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 15, 2018

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Having to pay for high-priced BMW 3 Series insurance can eat up your savings and make it tough to pay other bills. Doing a rate comparison is recommended to reduce premiums and put more money in your pocket.

Online insurance companies like Allstate, Progressive and GEICO increase brand awareness with ad campaigns and it is challenging if not impossible to avoid their marketing magic and find the best price available.

Consumers should take time to take a look at other company’s rates yearly due to the fact that insurance prices fluctuate regularly. Just because you found the lowest price for 3 Series coverage last year the chances are good that you can find a lower rate today. You can find a lot of information about insurance on the internet, but I’m going to show you some proven techniques to put money back in your pocket.

Informed consumers save more

Many factors are part of the equation when pricing auto insurance. Some are obvious such as traffic violations, but others are less apparent like your continuous coverage or your financial responsibility.

The following are some of the things auto insurance companies consider when setting prices.

  • Get cheaper prices after the wedding – Having a spouse may save some money compared to being single. Having a spouse means you’re more responsible and insurance companies reward insureds because married couples file fewer claims.
  • Always keep your auto insurance in force – Driving any period of time without insurance is not a good idea and any future policy may cost more because you let your coverage lapse. Not only will you pay more, failure to provide proof of insurance may result in fines or a revoked license.
  • Lower rates by increasing comp and collision deductibles – The deductibles state the amount of money you are willing to pay out-of-pocket if a claim is determined to be covered. Insurance for physical damage, also known as collision and other-than-collision, insures against damage to your car. Some instances where coverage would apply would be a windshield broken by a bird, collision with a deer, and damage caused by road hazards. The more money you are required to pay out-of-pocket, the lower your rates will be for 3 Series coverage.
  • Gender matters – Over time, data shows females are less aggressive when driving. That doesn’t necessarily mean that men are worse drivers. Both sexes are responsible for fender benders at a similar rate, but men have costlier accidents. Not only that, but men also get cited for more serious violations like DUI and reckless driving. Teenage male drivers are most likely to cause an accident so it costs more to insure them.

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

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Find hidden discounts on car insurance

Some insurers don’t always list every possible discount in an easy-to-find place, so the below list has some of the more common and also the lesser-known credits available to bring down your rates.

  • Discounts for Government Workers – Federal government employees can save as much as 8% for 3 Series coverage with some car insurance companies.
  • Drive Safe and Save – Drivers who don’t get into accidents can pay as much as 50% less for 3 Series coverage than less cautious drivers.
  • Pay Early and Save – If paying your policy premium upfront instead of paying each month you could save 5% or more.
  • Home Ownership Discount – Owning a home can save a few bucks since home ownership is proof of financial responsibility.
  • Anti-theft System – Cars and trucks that have factory anti-theft systems are less likely to be stolen and therefore earn up to a 10% discount.
  • Senior Discount – Seniors may receive a discount up to 10% for 3 Series coverage.

You should keep in mind that most of the big mark downs will not be given the the whole policy. Most only cut the cost of specific coverages such as physical damage coverage or medical payments. Just because it seems like you would end up receiving a 100% discount, it just doesn’t work that way.

Companies and their possible discounts can be found below.

  • 21st Century discounts include theft prevention, early bird, homeowners, driver training, and defensive driver.
  • Progressive may have discounts that include online signing, multi-policy, continuous coverage, online quote discount, and multi-vehicle.
  • State Farm may include discounts for accident-free, driver’s education, good driver, safe vehicle, student away at school, defensive driving training, and Drive Safe & Save.
  • Nationwide policyholders can earn discounts including good student, family plan, Farm Bureau membership, multi-policy, accident-free, and anti-theft.
  • Esurance offers discounts for DriveSense, Switch & Save, online shopper, good driver, Pac-12 alumni, multi-car, and multi-policy.
  • The Hartford offers discounts including driver training, air bag, bundle, defensive driver, good student, anti-theft, and vehicle fuel type.

If you are trying to find affordable insurance quotes, ask each company or agent which discounts you may be entitled to. Depending on the company, some discounts might not apply everywhere. If you would like to choose from a list of providers that offer multiple discounts, click here to view.

Are you falling for claims of savings?

Car insurance providers like Progressive, Allstate and GEICO consistently run television and radio advertisements. They all seem to state the claim of big savings just by moving your coverage. That’s great but how can every company give you a better price? This is how they do it.

Insurance providers are able to cherry pick for the type of driver that will most likely be profitable. A good example of a profitable risk profile may need to be over the age of 35, has no claims, and insures a new vehicle. Anybody that meets those criteria will get low premium rates and most likely will pay quite a bit less when switching companies.

