There are many types of auto insurance discounts that will help you lock in the cheapest car insurance for your particular situation. But, nailing down the actual discount amounts for car insurance is challenging, so we’ve analyzed discounted car insurance rates for you so you can learn how to get the biggest savings.

What are the best car insurance discounts?

Qualifying as a "safe" or "good" driver nets the highest car insurance discount (27%) on average, based on a 2021 CarInsurance.com discount savings analysis. Generally, you must have a clean driving record, so no moving violations, and no accidents for the past three to five years to earn a safe driver discount. Being accident-free, which means you’ve had no accidents during the past three to five years, nets a car insurance discount of 26% on average. After those, student and home-auto bundle discounts save drivers the most.  Student-away and good student discounts decreased premiums by an average of 18% and 16%, respectively. Auto-home bundles netted a 14% reduction. That’s followed by condo bundles, farm vehicle use and professional discounts at 12%.

Car Insurance Discount and its Average Savings
Discount Average Savings
Good driver/safe driver27%
Accident-free26%
Student away18%
Good student16%
Multi-policy home14%
Multi-policy condo12%
Primary use farm12%
Profession12%
Loyalty three to 20 years11%
New car9%
Higher education9%
Electronic signature9%
Paid in full9%
High-tech safety devices (when available)9%
Enroll discount for usage-based9%
Vehicle owned9%
Daily commute less than 14 miles each way8%
Driver training8%
Married8%
Advance purchase  (seven to 10 days)8%
Low mileage under 7,5007%
Homeowner7%
Primary use pleasure7%
Multi-policy renter6%
Senior defensive driver course5%
Electronic funds transfer5%
Low mileage 7,500 to 14,9995%
Multi-policy life4%
Multi-policy umbrella4%
Paperless4%
Anti-lock brakes4%
Air bags2%
Anti-theft2%

How do car insurance discounts work?

It is common for carriers to list at websites and in advertising that discounts will save you money, naturally. While this is true, you should realize that how much you save depends on many variables that come into play. Discounts depend on state laws and an insurer’s own internal rules and guidelines. Each company will have its own eligibility criteria. The savings will vary as well. You should be able to see what discounts you’re receiving by reviewing your policy's declarations page, though it may not list which vehicle is getting what discount and how much.

Here are seven things you should know:

Not everyone gets the “up to” amount. You may see at insurance websites that a discount saves “up to” a percent or dollar amount. Not everyone gets that amount. The highest savings amount may only be for those who meet certain qualifications, for instance drivers who have clean records.

Discounts don’t always apply to your overall bill. Many discounts only apply to specific coverage types, so the price break is applied to what you pay for that portion of coverage, and doesn’t come off the entire amount you pay. For instance, anti-theft devices will earn a discount, but it’s usually applied just to the comprehensive portion of your bill, because comprehensive insurance covers auto theft.

State laws require that you get some discounts. Some discounts are required by state law, which means you get the savings regardless of whether your insurance company officially offers it or not. One example, according to the Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association: Twelve states require insurers to give comprehensive insurance discounts for security devices. (Florida, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Texas and Washington.)

On the other hand, you have to ask for most discounts. While state laws mandate some discounts, others you have to earn by notifying your insurance company that you qualify for them. For instance, if you stop commuting a long way for work, you may qualify for a low-mileage discount, but your provider wouldn’t know that unless you told them. Or, your teen driver may start attending a college that’s a several hour drive away and be able to net a “student away” discount. That’s why it’s best to review your policy frequently, as circumstances change you may be able to qualify for more savings.

Discount amounts can max out. Insurance companies usually cap the percentage you can save by qualifying for discounts. You might think you can save, say, 80% because you qualify for multiple discounts, but you won’t get that amount. It’s not widely reported what the maximum discount savings percentage is – insurance companies say it is proprietary information – and it differs among carriers. However, underwriting experts say it is around 30%, and in some cases up to 40%. It’s wise to ask the insurance company what cap it puts on discounts when reviewing discounted car insurance offers.

