Elephant Insurance car insurance review November 2018
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Who is Elephant Insurance best for?
Because its services are limited to four states only, we’ll start with residency: Elephant Insurance is best for residents of Illinois, Maryland, Texas and Virginia. If you live elsewhere, keep an eye on Elephant’s site. It plans to adding more states in the future.
If you live in Elephant’s service area, lower-than-average rates and stackable discounts give it an edge over competitors. The company provides insurance directly to consumers, cutting out the need for an agent. And getting a quote takes minutes online.
Unfortunately for those who’d rather pay by check, payments are limited to credit or debit cards or bank accounts withdrawals. If you don’t pay for your policy in full up front, you’re required to sign up for automatic deductions.
What is Elephant Insurance?
Headquartered in Richmond, Virginia, Elephant Insurance is a subsidiary company of Admiral Group, one of the largest auto insurers in the UK serving more than 5 million customers worldwide.
Elephant’s is a direct auto insurer, but it extends its services through a range of property and life insurance underwritten by partner companies.
Focused on its customers, the company also focuses on making a difference by giving back through charitable donations to wildlife and animal conservation groups.
What car insurance coverage does Elephant Insurance offer?
Elephant offers a full range of coverage to protect you, your loved ones, your property and others you might bump into on the road.
Property damage liability. Pays for damages to other vehicles or property that result from an accident you’re at fault for.
Collision. Covers car repairs, medical bills and related expenses that result from an at-fault accident.
Comprehensive. Protects you from unexpected damages that can result from theft, vandalism or natural disaster — situations outside of accidents.
Medical payments. Covers the bills that come with injuries to you or your passengers — no matter who caused the accident.
Personal injury protection. Fills in the gaps to cover indirect costs that result from an accident, like ambulance rides, lost wages and even child care, no matter who’s at fault.
Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage. Bodily injury coverage that kicks in if you’re injured by an uninsured or underinsured motorist.
Rental reimbursement. Covers the costs of a rental if your own car ends up in the shop after an accident.
Roadside assistance. Get help with towings, jump-starts and emergency assistance services 24/7 nationwide.
How are Elephant Insurance’s rates?
Elephant is a smaller insurer without the branding of, say, a Geico or Progressive. But customers say its rates are low, especially for households that own multiple cars.
Those with good driving habits and newer cars tend to get the best rates. Young drivers and single-car households might be able to find a better rate elsewhere.
But specific rates vary by driver, vehicle — even the city you live in. Get a free quote in minutes online to learn what you might pay with Elephant.
What discounts can I get with Elephant Insurance?
Elephant claims it can save you up to 40% through its discounts alone.
It certainly advertises more of them online than you might find with similar low-cost competitors, including:
Responsible driver. If you haven’t had an accident in five years, you could save up to 10% with specific coverage.
Good student. Prove that you’re a full-time student with at least a B average, and you might shave 12% off your rate.
Electronic signature. Avoid paperwork by signing on an electronic dotted line to collect yet more savings.
Multicar policy. Get up to 20% off your coverage when you insure more than one car on your policy.
Auto and home bundling. Group homeowners or renters insurance with your auto coverage for a varying percentage off.
Pay in full. Satisfy the full balance of your annual policy up front to save more from the get-go.
Paperless account. Save up to 3% for each vehicle by going green.
What’s not covered by this provider?
Elephant Insurance considers safety a high priority. Those with good driving habits and newer cars tend to get the best rates. You’ll be able to get your old and trusty car insured but don’t expect it will cost you in the form of a higher rate. High end and sport model vehicles would be better served with a different provider.
Are there any coverage maximums?
Elephant’s bodily injury coverage tops out at $250,000 per person and $500,000 per accident. It also imposes a cap of $250,000 for total property damage per accident.
But coverage limits and minimums vary somewhat by state. If you’re concerned about maximums, talk to Elephant’s customer service before signing a contract.
Pros and cons of Elephant Insurance car insurance
Fully online. Get a quote, sign up and store all necessary documents in one convenient place.
Multiple discounts add up. Elephant goes beyond the standard bundling discount to include those for good students, paperless billing and full payments. And it claims it can save you up to 40% with these discounts alone.
One-year terms. Unlike other insurers, you can lock in your policy’s rate for up to a year.
Services in four states only. If you don’t live in Virginia, Texas, Illinois or Maryland, you’ll need to look elsewhere until Elephant expands its coverage.
Many online complaints. Its marketing is great. But Elephant’s customers say that site access is erratic, service unprofessional and payments tricky.
