Your safe driving habits may qualify you for a variety of discounts from an insurer of your choice — but consider companies that offer more than just the cheapest rates.
How much does car insurance for good drivers cost?
The average annual car insurance rate across the US is about $1,300 per year — with many good drivers factoring into that number. However, drivers with violations from a lapse in coverage or DUIs can see increased rates between 10% to 94%. That means riskier drivers might be shelling out closer to $1,430 to $2,522 each year for insurance.
Best for safe drivers: Metromile
Pay only for the miles you drive, plus enjoy app services you won’t find everywhere like claims and car health updates.
Start with low rates at $29/month, plus pennies per mile
Mileage over 250 in a day is free
Intuitive app that helps with claims, ID cards and car health updates
Good drivers have multiple savings options to reward their efforts. Some include:
Safe driving discounts. Many insurers include multiple rewards for safe drivers — including those for being accident or claims free, not having traffic violations, installing car-safety features and taking defensive driving courses.
Disappearing deductible. Another form of safe driving discount, this rewards you by lowering your deductible each year or policy period that you’re accident free.
Stack your savings. Increase your savings by stacking safety discounts along with other easy-to-achieve savings like automatic payments or paperless statements.
Telematics. This usage-based car insurance policy uses a telematics device or app to track your mileage and safe driving habits.
Shop around. Safe drivers have more options for insurance companies, meaning you can typically choose the best value.
Is the cheapest insurance the best?
Not necessarily. You may be able to get more bonuses, better customer service or a more convenient claims process with a car insurance company that doesn’t have the cheapest rates.
Be sure to compare all aspects of the insurers you’re researching, not just the final quote.
What kind of coverage should I get as a good driver?
Even as a good driver, consider a policy that still covers you for situations out of your control — such as other risky drivers on the road.
Coverage you may need includes:
Property damage liability
Pay for damage to another person’s car or property during an accident you cause. This is required in most states.
Andrew is shopping around for insurance and can choose almost any company because of his accident-free driving record. After comparing multiple companies, he settles on a policy at a below-average rate of $1,100 per year.
After applying the 10% safe driver discount and getting another 10% for signing up for his insurer’s safe driving program, Andrew can enjoy a premium of $880 a year. He may get up to 40% off as he continues driving with the app or telematics device.
What should I watch out for as a good driver?
As a good driver, you can have peace of mind about your insurance most of the time. But be aware of a few situations in which you may not be getting the best value:
Cheap insurance. A car insurance company that offers the cheapest rate may still not be the best option for you. Consider the insurer’s claims process and customer experience first.
Comparing quotes. Consider comparing several companies for the best rate with the highest coverage.
First accident. Any accident will bump up your premium, but some insurers offer first-accident forgiveness as a discount or add-on coverage to help.
Driving record errors. Mistakes on your record are rare, but not unheard of. Your record should showcase the safe driving history you’ve worked hard for.
How do I prove that I’m a good driver?
During the quoting process, an insurer looks at your motor vehicle report, provided by your local department of motor vehicles. Nothing more is required on your part.
But you can access the report to make sure it’s up to date and error free by going to your DMV or by asking your insurance agent for the details.
As a good driver, you have the freedom to choose a car insurance company with the best rates and coverage for you. However, you still have to meet state minimum requirements for coverage — so you can’t forgo insurance because of your safe driving.
Common questions about car insurance for safe drivers
Yes. Drivers who have accidents or violations on their record will cause a premium increase. However, you can offset this effect by assigning them as secondary drivers or excluding them from your policy.
Small accidents may actually have little to no effect on your premium. However, when your rate does increase, expect an increase anywhere from 20% to 40%, sometimes more, if the accident was due to DUI or another risky reason. Rate increases also vary by state.
Even if you’re a good driver, your age can drive your premium above the average annual rate. For example, teenage drivers could bring rates as high as 80% to 90% more than adults. This rate usually comes down when the driver hits 25 years old.
Even safe drivers need car insurance to protect them from accidents on the road. Every driver is required by state laws to carry car insurance, including drivers with an accident-free record or driver safety training.
This is likely because many safe drivers have been involved in accidents due to other risky drivers, weather or high traffic conditions.
Sarah George is a writer at Finder who unravels complicated topics about insurance, business and finance. She's been wordsmithing for nearly five years, after earning an English education degree. Her insurance know-how has been featured on CarInsurance.com. You can usually find Sarah sipping hot tea and talking through movie plots in her downtime.
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