Discounts vary by state and insurance company. Not all discounts are offered in all states, or by all insurance companies. Many carrier websites’ discount sections will include in the small print a listing of which states are either included or excluded, so look for that when researching. And of course, one insurance company may offer a discount for, say, having a certain professional job, while another may not.

Getting lots of discounts doesn’t always mean you’re paying the lowest price. Keep in mind that discounts don’t remove the need to comparison-shop your coverage periodically. You may find that a car insurance company offering only a few discounts gives you an overall lower price for your policy.

Types of car insurance discounts

The types of discounts fall into three basic categories. They are:

  • Driver profile discounts – Discounts having to do with you and your driving habits.
  • Vehicle discounts – Discounts having to do with your car.
  • Policy discounts – Discounts that relate to your policy, if you have an auto-home bundle or online billing, for example.

Car insurance discounts to ask for and how much you can save

As you’ve learned, the amount you save on a discount will depend on a variety of factors, including your state laws and insurance company, your driver profile and types of coverages you have. Still, you can get an idea of how much common discounts decrease your rate. Here are the details on average savings, based on research by CarInsurance.com’s staff of experts and on our discount rate analysis.

Senior driving training discount: Average of 5%, but can range up to 12%

Available to: Individuals 55 or older (sometimes the threshold is 60 or 65, depending on state laws or insurer guidelines) who have successfully completed an approved accident-prevention class, such as the AARP defensive driving course.

Conditions: In many states, it’s mandatory for companies to offer this discount.

Length: Typically this discount is good for three years, and it is commonly renewable if the course is taken again.

Discount typically applies to:  Bodily injury liability, property damage liability, collision and comprehensive coverages.

Defensive driver/driver training discount: Average of 8%, but can range up to 23%

Available to: Drivers who take an approved course or class to refresh and polish their skills.

Conditions: There may be age requirements, such as only those over 25.

Sometimes all drivers of a vehicle must take the driving course in order for the discount to apply.

If you take a defensive driving or driver improvement course to keep a ticket or points off your driving record, or to remove points from your driving record, then you may not be eligible to use the course for an auto insurance discount as well. Check with your auto insurance company on this matter.

Length: Typically this discount is good for three years. It may be renewable if the course is taken again.

Discount applies to: Liability coverages of bodily injury and property damage are discounted normally along with collision coverage.

Student away: Average of 18%, but can range up to 23% on average

Available to: Parent or parents of a full-time student living 100 miles or more from home without a vehicle.

Conditions:

  • Distance and discounts vary by insurer.
  • Parent may be required to list child at higher rate during school breaks.

Length: Renewable while child is away at school and under the age of 25.

Discount may apply to: liability coverages along with PIP, medical payments, collision, and comprehensive coverage on the vehicle assigned to the child.

Good student discount:  Average of 16%, but up to 23%

Available to: Full-time high school or college students (sometimes including recent graduates) who carry a 3.0 (B) grade point average or have achieved other certain academic criteria set by the auto insurance provider.

Homeschooled teen drivers may also be eligible based on the results of standardized exams.

Length: Typically renewable up to age 25.

The good student discount normally applies: to bodily injury liability, property damage liability, PIP, medical payments, collision, and comprehensive coverages.

Family, legacy, multi-generational: 5% to 10%

Available to: Child establishing a new policy with the parents’ auto insurance provider.

Conditions: There can be restrictions and certain eligibility rules. For instance, USAA notes that the former dependent must have been insured on the parent policy for a minimum of three years, have a clean driving record and be less than 25 years of age.

Good driver (safe driver, claims-free) discount: average 27%, up to 30%

Available to: Usually, an insurer will require you have a clean driving record for three years or five years. This means that for the review period of that time, your record shows:

  • No DUI/DWI convictions
  • No at-fault accidents
  • No moving violation convictions (some insurers say no violations at all; some say no major violations)

Other eligibility rules may apply, such as you having:

Some car insurance companies may require a certain number of years of driving experience, it may be just one year, others require three to five years.

