The Cheapest Car Insurance For College Students

Cheapest Car Insurance

If you’re a college student, you’re likely on a strict budget. You already have to pay for tuition, room and board, text books, and more. But if you’re driving, you also need to have car insurance. Auto insurance for college students is usually in the back of your mind. 

Nobody thinks about shopping for car insurance. In fact, most college student students simply opt for the same insurance their parents have… even if it’s not the cheapest.

But the simple fact is, auto insurance for college students can make up a huge part of your limited budget. And auto insurance rates change all the time. The “good deal” you got as a college freshman might be a bad deal today.

Plus, the average cost of car insurance for a 20 year old is $3,816 per year, or $318 per month! That’s a lot of money!

That’s why it’s essential that you shop around and look for the best auto insurance rates. We’ve made it simple by putting together this simple comparison tool.

Our Pick For The Cheapest Car Insurance For College Students

It’s important to remember that the average annual cost of car insurance in the United States is about $900 per year. That’s $75 per month. But that’s the average for everyone. 

The average cost for college students is roughly $3,816 per year, or $318 per month. So, if you’re paying less than that, you’re winning!

Note: The insurance offers that appear on this site are from companies from which The College Investor receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). The College Investor does not include all insurance companies or all insurance offers available in the marketplace.

Winner: Liberty Mutual

Our #1 pick for the cheapest car insurance for college students is Liberty Mutual. The reason might surprise you. It’s because Liberty Mutual has an awesome incentive program to combine renters insurance (which every college student needs) with their car insurance. And by combining your policies, you can save big bucks AND get more of what you need.

When you combine car insurance with renters insurance, you get a multi-policy discount, which saves you a lot of money. At Liberty Mutual, while rates vary, that can be a significant reduction. With that, we recommend Liberty Mutual as our top pick for the cheapest overall auto insurance for college students.

Liberty Mutual Insurance Logo

Runner Up: Lemonade

Lemonade is one of our top choices because it combines everything you need – car insurance, renters insurance, and more – into a simple product that you can apply for and get covered online.

We love Lemonade because of how easy they make it to get insured. They’re a relalatively new company compared to Liberty Mutual, but as a result, they’re also innovative and making things easy for their customers.

Read our full Lemonade review here.

Lemonade Logo

Runner Up: Metromile

You’ve probably not heard of Metromile, but it’s a fantastic solution for college students who don’t drive very much. This is car insurance that you simply pay by mile. So, if you’re only driving 2,500 or 5,000 miles per year, you could be saving $611 or more on your car insurance!

We love this model for college students because you only pay for what you use. If you live on or near campus, and only drive during the summers and maybe some random trips, why are you paying for car insurance year round? Save some money, and check it out.

Read our full Metromile review here.

metromile logo

Compare Overall Auto Insurance For College Students

Here’s our full comparison list for car insurance for college students. Remember, rates vary by state. Enter your zip code below and get started to find the lowest price near you.

Biggest Factors To Consider When Shopping For Car Insurance

Shopping for car insurance is tough because there are so many variables involved in what price you pay. If you already entered some information above, you might be surprised by the results. 

Everything from your history, your vehicle, where you live, and more all influence the price you’re going to pay for car insurance for college students. And the fact is, the insurance companies have done the math. They know the risks of every area, car, driving habit, and more.

When it comes to shopping around for car insurance as a college student, make sure you take into consideration the following factors:

How Much Coverage Do You Really Need?

Some policies will try to oversell you on coverage. But you also shouldn’t come up short. Every state also have different insurance minimums (which we highlight below), that you must follow. But the minimum might not be enough.

There are a lot of guides out there that can help you decide how much coverage you need, but it really comes down to a few factors:

If you have a lot of assets, do you have enough coverage to protect yourself?If you don’t have any assets, do you need as much coverage as you’re paying for?Are you getting all the discounts you’re eligible for (we talk about this below)?

Your History And Your Vehicle

Your driving history and your vehicle play a big role in the price of your car insurance. If you don’t drive much, you might consider an alternative that we discuss below. That might save you a lot of money, especially if you don’t even need to have car insurance as a college student!

Your vehicle also plays a big factor in your coverage. Some vehicles will be cheaper than others to insure. 

Alternatives For Low Mileage Drivers

If you’re a low mileage driver (maybe you’re at college, or don’t need to commute much), there are car insurance services that can be extremely affordable. Our favorite is Metromile. 

Metromile is a pay by mile car insurance company. If you’re driving less than 5,000 miles per year, you could be saving upwards of $500 or more per year by switching. This is a great solution for car insurance for students because if you’re on campus 9 months a year, you might not need to be spending a fortune on insurance.

