Nationwide car insurance review 2023
Excellent all around support and coverage, plus hefty discounts for safe drivers.
finder.com's rating: 4 / 5
Bottom line: Unlike some of its competitors, Nationwide balances great discounts and service, though it doesn’t accept drivers with too many claims or accidents.
|States served||All states except AK HI LA and MA|
|New car protection||Yes|
|Pay schedule||12 months, 6 months, Monthly|
|Claims methods||Online, Phone|
- High customer satisfaction ratings
- Guaranteed workmanship on completed repairs through Nationwide's auto repair shop network.
- Competitive member perks and discounts
- Potentially high rates
- Inconsistent support
|Anti-theft device discount||Yes|
|Defensive driving discount||Yes|
|Good student discount||Yes|
|Loyalty discount||Yes, up to 15%|
|Safety device discount||Yes|
|Special employment discount||No|
|Usage-based discount||Yes, 5-40%|
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What we think of Nationwide car insurance
Nationwide is one of the largest insurance companies in the country. The company offers plenty of perks, from a Plenti rewards program that offers cashback at major retailers to a vanishing deductible for every year that you’re accident free.
The company also stands at the forefront of technology with tools like Auto Watch, which lets you keep track of your car repairs. Plus, its mobile app makes it easy to make payments, file a claim or view and share ID cards. Customers seem pleased with its user-friendliness and how easy it makes paying monthly premiums, although the occasional negative review sites minor tech issues.
Though its prices may cost more than the competition, you may want Nationwide for its high-quality service, perks and accessibility. Agents are available by email, through an app, over the phone, in person or by online chat. However, if you’re looking for the cheapest rate, consider comparing car insurance quotes with other insurers.
finder.com's rating: 4 / 5
|Category||Our rating||Why we gave this score|
|Coverage||★★★★★ 4.5/5||Nationwide goes beyond the basics that most drivers need, offering options for accident forgiveness, roadside assistance and more.|
|Discounts||★★★★★ 3.5/5||The company offers rewards on par with other insurers, such as discounts for having an antitheft device or taking a defensive driving course.|
|Customer service||★★★★★ 3.6/5||It gets high J.D. Power and Better Business Bureau scores. However, it sees average customer ratings on Trustpilot and an average number of complaints filed with the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC).|
|Financial strength||★★★★★ 4.5/5||It receives an A+ financial rating from AM Best, which shows that it has strong finances to pay for car insurance claims.|
Nationwide car insurance rates
We pulled full-coverage car insurance rates using Nationwide’s online quote tool for good drivers living in California with a clean driving record.
How to get a free quote with Nationwide car insurance
Nationwide’s website offers a straightforward application for auto insurance coverage. Apply for coverage through an agent by calling 877-669-6877, or online by following these steps:
- From Nationwide’s website, click Insurance and protection, then Auto, then enter your ZIP code and tap Get and quote.
- Enter your basic contact and car info, including make and model. Tap continue.
- Add driver and prior insurance info. Hit continue.
- Answer questions to see what discounts you qualify for, then choose continue.
- Review details, select desired policy options, then continue to begin purchase.
- Choose your policy start date, enter contact information, then continue.
- Add your payment details to buy your policy. If you run into roadblocks, call an agent directly.
What discounts does Nationwide offer?
You’ll score the highest savings if you buy several kinds of insurance with Nationwide, insure a car made within the last five years or join Nationwide’s Smartride program to show off your safe driving.
- Accident-free discount. Get better rates if you have at least five years of safe driving.
- Advance quote discount. Save up to 5% if you get a quote at least eight days before your start date.
- Airbag discount. Get up to 30% off medical payments coverage if your car is equipped with airbags.
- Affinity discount. Save up to 10% if you’re a member of a partner organization like the Farm Bureau.
- Anti-theft discount. Earn a discount if your vehicle is equipped with anti-theft technology.
- Automatic payments discount. Get a discount when you sign up for automatic bill pay.
- Defensive driving discount. Save up to 10% for completing an approved driver safety course. In some states, you must be over age 55 to qualify.
- Family Plan discount. Save when you add family or household members to your Nationwide plan.
- Good student discount. Students who hold a B average or above can get discounted rates.
- Loyalty discount. Save up to 5% if you stay insured with Nationwide for three years and up to 15% if you stay with Nationwide for five years.
- Multi-policy discount. Save up to 20% when you bundle your home, auto or other insurance policies.
- New vehicle discount. Save up to 16% when you insure a car made within the last five years. The age requirements may vary by state.
- Paperless discount. Get a recurring discount when you switch to paperless billing and notifications.
