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San Francisco  Car Insurance

San Francisco Car Insurance

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San Francisco car insurance rates

Car insurance in San Francisco can be pricey, but you can save 50 percent or more in some cases by shopping around, according to our California car insurance rate analysis. Drivers in San Francisco ZIP code 94134 pay the highest average car insurance rate in the city, $1,815 a year, according to a survey of rates from six major carriers. But the difference between the highest rate ($2,524) for that ZIP and the lowest ($1,158) is $1,366.

Why comparing car insurance rates saves you money

Each car insurance company uses its own method when deciding what you pay for coverage, which is why prices for the same policy vary significantly. That’s why you can wind up overpaying for insurance if you don’t shop around. To see how car insurance rates compare, use our average rates tool below.

Enter a ZIP code to see the average premium for the location, as well as the highest and lowest rates from the six major carriers surveyed.


San Francisco Car Insurance Rates by ZIP Code

Invalid ZIP code or data not available
MOST & LEAST EXPENSIVE ZIP CODES In California
HIGHEST RATE:
  • 90029- LOS ANGELES: $2,416
  • 90020- LOS ANGELES: $2,403
  • 90010- LOS ANGELES: $2,402
  • 90005- LOS ANGELES: $2,388
LOWEST RATE:
  • 93441- LOS OLIVOS: $996
  • 93437- LOMPOC: $1,025
  • 93428- CAMBRIA: $1,027
  • 93449- PISMO BEACH: $1,028

Here's how San Francisco’s highest average rate ($1,815) compares to others:

  • $819 more than the least expensive average rate ($996) in California, Los Olivos ZIP code 93441
  • $382 more than the state average ($1,433)
  • $584 more than the national average rate ($1,231)
  • $148 more than the average rate for drivers in San Francisco ( $1,667)

You’ll see in the chart below how much rates can vary for the same policy.

San Francisco car insurance rates

San Francisco ZIP code

Average annual rate

Highest rate

Lowest rate

94134

$1,815

$2,524

$1,158

94124

$1,771

$2,491

$1,162

94121

$1,729

$2,439

$1,024

94102

$1,727

$2,404

$1,165

94132

$1,716

$2,459

$1,093

94103

$1,701

$2,288

$1,132

94108

$1,701

$2,543

$1,132

94130

$1,700

$2,344

$1,225

94144

$1,697

$2,524

$976

94145

$1,697

$2,524

$976

94133

$1,690

$2,323

$1,050

94112

$1,689

$2,345

$1,024

94129

$1,688

$2,303

$1,097

94122

$1,687

$2,455

$962

94143

$1,684

$2,524

$976

94116

$1,667

$2,364

$1,024

94104

$1,664

$2,284

$1,139

94199

$1,664

$2,242

$1,162

94107

$1,662

$2,391

$964

94110

$1,655

$2,296

$976

94111

$1,654

$2,257

$1,044

94158

$1,648

$2,242

$1,225

94115

$1,643

$2,162

$976

94105

$1,642

$2,300

$1,084

94118

$1,638

$2,278

$962

94131

$1,634

$2,247

$940

94151

$1,630

$2,242

$1,024

94153

$1,630

$2,242

$1,024

94154

$1,630

$2,242

$1,024

94156

$1,630

$2,242

$1,024

94177

$1,630

$2,242

$962

94109

$1,627

$2,174

$1,050

94127

$1,617

$2,338

$982

94171

$1,614

$2,242

$1,050

94117

$1,614

$2,200

$976

94160

$1,599

$2,242

$962

94161

$1,599

$2,242

$962

94162

$1,599

$2,242

$962

94163

$1,599

$2,242

$962

94114

$1,590

$2,174

$956

94123

$1,577

$2,055

$1,024

*Methodology for rates by ZIP code:

CarInsurance.com commissioned Quadrant Information Services to run auto insurance rates for a 2014 Honda Accord for more than 30,000 ZIP codes in the United States using six large carriers -- Allstate, Farmers, GEICO, Nationwide, Progressive and State Farm. (In cases where an insurer’s rate wasn’t available, another major carrier's rate was substituted.) Averages are based on insurance for a single 40-year-old male who commutes 12 miles to work each day, with policy limits of 100/300/50 ($100,000 for injury liability for one person, $300,000 for all injuries and $50,000 for property damage in an accident) and a $500 deductible on collision and comprehensive coverage. This hypothetical driver has a clean record and good credit. The rate includes uninsured motorist coverage. Average rates are for comparative purposes. Your own rate will depend on your personal factors and vehicle.