  • Continuous car insurance coverage.
  • Successfully completed a defensive driving course.
  • A record that is not only accident free but also claims free for the look-back period.

Some states, including California and Georgia, require car insurance companies give a specific discount if a driver meets certain good-driver criteria.

Car insurance companies can also differ on what portions of a car insurance policy are discounted by a good driver discount. However, in general, it will apply to the following coverage premiums:

  • Bodily injury liability
  • Property damage liability
  • Comprehensive coverage
  • Collision coverage
  • Personal injury protection (PIP)
  • Medical payments (MedPay)

How the discount is given can also vary. Common ways of dishing out the discount include:

Flat discount. Your insurance company has a set good driver discount. The set discount reduces your premium cost on the coverages the discount applies to, if you qualify for it.  

Tiered discount. The longer you are free of violations and accidents, the greater your good driver discounts. With these insurers, a driver with three years of safe driving gets one discount (for example, 20%), and drivers whose record is clean for five years gets a higher discount (for example, 25%).

Graduated discount. A discount is given for each year of accident-free driving or safe driving. For instance, the insurer gives a 2% discount for two years of safe driving and the discount goes up gradually, until after 10 years of clean driving, and then the driver gets 20% off.

Length: Continual, as long as you meet the qualifications.

Accident-free discount: average 26%, up to 30%

Available to: Drivers with accident-free records for three years or five years. The amount of time depends on the insurance company’s criteria.

Accident-free discounts may be applied in tiers, so you may get a discount for three-years, and then a higher one after five years.

Low mileage discount: average 3% to 7%, but up to about 10% if very low miles logged.

Savings for driving less depend on the amount of miles you travel. As a result, the average discount varies based on mileage as follows:

Mileage% Average Discount
Under 7,5007%
7,500-9,9996%
10,000-11,9995%
12,000-14,9993%

Available to: Policyholders who drive less than a specified number of miles each year, usually 7,500 to 10,000 miles, but can be more.

Conditions:

  • Some low-mileage drivers may see savings reflected as a reduction in their base rate.
  • Discount is typically applied to bodily injury liability, PIP, property damage liability and collision premiums.
  • Some insurers require verification of odometer readings.

Length: Continual as long as mileage is kept low.

Usage-based insurance (UBI)/telematics/pay-as-you-drive:

  • depending on your driving behavior, could be 5% to 40%
  • enrollment discount: average 9%, but can be up to 18%

Available to: Drivers who install a monitoring device or use a mobile app from their insurance companies that assesses driving habits.

Conditions: Some auto insurers measure only your mileage, but most UBI plans establish discounts based on information about your driving performance. The monitoring devices and apps transmit information such as:

  • How many miles you drive
  • What time of day you drive
  • How much and how often you brake
  • How smoothly you navigate turns
  • How rapidly you accelerate

The discount is typically for the premium related to the three major coverages of bodily injury liability, property damage liability and collision and is usually applied per vehicle, not per driver. Many UBI plans offer a discount for enrolling, typically from 5% to 10%, and then you get the discount for safe driving if you meet the criteria. However, it is possible that your driving habits may result in no discount at all. Depending on your driving performance, you could earn anywhere from a 5% to 40% discount.

Length After being monitored for a certain amount of time (typically 30 to 90 days), the discount should be applied upon renewal and be ongoing.

Married; average 8%, but can be up to 15%

Available to: Married drivers and sometimes domestic partners that prove they have lived together for over a certain time period. Married drivers pay less than single drivers. The average marriage discount is 8%, but can range into the mid-teens, depending on your state laws and your insurance company.

Conditions: You usually have to list each other on the same policy as drivers residing at the same address and driving the same cars.

Length: As long as you are married.

Homeowner: average 7%, but up to 15%

Available to: Homeowners

Conditions: You have to own a home.

Length: Applies as long as you’re a homeowner.

Profession/occupation and education discounts:

  • Professional/occupation discount: average 12%; but can be up to 30%
  • Based on scientist, lawyer, teacher, doctor, firefighter, farmer, engineer, law enforcement
  • Education: average 9%, but can be up to 30%
  • Based on bachelor, graduate and PHD degrees

Available to: Drivers who have a certain type of college degree or who are in a certain type occupation.