Prefers multicar policies. Elephant likes insuring multicar households. If that’s not you, you can still get a quote. But it may not be your cheapest option.
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What do customers say about Elephant Insurance?
Elephant Insurance Services, which encompasses services beyond auto insurance, has been accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) since 2015, earning an A+ rating as of this writing based on 13 factors outside of raves or complaints, including transparency and years in business.
But customer satisfaction varies widely. You’ll find a lot of customer complaints online that detail issues with payments, unhelpful service representatives, hidden fees and rate increases. More alarming, customers say that claims can be slow and difficult — not what you want to deal with after an accident.
On the flip side, positive reviews center on Elephant’s low rates and willingness to match competitor pricing. Its various stackable discounts also get a thumbs-up.
Mixed reviews aren’t out of the ordinary for car insurance companies. But when negatives outweigh the positives, it’s worth knowing what you’re getting into.
How to apply with Elephant Insurance
Start with a free online quote from Elephant:
Go to Elephant Insurance’s website and enter your ZIP code, then click Let’s get started.
Enter your personal contact information as well as details on the vehicles you want to insure and drivers you plan to add to your policy. Click Continue.
Wait for your quote to populate. If you’re not yet sure about Elephant, you can retrieve a saved quote to buy a policy later.
If you like what you see, continue the process of getting your policy online. To speak with a representative, contact support at 877-321-2096 weekdays from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. ET.
What info do I need to apply?
To sign up for a policy online or by phone, you’ll need to submit:
Your address, email and phone number.
Demographic info, like your marital status, education and employment details.
The year, make and model of the vehicles you want to insure, along with safety information.
Any payments you make on your vehicles, and whether you’re the original owner.
The primary use and annual mileage of your vehicles.
Contact information for any drivers you want to add to your policy.
Information on any current auto policy you carry.
A Visa, Mastercard or Discover card or bank account details.
Can I find an Elephant Insurance agent near me?
Elephant Insurance is a direct-to-consumer auto insurance company, which means it doesn’t operate brick-and-mortar storefronts.
Get a quote online or by calling Elephant at 877-321-2096.
How do I make a claim?
With Elephant Insurance, you can file a claim by phone or online.
To file a claim by phone, call 844-937-5353. After you report it, a claims representative will be in contact with you as soon as possible.
To file a claim online:
Go to Elephant Insurance’s website and click Claims from the top navigation bar.
Click File a claim online.
Enter details about your accident, including who’s reporting the claim, your policy information and where and when it took place.
Elephant assigns a claims specialist to your claim who will follow up with next steps.
There is no set wait time for the claims process: A simple claim may be resolved in a few business days, while more complex claims can take longer.
Do I have to go through Elephant’s suggested repair service?
No. If you know and love your mechanic, go ahead: Elephant Insurance lets you take your vehicle to the repair shop of your choosing.
Otherwise, its Repair Assistance Program includes a network of prequalified repair shops offering services with a limited lifetime guarantee.
How do I contact Elephant Insurance?
For general questions, call 877-321-2096 weekdays from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. or Sundays from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. ET.
General questions. Contact Elephant Insurance’s customer support team at 866-980-9431 weekdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET or email email@example.com.
Claims assistance. Call 844-867-2514 at any time.
Roadside assistance. Call 855-982-1720 at any time.
Does Elephant Insurance offer other types of insurance?
Yes. Through its partners, Elephant Insurance also offers:
What car insurance providers are similar to Elephant Insurance?
Elephant Insurance exists alongside many other insurers in providing affordable coverage that you might not find at a large national provider. Similar insurers include Mercury, Esurance and Root Insurance.
Mercury operates a network of more than 8,000 independent agents across 11 states that offer low-cost options.
Like Elephant, Esurance offers low rates for those with good driving habits through a mobile app that allows for full policy management. Whereas Root Insurance is a smartphone app that first requires a test drive before it will match you to a policy and rate it thinks you deserve.
Compare car insurance providers
Aside from the well-known national providers, many smaller insurers are providing affordable coverage with the flexibility that comes with a fully online operation.
Elephant Insurance is one of them, claiming to save you up to 40% through combinable discounts. But it’s available in four states only, which means most readers will need to look elsewhere.
Kelly Waggoner is a senior editor with finder.com. She's worked with publishers, magazines and nonprofits throughout New York City, including ghostwriting a how-to on copyediting for the Dummies series. Between projects, she toys with words, flips through style guides and fantasizes about the serial comma's world domination.
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