hartford offers auto insurance in partnership with AARP, so you’ll need to be 55+ in order to be eligible for coverage. They also offer coverage for boats, RVs, classic cars, and more.

The Hartford scores 895 on J.D. Power’s Customer Satisfaction Rankings, which is second-highest (behind only USAA), so it’s an option that you may want to consider if you’re 55 or older.

Pros of The Hartford:

  • Excellent customer satisfaction
  • Partnership with the AARP

Cons of The Hartford:

  • Only available to those who are 55+

Erie

Erie is another insurance company that has excellent rankings and ratings, but it is only available in certain states (Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and the District of Columbia).

With a score of 880 in J.D. Power’s Customer Satisfaction Rankings, Erie is among the top providers.

Aside from customer satisfaction, Erie also has a reputation for competitive rates and every policy includes assistance.

Pros of Erie:

  • Excellent customer satisfaction rankings
  • Competitive rates

Cons of Erie:

  • Only available in 12 states and Washington, DC

Nationwide

Despite its name, Nationwide is actually not available in every state. It doesn’t offer policies in Alaska, Hawaii, Louisiana, or Massachusetts.

In terms of customer satisfaction, Nationwide scored 862 in J.D. Power’s rankings, which puts them just above State Farm and Amica.

Pros of Nationwide:

  • Good customer satisfaction ranking
  • Competitive rates

Cons of Nationwide:

  • Not available in some states

American Family

American Family ranks 9th in terms of market share. While it’s not as well-known as competitors like State Farm or Geico, American Family is one of the larger providers that does not operate nationwide. Serving mostly the midwest, coverage from American Family is available in 19 states.

With a score of 878 in the J.D. Power Customer Satisfaction Rankings, American Family earns high marks in that area. However, BankRate scores them 3.61/5, which is on the lower side.

American Family offers a range of discounts that may make them a good option, including several possible discounts for young drivers.

Pros of American Family:

  • Strong customer satisfaction ranking
  • Potential discounts

Cons of American Family:

  • Only available in 19 states

Travelers

Travelers is available in 42 states plus the District of Columbia and sits in 10th place in terms of market share.

If customer service is your primary concern, you should note that Travelers scores an 847 on the J.D. Power Customer Satisfaction Rankings, which is the lowest score of any company mentioned on this page.

Although its customer satisfaction scores may not be the best, Travelers makes the quote process very easy. They also provide a variety of insurance products and maintain an A++ financial strength rating from AM Best.

Pros of Travelers:

  • Quick and easy quote process
  • A++ financial strength

Cons of Travelers:

  • Below average customer satisfaction

How Does Car Insurance Work?

Car insurance is intended to protect against the risk of financial liability if a driver or their vehicle is involved in an auto accident that causes damage. An insurance policy is required by almost every state, but the details vary from one state to another.

Vehicle owners pay a monthly premium to an insurance company in exchange for coverage through the policy. In the event of an accident, the insurer will pay for the costs related to the damage (with some exceptions, depending on the policy).

In the case of an accident, the vehicle owner can file a claim and submit it to the insurance company. After reviewing the claim, the insurance company will determine if the claim should be covered under the existing policy.

If you are in an accident, even if the accident wasn’t your fault, it’s best to contact your insurance company. The other driver’s insurance company may be responsible for the damages, but your provider may be able to help with the process, or they may be able to advise you of anything you need to do.

Vehicle owners are typically responsible for paying a deductible and the insurance company will pay the amount beyond the deductible, with maximum coverage determined by the policy. The deductible will impact the monthly premiums. For example, a higher deductible may lead to lower monthly premiums.

Do I Need Full Coverage?

Each state has minimum requirements for the insurance policy that you must carry as a vehicle owner. Policies that simply meet the minimum requirements are likely to offer the lowest monthly premiums, but the coverage and assistance you receive in the event of a claim may be limited.

Full coverage will increase your monthly premiums but may provide you with significant benefits and better coverage in case of an accident. There can be a significant difference in cost between a minimum policy and full coverage, so you’ll need to consider your own budget and situation to determine which is right for you.

Be sure to consider more than just the monthly premium. Minimum coverage policies may not give you enough to cover the cost of damages and your own liability, should you need it.

Financial Stability of Insurance Companies

Whenever insurance companies are evaluated, the financial strength of the company is a factor. After all, the company won’t be able to pay your claim if they go out of business.

We’ve included the AM Best Financial Strength Rating for each company in the table earlier in this article. All of the companies covered on this page are rated at least an A- by AM Best.

Choosing the Best Car Insurance Company for You

When it comes to finding the right car insurance policy, you’ll definitely want to do some comparison shopping. It’s important to compare apples to apples as much as possible, meaning, you should be sure that the details of policies are as close as possible if you’re comparing prices. Don’t compare a high-deductible policy from one provider to a low-deductible policy from another provider.

One of the reasons why Progressive is one of the largest car insurance companies is because they tend to make the shopping process simple. You can go to Progressive’s website and get their quote, as well as the prices of their competitors. Alternatively, you can use a comparison site like Susy.com to get multiple quotes.


Sources: BankRate ratings, J.D. Power, AM Best, US News rankings.

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