Conditions: Risk studies have found people in certain professions or who hold certain types of college degrees are less likely to have claims so insurance companies offer these individuals a discount. Professions who tend to get a discounted rate are:

  • Educators
  • Engineers
  • Scientists

Some car insurance providers, such as Farmers, also give discounts to certain occupational groups. This tends to include:

  • Doctors
  • Registered nurses
  • Dentists
  • Police
  • Firefighters
  • Teachers

Also, some insurers grant a discount of up to 10% to federal employees, typically at certain level, for example GS-7 and above.

Length: Ongoing as long you remain in that profession or as a member of the occupational group.

Military discount: 15% or higher

Available to: Military members and their families

Conditions:

  • Eligibility varies but typically a discount to the total car insurance premium can apply to active and retired military members as well as members of the National Guard or Reserves.
  • USAA gives their discounts based in part on the person’s military status and rank.
  • Louisiana regulations say a premium discount of 25% should be offered to military members.
  • A special storage discount (up to 90%) is also sometimes offered to service members who are deployed or otherwise away and have their vehicle stored in a secure location.
  • Other special discounts are available with some insurers if a military member is deployed overseas, so be sure to ask.

Length: Continual as long as driver meets the eligibility requirements.

Business relationships / Organization / Membership / Group savings discount: Up to 10%

Available to: Drivers who have a relationship with a company or organization associated with their insurance carrier can receive a discount.

Conditions: Some car insurance carriers have relationships with certain groups, companies or organizations that you may work for, or are associated with, allowing you to receive a “group savings” discount. Proof of an active relationship may be required.

For example, Geico is partnered with over 275 groups and associations. If you are a member of one of them, then you may be eligible for special discounts.

Length: Continual as long as your association with the group or organization continues.

Primary use:

  • Farm, average 12%
  • Pleasure, average 7%

Available to:

Farm use discounts are available to those who mostly drive the vehicle around their land, ranch or farm or other agricultural business, and for those whose full-time income is from farming.

A pleasure use vehicle discount is for those who don’t use their vehicles for commuting and errands, and log few miles for leisure drives, for instance, a sporty convertible that is driven just on Sundays in warm weather. Some insurance companies designate vehicles as used for pleasure and offer a discount if your annual mileage is under their set amount for the classification, generally 7,500 miles. Others just will specify that you don’t use the car to commute to work.

Multi-policy/bundle: average for home 14%, but up to 25% to 30%

Available to: Drivers who hold multiple policies with the same insurance provider. Homeowners who bundle their auto policies usually get the highest discounts. Insurance companies consider homeowners a lower risk than renters or condo owners.

Type with AutoAverage Savings
Homeowners Policy14%
Condo Policy12%
Renters Policy6%
Umbrella Policy4%
Life Policy4%

With some insurers, the more insurance you bundle together the higher the saving will be, such as up to 20% if you insure both your car and home with them and up to 25% off if you insure your car, home and have a life insurance policy with them.

Here are rates from regional and major carriers on auto-home bundles that are higher than average.

Auto-home bundle discount savings by company
Company% average auto-home bundle discount
Vermont Mutual34%
Grange31%
Bristol30%
Progressive29%
Acuity26%
Adirondack26%
Memberselect25%
Farmers25%
Southern Farm Bureau24%
MMG24%
Mid Century24%
Fremont23%
American Family22%
Allstate22%
SC Farm Bureau21%
Citizens21%
Allmerica20%
MetLife20%
Patriot20%
Grinnell20%
State Farm19%
Safety Insurance19%
Oklahoma Farm Bureau19%
Colonial19%
Secura Supreme19%
Pemco18%
Mississippi Farm Bureau18%
American Family18%
North Star18%
Hanover18%
New York Central Mutual18%
Quincy Mutual17%
Auto Club Group17%
AAA Texas16%
Interinsurance Exchange Of The Automobile   Club16%
Citizens16%
Pioneer State16%
Palisades16%
Depositors16%
Allstate16%
United Financial15%
Travelers15%
American Farmers & Ranchers Mutual15%
Nationwide15%
State Farm15%

Length: Renewable as long as you continue to keep all insurance policies with the insurer active.