Potential insureds who may not quite match the ideal profile will probably be forced to pay a more expensive rate and this results in the customer buying from someone else. If you pay attention, the ads say “people that switch” not “everyone who quotes” save that much money. That is how companies can advertise the way they do.

This illustrates why it’s extremely important to do a quote comparison often. You cannot predict the company that will have the best auto insurance rates for your profile.

Tailor your insurance coverage to you

When it comes to choosing the best insurance coverage for your personal vehicles, there really is no “perfect” insurance plan. Everyone’s needs are different and your policy should reflect that. For example, these questions can aid in determining if your situation could use an agent’s help.

  • Is my cargo covered for damage or theft?
  • What are the financial responsibility laws in my state?
  • Am I covered if hit by an uninsured driver?
  • What if I owe more than I can insure my car for?
  • Does my liability insurance cover pulling a trailer or camper?
  • Why is insurance for a teen driver so high?
  • Is extra glass coverage worth it?
  • What can I do if my company denied a claim?

If you can’t answer these questions, then you may want to think about talking to an agent. If you don’t have a local agent, simply complete this short form or click here for a list of insurance companies in your area.

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

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What insurance coverages do you need?

Understanding the coverages of your insurance policy aids in choosing appropriate coverage at the best deductibles and correct limits. The coverage terms in a policy can be confusing and nobody wants to actually read their policy. Listed below are typical coverage types offered by insurance companies.

Collision coverage – Collision insurance pays for damage to your 3 Series resulting from a collision with an object or car. A deductible applies and the rest of the damage will be paid by collision coverage.

Collision coverage protects against claims like driving through your garage door, crashing into a building and damaging your car on a curb. Collision coverage makes up a good portion of your premium, so consider removing coverage from older vehicles. Drivers also have the option to choose a higher deductible to get cheaper collision coverage.

Medical expense insurance – Med pay and PIP coverage kick in for short-term medical expenses such as nursing services, chiropractic care and EMT expenses. The coverages can be used in conjunction with a health insurance program or if you are not covered by health insurance. They cover not only the driver but also the vehicle occupants and will also cover getting struck while a pedestrian. PIP is not available in all states and gives slightly broader coverage than med pay

Liability coverage – This coverage provides protection from damage or injury you incur to other’s property or people by causing an accident. This insurance protects YOU against claims from other people. Liability doesn’t cover your own vehicle damage or injuries.

Split limit liability has three limits of coverage: bodily injury per person, bodily injury per accident and property damage. You commonly see values of 100/300/100 which stand for $100,000 bodily injury coverage, a limit of $300,000 in injury protection per accident, and property damage coverage for $100,000. Occasionally you may see a combined single limit or CSL which provides one coverage limit rather than limiting it on a per person basis.

Liability coverage pays for claims such as structural damage, bail bonds, legal defense fees, medical services and funeral expenses. How much coverage you buy is a decision to put some thought into, but buy as large an amount as possible.

Protection from uninsured/underinsured drivers – This coverage protects you and your vehicle when the “other guys” either are underinsured or have no liability coverage at all. This coverage pays for injuries sustained by your vehicle’s occupants and also any damage incurred to your BMW 3 Series.

Because many people have only the minimum liability required by law, it only takes a small accident to exceed their coverage. This is the reason having UM/UIM coverage should not be overlooked. Usually these coverages do not exceed the liability coverage limits.

Comprehensive (Other than Collision) – Comprehensive insurance will pay to fix damage from a wide range of events other than collision. You first have to pay a deductible then the remaining damage will be covered by your comprehensive coverage.

Comprehensive coverage pays for claims like a broken windshield, damage from getting keyed, hitting a bird and rock chips in glass. The maximum payout your insurance company will pay is the cash value of the vehicle, so if the vehicle is not worth much it’s not worth carrying full coverage.

More choices the merrier

Cheap 2011 BMW 3 Series insurance is attainable online in addition to many insurance agents, so you need to quote insurance with both in order to have the best chance of saving money. Some auto insurance companies may not provide online quoting and most of the time these smaller providers work with independent insurance agents.

Throughout this article, we presented a lot of ways to compare 2011 BMW 3 Series insurance rates online. The key concept to understand is the more rate quotes you have, the better your comparison will be. Consumers could even find that the lowest priced auto insurance comes from a small local company. These companies often have lower car insurance rates on specific markets than the large multi-state companies such as Allstate or State Farm.

As you shop your coverage around, you should never reduce needed coverages to save money. In many cases, an insured dropped collision coverage to discover at claim time that the savings was not a smart move. The aim is to buy enough coverage at the best price while not skimping on critical coverages.

For more information, take a look at the resources below: