Whether you’re shopping for new car insurance or considering a switch, making a car insurance rates comparison is the best way to find a great deal on auto insurance.

Comparing car insurance quotes is a simple process that can save you hundreds of dollars annually. We’ve done the hard (and smart) work of comparing rates so you don’t have to. Let us help you compare car insurance quotes that fit your needs and budget. 

Our team of experts made a comparison of car insurance rates to present you with this data-driven guide.

The savings are real – our data analysis shows that an average policyholder could save $1,600 per year by comparing auto insurance rates. 

Compare car insurance quotes from different companies

For a comparison of car insurance rates, see how companies compare at three different coverage levels.

Company State Minimum Liability Only Full Coverage
North Carolina Farm Bureau$332$374$1,141
Mississippi Farm Bureau$376$420$1,701
Auto-Owners Insurance$404$457$1,435
Texas Farm Bureau$414$458$1,465
Kentucky Farm Bureau$422$469$2,193
Safety Insurance$435$558$1,217
State Farm$484$561$1,505
AAA Texas$493$537$1,784
United Financial$499$667$1,795
Mid Century$553$604$1,820
New Jersey Manufacturers$660$785$1,660
Illinois Farmers$681$740$1,695
Louisiana Farm Bureau$698$901$2,329
Colonial County$735$708$1,663
New York Central$757$843$2,123

 The above rates shown are average annual rates compared.

  • State-minimum liability only
  • Liability only: 50/100/50
  • Full coverage: 100/300/100 with $500 deductibles on comprehensive/collision

Get started by comparing car insurance quotes

To compare car insurance rates, you will need to first decide how much coverage you need and have the details about your car, location and listed drivers. Also, keep in mind the difference between a car insurance rate comparison and a car insurance quote comparison:

  • A quote is a company’s estimate of what it thinks you will pay for a policy.
  • The rate is the amount you’ll pay once you’re policy is in effect.

You will get quotes during your research, but the exact amount you pay for coverage – your rate – may be a bit more or less after the insurance company finalizes its calculations.

Get an idea of what you can expect to pay by comparing car insurance

If you’ve moved or if you want to get a feel for what car insurance costs in your neighborhood or are a new driver, you can get an idea of what people in your area are paying by using our car insurance comparison tool, showing the average car insurance rate in each ZIP code.

California Car Insurance Rates by ZIP Code

Enter ZIP for average rate. Then enter Age, Gender and Coverage Level for customized rate.
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State Minimum: Required liability coverage to drive legally in your state; some states mandate additional coverage, such as personal injury protection, uninsured motorist, underinsured motorist. Liability Only 50/100/50: $50,000 per person/$100,000 maximum per accident for bodily injury; $50,000 for property damage. Liability pays for injuries/damage you cause others. Full Coverage 100/300/100: $100,000 per person/$300,000 maximum per accident for bodily injury; $100,000 for property damage; comprehensive and collision coverage with $500 deductible. Liability pays for injuries/damage you cause others. Comprehensive and collision pay for damage to your car.
94404 Foster City
For  30  Year Old   Male  (Type:  Liability - Minimum )
Average Monthly Premium
highest rate Highest Rate $56/mo.
lowest rate Lowest Rate $26/mo.
Compare personalized quotes from up to 20 companies in California now
91205 - Glendale: $91
90212 - Beverly Hills: $91
90038 - Los Angeles: $91
91203 - Glendale: $90
96107 - Coleville: $33
93513 - Big Pine: $34
96093 - Weaverville: $34
96027 - Etna: $34

Review your existing car insurance policy and assess coverage

While you shop for the price and insurance company that is right for you, you should know what coverages are right for you too. If this is a new policy you need to meet at least your state’s minimum liability car insurance requirements. If you simply want to find the cheapest car insurance possible when comparison shopping, you would look for liability coverage only, and in the smallest amount your state will accept. (Legally required minimum liability coverage amounts vary by state.) Bear in mind that some states require so little coverage that an accident might leave any other assets you have, such as a home or savings, vulnerable to lawsuits.

If you’re replacing a policy, review the information on your policy to see if your existing coverage is still the best for you.

The four main types of car insurance you should understand are: 

  • Liability car insurance – Covers others’ property damage and medical expenses. If you have few assets, you don’t need high limits. If you own a home or have savings, you do —  100/300/100 is recommended. That means $100,000 per person, up to $300,000 an accident and $300,000 for property damage costs.
  • Uninsured motorist coverage – Comes in two forms: uninsured motorist bodily injury pays for medical bills if you’re injured in an accident that an uninsured driver causes. Uninsured property damage pays to fix your car. Some states require these coverages, but if yours doesn’t, ask yourself if you would have the money to pay for damages if a driver hits you without car insurance.
  • Collision coverage – Covers damage to your car. This pays out only up to the actual cash value of your car. If your vehicle is old, you may not need this optional protection.
  • Comprehensive insurance – Covers theft and damage to your car from hail, floods, fire, vandalism and animal strikes. Like collision coverage, this will pay you up to the amount the insurance company values your car. If you drive a beater, you may not need the extra coverage.