The way it works is simple – you sign up, pay a small monthly fee, and then a low per-mile rate. You plug a small device into your car which tracks your mileage. Super simple!

Check out Metromile here.

Metromile Car Insurance LogoPay per mile car insuranceLow deductible options availableIdeal for low mileage drivers like college students

What About Ride Sharing Insurance?

One of our favorite ways to make money in college is to drive for a ride sharing company like Uber or Lyft. However, if you drive for these services, you need to get additional insurance if you’re in an accident. These insurance policies are “add-ons”, they cover you for the time you’re using your vehicle for work.

If you don’t have ridesharing insurance and you’re in an accident, you could be liable for all the damages – your personal insurance likely won’t cover you. 

You might think you’re covered by Uber or Lyft when you drive, but that’s only partially correct. Uber and Lyft only cover rideshare drivers once you accept a ride request and are en route to your passenger, and once your passenger gets into your car.  But when you’re online and waiting for a request OR the second you end the ride and your passenger gets out, you have no collision coverage from Uber or Lyft.  And that’s typically an “accident prone” time.

So as a rideshare driver, you need to get a ride sharing insurance policy.  Our recommended company Liberty Mutual offers ridesharing policies, and other companies do as well. Make sure you talk to your insurance company about this if you’re driving for Uber or Lyft.

Do You Need Insurance For On-Demand Rental Services?

What if you don’t own a car, don’t drive very much, and only use on-demand car rental services like Zipcar. Do you still need car insurance?

Using services like Zipcar is a fantastic tool for college students who only need to drive a few times a month. These are self service cars that are available on almost every college campus, 24/7. You only pay for what you use by the hour, and you can get started with their online app. 

The great thing about using a service like Zipcar is that car insurance is included. For your monthly membership fee and rental usage fee, you get an insurance policy that covers you while you drive – so no worrying! Everything is taken care of!

This is a fantastic alternative than owning a car and having to get car insurance if you don’t drive very often. Check to see if Zipcar is available on a campus near you: Find Zipcar. 

Read our full Zipcar review here.

Can You Just Uber Everywhere?

Even though we’re talking about shopping for car insurance for college students, our end goal is really to save you money in your budget every month.

This may sound odd, but have you thought about ditching your car (and car insurance and other expenses) and simply using Uber or Lyft to get rides everywhere you need to go. Depending on where you live, how frequently you need a vehicle, and the prices in your area, it can be a really cost effective solution versus owning a car and having to shop for car insurance.

In fact, I personally sold my car and Uber everywhere. I document the full experiment (including what I spend every month), here: Why I Sold My Car And Uber Everywhere.

How College Students Can Get A Discount On Car Insurance

One of the hardest parts about comparing car insurance options is all the discounts that are available to drivers. These discounts can turn an expensive policy into the cheapest, and so it’s important to make sure you get every discount you’re eligible for.

There are three main buckets to break discounts down into:

Vehicle Discounts

Vehicle discounts are savings you get for driving a car that has specific features. For example, our recommended company Liberty Mutual offers the following vehicle discounts: 

Anti-theft discount (does your car have an alarm system?)Anti-lock brake discountNew car discount (if it’s this model year and you’re the first owner)

Policy Discounts

These are discounts that apply to the entire policy, and are usually based on actions you take as a driver.

Multi-policy discount (if you have multiple insurance policies with the same company)Full payment discount (if you pay your entire year premium at once, instead of in monthly installments)Auto payment discount (if you sign up for direct debit of your insurance premiums)
Responsible drive discount (if you go a long period of time with no claims or accidents)
Paperless Statement discount (if you sign up for eStatements)
Long term customer discount (if you’re been a loyal customer for a long time)

Other Discounts

These are other discounts that you might get from your car insurance company, but they typically require special actions on your part. Always ask to see if you qualify. 

Good student discount (usually involves some combination of being a student and having good grades)Drive education discount (if you take a driver education course sponsored by your auto insurance company)Safety monitoring discount (some insurance companies now allow you to get a discount if you install a safety monitoring device in your vehicle to record your driving)

For students, the big discounts to take advantage of are the good student discount and the multi-policy discount. The multi-policy discount is typically the biggest dollar-amount discount that insurance companies will provide. However, for teenage and college student drivers, the good student can help a lot with rate reduction.

Is Switching Car Insurance Worth It?

Most of the time, changing your car insurance company for the company with the lowest rate is definitely worth it. Unlike banks or credit cards, changing your car insurance is easy. You can do it in about 10 minutes online, and your new policy is active. Then, you just need to cancel your old car insurance policy.

Another thing that can make switching car insurance worth it is combining it with renters insurance. College students need renters insurance. If you get a car insurance and renters insurance policy at the same company, your renters insurance can be free (or you can view it as a significant discount on your car insurance).