 

San Francisco ranks fourth in the list of most expensive ZIP codes for car insurance in California's major cities:

1.       Los Angeles ZIP 90029

               $2,416

 2.       Oakland ZIP 94607

               $1,868

3.       Sacramento ZIP 95824

               $1,833

4.       San Francisco ZIP 94134

               $1,815

5.       Long Beach ZIP 90813

               $1,702

6.       Fresno ZIP 93701

               $1,624

7.       Anaheim ZIP 92804

               $1,559

8.       Santa Ana ZIP 92703

               $1,543

9.       San Jose ZIP 95122

               $1,475

10.   San Diego ZIP 92135

               $1,467

 

San Francisco car insurance requirements

California state law requires the following minimum car insurance coverage:
Minimum bodily injury liability $15,000/$30,000
Minimum property damage liability $5,000

Cheapest car insurance in San Francisco

If you need just bare-bones coverage, you’ll want to shop for the lowest liability car insurance limits required by the state to drive legally. In California (written as 15/30/5), that means your liability car insurance would pay up to:

  • $15,000 for injuries you cause to others
  • $30,000 per accident
  • $5,000 for damage you cause to others’ cars and property

The state average rate for a year of minimum coverage is $723, according to our rate analysis. You would pay just $188 more if you hiked your liability coverage to 50/100/50.

Best car insurance in San Francisco

If you want to have enough car insurance coverage to protect your home and assets, you should buy liability insurance in the following amounts:

  • $100,000 to pay for others’ medical bills
  • $300,000 to pay for injuries to others in an accident you cause
  • $100,000 to pay for damage to others’ property

You should also consider buying these optional coverages:

  • Comprehensive, which replaces stolen cars and covers damage to your car from floods, fire, hail, vandalism.
  • Collision, which pays for damage to your car from accidents.

Comprehensive insurance and collision coverage are fairly affordable. They pay out up to the actual cash value of your car. In California, comprehensive costs $98 and collision costs $361, on average per year, according to the Insurance Information Institute. These two coverages, unlike liability insurance, come with a deductible. That’s the amount you pay for each claim before your insurer chips in. Deductibles of $1,000, $500 and $250 are the usual practice. The higher the deductible is, the lower your rate will be.

California car insurance rates for coverage recommendations

100/300/100

Men

Women

State average

With $1,000 deductible

$2,413

$2,123

$2,268

With $500 deductible

$2,746

$2,401

$2,574

With $250 deductible

$2,955

$2,586

$2,771

 *Average rate of six insurance carriers for a 2015 Honda Accord LX, from the following carriers, in no particular order: Progressive, Allstate, State Farm, Nationwide, GEICO and Farmers. Data was provided for CarInsurance.com by Quadrant Information Services.

 

Driving in San Francisco

Traffic in San Francisco: The city and nearby areas came in third for the worst traffic in the country in a recent report by USA Today, which noted that drivers spend about 78 hours a year stuck in traffic.

Car crashes: Major accidents have resulted in an average of about 30 deaths a year in recent years (2012-2014).

Commuting: The average commute lasts 29.2 minutes.

High Occupancy Vehicle rules: The HOV lane, also known as the carpool or diamond lane, is designed to reduce traffic congestion and promote ride-sharing on freeways. In the San Francisco area, only vehicles with at least two people, mass transit vehicles like buses, and motorcycles are allowed to use the lanes. Use may be restricted during specified hours.

Public transportation: The U.S. Census Bureau says that the majority of riders in San Francisco who commute to work by public transportation are white (about 45 percent), Hispanic (about 17 percent) and black (about 5 percent). The bureau notes that commuting is the main reason people use mass transit.

Smog rules: All California residents much have their vehicles tested for emissions at a licensed smog testing center every two years to renew registration. Vehicles that are six years old or less are exempt from testing. New California residents must have an initial inspection to have their vehicle registered, even if they have a current smog certificate from their previous state.

Bad intersection: The intersection at Mission Street, 12th Street, Otis Street and S. Van Ness Avenue is considered one of the worst in the city - there were 92 vehicle accidents at the intersection from 2005 to 2012.

The information was gathered from various sources, including the U.S. Census Bureau, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Texas A&M Transportation Institute, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, state transportation departments and city police departments.