Comprehensive and collision coverage are typically not budget-busters. A comprehensive car insurance comparison analysis by CarInsurance.com shows the national average cost per year is $192. For collision, it’s $526.

Also, decide now what deductible makes sense for your situation. One of the best ways to save on car insurance is to raise your deductible for collision and comprehensive insurance, but remember that if you have a claim, that deductible will be your out-of-pocket expense to repair or replace your car. You’ll have to pay the deductible each time if you have more than one claim. We recommend you choose an amount that you can pay from savings. Your car won’t be repaired until you pay your share.

Gather your personal information

If you compare car insurance rates online, it’s easier to compare quotes side-by-side, saving you from repeatedly giving out the same information and writing down quotes on your own. Once you know what coverage you need, gather the following information to request a car insurance quote.

  • Name, birthdate and driver’s license number of all drivers to be covered.
  • Make and model of each car to be covered.
  • Driving history, including accidents and driving violations, of all drivers to be covered by the policy.

Start a car insurance rate comparison from different companies

Now you can begin collecting online car insurance quotes. Request rates from at least three different insurers. Compare the same coverage using the same liability limits, identical deductibles and optional coverages.

Also, follow up with potential insurers about any car insurance discounts you may qualify for. There may be additional discounts offered that are not part of the online quote process. For instance, you may be asked how many miles you drive a year to see if you’re eligible for a low-mileage discount, but you may not be asked what your teen driver’s grades are, which could snag you a good-student discount.

Now that you know what coverages and limits you need, start now by finding car insurance companies in your area.

Research potential car insurance companies before you buy

When you’re ready to buy, research the insurers that offer the lowest rate. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) recommends that when you compare insurance companies, you:

  • Check with an insurance ratings service, such as AM Best or Standard & Poor’s, to find a grade or rating for the company and analyze its finances.
  • Check for complaints against the company with the NAIC.
  • Research complaint rates online at the Better Business Bureau and your state insurance department.
  • Read the customer comments on the company’s social media sites.
  • Take a look at CarInsurance.com’s best car insurance companies.

Tips for comparing car insurance quotes online

Understanding variables that impact rates: When you compare car insurance costs, understand that many factors influence car insurance rates. The major considerations include your age, where you live, the type of car you drive, your driving record, your credit history and how much coverage you buy.

Your deductible: The deductible you pay if you have a full coverage policy will increase or decrease your price. Higher deductibles lower your rates because insurers assume you will file fewer claims. If your deductible is $1,000, it doesn’t make sense to file a claim for damage under that amount or even for a bit more than that, since you’ll have to pay the deductible before your insurance pays out. Fewer claims mean your potential cost to your insurer is lower, so the amount you pay is lower. On the other hand, a low deductible, say $500, means you’ll likely file more claims. So, a low deductible will increase your rates.

Drop optional coverages if you don’t need them: If you have a car that you own outright and it’s not worth much money, less than $3,000, and is 10 years old or older, it might not make financial sense to carry the optional coverages of comprehensive and collision. You only get paid out up to the actual cash value of your car if you file a claim under these portions of your policy.

Get all the discounts you qualify for: Not all drivers meet the criteria for all discounts, so be sure to get the ones that match your driver profile. Common car insurance discounts include those for bundling with your home insurance company, paying your policy in full, paying electronically, meeting low mileage requirements, having safety and anti-theft features installed, insuring more than one vehicle with the same company, staying accident-free for three to five years and maintaining a high grade-point average.

Check customer reviews: Be sure to read customer reviews of companies you are considering. Also, check the insurance companies’ social media and Facebook pages on your list to see what policyholders have to say about their experiences.

Car insurance rates comparison: Compare rates by state

Below, you’ll see the average highest and lowest rates fielded from up to six major insurers for nearly every ZIP code in each state.

The difference between the highest and lowest rates is the amount you could save by comparing car insurance quotes from different companies.

State Average Rate Average Highest Rate Average Lowest Rate Average $ Savings Average % Savings
Washington, D.C.$2,188$3,773$1,042$2,731262%
New Jersey$1,993$3,569$990$2,579261%
Rhode Island$2,040$2,992$763$2,229292%
New York$2,062$2,799$824$1,975240%
West Virginia$1,654$2,576$1,064$1,512142%
New Mexico$1,604$2,334$951$1,383145%
North Dakota$1,577$2,324$949$1,375145%
New Hampshire$1,086$1,999$664$1,335201%
North Carolina$1,425$2,064$767$1,297169%
South Dakota$1,643$2,213$1,062$1,151108%
South Carolina$1,653$2,118$986$1,132115%
National Average$1,758$2,557$910$1,647178%

Compare auto insurance quotes side-by-side

Use the CarInsurance.com estimator tool to get a customized recommendation in minutes for how much coverage you need, and be matched with car insurance companies that can provide quotes.