Multi-car discount: 10% to 25%

Available to: Drivers who insure multiple cars on the same auto insurance policy.

Discount is typically on your liability, collision and comprehensive coverages.

Length: Continual as long as you have two or more eligible vehicles insured.

Loyalty: average 11%, but can be up to 20% if for five or 10 years

Available to: Drivers who stay with their current insurer year after year instead of seeking new coverage elsewhere. The longer you stay with the company, the bigger discount you could enjoy.

Conditions: The discount amount tends to be around 10% if you’ve remained with your insurer for three to five years,  and around 12% if you’ve remained loyal for 10 or more.

Length: Continual if remain with current insurer.

Transfer: between 5% and 10%

Available to: Drivers who start a policy with a new auto insurance provider and those switching car insurance companies.

Conditions:

  • To obtain this discount, a driver must usually switch to a new auto carrier before the next premium is due with their current insurer.
  • Generally, you will need to start shopping around two weeks or more in advance of the end of your current auto policy to purchase a new policy to take advantage of this “early shopper” discount.

Length: One-time-only discount usually; if you continue with new insurer, then you may be eligible at next policy period for renewal discount.

Pay in full: average 10%; but up to 18%

Available to: Drivers who pay their car insurance policy premium up front and in full.

Conditions: Need to pay before the policy effective date to receive the premium reduction.

Length: Renewable at beginning of each new policy period if you pay in full.

Advance purchase: average 7%, but can be up to 15%

Available to: Drivers who buy a policy at least seven to 10 days before the renewal date, or before the next premium is due.

Conditions: You must pay for the policy at least seven to 10 days before your renewal date or your next bill is due from your existing carrier.

Electronic funds transfer: average 6%, but can be up to 10%

Available to: Drivers who authorize automatic electronic funds transfers by their insurance carriers from their checking accounts.

Length: Renewable at each policy extension.

Paperless: average 4%, but can be up to 8%

Available to: Drivers who sign up to access their account online and receive documents online.

Conditions: The driver may also be required to set up online billing and automatic payments to receive the discount.

Length: One-time discount with some insurers, ongoing with others.

Anti-theft/vehicle recovery discounts: average 2%, but up to 13%, in some cased 23%

Available to: Drivers whose vehicles have anti-theft devices or a vehicle recovery system attached to it.

Type of DeviceAverage Discount
Tracking device3%
Passive disabling2%
Audible alarm2%
Active disabling2%

Length: Renewable as long as you continue to have the device as part of your vehicle.

VIN etching discount: 5% to 15%

Available to: Car owners who have their vehicle identification number (VIN) permanently etched on the windshield and all other windows as a deterrent to thieves.

Conditions:

  • Discount is not offered by all insurers or in all states, though some states, such as Florida and Kentucky, require insurers to give a discount.
  • Discount is to the comprehensive portion of a car insurance policy.

Length: Renewable as long as you own the vehicle.

High-tech safety features: average 9%, but not yet widely available

High-tech safety features are increasingly becoming standard in new model vehicles, but only a handful of car insurance companies offer discounts for them. Travelers has been an early adopter of high-tech safety feature discounts, but besides Progressive and AAA auto insurance in a few states, the other big insurers aren’t offering such discounts. Our research does show smaller companies, like Kemper, or regional companies such as Grange, also offering these types of discounts. More major carriers may follow suit if their research over the past five years or so shows that high-tech safety features result in fewer accident claims.

Conditions: Some states mandate a discount for specific safety features, while others leave it up to the insurers to determine which devices qualify for discounts.

Applies to: The portion of the policy that receives the discount can vary, but in general it may apply to your liability, personal injury protection (PIP), medical payments (MedPay) and/or collision coverage.

Safety DeviceAverage discount among those who offer high-tech discounts
Air bag deployment communication system11%
Collision prevention system11%
Heads-up display11%
Night vision11%
Park assist11%
Adaptive cruise control10%
Back up sensor9%
Lane-departure warning8%
Rear view camera8%
Driver alertness monitor5%
Daytime running lights4%

Standard safety features such as side-impact and driver and passenger airbags and anti-lock brakes garner fairly small price breaks, just 2% to 4%, on average. Air bag discounts are normally applied to your PIP or MedPay portion of your policy.

New car: average 9%, but up to 23%

Available to: Drivers insuring a vehicle that is three years old or newer.

Conditions: Discount is usually to the collision portion of your insurance policy.

Length: For the first three years of ownership of a new vehicle.

Alternative fuel / Hybrid car discount:  5% to 10%

Available to: Owners of hybrids and other alternative fuel vehicles.

Conditions: The discount on major coverages (liability coverages, collision and comprehensive) on a hybrid or alternative fuel vehicle is only available with certain auto insurers and even then it’s not necessarily available in all states.

Length: Continual as long as you own an eligible vehicle.

Car insurance companies with the most auto insurance discounts

Insurance companies each have their own menu of discounts that are available. Below you’ll see which discounts are offered by major carriers.

Discounts Offered by Major Carriers
CompanyLow MileageMulti-PolicyMulti-VehiclePaid In FullOwn HomeLoyaltyAir BagAnti-LockAnti-TheftNew CarGood StudentTeen Driver edStudent AwayDriver TrainingSafe DriverAccident FreeMature DriverJob DiscountTransfer From CompetitorStart Quote Online/Buy onlineEarly SigningAuto PayPaperlessAffinity
AAAxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Allstatexxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
American Familyxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Auto Club of Southern Californiaxxxxxxxxx
Auto-Ownersxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Country Insurancexxxxxxxxxx
CSAA Insurance Groupxxxx
Direct Generalxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Erie Insurancexxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Everest (Arrowhead)xxxxxx
Farmersxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Geicoxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Infinityxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Liberty Mutualxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Mercuryxxxxxxxxxxxx
MetLifexxxxxxxxxxxxx
Metromilexxxx
National Generalxxxxxxxxxxxx
Nationwidexxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Progressivexxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Safecoxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
State Farmxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
The Generalxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
The Hartfordxxxxxxxxxx
Travelersxxxxxxxxxxxxx
USAAxxxxxxxxxxx

Discount car insurance for years licensed, years insured

The number of years you’re insured and the number of years you’ve had a license both offer huge savings on your rates. But they aren’t typically touted as auto insurance discounts because they are quasi-underwriting factors. That means in some states how long you’ve been insured and how long you’ve had a license are taken into account when insurance companies set your rate, in the same way your driving record is considered. And then from there, you may or may not qualify for discounts. In other states, these variables may be deemed discounts after your rate is set. Regardless, this information is generally reviewed when you apply for coverage and are getting a quote. Either way, the longer you’ve had continuous coverage and a license, the less you pay. The average savings are:

No. of YearsInsuredLicensed
118%20%
217%24%
319%32%
419%33%
520%34%
1020%37%
1520%38%
2020%38%

Car insurance discount FAQ

How do I get discounts on car insurance?

When it comes to discounts, knowledge is power – you can’t get a discount you don’t know about. The best way to be certain you are getting all the discounts you are eligible for is to ask your insurer. Ask for a full list of all the discounts the insurance company offers. Then, assess which ones you qualify for and notify your insurance company.

If you’re shopping for a new policy, be sure to ask potential insurers which discounts they provide, and to which coverages they apply. That way you can choose the company that has the most discounts that match your particular situation.

How long do I have to be with my insurance company to get a discount?

Some discounts are automatic, while others are applied once you meet some criteria. You might get a discount immediately, for instance, if you buy a new car or bundle your coverage with a home insurance policy. If your teen driver earns a 3.0 grade average, a good student discount would be applied at that time, or for example, if you switch to paperless billing, the price break would come at that time.