- Pay-per-mile discount. Nationwide’s SmartMiles is a pay-per-mile insurance policy, which charges you a low base rate and then a few cents for every mile you drive. This option can help low-mileage drivers save big.
- Telematics discount. Earn up to 40% off by joining Nationwide’s SmartRide program.
What extra perks does Nationwide offer?
Nationwide offers several special programs and features to benefit its customers:
- Accident forgiveness. This program helps you avoid rate increases for your first at-fault accident after going claim-free for a set timeframe.
- Auto watch. Track car repairs online.
- Bonus drive. Get up to $500 for buying or leasing a new car insured by Nationwide.
- High-rated mobile app. Make payments, save your ID card offline, file claims and connect with roadside assistance. Customers give high ratings for the app for how its user-friendliness and accessibility.
- Member connections. Nationwide hosts town hall style events where members can speak up about their experience and give feedback.
- On your side auto repair network. Nationwide has a network of auto repair shops that provide great service and guaranteed repairs.
- Plenti rewards. Sign up to earn discounts and cashback at major stores across the country.
- Vanishing deductible. This optional program lowers your deductible by $100 for every year that you don’t have an accident, up to $500.
Our review of Nationwide SmartRide
Nationwide SmartRide is a telematics car insurance program that tracks your driving through an app or device. If you drive safely, you can earn up to 40% off your premium, a higher discount than most other programs offer.
You start out with a 10% discount at signup, then get your personalized discount after driving for four to six months. The discount applies for as long as you keep your Nationwide policy.
Overall, most customers find the app satisfactory, giving it 3.3 out of 5 stars on Google Play and 3.6 out of 5 on the Apple Store. However, you’ll see higher app ratings when you’re looking at other companies’ telematics apps.
How SmartRide rates your driving
SmartRide factors in four key areas when figuring your discount:
- Accelerating and braking — Limiting speeding up or slowing by more than 7.7+ mph per second
- Mileage — How many miles you drive per trip
- Idling — How long you stop during a drive, which suggests traffic
- Nighttime driving — Avoiding trips between midnight and 5 am
Nationwide car insurance reviews and complaints
Nationwide holds an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB), showing that it has followed up on customer complaints in a timely manner. Despite its high rating, over 200 customers have filed BBB complaints.
Customers are unhappy with denied claims, billing issues and unexpected rate changes. At the same time, Nationwide typically falls below each region’s average on the J.D. Power Auto Insurance Study.
However, Nationwide does hold a 2.38 score on the National Association of Insurance Commissioners complaint index for private passenger vehicles. Since the industry standard is 1.00, Nationwide’s score shows that it sees fewer complaints than normal.
That said, most customers only go online to speak up about major issues with a product or service. It’s common to see multiple complaints but few positive reviews.
Our star ratings for Nationwide, explained
Our car insurance experts rated Nationwide above average because of its solid coverage options, high BBB score and strong finances that back up customers’ claims. We also rated Nationwide highly for its few customer complaints, though its other customer ratings did pull its Finder rating down.
|AM Best financial rating||A+|
|Trustpilot score||2.1/5 out of 10 customer reviews|
|Customer reviews verified as of||April 2022|
Alternatives to Nationwide
See how Nationwide stacks up to other companies’ coverage, benefits and discounts. Then tap Get quotes to see a policy customized to you.
What car insurance coverage does Nationwide offer?
Nationwide offers a standard set of coverage options to protect you while on the road.
- Collision. Pays for damage to your car if you hit another car or object.
- Comprehensive. Pays for non-collision car damage like vandalism, theft, fire, hail or flooding.
- Liability. Covers expenses if you damage a vehicle or injure someone in an accident.
- Medical payments. Helps with accident-related medical costs, regardless of who’s at fault.
- Personal injury protection. Pays for medical expenses, work loss, funeral costs and home services or child care if you get accident injuries.
- Property damage liability. Protects you if your car damages someone else’s car or other property.
- Roadside assistance. Reimburses you for towing and other roadside services if your car breaks down while traveling.
- Uninsured/underinsured motorist. Provides injury and property damage coverage if another driver hits your car but doesn’t have enough insurance to pay for it.
How does Nationwide bundling work?
With Nationwide, you can bundle your car insurance with your home, renters, life or boat policies. Or choose to bundle your motorcycle and renters insurance.
Car insurance ratings
★★★★★ — Excellent
★★★★★ — Good
★★★★★ — Average
★★★★★ — Subpar
★★★★★ — Poor
Our insurance team analyzes car insurance providers to help you choose the best car insurance for you.
We rank insurers from one to five stars based on key factors including customer satisfaction, policy options, price, billing, claims, and support. We create these rankings to help you narrow down an insurance provider that best suits your budget and coverage needs.