How Much Car Insurance Do You Need?

This is a tough question and it can vary from person to person. To complicate matters, some states require a base-line level of insurance for any policy (don’t worry, the companies in the list above will all comply with local insurance laws so you don’t have to worry about it).

If you’re looking to get the cheapest policy possible, you can buy an insurance policy that is only liability. This means it only covers you for injuries and damages you cause to others, but it won’t help pay for damage to your car. Typically, most experts recommend having at least $50,000 per person in liability coverage.

You can then add in collision or comprehensive coverage. Collision coverage will cover your vehicle for damages suffered in a collision. Comprehensive adds even more coverage, such as if your vehicle is stolen. Given that this insurance will cover more, it will also make it more expensive.

Car Insurance Minimums By State

Every state has different insurance requirements, which makes it so hard to compare insurance policies. That’s why we have this tool that allows you to enter your zip code and see what policies you can apply for. They do vary quite a bit from state to state. 

What You Need To Compare

The first things to know is what you need to compare when it comes to states. There are four main types of insurance minimums that apply:

1. Bodily Injury Liability: This is defined per person and the maximum amount your policy will pay if someone is injured.

2. Property Damage Liability: This is defined per accident and covers damage you do to property (not your own vehicle). 

3. Personal Injury Protection: This is what you insurance company will cover for your injuries, and is defined per person and per accident.

4. Uninsured Motorist Protection: This is defined per person and per accident, and covers you if you’re involved in an accident by an uninsured motorist.

It’s important to note that these are just minimum amounts of insurance. You can also get comprehensive insurance that covers your vehicle in events like storm damage, theft, and more – but states don’t require that.

Also, note that the minimums might not be enough for you. You need to assess your own personal finance situation and see if you might need more insurance. If you have an above average net worth, you might need more protection. 

Here is the full list by state. Note: these numbers are subject to change. Other restrictions to insurance may apply.

Alabama 

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $25,000 property damage liability per accident

Alaska

Bodily Injury: $50,000 bodily injury liability per person and $100,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $25,000 property damage liability per accident

Arizona

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $25,000 property damage liability per accident

Arkansas

Bodily Injury: $15,000 bodily injury liability per person and $30,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $10,000 property damage liability per accident

California

Bodily Injury: $15,000 bodily injury liability per person and $30,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $5,000 property damage liability per accident

Colorado

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $15,000 property damage liability per accident

Connecticut

Bodily Injury: $20,000 bodily injury liability per person and $40,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $10,000 property damage liability per accidentUninsured Motorist: $20,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per person and $40,000 per accident

Delaware

Bodily Injury: $15,000 bodily injury liability per person and $30,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $10,000 property damage liability per accident

Florida

Property Damage: $10,000 property damage liability per accidentPersonal Injury Protection: $10,000 personal injury protection

Georgia

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $25,000 property damage liability per accident

Hawaii

Bodily Injury: $20,000 bodily injury liability per person and $40,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $10,000 property damage liability per accidentPersonal Injury Protection:  $10,000 personal injury protection

Idaho

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $15,000 property damage liability per accident

Illinois

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $20,000 property damage liability per accidentUninsured Motorist: $25,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person and $50,000 per accident

Indiana

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $10,000 property damage liability per accident

Iowa

Bodily Injury: $20,000 bodily injury liability per person and $40,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $15,000 property damage liability per accident

Kansas

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $10,000 property damage liability per accidentUninsured Motorist: $25,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per person and $50,000 per accidentPersonal Injury Protection: $4,500 in medical expenses, up to $900 per month for disability or loss of income, $25 per day for in-home services, $4,500 for rehabilitation, $2,000 for funeral burial or cremation costs

Kentucky

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $10,000 property damage liability per accidentPersonal Injury Protection: $10,000 aggregate

Louisiana

Bodily Injury: $15,000 bodily injury liability per person and $30,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $25,000 property damage liability per accident

Maine

Bodily Injury: $50,000 bodily injury liability per person and $100,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $25,000 property damage liability per accidentUninsured Motorist: $50,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person and $100,000 per accidentPersonal Injury Protection: $2,000 medical payments coverage

Maryland

Bodily Injury: $30,000 bodily injury liability per person and $60,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $15,000 property damage liability per accident

Massachusetts

Bodily Injury: $20,000 bodily injury liability per person and $40,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $5,000 property damage liability per accidentUninsured Motorist: $20,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person and $40,000 per accidentPersonal Injury Protection: $8,000 aggregate

Michigan

Bodily Injury: $20,000 bodily injury liability per person and $40,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $10,000 property damage liability per accident

