Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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Benjamin Carr was a licensed insurance agent in Georgia and has two years’ experience in life, health, property and casualty coverage. He has worked with State Farm and other risk management firms. He is also a strategic writer and editor with a background in branding, marketing, and quality assurance. He has been in military newsrooms — literally on the frontline of journalism.

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Reviewed by Benji Carr
Former Licensed Life Insurance Agent Benji Carr

UPDATED: Oct 5, 2015

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It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right coverage choices.

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Our partnerships don’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own. To compare quotes from top car companies please enter your ZIP code above to use the free quote tool. The more quotes you compare, the more chances to save.

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No car owner likes having to buy auto insurance, in particular when the prices are way too high.

Since you have so many companies to choose from, it can be impossible to pick the right company.

Finding affordable coverage is quite easy. If you have car insurance now, you should be able to cut costs considerably using these tips. Although consumers must learn the way companies compete online and use this information to your advantage.

Verify you’re getting every discount

Companies offering auto insurance do not advertise the entire discount list in a way that’s easy to find, so below is a list both well-publicized as well as some of the hidden credits available to lower your premiums when you buy insurance coverage online.

  • Senior Citizen Discount – Mature drivers are able to get lower premium rates for allroad quattro coverage.
  • Early Renewal Discounts – Some auto insurance companies give discounts for renewing your policy before your current policy expires. You can save around 10% with this discount.
  • Discount for New Cars – Adding a new car to your policy is cheaper since newer vehicles are generally safer.
  • Payment Discounts – If you can afford to pay the entire bill as opposed to paying monthly you can avoid the installment charge.
  • Waiver for an Accident – This one isn’t a discount, but companies like Allstate and Progressive may permit one accident before hitting you with a surcharge as long as you don’t have any claims for a certain period of time.
  • Telematics Devices – Drivers who agree to allow their auto insurance company to scrutinize when and where they use their vehicle by using a small device installed in their vehicle such as Snapshot from Progressive or Drivewise from Allstate may get a rate reduction if they exhibit good driving behavior.
  • Memberships – Joining specific professional or occupational memberships or organizations could qualify you for a break on auto insurance.
  • Accident-Free Discounts – Drivers with accident-free driving histories can earn big discounts when compared with frequent claim filers.

It’s important to understand that most credits do not apply to all coverage premiums. Some only reduce the price of certain insurance coverages like collision or personal injury protection. So despite the fact that it appears you could get a free auto insurance policy, it just doesn’t work that way. But all discounts will cut the premium cost.

Companies and their offered discounts are outlined below.

  • Progressive offers discounts including online quote discount, homeowner, multi-vehicle, online signing, multi-policy, and continuous coverage.
  • SAFECO offers premium reductions for bundle discounts, drive less, anti-theft, homeowner, and safe driver.
  • American Family has discounts for air bags, early bird, multi-vehicle, defensive driver, accident-free, good driver, and bundled insurance.
  • MetLife may have discounts that include multi-policy, claim-free, good student, accident-free, good driver, defensive driver
  • GEICO discounts include multi-vehicle, membership and employees, anti-lock brakes, five-year accident-free, military active duty, air bags, and good student.
  • The Hartford has savings for driver training, anti-theft, defensive driver, air bag, vehicle fuel type, and bundle.

If you need lower rates, check with every insurance company to give you their best rates. Some discounts listed above may not apply to policyholders in your area. To find companies who offer discounts, click this link.

Enter your zip code below to view companies that have cheap auto insurance rates.

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When should I discuss my situation with an agent?

When buying coverage, there really is not a “best” method to buy coverage. Everyone’s needs are different and a cookie cutter policy won’t apply. Here are some questions about coverages that may help highlight whether or not you would benefit from professional advice.

  • Are my friends covered when driving my 2005 Audi allroad quattro?
  • Am I covered when driving a rental car?
  • Which companies will insure high-risk drivers?
  • Is my teen driver covered when they drive my company car?
  • When do I need to add a new car to my policy?
  • Why am I required to get a high-risk car insurance policy?
  • Is extra glass coverage worth it?
  • Will filing a claim cost me more?

If it’s difficult to answer those questions but you think they might apply to your situation, then you may want to think about talking to a licensed agent. To find lower rates from a local agent, fill out this quick form or you can also visit this page to select a carrier

Coverage specifics

Understanding the coverages of your policy helps when choosing the best coverages and the correct deductibles and limits. The coverage terms in a policy can be difficult to understand and even agents have difficulty translating policy wording. Listed below are the normal coverages offered by auto insurance companies.

Protection from uninsured/underinsured drivers

This protects you and your vehicle’s occupants from other drivers when they are uninsured or don’t have enough coverage. This coverage pays for hospital bills for your injuries as well as damage to your Audi allroad quattro.

Due to the fact that many drivers carry very low liability coverage limits, it only takes a small accident to exceed their coverage. So UM/UIM coverage is very important.

Comprehensive (Other than Collision)

Comprehensive insurance coverage will pay to fix damage from a wide range of events other than collision. You first have to pay a deductible then your comprehensive coverage will pay.

Comprehensive insurance covers things like a broken windshield, damage from a tornado or hurricane and theft. The maximum amount you’ll receive from a claim is the actual cash value, so if your deductible is as high as the vehicle’s value consider removing comprehensive coverage.

Auto liability

Liability insurance protects you from damage that occurs to other people or property that is your fault. It protects YOU from legal claims by others, and doesn’t cover damage sustained by your vehicle in an accident.

Liability coverage has three limits: per person bodily injury, per accident bodily injury, and a property damage limit. Your policy might show liability limits of 50/100/50 which means a $50,000 limit per person for injuries, a total of $100,000 of bodily injury coverage per accident, and a limit of $50,000 paid for damaged property.

Liability insurance covers things such as medical services, attorney fees and repair bills for other people’s vehicles. How much liability coverage do you need? That is a decision to put some thought into, but buy as high a limit as you can afford.

Medical expense insurance

Coverage for medical payments and/or PIP provide coverage for expenses for things like ambulance fees, chiropractic care, hospital visits, nursing services and surgery. They are often used to fill the gap from your health insurance program or if you do not have health coverage. Medical payments and PIP cover not only the driver but also the vehicle occupants and will also cover getting struck while a pedestrian. PIP coverage is only offered in select states and gives slightly broader coverage than med pay

Collision coverage protection

This coverage will pay to fix damage to your allroad quattro resulting from colliding with a stationary object or other vehicle. You first must pay a deductible and the rest of the damage will be paid by collision coverage.

Collision coverage pays for things such as driving through your garage door, colliding with a tree, backing into a parked car, crashing into a ditch and hitting a parking meter. Paying for collision coverage can be pricey, so consider removing coverage from lower value vehicles. Drivers also have the option to raise the deductible to save money on collision insurance.

Be a money saver!

When you buy insurance coverage online, it’s a bad idea to reduce coverage to reduce premium. Too many times, consumers will sacrifice collision coverage to discover at claim time that the small savings ended up costing them much more. The aim is to buy the best coverage you can find at the best possible price, not the least amount of coverage.

A few companies don’t offer online quoting and usually these small insurance companies prefer to sell through independent agencies. Lower-priced auto insurance is possible on the web and from local insurance agents, so compare prices from both to have the best selection.

More information is available at these links: