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Compare car insurance without a bank account

You have several options to pay your premiums, though you may miss a few banking benefits.

Updated

Most insurance companies offer several payment methods, including non-banking options. But you may find that some methods — like cash payments — require extra steps and time for processing.

How can I pay for car insurance if I don’t have a bank account?

Ask your insurer or check its website to find out what payment options are available, typically on the contact page, payment info page or FAQs. Most insurance companies offer several ways to make a payment, including:

  • Credit card
  • Debit card
  • Prepaid card
  • Money transfer
  • Money order or cashier’s check
  • Personal check
  • Cash

Be aware that some companies cater to an online audience, so certain payment methods may not be accepted or processed as quickly. You may need to send your payment well before its due date to allow extra processing time.

Best insurer with alternative payment methods: Progressive

Discover coverage that’s broader than competitors, valuable discounts up to 30% off and perks like shrinking deductibles that reward no claims.

  • Broad coverage, including for custom car parts or ridesharing
  • Transparent pricing tools that help you buy within budget
  • Accident forgiveness on small claims or for staying claim-free
  • Stack a variety of discounts for multiple cars, autopay or homeownership

Which insurers offer alternative payment methods?

Name Product Roadside assistance New car protection Accident forgiveness Safe driver discount Available states
Progressive
Optional
30%
All 50 states
Discover coverage that’s broader than competitors, valuable discounts up to 30% off and perks like shrinking deductibles that reward no claims.
USAA
Optional
Yes
All 50 states
Affordable car insurance with highly rated customer service. Only available to military members and veterans and their family.
Allstate
13%
All 50 states
Your dedicated agent can help you find the best savings with multiple discounts and rewards programs.
EverQuote
EverQuote
Optional
Yes
All 50 states
Roll in a variety of car insurance quotes from top insurers despite a high-risk driving profile, and view possible discounts while you’re at it.
The AARP Auto Insurance Program from The Hartford
Optional
Yes
All 50 states & DC
Drivers over age 50 can enjoy low rates and perks designed for mature drivers, plus freebies and AARP member perks like free replacement cost coverage.
Liberty Mutual
Optional
30%
All 50 states
Earn free accident forgiveness after five years claims-free and customize your policy anytime online at the tap of a button.
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How to pay for car insurance with a debit or credit card

Making a payment with a debit, credit or prepaid card offers an easy alternative to a bank account. Like a bank account, you can pay for your bill with plastic in a variety of ways:

  • Online. Access your insurance company’s online payments through the website or customer account.
  • Phone. Many providers offer phone payments where you speak or dial in your card number to a recorded phone system. You might also talk to a representative.
  • Automatic setup. Opt into automatic card payments through your online account or by setting it up with a representative.
  • Mobile app. Access online payments through your mobile phone.

Keep in mind that you’ll have to keep adequate funds on your prepaid card, and your credit card charges interest if you don’t pay off the total every month. But it may be worth it if you always pay your credit card bill on time and want to earn credit card points for everyday bills.

How to pay for car insurance through PayPal

PayPal provides a secure way to make online payments. It also offers a quick cash payment method if you tap into funds sent directly to PayPal or add cash through a PayPal Cash Card. With the PayPal Cash Card, you can add money from partner stores like CVS and Walmart.

To make a one-time premium payment:
  1. Use your company’s online payment system.
  2. When adding payment information, choose the PayPal option.
  3. Sign into your PayPal account and confirm payment details.
To set up automatic payments:
  1. Using your online account, select automatic payment setup.
  2. Choose PayPal as your preferred method and save the updated information.
  3. You may also be able to check a recurring payments box during your next online payment.

One downside to using PayPal is that smaller providers may not offer it as an option online, making it a less convenient method. The company would have to add PayPal to its online system. In addition, you may incur a fee when adding money to your PayPal account.

How to pay for car insurance with a money transfer

Money transfers work similarly to PayPal payments. Depending on which service you use, you can send money bank-to-bank, online, with a card or with cash.

To use this method:
  1. Choose which service to use for your money transfer, such as your bank, an online service or independent money transfer company.
  2. Fill out necessary forms from the transfer company, including details about the payment.
  3. Provide information about where to transfer the money, such as the recipient’s bank account information.
  4. Add money to transfer and pay service fees.

This method may add several more steps to your payment, especially if paying in cash or setting up a first-time online account. Many providers also charge a fee. However, you might benefit from the speed of a money transfer if wiring cash, which can be an almost instant process.

How to pay for car insurance with cash

Paying for your premium in cash is a less common method and requires extra time for mailing and processing. To send payment this way, confirm the correct mailing address beforehand. Companies often have several addresses, and sending to the wrong one could delay payment.

You may also want to ask a representative about required forms or helpful information that can speed up the process, such as including an attention (ATTN:) on the letter.

Here’s how to send your payment in cash:
  1. Fill out any required forms from your insurance company, such as a cover letter.
  2. Enclose the cash in a secure envelope.
  3. Place the company’s mailing address on the front and drop the letter in the mail.

To make the cash payment more secure, consider sending a cashier’s check or money order instead. These methods require both you and the recipient to sign before cashing out, and they’re backed with a guarantee by the company providing the check.

You can get a cashier’s check or money order from your bank, post office or some grocery and convenience stores.

Should I get a bank account to pay for car insurance?

Using a bank account does offer several benefits when using it for car insurance payments, including:

  • Flexibility. Choose to pay online, by phone or through a mobile app, using your account information.
  • Security. Banks track the security of its transactions, noting anything out of the ordinary. Using payment methods like cash may not offer this security.
  • Autopay discounts. Your insurance company may offer discounts for automatic transfers.
  • Fee free. Most companies don’t charge service fees when paying through your bank account.

What if I’m having trouble opening a bank account?

You may find that different banks offer a variety of options and benefits and may have differing requirements. Some banks require steep deposits and minimum balances, while others need little more than your personal information and a few dollars. Shop for banks to compare rates, services and customer reviews.

If a lackluster financial history is preventing you from getting a bank account, credit unions or second chance banks could be options. Credit unions often work with higher risk groups, such as those with low credit or unemployment.

Second chance banks offer similar services, but you may need to secure the account with extra money upfront. A few alternative bankers offer accounts with no opening deposit or minimum balance.

Bottom line

You can easily bypass a bank account to pay for insurance by using a credit card, money transfer or cashier’s check. However, it may be more difficult to send and process payments when using less common methods like cash payments.

Compare car insurance providers with flexible payment options that meet your needs.

Frequently asked questions about no-bank car insurance

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