Minnesota

Bodily Injury: $30,000 bodily injury liability per person and $60,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $10,000 property damage liability per accidentUninsured Motorist: $25,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per person and $50,000 per accidentPersonal Injury Protection: $40,000 aggregate

Mississippi

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $25,000 property damage liability per accident

Missouri

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $10,000 property damage liability per accidentUninsured Motorist: $25,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person and $50,000 per accident

Montana

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $10,000 property damage liability per accident

Nebraska

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $25,000 property damage liability per accidentUninsured Motorist: $25,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person and $50,000 per accident

Nevada

Bodily Injury: $15,000 bodily injury liability per person and $30,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $10,000 property damage liability per accident

New Hampshire

Car insurance is not mandatory in New Hampshire. While you don’t have to purchase insurance, there is a law which will hold you responsible for paying for damages. You should purchase at least the minimum car insurance to protect yourself and your family.

New Jersey

Bodily Injury: $15,000 bodily injury liability per person and $30,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $5,000 property damage liability per accidentPersonal Injury Protection: $15,000 aggregate

New Mexico

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $10,000 property damage liability per accident

New York

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentDeath Liability: $50,000 liability for death per person and $100,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $10,000 property damage liability per accidentUninsured Motorist: $25,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person and $50,000 per accidentPersonal Injury Protection: $50,000 aggregate

North Carolina

Bodily Injury: $30,000 bodily injury liability per person and $60,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $25,000 property damage liability per accidentUninsured Motorist: $30,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person and $60,000 per accident and $25,000 uninsured motorist property damage coverage per accident

North Dakota

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $25,000 property damage liability per accidentUninsured Motorist: $25,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per person and $50,000 per accidentPersonal Injury Protection: $30,000 aggregate

Ohio

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $25,000 property damage liability per accident

Oklahoma

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $25,000 property damage liability per accident

Oregon

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $20,000 property damage liability per accidentUninsured Motorist: $25,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person and $50,000 per accidentPersonal Injury Protection: $15,000 aggregate

Pennsylvania

Bodily Injury: $15,000 bodily injury liability per person and $30,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $5,000 property damage liability per accidentPersonal Injury Protection: $5,000 in medical benefits

Rhode Island

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $25,000 property damage liability per accident

South Carolina

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $25,000 property damage liability per accidentUninsured Motorist: $25,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person and $50,000 per accident and $25,000 uninsured motorist property damage coverage

South Dakota

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $25,000 property damage liability per accidentUninsured Motorist: $25,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per person and $50,000 per accident

Tennessee

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $15,000 property damage liability per accident

Texas

Bodily Injury: $30,000 bodily injury liability per person and $60,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $25,000 property damage liability per accident

Utah

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $65,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $15,000 property damage liability per accidentPersonal Injury Protection: $3,000 aggregate

Virginia

You do not have to buy car insurance, but Virginia law requires that all drivers to pay for injuries or property damage resulting from a car accident. Minimum car insurance is one way to meet this requirement. These are the Virginia minimums:

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $20,000 property damage liability per accident

Vermont

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $10,000 property damage liability per accidentUninsured Motorist: $50,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per person and $100,000 per accident and $10,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist property damage coverage per accident

Washington

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $10,000 property damage liability per accident

Washington D.C.

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $10,000 property damage liability per accidentUninsured Motorist: $25,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage per person and $50,000 per accident and $5,000 uninsured/underinsured motorist property damage coverage per accident

West Virginia

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $25,000 property damage liability per accidentUninsured Motorist: $25,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person and $50,000 per accident and $25,000 uninsured motorist property damage coverage

Wisconsin

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $10,000 property damage liability per accidentUninsured Motorist: $25,000 uninsured motorist coverage per person and $50,000 per accident

Wyoming

Bodily Injury: $25,000 bodily injury liability per person and $50,000 per accidentProperty Damage: $20,000 property damage liability per accident 

Final Reminders

As you can see, shopping for car insurance as a college student can be confusing. There are so many options, things to remember, and you want to make sure you’re going to be fully insured.

If you don’t want to think about it, check out Liberty Mutual, our number one recommendation for car insurance for college students. In about 10 minutes you can get your insurance taken care of online. Check out Liberty Mutual here.

If you don’t drive much, consider using one of the alternative options we provided. If you have your own car, check out Metromile. Pay as you drive car insurance is about as low cost as you’ll find. If you don’t even own a car, look at simply using services like Zipcar for the few times you need to rent one.

Hopefully, this helps you cut through the uncertainty about shopping and comparing auto insurance.


This post The Cheapest Car Insurance For College Students was original published at “https://thecollegeinvestor.com/22103/car-insurance-college-students/”

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