Factors to consider while making an auto insurance quote comparison

Many factors affect your car insurance rates. Here, we’ll review the chief variables of your driver profile that insurers consider when pricing your policy.

    1. Where you live: Your location, and where you garage your car, is the springboard for calculating what you pay. Insurance companies consider the frequency and cost of accidents, vandalism, weather damage and theft claims in your area, and set a base rate. From there, your cost is adjusted up or down, depending on your driving record, the type of vehicle you’re insuring, and other circumstances, such as your credit history and demographics, such as your age. You can compare car insurance rates by ZIP code for three coverage levels, based on your age, by using CarInsurance.com’s average rate tool. It also shows the highest and lowest rate fielded from up to six carriers, so you can see how much you can save by shopping around.
    2. Your age: Inexperienced drivers, typically teens and those under 24, pay higher rates than older drivers because they are deemed high-risk motorists, meaning they have a high likelihood of getting into accidents. Generally, rates are cheapest for drivers in their 40s, 50s and 60s, and then increase again at age 70, based on an analysis of average car insurance rates by age.
    3. Your gender: Using gender when setting car insurance rates is somewhat controversial as insurance companies maintain it’s a fair practice based on their actuarial research, while consumer advocates argue it is discriminatory. As a result, seven states have either banned the use of gender in pricing auto insurance or require unisex pricing. Female drivers from age 16 to 24 pay, on average, around $500 less (15%) a year for car insurance compared to their male counterparts, according to CarInsurance.com’s rate analysis.  Our rate data show that from age 25 to 65, males and females are within 5% of each other, with rates for males a tad cheaper from age 45 to 75.  After age 75, females start again to pay less, but only around 7%, or $100, annually. States that banned the use of gender: California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Montana, North Carolina, Michigan and Pennsylvania.
    4. Your credit history: Drivers with bad credit pay more for coverage than those with good credit. If you have bad credit, you can still save on coverage by comparing quotes, but be prepared for more expensive rates.
    5. Your driving record: Your driving record greatly affects what you’ll pay for insurance. Car insurance rates go up 31%, on average, after one at-fault accident with more than $2,000 in damage, or by $450 a year, CarInsurance.com rate data show. It’s just a bit more for an at-fault bodily injury accident.
    6. The type of vehicle you drive: Car insurance costs also vary by make and model, as insurance companies consider, along with other factors we’ve mentioned already, how safe the vehicle is, what its rate of accident claims are and how much it costs to repair. To compare car insurance rates by vehicle, below you’ll see the average car insurance rates for the nation’s top-selling 2021 vehicles:
Make Model Average Rate
FordF-150 XL$1,370
ChevroletSilverado 1500 LT$1,420
RAMRam 2500 Tradesman$1,536
ToyotaRAV4 Adventure$1,399
ToyotaCamry LE$1,604
ChevroletEquinox L$1,390
HondaCR-V LX$1,285
ToyotaCorolla L$1,572
HondaCivic LX$1,500
NissanRogue Sport SV$1,441
FordExplorer XLT$1,453
ToyotaTacoma SR$1,411
GMCSierra 1500$1,385
JeepGrand Cherokee Laredo$1,450
FordEscape S$1,360
ToyotaHighlander LE$1,472
NissanRogue S$1,441
HondaAccord LX$1,501
JeepWrangler JL Sport$1,339
SubaruForester 2.5I$1,333
FordEscape S$1,360
SubaruOutback 2.5I$1,330

Final thoughts on car insurance rates comparison

It’s wise to shop your policy at least once a year, upon renewal, to be sure you’ve not overpaying. But you should also compare car insurance quotes when you experience life changes because your existing company may no longer be the most affordable after a major change in your circumstances. That’s because some companies may hike your rates a lot after an accident, for instance, while others may not.

Here are other times you should compare car insurance quotes, as your rate is likely to be affected, and switching companies may mean more savings:

  • You move
  • You buy a car
  • Add or drop drivers from your policy
  • Experience a significant change in your credit score
  • Have an accident or multiple moving violations within 12 months
  • Add a teen driver

If you compare car insurance quotes, you’ll save money because you’ll see which carrier offers the cheapest car insurance for your particular circumstances.

 — Michelle Megna contributed to this story.

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Executive Editor

Laura is an award-winning editor with experience in content and communications covering auto insurance and personal finance. She has written for several media outlets, including the USA Today Network. She most recently worked in the public sector for the Nevada Department of Transportation.